I hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable Halloween. Throughout the weekend, it was wonderful to see the creative ways our community was celebrating safely. I was also pleased to be able to help organize a number of events, including the Davenport Spooky Stories event with the West End Phoenix, and the Earlscourt Centennial Hallowe’en Hullabaloo.
As many of you have noticed and reported to me, there has been a sudden increase in traffic along Lansdowne Avenue between Bloor Street West and Dundas Street West. With various construction related projects scheduled along this corridor – including construction being done by provincial transit agency Metrolinx, the TTC and Toronto Hydro, we need more planning to ensure that the impacts on our community are reduced. I fully share the concerns expressed and as a result, I have written to the CEOs of both Metrolinx and the TTC to work on a plan to address this situation. I have also been speaking to the Deputy City Manager and General Manager of Transportation Services to ensure that an acceptable solution is implemented. I will continue working with the relevant officials on this issue and will keep you updated.
The Ontario Government presented its 2020 budget today. It was delayed due to COVID-19 as these budgets are usually delivered in the spring of each year. While all governments face unprecedented challenges, it is clear that a strong recovery cannot succeed without the partnership and strong support of the provincial and federal governments for municipalities like Toronto. From housing to supporting local businesses, to childcare, it is vital that the province provide the tools and support needed for our City to recover quickly from this pandemic. While information on the budget has just been released, we will all be reviewing it closely to determine the support that will be coming from the provincial government.
At the City, we continue to take steps to keep our communities safe. As we prepare for the re-opening of gyms, movie theatres and indoor dining next weekend, staff at Toronto Public Health have been hard at work building their contract tracing team to ensure we can successfully manage and contain the growing spread of COVID-19 in our communities. This team has grown from 50 to 700, which is the largest in the country, and 200 additional staff are expected to join this month.
Despite the pandemic, City projects are still moving forward across Ward 9. Park improvements and local area studies are continuing. I encourage you to see below for the projects that are in your neighbourhood.
Our office continues to work to serve you remotely. If we can be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us by email at [email protected] or by phone at 416.392.7012.
Table of Contents
- Question from the Community
- Provide Your Feedback on the Creation of Toronto’s Community- based Crisis Response Model
- Bloor Street West Study TONIGHT!
- Keele-St Clair Local Area Study – Second Community Consultation Meeting
- CafeTO Winter Update
- Animating Toronto Parks
- Fatima House Update
- Earlscourt Park Splash Pad Meeting
- Green Line Meeting
- BIA Innovation Fund
- 150 Harrison Park - Information Session and Survey
- Steps – The Renaissance of Mother Gaia Mural
- Dovercourt Kids Refer a Friend Program
- Parks People Webinars
- Inclusionary Zoning Public Consultations
- Recent Announcements
Each day, we are working to answer important questions from our community. To keep you all informed, we will feature some of these questions each newsletter. Have a question you think would be good to share? Reach out to us at [email protected].
I see some people wearing a masks outside. Is this required and is it necessary?
The City of Toronto has in place a by-law that requires the wearing of masks in indoor public spaces. Since July 7th, masks are required in indoor public spaces and since August 5th this requirement was extended to indoor spaces within condominium and apartment common areas. Generally speaking, it is considered safer outside than within indoor spaces. The City's regulations require indoor mask use but not outdoors. Many people choose to wear a mask outdoors as well and this would be prudent when for example it is difficult to maintain safe physical distancing. However, regulations do not require the wearing of a mask outdoors.
Provide Your Feedback on the Creation of Toronto’s Community- based Crisis Response Model
Since May, we have been having working towards a new and more inclusive vision of what community safety and policing should look like in our City. In Toronto and around the world, we have seen people calling on their governments to create approaches to community safety that are fairer, systems that build communities up and more effectively help those that are in need. I have spoken to many of you through email, on the phone, or on virtual community meetings.
Recognizing the urgent need to substantially change how we deliver community safety services, the City has been taking quick action.
As we look to make these changes, it is important that we hear all voices from the community. Recently, the City launched the first phase of consultations on the creation of a community-based crisis response model. The first of the two surveys are live, and seek to understand the public's priorities when designing this program.
Access the Survey Here
Survey will be open until Monday, November 9
A second, broader survey is scheduled for early December that will further explore findings from the first survey.
With growing development pressures on Bloor Street West between Perth and St. Helens, we need to create a comprehensive plan for the community. At 6:30pm, join the Bloor Study community kick-off meeting to learn more and share your thoughts.
On November 18 at 6PM, we will have our second community consultation on the Keele-St Clair Local Area Study. More information and an online survey are available at the link above.
The Winter CaféTO program aims to provide more outdoor dining areas to help some restaurants and bars create physical distancing for patrons on patios. Winter CaféTO has been extended to allow cafes on the sidewalk through the winter to support restaurants with increased outdoor dining space.
A full Winter CaféTO guidebook will be made available soon when provincial regulations are made clearer. In the meantime, restaurants that follow the above linked design guide can establish a sidewalk café.
Grants of up to $25,000 are available to individual artists, arts collectives, and non-profit organizations to present arts programming in selected Toronto parks.
Fatima House Update
No matter what you've been through, you deserve a safe space to live with dignity. Fred Victor, a social service organization, is working to provide this along with other supports for women in need at Fatima House. By helping one another, we all benefit. Click the video below to learn more about this shelter.
