Friday, July 29, 2011

Improving Toronto’s Parks great report and Scaling Up Urban Agriculture in Toronto

[caption id="attachment_8382" align="aligncenter" width="453" caption="click image to download report"][/caption]


link to above  full report at George Cedric Metcalf Charitable Foundation


[caption id="attachment_8383" align="aligncenter" width="461" caption="click on image to download report"][/caption]


link to above  full report at George Cedric Metcalf Charitable Foundation

Top Searches on the blog yesterday


Farm Fest which was the top search for the days before its occurrence last Saturday is still the top search.

Top Searches

 junction farm festtoronto history rockcliffe blvd rebuild,  aikenshaw vineyard junction,  handyman shop 3077 dundas st west toronto





three articles, by local Junction writer David Wencer,all connected by the presence of bears.

two articles tied together by the wandering line of Davenport Road by Annie Vielleux, an archaeologist  and Jamie Bradburn, co-author of Torontoists' Historicist series

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Major building changes to your Junction Area house?

[caption id="attachment_8361" align="aligncenter" width="475" caption="Soil engineer checking soil conditions at a Junction area house"][/caption]


Increasingly many house owners in the Junction area are deciding to enlarge their house, by heightening the basement by lowing the level of the basement floor or converting the attic to usable space or adding an addition.

Any of these projects involves the use of a building permit. In addition to the architectural or designers drawings, an engineers report as to the suitability of the building foundation to support the changes will be required.

Having the knowledge about the need for the engineers report is what this post is about as in new parts of this ward the construction includes footings, but they are not common on 1st lot construction homes in the Junction. Thus the necessarily need for this professional action to performed before a permit is issued by the city.

Often the house owner finds out about this need and its  costs for the report and many times remedial foundation work to strength the foundation is required.

Most Junction houses do not have a footing, but a foundation sitting  on soil, often this has to provided to add an addition or do other major renos. This remedial work can outstrip the cost of the design services.


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Dekalb Market Brooklyn great use of vacant lot

[caption id="attachment_8357" align="aligncenter" width="298" caption="Click on image to go to the market web site"][/caption]


Reposted from

Low-price, low-rise, low-impact, the new DeKalb Market in Brooklyn is far from low-key. The modular market opened on July 23 and sits on the site of the planned second phase of the CityPoint development in Downtown Brooklyn. The market is made up of a lego-like fortress of shipping containers re-appropriated by 22 local companies as cafes, restaurants, retail outlets, and even an internet radio station. The repurposing of both the site and rectangular storage units is the brainchild of UK-based Urban Space developed with Young Woo & Associates. Urban Space has been championing container constructions for 30 years and is behind successful public spaces and temporary markets including the famous Camden Lock in North London and Union Square Holiday Market in Manhattan, as well as retail, leisure and residential developments. “This is the first of its kind in the US,” said Urban Space's Jessica Tolliver. “We really focus on going into areas that are not being used to full potential and putting something there for the community to enjoy.”

On the former site of the Albee Square shopping center between Willoughby and Fulton Streets, the containers are stacked two-high to form a gateway, and they drop to one story along the perimeter of the one-acre lot, which also accommodates a temporary weekend fair. The container vendors include a diverse mix of established and start-up companies, like Robicelli's cupcakes and Cuzin's Duzin doughnuts. The vendors each leased their new hubs for one year and could individualize the container interiors. Due to delayed permits, they spent the past two weeks frantically painting, cladding, and soundproofing their cabins to meet the grand opening deadline. Anticipating a warm reception, the partners of Urban Space aim to extend and expand the container community. “This is the big intro,” said Tolliver, and, she hopes, the beginning of a rectangular revolution.

ELSEWARE of high speed rail comp

ELSEWARE is going to be a part of the blog  posting links to articles with similar happenings in the Junction.

This one is about a completion to discuss and provide ideas about high speed rail as as the  West Toronto Diamond project.


Click on the image to go to the site.

[caption id="attachment_8364" align="aligncenter" width="490" caption="click on the image to go to the site, this author really enjoyed the HOU(S)TATION configures a new suburban morphology founded on the logics of high-speed rail. article and the The Effect of High-Speed Rail on Six Lives proposes an ad campaign aimed at the high-speed rail public. By demonstrating the diverse set of people who could benefit from HSR, the project reminds us how personal transportation really is article."][/caption]

Pie shop yea!

