Cracking Down on Bad Builders

Cracking Down on Bad Builders

It will come as no surprise that our neighbourhood has more new home construction – by far – than anywhere else in the city.  The unprecedented increase in construction has brought with it a large number of “builders” who show little respect for the City’s bylaws, the neighbourhood in which they are building, or neighbours near their construction sites.  There are, of course, still some good and responsible builders, but these now appear to be in the minority.

Keeping up with the amount of construction and …

Read More »

Rec Spaces at Local Community Centres

Rec Spaces at Local Community Centres

Residents interested in keeping active in 2017 should look into some of the many great community centres Willowdale has to offer.  Check out the leisure skating programs at Mitchell Field or Goulding Community Centres, walk/jog the indoor tracks or join the gym at Mitchell Field or Edithvale Community Centres, or check out the drop in sports programs at any of the three by clicking on the centre name below.  Spaces are also still available for many registered programs at all three locations.

Edithvale Community Centre (131 Finch Ave …

Read More »

Toronto Ready for Winter Snow Clearing (UPDATED)

Toronto Ready for Winter Snow Clearing (UPDATED)

Some quick reminders on City snow clearing for this year:

When the snow stops and if the snow accumulation reaches eight centimeters, local road plowing will begin.  Plowing on the local roads is usually completed between 14-16 hours after the snow stops falling. During this time, snow service requests will not be taken by 311. 

The City will only open driveway windrows wherever it is mechanically possible to do so after eight centimeters of snow has fallen. Typically, driveway windrows are opened between one and two hours …

Read More »

City Finances & “Revenue Tools” – Consultation December 7.

City Finances & “Revenue Tools” – Consultation December 7.

The City of Toronto needs to take a hard look at how it collects revenue, both to maintain and improve services and to finance major projects including public transit, affordable housing and other infrastructure needs.  While finding spending efficiencies is an important part of this equation, capital priorities cannot continue to be funded almost exclusively from the property tax base.  John strongly supports the City’s active exploration of additional revenue tools that would more fairly spread the tax burden.  He also opposes the idea of selling off …

Read More »

John Calls on Province to Broaden Camera Enforcement

John Calls on Province to Broaden Camera Enforcement

Over the past several months, John and his staff have had conversations with local community groups and senior officers at TPS 32 Division discussing enforcement strategies in an overly congested traffic environment.  Too often, even when a uniformed officer is available to observe a traffic infraction on a busy road like Yonge Street, they will avoid issuing a ticket as this process would take out a lane of traffic for 10-15 minutes.  The recommendation from local Superintendent Sam Fernandes has been to work towards camera enforcement …

Read More »

New Programs at Mitchell Field – Winter Registration December 6

New Programs at Mitchell Field – Winter Registration December 6

Have you checked out Mitchell Field Community Centre recently?  Over the past several months there have been some great additions including a new youth lounge and expansion of many children and youth programs.  New program highlights include Young Women in Action, an upcoming 3-on-3 basketball tournament, cooking programs for kids, drop-in volleyball programs for adults and much more.  Staff are also working on developing a new advisory council for residents wishing to participate in programming.  For more information call Jasmine at 416-395-0262.  Or look for the …

Read More »

Provincial Review of the Ontario Municipal Board

Provincial Review of the Ontario Municipal Board

A key item currently under review is the future role of the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB).  The OMB is an un-elected body appointed by the Province that his final say over all planning decisions in our city.  Ontario is the only province in Canada which has a body that takes planning approvals out of the hands of local representatives.  In our community this has often led to large amounts of OMB approved residential development never considered by the City’s Official Plan.

John is a strong advocate …

Read More »

From City Hall: New Ward Boundaries Approved

From City Hall: New Ward Boundaries Approved

With the population of Ward 23 now over 100,000 – literally more than double other wards in Toronto – and development rates among the greatest in the City, John was pleased to see the City take action to re-align the City’s wards making population sizes more equitable.  Either the 44 or the 47-ward models that went before Council would have broken up Ward 23.  John voted with the majority to expand council slightly (to 47 wards) to accommodate the high growth rates being experienced across …

Read More »

Yonge-401 Interchange (UPDATED)

Yonge-401 Interchange (UPDATED)

Update:

In late October, John joined representatives from the Yonge Corridor Condominium Association, West Lansing Homeowners Associationand West Willowdale Neighbourhood Association for a meeting they arranged at Queen’s Park with Willowdale MPP David Zimmer and Ontario Minister of Transportation Steven Del Duca.  The focus of discussion was the ongoing delays in proceeding to an Environmental Assessment (EA) of the Yonge Street/Highway 401 interchange improvements.

Residents, along with John, expressed their frustration over the stalling of a Feasibility Study in 2015.  In the summer of 2016, the Province announced …

Read More »

Updates to Olive Square

Updates to Olive Square

City parks are a place where children from all cultures naturally play together.  John is looking to take this one step further by creating a simple way for residents of different communities to share their childhood games and celebrating the diverse culture of the North York Centre.

The first attempt to do so will be at Olive Square, located near the southeast corner of Yonge & Finch, a location with a very large number of residents of Korean, Persian, Chinese and other heritage.  Many of these …

Read More »

REimagine Yonge Street (UPDATED)

REimagine Yonge Street (UPDATED)

Update (September 15)

Over the spring and summer hundreds of Willowdale area residents have offered their thoughts on “REimagine Yonge”, the Environmental Assessment currently being conducted by the City of Toronto looking at opportunities to improve the streetscape and public realm along Yonge Street from Sheppard Avenue to Finch Avenue.

Residents at the last public Open House on July 25 had the opportunity to offer their thoughts as the City focused its scope on an option that would “transform” the streetscape.  Residents interested in viewing the panels …

Read More »

Lee Lifeson Art Park Opening – September 17

Lee Lifeson Art Park Opening – September 17

In recent years we have had the great fortune of opening a new park virtually annually in Willowdale.  2016 is particularly special as our community’s new Lee Lifeson Art Park – located between Princess and Hillcrest Avenues at Gladys Allison Place – will be not only celebrate the arts in our community and beyond, but will honour two hugely successful artists with local origins.

The initiative to create an art park, and to name it after Willowdale natives Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson, originated with John in …

Read More »