Monday, June 30, 2008
from their email..
Due to a great mix of sun and rain we are also excited to be getting more and more produce every week, such as peas, beets, zucchinis, cucumber, radishes, onions, carrots...and of course there are still strawberries.
Please also market the 21st of July on your calender as we will be celebrating the grand opening
Sorauren Farmer's Market, every Monday from 3 p.m. - 7 p.m. May 26 until October 27
One of the vendors at the market is the Field Sparrow Farms is a family-run grass fed beef business,
from their site ... purely grass-finished beef. Compared with feedlot beef, grass-fed has less total fat, less saturated fat, less cholesterol, and less calories. It also has more vitamin E, beta carotene, vitamin C, Omega 3 fatty acids, and conjugated linoleic acids (CLA) which is an anti-carcinogen.
Field Sparrow Farms
Posted by Robert
The north west corner of Weston Rd north of St Clair Ave., a corner that helped to form the beginning of the junction community, is to be redeveloped by the Trinity Group into a mix of big box retail and other retail and residential uses. They will be building 650.000 square feet of retail use space which is projected to open in spring of 2010.
The site was formerly a plant for Swift’s Premium Meats for many years and most recently Bunge Ltd. (at this location a processor of edible oils)
Trinity Group WESTON & ST. CLAIR W., Toronto, ON diagrams at their site
The mix of residential and commercial is a welcome change. Many developments in West Toronto are one or the other.
Posted by Robert
Friday, June 27, 2008
Hey, there are studios for rent on Vine ave numbers 142 to 144 which was the A and B plastic building - until the mid 80's? and more recently a textile company.
The current conversion to studios has the building owner taking the long enclosed loading dock to the west side of he building and opening it up to allow sunlight to enter the building.
CP Rail is now selling a portion of the West Toronto yard to be used for a housing development. Most likely the front row of houses will front onto Ethel Ave.
Ethel Ave provides a major east-west route between Runnymede Road and Keele Street via it's connection with West Toronto Street. The streets are two-way with a width of approximately 10 metres and a 40 km/h speed limit. While the abutting avenues of Ryding and Cobalt are primarily residential, with George Bell Arena on the south side. Sections of roadway at Gourlay Crescent, Ethel Avenue are industrial/commercial. On West Toronto Street there are large retail facilities such as Home Depot, Rona, Staples and Dominion. Again this will bring up the issue of the industrial/commercial/residenal mix, much as it has on the old Benjamin Moore paints site just off of Keele St. where the city is having a difficult time finding the right way to integrate the threee land uses. The commuity needs the mix - the city needs a policy on this this issue.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Using census data to identify problems the Fraser Institute has cited Toronto as a declining city, the census data does provide this sort of picture. While neighborhood people continue to develop their communities within the city, the municipal infrastructure that supports these communities is weakening. Look, at the condition of the roads - bad. There are also continuing cutbacks in school services and parks.
Some points from the news release.
"While most other major cities across Canada have experienced growing incomes and job creation, Toronto has become a national laggard. It’s little wonder a feeling of unease has crept into the public’s consciousness,” Harris said.
Toronto may be losing its status as Canada’s pre-eminent city and business hub and that has city residents worried, according to a new study and poll from independent research organization the Fraser Institute.
Is Toronto in decline? (Toronto Star)
Fraser Institute News Release
Link to Fraser Institute report (PDF)
Posted by Robert
Picture credit - 416style flickr
The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) and the City of Toronto are examining routes to extend streetcar service westward from Exhibition Place (where it now ends in the near the lakeshore) to the existing track at Roncesvalles Avenue and Queen Street West. Currently they are looking for best route. It looks like they want a run the streetcars in a protected right of way, one that is not interrupted by vehicle traffic.
The route extension would better serve communities from southern Etobicoke to downtown Toronto, including High Park, Sunnyside, Parkdale, and Liberty Village, with a clear passage downtown.