Been told a pie shop is going into Pete's sunnybar wonderful.


Monday, July 25, 2011

High Park Zoo its possible loss not causing any uproar?


A quick Google search results in a multitude of save Riverdale farm efforts, while a save High Park Zoo results in a Inside Toronto article and a Facebook page (great effort with around 1400 friends).

It is surprising with the new baby boom in the area over the past few years, more parents in the area would not be protesting the potential closing of the zoo.  Typically, on the weekend it is a "zoo" there with all of the families and tourists visiting the resident animals.  Is the community just unaware of the threatened closure or are people ready to see the High Park Zoo go?

a few images from the park zoo today...





House of continual construction gets lots of workers lately

This house on the NW corner of Pacific Ave and Annette St. Has been under continual construction for over a decade.

Now a team contractors is flooding the site.



Friday, July 22, 2011

Old communication box at St Clair Ave West and Weston Rd remains despite all the construction activity.


In the north east corner of of the Delta Bingo lot at St Clair Ave West and Weston Rd there remains a old communication box that has gone through many uses in the past decades.

All around it for the past few years the st Clair expansion construction has buffeted it with piles of old large water pipes and concrete debris, yet it still remains. Although the door has been pulled off since early November of 2010.

images of the box and its neighbours...

2876 Dundas St facade scaffolding down.

The scallfolding has come down from the front of the old Reitmans store on Dundas St. West, the cleanup of the facade looks great.

This has for decades been one of the more stoic and grand facades in the Junction.

Junction Design Crawl Friday August 5th 7 to 11pm, wonderful idea from design related shops in the Junction

and a great part of it...


[caption id="attachment_8321" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="click image to go to their web site"][/caption]




Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Detroit copies Torino’s public markets to support its regeneration

Detroit copies Torino’s public markets to support its regeneration
(English translation of article published yesterday in La Stampa newspaper – author Andrea Rossi):
Michigan delegation between the cabbages and the red peppers

Who would have thought that the regeneration of a city can start from a market stand that sells fruits and vegetables, or clothes? But it’s true: one of the pillars that Detroit has chosen to structure its very difficult relaunch around, is the development of a network of local public markets, based on the “Torino model”.

Facing an uncertain industrial future, having lost nearly half of its inhabitants in fifty years, and with a fragile urban fabric that needs to be rethought, Detroit is looking in the mirror and discovers it has much in common with the situation facing Torino fifteen years ago. So now, building on the newborn Fiat-Chrysler connection between the cities, Detroit is retracing the steps of Torino’s regeneration. The city’s urban and (particularly its) social fabric needs to be knitted back together, and the Michigan heart has decided where to start from.

It may seem bizarre to us, but for the Americans it isn’t. Yesterday morning a delegation landed in Torino led by Kathryn Lynch Underwood, the City Planner of the City of Detroit. And with her came a group of about ten managers, experts and market operators. The first thing they did was taking a plunge in the heart of the Porta Palazzo market. Then they gathered in an office, to be briefed in detail on Torino’s 45 local markets by the city’s administrators in charge of local commerce and public spaces.

As of today they will visit them one by one, trying to understand how they can export their DNA and adapt them to the Detroit context. “They are interested in understanding the social, economic and cultural functioning of the markets and of the nearby businesses, which in Torino constitute one of the more distinctive aspects of urban life,” explain deputy mayors Ilda Curti and Giuliana Tedesco.

It took the American delegation only one day to understand that the replication – even in a reduced version – of the “Torino model” could be the engine of the urban regeneration process that the Michigan capital will have to undertake if it wants to rise up again. “Ours is a feeble system, made up of only six markets,” explains Pam Weintestein, who is in charge of one. “In Turin, however, everyone does their shopping at the market stands irrespective of their social background or their income level.” Dan Carmody is in charge of the Eastern Market, Detroit’s largest. He is surprised: “What makes the difference here is the sense of community that transpires from your markets. It is obvious that they add value to the urban context.”

Detroit is in desperate need of revitalizing its urban spaces. Kathryn Lynch Underwood, who works for Detroit’s City Planning Commission, knows it all too well: “Our challenge is to bring about density in a depopulated city center. Detroit is a dispersive city. Markets can help in creating new densities, to repopulate the heart of the city, and to rebuild the sense of community.”