Earlscourt Park Splash Pad Meeting
This Tuesday, I joined community members around Earlscourt Park to discuss the future splash pad! Thank you everyone for joining the meeting and sharing your ideas.
Green Line Meeting
The Green Line gives us a rare opportunity to add green space for community use and it is important that it reflects local needs. Thank you to everyone who joined me yesterday evening to discuss the future of the Green Line, including the proposed dog park!
BIA Innovation Fund
The Toronto BIA Office is now accepting applications for Stream 6 of the BIA Innovation Fund. Awards range from $5,000 to $25,000. Special consideration will be given to projects that address economic support and recovery in the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Deadline: Thursday, December 10th, 2020, 4:30 p.m.
On November 12 at 6:30PM, The City of Toronto’s Parks, Forestry and Recreation division invites you to learn more about the new park coming to 150 Harrison Street.
Staff are hosting a virtual meeting to:
- Provide a project update
- Present a concept plan for feedback
- Identify community perspectives and priorities
This virtual meeting will be accessible online and by phone-in. The City of Toronto is following the most current advice provided by Public Health officials as a result of COVID-19.
The survey will be live until November 20.
Artist Jacquie Comrie, working alongside Ward 9 artist Bareket Kezwer created this beautiful new 1,300+ square foot mural at 1140 Dupont Street. I encourage you to click the image to see more of their great work.
Dovercourt Kids Refer a Friend Program
Calling all Dovercourt families! The Club has an exciting campaign for the Dovercourt community.
Do you know anyone would be interested in Dovercourt Club's services?
- Before and After School Program
- Swimming lessons
- Online Character Development Program: Master Chef Junior, Coding, Photography, Art club
- Virtual tutoring: Math
Complete the flyer linked above and submit your flyer via email or in-person for a chance to be included in 1 of 3 draws to receive a token appreciation.
Parks People Webinars
Since September, Park People’s webinar series, "7 Questions: Perspectives on the future of parks and public spaces," has explored the urgent and immediate needs arising out of Covid-19 and the role of parks in creating a more inclusive and sustainable future. I am pleased to share with you the last two webinars of the series
Inclusionary Zoning Public Consultations
City Planning staff will be hosting three virtual public meetings to consult on draft inclusionary zoning policies and zoning requirements as well as a proposed definition of affordable rental housing. These meetings will provide an opportunity for the public to learn more about inclusionary zoning and share ideas and feedback on how this new affordable housing tool should apply in Toronto.
The last meeting will be taking place on Tuesday November 10th from 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm Register here
Remembrance Week Proclaimed in Toronto
Today, Mayor John Tory proclaimed November 5 to 11 as Remembrance Week in Toronto. Remembrance Week is a time when Torontonians can reflect on those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their country and provides us the opportunity to honour all Canadians who have fought and continue to fight for peace.
City of Toronto update on COVID-19
There are 29,960 cases of COVID-19 in the city, an increase of 338 new cases today. There are 159 people hospitalized. In total, 25,133 people have recovered from COVID-19. To date, there have been 1,393 COVID-19 deaths in Toronto. Case status data can be found on the City’s reporting platform.
City of Toronto announces planned road closures weekend of November 7 to 8
The City of Toronto announced planned road closures that will impact travel this weekend, Saturday, November 7 and Sunday, November 8.
Lake Shore Boulevard West will be reduced to a single lane of traffic (westbound only), between Windermere Avenue and Ellis Avenue from Friday, November 6 at 9 p.m. until Sunday, November 8 at 11:59 p.m. to accommodate a large tower crane hoist.
City of Toronto facilities supporting COVID-19 response
City of Toronto libraries, recreation centres, parks and other facilities continue to be vital in the City’s response to COVID-19. These important places have been the frontline of supporting Torontonians, ensuring access to information, providing for food security and facilitating access to health care.
2020 Toronto Book Awards short list announced
The City of Toronto and Toronto Public Library have named the five titles shortlisted for the 2020 Toronto Book Awards. This year’s shortlisted titles include a novel, a graphic novel, a short story collection and two works of non-fiction and tell stories that reflect the diversity and depth of the communities that call Toronto home.
City Council moves to rapidly build new affordable and supportive homes for Toronto’s most vulnerable with $203 million federal investment
Following last week’s announcement from the Government of Canada that the City of Toronto will receive $203.3 million through the Rapid Housing Initiative (RHI), City Council approved Mayor John Tory’s motion directing staff to take the next steps to plan and implement the work needed to move forward quickly. As the City's Housing Advocate and Chair of the Planning and Housing Committee I am pleased to have the opportunity to work on this initiative to provide affordable housing very quickly over the next year.
Ontario Releases COVID-19 Response Framework to Help Keep the Province Safe and Open
In consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and other health experts, the Ontario government has developed the Keeping Ontario Safe and Open Framework. It ensures that public health measures are targeted, incremental and responsive to help limit the spread of COVID-19, while keeping schools and businesses open, maintaining health system capacity and protecting vulnerable people, including those in long-term care.
Province Increasing Direct Care for Long-Term Care Residents to Four Hours per Day
The Ontario government is increasing the hours of direct care for each long-term care resident to an average of four hours per day. This commitment will make Ontario the leader among Canadian provinces in the provision of care for long-term care residents. The announcement was made in advance of the release of Ontario's 2020 Budget later this afternoon.
Prime Minister announces new supports for Indigenous peoples and communities
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, announced over $200 million in new funding to provide support to Indigenous peoples and communities.