More information is posted at Waterfront West Light Rail Transit (WWLRT) Environmental Assessment at the TTC site
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
This an fine looking home in a nice neighborhood - still an affordable neighborhood yet still with a little excitement from the grit. Highlighted in green below in some text from the realtors blurb (who is Tony Couto of Remax West ) are items that sounds wonderful about the house and in orange is a statement that is probably not so right. It may be just worth it for the instant Stunning Maple Kit that comes with the house - see text below. Realtors should not write house descriptions provided to the public in "realtor vernacular" english
Tony Couto of Remax West
Olde Minico Elegance & Grace, Circa 1905. Sun-Filled 4 Bedrooms W/New World Charm. Lovingly Cared For, Boasts Original Baseboards & Wood Trim, Lead Glass Windows, B/I Window Seat, Elegant Fireplace, Stunning Maple Kit, New Bath & Fabulous 20 X 10 Deck Overlooking Oasis. Features Formal Living & Dining Rooms. Close To Public Transit, Marina, Parks And Lake. Minutes To Downtown. Restoration & Attention To Detail Unsurpassed. Shows 10+++ Great Neighbours!!! (sic)
Heated Floors In Kitchen And Main Bath. All Elf's, Fridge, B/I Oven & Microwave, B/I Gas Cooktop, B/I Dishwasher, Gb & Equipment Hwt (R). One Of A Kind, Show To Most Discriminating Buyers. 50 X 124 Lot.
P.S. the agent name is given as a courtesy - don't know him
posted by Robert
On Industry Ave just above Eglinton Ave at Black Creek Rd. you can see the last twisted remnants of the old Kodak plant gate. Through the gate you can see the land where a new residential development is to be constructed. Right across the road an old industrial building is being brought up to todays workplace standards - great move by the people refitting this building. Having a new residential development next to light industrial buildings is great, because it provides jobs for the people in the homes. Fewer of residents will have to travel some distance to their jobs, saving energy and leaving then more time with their families. Hopefully the elected persons will see this and support more of it.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
For ever - is the approx time people on Vine Ave and the greater junction have been waiting, to have sidewalks placed on the north side of the avenue. In the spring the long stretch between Pacific Ave and Keele St is a mud hole in sections and in winter an ice field. More when the person at the city who arranged this is found.
The Big on Bloor fest - they were so tight for space, with over 400 tables booked and all the performance and art exhibits - but it all ran smoothly and there were a lot of excited people.
The flicker and comments page can give you a feel of it's nature.
Read what people had to say about it
Big on Bloor flicker page
Monday, June 23, 2008
Picture credit - rachaelvoorhees Flickr
Getting speed bumps and or no through traffic signs, or a reduction in speed to 30 km in the City of Toronto is long process. (see cities procedure at end of post)
Traffic Calming Page
Summary of the Policy (PDF)
The cities rules and procedures for traffic calming.
The issue must be initiated by your City Council representative following a public meeting, or upon receipt of a petition signed by at least 25 per cent of affected households, or by a survey conducted by the local Councillor. When a request for traffic calming is received, staff reviews it to ensure that it meets the stipulated technical and safety requirements. After City staff has reviewed the situation, traffic calming may be installed only on streets when the results of a formal poll indicate that a minimum 50 per cent plus one of the affected households have responded and at least 60 per cent of the responding households are in favour of the proposal.
This townhouse currently for sale just off Lakeshore Blvd is one very few homes in the West end that provide you with such a close view of the lake. While it would be wonderful to live here if your lifestyle suited - you could do without a garden and major home repairs, you would do to view yourself as privileged. $1,600,000 isn't a very high price for a three-story house in this area. this post started with some wonder about what sort of community is developing in the old west Toronto motel strip now that it is just about built up with new exciting and costly places to live, still wondering?
