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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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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OMB Reform Coming Soon

OMB Reform Coming Soon

The provincial government has announced that it intends to replace the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) with a Local Planning Appeal Tribunal which will be required to give much more weight to the decisions of local municipal councils. Under the proposed system, the Tribunal would evaluate appeals by whether the City had followed its own planning rules in the initial decision. The set of proposals, if implemented, would put planning back in the hands of your local elected councils, which John believes is very good news.

This legislation, part of Bill 139, passed …

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Updates to Edithvale Park

Updates to Edithvale Park

Edithvale Park and Community Centre (131 Finch Ave W) is one of our busiest hubs for recreation.  John has continued to work with the community and City PF&R staff to make the park more functional for its users.  The next set of updates will begin in the fall of 2017 with the restoration of the Native Plant Garden.  Many residents have seen this area tarped off to remove a number of invasive plants and weeds.  The new garden will be designed as a natural habitat for …

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Mel Lastman Sq Movie – The Salesman – May 26

Mel Lastman Sq Movie – The Salesman – May 26

MAY 26 Update:

Movie Night is On!  Forecast for showtime (8:45 PM) is partly cloudy skies and 16 degrees C. Bring a blanket to stay warm or a cushion to sit on.

MAY 17 Post:

Join John and Member of Parliament for Willowdale, Ali Ehsassi for a free outdoor film screening in the heart of our community, the amphitheater in Mel Lastman Square (5100 Yonge)

Bring a blanket and curl up under the stars for The Salesman winner in the Best Foreign Language Film category of this year’s Academy Awards.  This film screened outdoors …

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From City Hall: Growth Strategy for Child Care

From City Hall: Growth Strategy for Child Care

Last month, City Council approved a 10-year strategy for expanding child care and early learning programs in Toronto and authorized staff to meet with federal and provincial representatives in pursuit of a tri-government agreement on expanding child care and early learning. The City’s vision is a licensed child-care system serving 50% of Toronto’s children up to age four by 2026. Locally, population growth has meant finding licensed child-care is a problem for many Willowdale families.  John has worked maximize developer contributions in this area to expand our local system.  …

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Ward 23 2017 Community Environment Day – May 12

Ward 23 2017 Community Environment Day – May 12

John hosts his annual Community Environment Day at Earl Haig Secondary School (100 Princess Avenue) on Saturday, May 13, from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM. Environment Days are focused on creative ways to reuse old items, recycle properly, and learn about waste diversion initiatives.  It is also a space where people are encouraged to donate the items that they might otherwise throw away, specifically any school supplies or non-perishable food items. You may pick up new kitchen compost containers ($5 ea) and drop off old technology, batteries, and household hazardous waste to ensure a …

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New Green Bins arriving in Willowdale

New Green Bins arriving in Willowdale

The City continues to phase in delivery of the new Green Bins.  Neighbourhoods west of Yonge have now been completed and areas east of Yonge began recieving new bins on March 9. It will take about three months to complete this distribution. The City will deliver to one collection route per day, which represents approximately 1,500 households. Don’t be alarmed if you see residents in your area with new bins and you have not received one — yours is coming. On the same day that residents …

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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 …

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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 …

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