ActiveTO Lake Shore West Update

Posted on June 30, 2021

Today the City is announcing a schedule of full and partial closures of Lakeshore West as part of our ActiveTO program. Many of us had wanted this to happen sooner. Because we are reconstructing the intersection of King/Queen/Queensway/Roncesvalles (KQQR) there was a possibility that closing Lakeshore at the same time would create serious problems. There were three issues I was particularly concerned about. First, we needed to be sure we could maintain ambulance access to St. Joseph’s hospital. Second, I wanted to be sure that the TTC service on King, Queen, and the Queensway could still function, and third we needed to be sure we didn’t create complete gridlock for people in the area around the construction zone.

City staff have completed a study on the impacts of the construction work on these issues and have given the go ahead for the Lakeshore West ActiveTO closures. This is great news. Last year an average of 22,000 people were walking, running, and cycling each day during the Lake Shore closure West. I’m thrilled we are able to offer it again.

You can find more information about the construction work here:

You can find more information on closures of Lake Shore West during the month of July here:

Also we are working on two transformative projects in the Ward that might be of interest.

High Park Movement Strategy 

The City of Toronto is preparing to launch a study to both improve the travel network for High Park and better serve park users and the surrounding community.

As you know, we’ve opened High Park to pedestrians and cyclists. The recent road closures to motorists in High Park have provided users with additional space to physically distance. The community has responded positively to these changes. There will be a survey that will be released shortly, along with public consultations in the fall. Please stay tuned for more information.

Western Waterfront Master Plan

The Western Waterfront Master Plan (WWMP) was approved by City Council and is being used to guide future decisions related to improvements to the public realm within the Western Waterfront over the next twenty years and beyond. The Master Plan provides an overall vision for improving parkland, beaches, break walls, trails, promenades, roads, bridges, servicing and recreational facilities within the Western Waterfront. The Plan applies to the waterfront area between the Humber River and Exhibition Place and includes Sunnyside Beach and Marilyn Bell Park.

Concept plan for the Western Waterfront Master Plan:


Update on renaming of Dundas Street

Posted on June 30, 2021

A City of Toronto staff report going before Executive Committee on July 6 recommends a renaming of Dundas Street and other civic assets with the Dundas name. If approved by Executive Committee, the report will then be reviewed by City Council at its July meeting.

A petition calling for the renaming of Dundas Street was created in June 2020 following global discussions on racial injustices, inequality and anti-Black racism, which led the public to scrutinize the origins and history of monuments, street names, parks and buildings across Toronto. The petition objected to the street’s namesake, Scottish politician Henry Dundas, who was involved in delaying the abolition of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, causing more than half a million Black people to be enslaved in the British Empire.

The recommendation to rename Dundas Street and other civic assets bearing the same name follows discovery sessions, extensive academic research and a review of over 400 global case studies, and furthers the City’s commitment to anti-Black racism, Indigenous truth and reconciliation, as well as building a more inclusive and equitable Toronto.

In addition to the Dundas Street renaming, the report outlines guiding principles for the City’s overall framework on commemorative policies and programs following a Recognition Review examining how systemic racism and discrimination may be embedded in City assets, commemorative programs and naming policies.

The report outlines a renaming process along with a Community Advisory Committee of Black and Indigenous leaders and local Dundas Street residents and businesses. Pending approval by Executive Committee and City Council, the Community Advisory Committee will gather naming suggestions from their communities as part of a commitment to healing and recommending new names for Dundas Street and other civic assets for consideration by City Council next year. The report provides an assessment of the cost for the City and its agencies and outlines a community engagement strategy and change management process to fulfill the renaming process. A transition plan would be developed to support Dundas Street residents and businesses in preparation for the name change.

Recommendations were developed by a City staff working group which was formed following a request by Mayor John Tory to City Manager Chris Murray. The working group includes representatives from City divisions, the City’s Confronting Anti-Black Racism Unit and Indigenous Affairs Office.

More information is available at; the report can be viewed at

Members of the public who wish to make their views known about this matter, submit comments or request to speak before a committee of City Council, can visit .