The listings description
Direct Waterfront - Very Private Enclave Of 8 Executive Residences - Extremely High End Gated Community Beautiful Design - 500 Sqft Deck Off Main Level - 200 Sqft Off Master, Both Overlooking 'Lake'.
Extras: Subzero S/S Fridge, Dw, Viking Range, Wd, Elf's, Crown Moulding, 10 Ft Ceiling, 2 Fireplaces, Gated Community, $169 Pm Assoc. Fee Covers Snow/Landscaping. Rare Opportunity To Own The Best! Near 2 Yacht Clubs, Acres Of Park, Kingsway Dining.
Friday, June 20, 2008
A meeting to discuss issues and and chat about the community - and meet each other at the Troubadour Bar 3071 Dundas St. West (at Quebec North side of Dundas)
Kristy of the Troubadour bar has kindly donated her patio for the meeting starting at 7 pm.
One of the issues to be presented is the organizing of a residents association so the community can have a joint voice.
Walk though the Eglinton/Caledonia area - down through a side street and what you will see is the growth of small post war bungalows into mini mansions. The top two houses in the above image show the two distinct styles currently being chosen by most people - the stucco or the veneer stone. Of course neither of these has a strong history in numbers of Toronto housebuilding. What people want is the appearance of stone, which they get in this method of external finish.
The bottom two houses clearly detail the old and the new, and many people would not enjoy living in the small post WWII house. But why must the "new" residential architecture of Toronto be an agglomeration and not something really true to the new conditions of Toronto. Should the brighter of the west end architects and housing designers speak up to their clients?
posted by Robert
Images from the site
Thursday, June 19, 2008
The City of Toronto has on June 10th 2008 adopted the Damaris Dev. Inc proposal to develop the site into a residential development. Public space areas in the development will include an area along the southern boundary of the development as the appropriate location for parkland dedication - which is required to be provided of Damaris, and a public lane. In addition Damaris must provide $175.00.00 Section 37 contribution towards playground improvements to Louise Russo and Strathburn Parks.
3035 Development Plan
The Toronto Star is reporting - once again t he St. Clair West streetcar right-of-way once again is mired in controversy as TTC officials yesterday threw cold water on a report suggesting it's unsafe for fire trucks.i
points mentioned are..
- Trucks risk smashing their mirrors into the streetcar power traction poles
- damaging tires or equipment on curbs, the pavement being about 6 metres wide rather than the usual 9 metres
- Fire trucks have difficulty maneuvering around the center poles to bypass streetcars
link to article Alarm raised over St. Clair right-of-way
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
This building is tough, it has taken some knocks, and to discover whats going to be it's fate is the question. For many years it was a green grocer, then it went through a series of quick in and out tenants. For some time it appeared it was going to get a huge refit in size as evidenced by the image pictured at the bottom above. This image taken from a local architectural office site (High Park Architects) has been up on their site for some time now. Now though (June 2008) there are two building permits for restaurants attached to the windows of the two stores the building is divided into.
This building has over time had just about all of it's original character ripped off, not by the current owner - who has recently replaced the roof, which will greatly help the building. This building needs to make a profit for it's owner so he/she can continue to improve it. The Junction right now needs some effort to layer back in some of the Junction mercantile history of dual use buildings. Maybe one day someone will build the overbuilding designed by High Park Architects. Hopefully they will update their site witth more pictures of their design.
The rendering above is copyright High Park Architects http://www.urbanactions.com/
Posted by Robert
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Monday, June 16, 2008
Picture credit - junctioneer 2008
What would a person-on-the-street in the Palmerston area, out for house looking walk think about how the choices of these too people affect the neighborhood? The exterior renos look like they were done around the same time by the condition of the materials. Sure the stucco on the left cleans up the house. Is stucco being now used aluminum siding was in the 70's?
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Picture credit - jbcurio
The junction-parents blog community has a post concerning smoking around children and in parks thats is particularity relevant to the community and so important right now as there are so many kids outside and in the parks.
