Doors Open Toronto 2016

Doors Open Toronto 2016

Since its inception in 2000, Doors Open Toronto has attracted more than two million visits to over 700 unique locations across the city. It is Canada’s largest Doors Open event and one of the three largest Doors Open events in the world. Doors Open Toronto is dedicated to celebrating built heritage, architecture and design. The 17th annual celebration will offer free and rare access to architecturally, historically, culturally and socially significant buildings across Toronto on Saturday, May 28 and Sunday, May 29.

This year’s event features more …

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From City Hall: Taxis, Limos & Uber (UPDATED)

From City Hall: Taxis, Limos & Uber (UPDATED)

At its recent meeting, City Council voted on a series of regulations which legalized private transportation companies (PTCs) such as UBER.  John supported all recommendations relating to establishing a new PTC class in the City’s licensing system.

However, that was only part of the 58 motions Council had before it.  Some of the Mayor’s recommendations – resulting from an agreement reached with several Councillors who supported taxi brokerages and plate owners – effectively reversed most of the positive reforms to the taxi industry adopted by Council …

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City Continues Work on Street Safety

City Continues Work on Street Safety

City staff are currently working on a road safety plan that will be presented to the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee in early summer. The plan’s goal is to identify potential safety initiatives that can be implemented to help reduce transportation- related deaths and serious injuries on Toronto’s roads.

Among the key issues being addressed in the plan are safety for seniors and school children, pedestrian and cyclist safety, and the problems of aggressive and distracted driving.  This continues to grow as a local issue relating …

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Clean Toronto Together 2016 (UPDATED with Ward Locations)

Clean Toronto Together 2016 (UPDATED with Ward Locations)

The City of Toronto is holding its annual Clean Toronto Together community cleanup program April 23 & 24.  Registrations for this event are now closed.  If you are interested in getting involved in a local clean-up event, the following dates and times have been registered with our office or with the City:

SATURDAY, APRIL 23, 2016

West Lansing Parks       9:30 AM
meeting at the West Lansing sign, NW corner of Florence & Yonge

Mel Lastman Square      10:00 AM
with David Zimmer (MPP) and Ali Ehsassi …

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Shaping Toronto’s Low Carbon Future – Conversation May 9

Shaping Toronto’s Low Carbon Future – Conversation May 9

Residents are invited to help shape Toronto’s future as a low-carbon city by participating in a series of community conversations as part of TransformTO: Climate Action for a Healthy, Equitable and Prosperous Toronto. Participants will be engaged in co-creating a vision for Toronto’s low-carbon future that reflects various community perspectives and explores the actions, behaviour and lifestyle changes that will be needed to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent by the year 2050.

The North York conversation will be held on Monday, May …

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From City Hall: Making High Density Neighbourhoods More Family Friendly

From City Hall: Making High Density Neighbourhoods More Family Friendly

The City of Toronto has initiated a study entitled Growing Up: Planning for Children in New Vertical Communities. The study examines how new multi-unit housing in high-density communities can better accommodate the needs of households with children and youth. Undertaken by the City Planning division, the study will give direction on how new mid- and high-rise developments can better function for growing families. The study will look at how the condo unit, the building, and the neighbourhood can be improved to better suit a growing family.

Some examples …

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New Solar Panels at Gwendolen Tennis Club

New Solar Panels at Gwendolen Tennis Club

The City of Toronto recently completed the installation of new solar panels at the Gwendolen Park Tennis Club connected to the Toronto Hydro electrical grid.  The City will receive revenues for 20 years from the sale of electricity generated by the system, through Ontario’s MicroFIT program, expected to be almost double the capital cost.  The Toronto Renewable Energy Office (TREO) organized this installation as the City’s lead in supporting its mandate to install renewable energy systems on all City buildings, where feasible, by 2020.

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City Action on Infill Construction

City Action on Infill Construction

Willowdale residents noticing construction sites on seemingly every street aren’t just imagining it.  Ward 23 continues to see a massive increase of infill housing sites where old homes are replaced by usually much larger structures.  In 2015, the City tracked 31 severance and 262 minor variance applications in the ward for a total of 293 sites that went before the Committee of Adjustment.  Those numbers rank Ward 23 in the top spot across the City, more than the applications of 15 other wards combined.

These numbers are …

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New Online Resources for City Residents

New Online Resources for City Residents

The City of Toronto has launched new online tools to help residents monitor services.  Want to know where City snowplows are working?  A new City webpage uses GPS to determine when a road was serviced by using a colour coded system.

The City has also launched MyWaterToronto, an online tool that enables customers to view their water use information from their computer or mobile device. By entering their utility account information, residents can view their total and average water use by day, week, month or year …

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From City Hall: Labour Relations Update

From City Hall: Labour Relations Update

On Friday, February 19, Mayor John Tory announced that a tentative agreement had been reached with the Toronto Civic Employees’ Union Local 416 (CUPE) representing the City’s 4,200 outside workers.  Details of the agreement will be released once ratified by the Local 416 membership and subsequently approved by City Council.  John was happy to see an agreement reached preventing a disruption in services including garbage collection and snow clearing.

Bargaining with Canadian union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 79 and the City’s 21,000 inside workers continues.  Though …

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From City Hall: 2016 Budget

From City Hall: 2016 Budget

In January, Council will debate the 2016 budget.  These discussions are always challenging and must balance the reluctance to ask residents to pay more than the rate of inflation, while also ensuring the City has the necessary capital to run well.  Willowdale residents are particularly aware of tax increases as local property values continue to skyrocket.  As these values ultimately determine the taxes residents pay, our community is disproportionately affected by all budget decisions.

For this reason John tends to support user fees as a budget …

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From City Hall: Shifting Plans on Transit (and Open Houses)

From City Hall: Shifting Plans on Transit (and Open Houses)

The City has once again announced a shuffling of the deck on high speed transit proposing amendments to several projects previously approved by Council.  While residents have grown weary of constant change, in this case there is reason for optimism and hope that the City is not only moving forward, but inching closer to getting it “right.”

The Mayor’s SmartTrack proposal leveraging the Province’s electrification of the GO lines was approved for study by Council in 2015.  It adds stations to these lines in the eastern …

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