It is a cultural challenge first of all, more so than an economic one, even though money is not of secondary importance. Detroit is a metropolis in crisis, held in the vice of poverty: thousands of inhabitants do not own a car, many not even a functioning refrigerator. “Developing a network of nearby markets,” explains Sarah Fleming, director of Detroit’s Economic Development Department, “would allow us to reach a double goal. Our citizens wouldn’t be forced anymore to drive to the big suburban supermarkets for their daily shopping, allowing even those who do not have a car could to obtain quality food. Also, the possibility of doing your small shopping on a daily basis at the market stands would solve many food conservation problems.”

It is not just about the rediscovery of “local” food culture that America has lost out on. What really drives this is the idea that the urban generation of a metropolis can start from its food.

Further links:
- Kathryn Lynch Underwood
- Detroit Food Policy Council
- Detroit Food Justice

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The last crane on the 1st Junction Condo?

Henitzman Place crane activity Tuesday the 19th of July 2011.


Topper linen trucks on sidewalk

A commenter noted this practice the other day on the blog, and while I am a firm advocate of integrated residential and industry this practice should have a better solution that what is happening now.

This author has personal seen such technical difficulties solved using sidewalk and traffic repositioning, yet I wonder if the respective parties such as the business, the city and the community are all willing to put the hard work into such solution.


Developer continues lot cleanup on old paint plant site


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

West Toronto Diamond – Overnight Work Temporary Change in Working Hour







A call for volunteers from the JRA! Farm Fest

A call for volunteers from the JRA!

The 1st Annual Junction Farm Fest (where city meets farm) will be held on Saturday July 23 from 11am to 5pm.

It is a children's educational event that focuses on local, sustainable agricultural production. It will be an opportunity to meet and interact with local Ontario farmers and their animals (but not a petting zoo).

In order to introduce people to ethical livestock practices, sustainably raised farm animals, including a cow/calf, sheep, lambs, goats and chickens, will be located at Toronto Police Service, 11 Division at 209 Mavety. (However, not a petting zoo.)

Hands-on activities, demonstrations, food samples and more will be at the Junction Train Platform at 2954 Dundas Street West. Here are some of the booths:

Foodshare: Pollinators, foodprints, butter etc..
The Stop: Urban Ag gardening activity
Cathy's Composters: Vermiculture (worm composting) activity
Toronto Beekeepers Co-op: Beekeeping activities
Treeworkers: Child's introduction to growing apples
Harmony Organics: Chocolate milk samples
Local Food Plus: Local sustainable taste test
City Seed Farm
Sorauren Farmers Market:

The main sponsors are Local Food Plus, an organization committed to creating sustainable food systems, Junction Fromagerie, Delight Chocolate, The Beet, the Sweet Potato and the Junction Residents Association.

The JRA is looking for volunteers to help on the day of the event. Each volunteer would need to commit to approximately three hours on the day of the event at one of the twelve stations. No special skills required.
Easy and enjoyable! Interested parties should respond to

Twitter account: @FarmFestTO
Facebook Fan Page, just search for Junction Farm Fest and LIKE us!

Events scheduled for the Junction Seniors

Tue., July 19, 2 pm

Informal gathering -- I haven't found a space yet, so let's meet at the "train station" on Dundas St. W. just east of Pacific. If all agree (and it's not too hot), after getting re-acquainted we could go for a stroll along Dundas St. W., trading information about good places to eat / drink / shop. Or, we could go to a coffee shop, or I could have found a place by then!

Sat., July 23, all day

Farm Fest, 11 am - 5 pm. Family event about where our food comes from. Eleanor will be holding down an information table at "the train station" — stop by and say hello! If you'd like to help out, at the table or at other stations at the Fest, let me know. They need people to give out samples and pamphlets, keep lines organized, assist in preparation for demonstrations, etc.

Thur., July 28, 10:15 am

Short tour (30 mins.) of Keele Community Correctional Centre, 330 Keele St. (just south of Dundas, in Canada Post building). Meet in front of the building at 10:15. Possibility also of tour of fire station next door. We'll go for coffee afterwards.

Monday, July 11, 2011

301 Rockcliffe Blvd. Build Toronto to sell land for development

The city has sights set on housing and jobs on the property and is open

to selling portions of the property. Located in a floodplain between a hydro corridor and the Black Creek culvert, the Rockcliffe property is subject to Toronto and Region Conservation Authority review.