Want a new urban model? Go west
Vancouver's approach to city-building is now a global export. We've distilled five lessons Toronto could learn from the left coast
and another Christopher Hume article about our new street furniture
Friday, June 13, 2008
The City of Toronto appears to be looking at it's property "portfolio" - the word they seem to use, and see what chunks they can cut off and sell. Although the sale of any public lands removes space from the publics access and it a city with so little public space, should be being done? Maybe they should take the money and buy some land, and make a few public squares?
This 1st one is the sale of a small triangle piece of land at the turning point in a lane way, it's loss will simply make the lane way harder to turn into.
On May 20, 2008, the portion of public lane at the rear of 427 Shaw Street (PDF), between Shaw Street and Crawford Street and north of Harrison Street, and shown as Part 1 on Sketch No. PS-2007-298, conditional upon City Council approving the permanent closure of the portion of the lane. The property has an area of approximately 5.0 m² (53.8 ft²). The City proposes to invite an offer to purchase from the owner of 427 Shaw Street.
3. On May 20, 2008, the portion of public lane at the rear of 3 Kimberley Avenue (PDF), being a portion of the public lane on Plan 1186 and shown as Part 1 on Sketch No. PS-2007-218, conditional upon City Council approving the permanent closure of the portion of the lane. The property has an area of approximately 56.8 m² (611.4 ft²). The City proposes to invite an offer to purchase from the owner of 3 Kimberley Avenue.
4. On May 20, 2008, the public lane at the rear of 585 Queen Street West (PDF), extending west from Portland Street, between Queen Street West and Richmond Street West and shown as Part 1 on Sketch No. PS-2006-056, conditional upon City Council approving the permanent closure of the lane. The property has an area of approximately 285 m² (3,067.81 ft²). The City proposes to invite an offer to purchase from the owner of 585 Queen Street West (RioCan PS Inc.).
Thursday, June 12, 2008
A Concord company has requested of the city of Toronto that the private lane being made to service their townhouse development at 315 and 325 Dalesford Road, be named “Gala Lane”; the cost $600.00 and they have to maintain the street sign.
Other than that simplistic and marketing oriented lane name and the city's pricing guys be out to lunch, Berkley Developments has designed some nice looking steel level designs with mostly well thought out ornamentation, that could be said to be a grammar of ornament.
Brownstone Lane Berkley Developments
Picture credit - City Toronto
The Go Transit rail-to-rail grade separation of the CN/CPR corridor at Junction Road/Old Weston Road, expects to start construction on October 1, 2008. Go Go Transit expects to close the intersection of Junction Road/Old Weston Road for up to 4 years - They plan to close the Road to Oct 1st 2008 until Oct 2012. (although the 20102 date is approx. the intersection will be closed for a few years.)
City's Background Information (PDF)
Interesting issues raised in the city report
GO is negotiating the purchase of a portion of Old Weston Road from the City of Toronto (what? doesn't this remove some public space)
GO is wanting to place a permanent installation of a storm water detention pond within a portion of the Old Weston Road right-of-way ( the part the city is selling to them)
Another interesting aspect is that Monarch Road pictured above still seems to exist at least on paper. Walking in the area now the road is a pile of dirt and garbage, then near it's end opens open before it hits the tracks. 12 Monarch Road was the address of the milling comnay afetr which the street is named.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
BUYING, RENOVATING & SELLING is a title section on a Toronto Remax relator's web site. Providing a thorough run through of the investment opportunities using this particular method of making money buying and then doing some renovation and quickly selling again - the site places an attractive face on the activity.