Free drop-in outdoor programs for children and youth in Toronto

Posted on June 30, 2021

ParksPlayTO and Summer in the 6IX will return this summer to engage Toronto youth, children and their families at parks and outdoor spaces across the City for a second summer.

Beginning Monday, July 5, ParksPlayTO will offer free drop-in and activity-based, recreation programming Monday to Friday at 74 locations. ParksPlayTO will offer activities such as exploring nature, gardening, active games, arts and crafts, family fitness, story-telling and music circles for children and their caregivers. Children age 12 and under will be welcomed to ParksPlayTO Adult caregivers are required to accompany all program participants. ParksPlayTO will run morning and afternoon sessions, with 25 spots available at each site at a time. Programming will run for eight weeks from July 5 to August 27.

Summer in the 6IX, which will also begin on Monday July 5, is a free program designed for Toronto youth, aged 13 to 24, offering opportunities to drop in, meet up with friends and participate in themed activities. Programming includes dance, fitness, and sports, as well as leadership, employment, arts and media. The program, which will be offered for nine weeks from July 5 until September 3 (Monday to Friday), is available to all Toronto youth at parks across the City.

Health guidelines for both programs were developed in consultation with Toronto Public Health and are aligned to provincial guidelines, including program capacities, physical distancing, adequate cleaning, mask wearing, signage, daily health checks and screening.

ParksPlayTO and Summer in the 6IX are free drop-in programs and registration is not required. People can head to the location where activities are scheduled to secure a spot on-site.

The City will also offer adapted and inclusive outdoor programming at 20 outdoor spaces near community centres with washroom access throughout the summer. These programs are open for children aged four to 12 and youth aged 13 to 29 who are living with a disability. Programs include an adapted walking program for children, arts, science and adapted movement in the park. Read more information about adapted and inclusive outdoor programming and register online, call 416-395-6128 or email

Check ParksPlayTO and Summer in the 6IX for more information.

TransformTO June 2021 Update – Getting TO Net Zero Public Engagement

Posted on June 29, 2021

The City of Toronto is currently seeking input on actions under consideration for the TransformTO Net Zero Strategy, which is being developed in response to the climate emergency declaration made by Toronto City Council in October 2019. The declaration set a new community-wide target of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, or sooner. The TransformTO Net Zero Strategy will be presented to Council in fall 2021.

The development of the draft net zero actions were informed by previous consultations between 2016 and 2020.  The City is now asking for input to prioritize the short-term actions that will help to meet our 2030 emissions reduction target – a key milestone on the path to net zero.

There are several ways to provide feedback:
Complete an online survey
• Host a virtual discussion in your community using the Discussion Guide and provide a summary of your group’s input
• Add or comment on ideas on the TransformTO Getting TO Net Zero Idea Board

More information and resources are available here.

The public comment period closes on July 26

My thoughts on the encampment clearance at Trinity Bellwoods

Posted on June 24, 2021

As I write this there is a heavy Toronto police presence in Trinity Bellwoods Park aimed at removing the encampment residents and the tents and structures they have been living in. This is profoundly wrong. It is also wrong that in our City people find themselves living in tents.

This crisis has deep roots. In part it is the result of decades of Federal housing policy that treats where we live as a profitmaking commodity, and not as a human right. In part it is the result of a Provincial social services policy which sets welfare rates and social support levels scandalously low making it impossible for many in to live in secure, safe and healthy housing. In part it is the result of a City Council which has over and over again voted down proposals I and others have made to treat homelessness as an emergency and bring the full weight of government to creating good housing. At our latest Council meeting we tried again. We proposed a human rights based negotiation with encampment residents to get them into housing they want. Instead of supporting this proposal the Mayor and his allies voted to simply clear the encampments. The use of force taking place now is the result.

Going forward we have to redouble our efforts to change our housing system, build real supports for people in need, and create good faith human rights based negotiations to get people housed. State violence is not the answer to homelessness, nor is leaving people outside in encampments.