Information from city documents

Historically, the site was part of the floodplain of Black Creek and riverine soils were
deposited in an unconsolidated state. The site was later used as a landfill and a sewage
treatment plant, resulting in placement of fill materials in considerable thicknesses
Site Description:
Flat, vacant land located within a designated Flood Plain which requires
TRCA approval for building.
The site is fully serviced with sewers and water along Rockcliffe Cr
Site Area: 15.54 acre
Planning Status:
Official Plan - Employment Area
Zoning - PE (Prestige Employment


Enviro study from city














Runnymede Rd Goodwill under construction July 10 2011

Early Canadian Furniture building to become Goodwill Store


731 Runnymede Rd, Toronto, ON M6N 3V7
Bus: Runnymede Road at St Clair Avenue West Farside


















Friday, July 8, 2011

Tailors Shoes arcade to go?

This arcade takes up  a great amount of  the floor space available in the building - a remarkable proportion that was commonplace in shops in the 1930s to the 1960's in the Junction. The double sided shop has two side display windows and a third and fourth outcrop at the rear on both the left and right side.

 The arcade floor is black, red and white small tiled surface in great condition. The display cases are edged in chrome surrounds but there are no glazing snaps between some of the large panes of plate glass. Large expanses of glazing, particularly curved or bent glass, were very fashionable at one time.

All beautiful, but I just cannot see the social agency (Community Living Toronto is a community organization serving individuals with an intellectual disability, they will offer community social and recreational classes and activities)  moving in keeping it, as they probably need the arcade space inside the building.

UPDATE: The Junction residents association has spoken with them about keeping the arcade


Thursday, July 7, 2011

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Vine Parkette a go go

A rather sparely attended meeting took place in  Vine Parkette Wednesday evening with  local Councillor Sarah Doucette of Ward 13, and the parks department designer for the parkette.

I walked by the meeting,  following my son as he rolled right past his mother who attended the meeting, heading for the swings, he would hear nothing about stopping for a look in on the meeting. So everything I write is well...second hand.

...talked to few people after and got the impression some people liked the plan, while some thought using a 4 year old plan was a bit simple. Others really disliked the loss of green space. Others thought the placement was too close to the basketball court, and that the sight lines with the other play area were weak.


---------------------yet the most striking items for me was the low turnout.


Lansdowne Fence Streetscape one year anniversary

On July 15th 2011, it will be the one year anniversary of the unveiling of the Lansdowne Fence Streetscape by  Marianne Lovink and Scott Eunson.  It is located  at the corner of Lansdowne Avenue and Paton Road, on the site of the former Lansdowne TTC  Garage

The goal of the Lansdowne Fence Streetscape is to animate a vacant lot in the Lansdowne and Bloor neighbourhood and patch a hole in the fabric of the city.

Who: work byArtists Marianne Lovink and Scott Eunson.


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Public Meeting - Dupont St. Underpass Mural REPOSTED from blog

simply because of its importance

Public Meeting - Dupont St. Underpass Mural

June 30, 2011 - 4:35pm 

Start: Jul 28 2011 19:00

End: Jul 28 2011 21:00

There will be a public meeting regarding the railway underpass mural on the south side of Dupont St. between Campbell and Lansdowne Avenues. You may recall that this is the location of local artist Joel Richardson's mural, which was accidentally removed by the City (more details about that incident can be found here).

Meeting details:

  • When: Thursday, July 28, 7PM

  • Where: St. Luigi's school, 2 Ruskin Ave.

Councillor Bailao and other representatives from the City will be on hand to discuss designs and the future of this mural.


Monday, July 4, 2011

Vine ave demolition happening Tuesday Morning

61 63 67 Vine ave coming down Tuesday, these images about 9:15




Starving Artist Bar


It's that time to venture into the greater Junction area for breakfast. While out today photographing the TTC fence for another Junctioneer  post, this author found this establishment.

584 Lansdowne Ave.

Toronto, Ontario

M6H 3Y6


Link to their website scary :-)


Dupont 1600 west side block signs of memory still hang






Eduarda's Poultry and Foodstuffs takeout


It's 9:20 am and the staff at this takeout are cleaning and readying to cook for today's trade.

Great character view though the window each morning.

At Dupont Ave and Perth Ave.

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