Neighbors are no doubt eager to see really run down houses purchased and repaired and would also see the value in the flippers profit for work in this scenario. Yet most flips are of houses that are really in reasonable condition, there may be badly chosen homeowner designed "interior design". Flippers are a problem in such cases as they will be willing to pay more for house - as they are planning for profit - then would a person or family who actually wanted to live in the house or condo. (yep condos get flipped too)
West Toronto has a particular big problem with mega flippers - who prefer to be referred to as builder/developers. These people buy a house tear down all but 15 percent (tax thing) and then build another one or two houses on the lot. Lost is all the architectural heritage - and probably the character of that particular area of street. 48 Rathburn - a property of national architectural and historical significance is a case in point (it's a great site detailing the house) A Globe and Mail article (2004) on the Trend House program.
posted by Robert
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
The new City of Toronto Public Posting Columns are oh so great as they affirm the people of the city's right to tell each other anything in a public forum with no one interfering. Until they are in place people who want to post posters within the accepted rules have to read the wonderfully titled (which can be read as don't do this) municipal code Section 313-73.2 -.3-.4 Placement of posters on certain objects prohibited.
Hurray for the people who made this happen!
Public Spaces site on Toronto Postering
Great story over at EYE weekly about how (there) correspondent gets bounced from Astral Media's oh-so-private public infrastructure party
Monday, June 9, 2008
Picture credit - Sweet one
This picture posted by on Flicker provides a great example why condominium developments should be designed to reflect the community character ( thats why it was allowed to break the west end subject matter of this blog) and the provide integration into the built environment they are being placed into. will this one?
From the image poster. One of three buildings on Charles Street East being considered under a rezoning proposal (this will be demolished and replaced with a condo building). I think I'm writing my councillor tomorrow.
Perhaps if the developer was more community communicative he wold not be so mad, many good developers hold public meeting and fare well with bring there project to a community.
Friday, June 6, 2008
Today's lantern making was swell, with people making over 20 lanterns today. There will be another lantern making session next Saturday, or you can make your own at home and come for the walk at 7:3pm on the 21st. Plan to come for the walk - imagine a procession of lanterns walking through the streets - waving in the air- the murmurs of joy from the adults and shouts of wonder from the children. All the while enveloped with the glow of the all the tea lights.
Picture credit - Uncle Tubby 2008
The City of Toronto wants to use funds gained from developers under section 37 to fund of Heritage Conservation District Studies. Section 37 allows the city through a zoning by-law, approve increases in height and/or density beyond what the zoning by-law would otherwise permit, in return for facilities, services or matters (community benefits) as are set out in the by-law. aTo use the funds in this way the city must amendment Official Plan. In November of last year City Council has approved this amendment in principle. They then were to proceed with mapping of the specific areas, and as they have stated the amendment is not expected to be adopted until May, 2008 at the earliest.
The potential benefits for Including Heritage Conservation District Studies under Section 37 are many for West Toronto. These studies allow City Council to protect and enhance the special character of properties in an area. The character is established by the overall heritage quality of buildings, streets and open spaces as seen together.
Many communities in Toronto are rapidly losing much of their built historical character by the unregulated building changes in terms of heritage and in some cases the simple removal of architectural elements inherent to the community for simple profitable sale by the building owners and individuals who engage in such businesses.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
This post is nothing about the house for sale on Indian Grove in the Dundas St. and Keele St. area. (there no listing on the MLS listing at the time of this writing) The issue in this post is the practice people are aware of that real estate agents often use freewheeling house descriptions, and in this listing describing as steps to the walk Bloor West Village is just wrong, it's a 2 km round trip walk. Yes on a nice day it's an exercise walk, but not steps to pick up the item you forgot. The mid way point of the Bloor West Village area was picked, which also the center hub (of BWV) to test the agents claim, by walking the distance you can lower the drive of 2.5 km cutting through parks and school yards by 1/2 km.
Annette St. looking towards Jane St.
The plan to take out a lane of traffic and add dedicated bike lanes pitted cyclists against merchants yesterday, and an attempted compromise meant no one was happy. The original proposal had the bike lane running from Jane St. east to Dupont St. and Lansdowne Ave., but after community complaints, city staff came up with an alternative: Between Jane and Runnymede – the main commercial strip – cyclists would be detoured one block north to St. John's Rd., to avoid interfering with parking. Later the article indicates the city may go back to the original plan.
