City Consultation on Construction Dust – May 15

City Consultation on Construction Dust – May 15

Willowdale continues to be a neighbourhood with a very high amount of infill construction. When builders are not sensitive to impacts on their neighbours, this can be a source of great frustration.

Over the past several years, John has worked with the City to improve the resources it has available to enforce bylaws, improve training for building inspections and develop new communication tools for neighbours.

You can read more about addressing infill construction issues here.  Or find the City’s recently published Good Neighbour Guide here.

One of the most frequent …

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Community Safety Town Hall – May 6

Community Safety Town Hall – May 6

In the aftermath of last week’s attack, the City of Toronto’s Community Crisis Response Program and Toronto Police Services invites residents and business owners or staff to an interactive dialogue about community safety in Willowdale.  Topics will include how to support your neighbours and available community resources during a time of crisis.

Please join us Sunday, May 6, from 6 – 8 PM at Willowdale Baptist Church (15 Olive Ave).  Refreshments and child care will be provided.  For more information, contact Rose-Ann Bailey by e-mail or 647-217-4368.  You can also pre-register here.

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A note of thanks: #TorontoStrong Vigil

A note of thanks: #TorontoStrong Vigil

A very large word of thanks to the City of Toronto staff, countless members of the Toronto Police Service, members of Faith in the City and the Toronto Area Interfaith Council for their tireless work in pulling together last Sunday’s #TorontoStrong Vigil in Mel Lastman Square. It was an opportunity for members of the Willowdale community, and for residents from literally across the GTA and beyond to gather in support and solidarity with the victims of the attack. We hope that it brought a small amount of comfort and healing to those who …

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#TorontoStrong Vigil & Community Walk – April 29

#TorontoStrong Vigil & Community Walk – April 29

As we move together through a difficult week, I want to update you on community gatherings in the days ahead.

The #TorontoStrong Vigil was announced today by the City of Toronto to honour and support all those who have been affected by Monday’s tragedy.

The vigil will take place on Sunday, April 29 at Mel Lastman Square, beginning at 7:00 PM.

Organized in collaboration with community groups Faith in the City and the Toronto Area Interfaith Council, the vigil will be an interfaith demonstration of Toronto’s diverse communities as well as a display of the City’s resiliency.

Additional details, including …

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UPDATED – Community Note on the Yonge Street Attack

UPDATED – Community Note on the Yonge Street Attack

UPDATE (April 24, 2018):

I have been both touched and astounded by the outpouring of offers from residents to offer their time or services to assist others during our current time of need in the Willowdale area. Thanks to all who have sent in thoughtful messages of support.

As we move forward, our priority has been to allow first responders and the Toronto Police to continue doing their important work on Yonge. About half of their work area has now been re-opened to the public and I …

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Outdoor Skating Season is Here

Outdoor Skating Season is Here

The outdoor skating rink at Mel Lastman Square opens this week. Residents looking for a fun, free, family activity can lace up their skates from 10 AM to 9:30 PM on weekdays or from 10 AM to 6 PM on weekends – access to the Civic Centre and washrooms will not be available outside of those hours. The rink in the Square will remain open until March, weather permitting.

As the weather cools, plans for neighbourhood natural rinks are also underway. These rinks usually require a …

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Vision Zero Road Safety Plan

The City of Toronto remains committed to its Vision Zero Road Safety plan focused on reducing traffic-related fatalities and serious injuries on Toronto’s streets. This week, City Council will consider a report recommending an acceleration of the program’s implementation of enhanced pavement markings, signage, Automated Speed Enforcement, Mobile “Watch Your Speed” boards, and new awareness programs. John had initiated the “Watch Your Speed” boards as a pilot for the City in 2014 and remains committed to looking for solutions to implement local improvements. John also supported …

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Overcrowding in Local Schools – Public Meeting October 30

Overcrowding in Local Schools – Public Meeting October 30

Children in some Willowdale condos look out their bedroom windows at schools that have no room for them. Instead of a short walk to class, they get on a bus to the nearest school that can take them. McKee School, built not that long ago to hold more than 600 students, has already been forced to add portables.

As with issues such as traffic and transit congestion, school overcrowding is the product of provincial rules which force development on the area but don’t give it the …

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RBC Race for the Kids (Lane Restrictions) & Terry Fox Run

RBC Race for the Kids (Lane Restrictions) & Terry Fox Run

Willowdale residents will want to be aware of races being held in our community this weekend.  RBC’s annual Race for the Kids in support of youth mental health at Sunnybrook, will be held on Saturday, September 16, 2017.  Over the past three years, the race has welcomed 28,000 participants, raising over $7-million for this important cause.

Road closures will be in effect on Yonge Street (between Sheppard Ave and north of Finch Ave) from 7:15 AM to 11:15 AM.  Finch Ave will also be closed between Doris Ave and Beecroft Road.  For a …

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City Consultation on Short Term Rental Policy

City Consultation on Short Term Rental Policy

Municipal Licensing and Standards and City Planning staff are holding a series of open houses on the newly proposed regulations for short term rentals in the City. The term “short-term rental” describes rentals that occur over a short period of time (e.g. 28 days or less). Popular online platforms, such as Airbnb, Flipkey, VRBO etc. facilitate bookings and payments for short-term rentals.

A local open house will be held from 3:00 to 8:00 PM (with short presentations at 4 PM and 7 PM) on Monday, September 11 at the North York Civic Centre Council Chamber (5100 …

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Re-imagining Yonge Street (UPDATED) – Open House October 10

Re-imagining Yonge Street (UPDATED) – Open House October 10

Update (September 5, 2017)

Re-Imagining Yonge, the City’s plan to reconstruct the badly aging stretch of Yonge Street between Sheppard and Finch Avenues continues as a critical infrastructure project for our community.  Over the spring and summer, John and his EA Markus O’Brien Fehr, participated in fireside chats with over a dozen local neighbourhoods and condominiums in small “fireside chat” formats, sharing information on the project and hearing a wide range of views and opinions.  One thought that most residents share is that Yonge Street is in …

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Healing Gardens Musicfest – October 14

Healing Gardens Musicfest – October 14

Each year, Terry Eagan of Patio Records in Massachusetts boards a plane from Boston, rents a performance hall in Toronto, hires some of his favourite musicians, and writes a cheque to cover all the costs.  Ticket sales from his concerts go towards building healing gardens for cancer patients in local hospitals, a project he started in memory of his late wife, Mary.

On Saturday, October 14, Terry brings this year’s Healing Garden Music Fest to North York’s Lyric theatre, a newly renovated 500-seat gem in the Toronto Centre for the Arts (5040 Yonge St).  …

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