Annette bike lanes spark bickering (Toronto Star)
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
---- Emergency Task Force went into one residence in the Dundas and Keele area, in the early morning raids involving the Guns and Gangs task force. Police Carry Out Early Morning Raids At Several Locations (City TV)
Police have taken into custody in the Jane and Dundas and Keele and Dundas areas a 20-year-old man and two 16-year-olds who they claim were behind a string of robberies that have been targeting TTC passengers since last year. Police Bust Gang Allegedly Attacking And Robbing TTC Passengers. (Citytv news)
Thanks to the commenter (see comments) who informed me that the two stories above were different.
----- At Oakwood Ave. and Vaughan Rd, the 5-Points Community Action group wants to see responsible bar owners and they want to see the after-hours clubs shut down. In this area like many in WTO attention to community life and enjoyment is often overlooked by the elected persons charged by the position of their office to plan and develop services, bylaws, and foster community involvement - and then have the bylaws and community interests enforced. A common refrain given by many officials and councilors in the WTO is that there are many different opinions in most issues. They also claim lack the resources in time equipment or funding. As long as the members of the community accept these claims nothing will change. The 5-Points Community Action group should commended for its efforts, as well as the 60 people who showed up, those who didn't - shame. West-end residents fight bars, booze-cans (Toronto Star)
---- The median cost of housing in the Toronto region was $13,084 a year – or $1,090 a month – in 2006, with a total of 67.6 per cent of households in the Toronto region being owners of house or condos. Toronto home ownership costs escalating (Toronto Star)
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Picture credit - David 2008
One condo sales centre is being demolished to make way for the condo tower to be built there on Lakeshore Rd. just west of Park Lawn. And just up the street on Park Lawn opposite Christie's bakery (Kraft) another defunct warehouse building is converted into a sales centre for a condo tower
Monday, June 2, 2008
Malibu Investments who are building the mega Malibu Harbourfront condo project (developers are great at gluing themselves to long and hard built cultural elements in this case adding the name Harbourfront to their development) have started a new phase of the project called LTD. Which looks to be a much better value for buyers than the big Malibu project. The LTD.'s building is right in the shadow the big one with units from 190's to the 400's?. Same neighborhood from the CNE/Fort York to Harbourfront, everything is all around food, Skydome, concert venues, and just about everything else and don't forget the water. All just at a better price. The biggest two bedroom is just 1000 square feet, which can be comparable to some Victorian houses in the west end if this question is part of your condo question (to house or to condo?).
Does this building have the to balance to create some character? Many of the condo projects going up in WTO don't - including the towering Malibu.
LTD "greeny" site
Picture credit - David 2008
New eatery Cafe du Lac Old Mimico opening in June
relaxed Quebec Style Bistro
The renaissance of Lakeshore Rd In Old Mimico continues with the upcoming opening of this new restaurant. I hope to report favorably on the quality of food preparation but before it even opens we're happy for the addition of almost anything other than donut stands and dollar stores.
cafe du lac
posted by David
The Annette St. face of Annette Lofts
Replacing the the long neglected Biway Store on this site was a great idea as well as a sound business investment for the developer, he contributed to the community in choosing to do this. Then he plowed his building onto Annette St, creating a very unsettling building frontage. The development has 8 townhouse condos which are accessed off a lane which begins at Annette St. which are pleasant to look at. His side walkway down the lane is also well though out as he claims with more than enough walking room. The building is not built in the regency style as claimed - here's a regency building image at Wikipedia.
One of the most important aspects of this building is that it's live work, just what WTO and this particular area needs a lot more of. Now if the developer can sit down and fix the Annette St. face of the building.
Has anyone been inside that has an opinion on the interiors? Annette lofts web site
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