150 Dunn Ave Staff report coming to Planning and Housing Committee – June 28

Posted on June 24, 2021

As we announced with great excitement earlier this month, the City of Toronto will be building supportive housing in Parkdale, at 150 Dunn Avenue, on the University Health Network (UHN) site. The new building will provide warm, safe homes with supports for approximately 51 people, including women, Indigenous residents, racialized people, people with disabilities and other people who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

The new homes will be studio apartments each with a kitchen and a bathroom, using modular building construction

Thank you to the many community members who have attending virtual meetings to learn more about the proposal and how the community can support your new neighbours.

The next step in this process is a Staff Report to the  June 28th  Planning and Housing Committee which will request that City Council endorse, in principle, amending the zoning regulations for 150 Dunn Avenue to permit the construction of modular housing proposal by way of a Minister’s Zoning Order. PH25.13 Rapid Housing Initiative – 150 Dunn Avenue (Part of a Larger Parcel of Land Including 74, 82, 130, 160, and 162 Dunn Avenue, 1-17 Close Avenue, and 74 and 78 Springhurst Avenue) . The Report is available for your review at .

If you wish to register to speak to this item at Planning and Housing Committee, or submit written comment, please email Registered speakers will be provided with instructions on connecting to the meeting.

For project timeline and community engagement opportunities visit .

I am happy to continue to share updates on this this exciting build as it moves forward and as always am available at .


Multi-tenant housing regulatory framework coming to Planning and Housing Committee – June 28

Posted on June 24, 2021

Multi-tenant houses are an important part of Toronto’s affordable rental housing stock, providing single-room accommodation to diverse communities including students, seniors, new immigrants and residents with low to moderate income.

The existing zoning and licensing regulations for multi-tenant houses have not been updated since amalgamation of the former municipalities in 1998 and as a result, are inconsistent.

On June 28, the Planning and Housing committee will review a staff recommendations on a new regulatory framework for multi-tenant housing which will include zoning by-law amendments, outline licensing process and operational standards. The proposed comprehensive city-wide zoning approach and enhancements to licensing and enforcement to enable regulatory oversight will support safe, liveable, well-maintained and affordable multi-tenant houses across Toronto.

A complete list of recommendations and background documents can be found on item PH25.10 of the meeting agenda.

For more details on how to get involved and the proposed regulatory and compliance framework, visit If you wish to register to speak to this item at Toronto and East York Community council, or submit written comment, please email Registered speakers will be provided with instructions on connecting to the meeting. 

Virtual Community Consultation Meeting on 2-6 Howard Park Avenue development application

Posted on June 24, 2021

City Planning is holding a Virtual Community Consultation Meeting on a Proposed Official Plan and Zoning Bylaw Amendment application for property located at 2-6 Howard Park Avenue.

This application, at the N/W corner of Howard Park and Dundas St West proposes  a 10-storey mixed use building with 128 residential units. The proposal also includes 377 square metres of retail GFA. A total of 40 parking spaces are proposed. Vehicular access is proposed off the private laneway.

The property is currently occupied by Master Mechanic.

Information on the application is available on-line at the City’s Application Information Centre, .

You can view a copy of the Preliminary Report providing background information at:

The meeting will take place on Monday, July 12, 2021 from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. It will be an opportunity to learn more about this application, ask questions and share your comments. Your feedback will help inform the City’s evaluation of the proposed development.

The meeting notice can be found here:

How to participate:
A link to the meeting is available online at . Participants will be able to join the meeting either by phone or online on the day of the meeting.

Note: Participants by phone will not be able to ask live questions during the meeting. Submit your comments in advance by contacting the City Planning Staff or the Councillor’s Office.

If you are unable to attend the meeting, please forward your comments to Jacqueline Lee, City Planner, and Councillor Perks’ Office, .

Upcoming High Park Zoo Events!

Posted on June 24, 2021

EVENT 1: (July 17)

ZOOVIEWS – Learn more about yaks (live!)

ZOOVIEWS is Friends of High Park Zoo’s live speaker series with the ability to ask questions of an expert!

Join on Saturday, July 17 at 1:00pm ET, along with Dr. Peter H. Hansen to learn more about the historical impact the yak had on colonization.

Please visit our website ( for Zoom meeting details.

EVENT 2: (August 14)

ZOOVIEWS – Learn more about the history of High Park (live!)

ZOOVIEWS is Friends of High Park Zoo’s live speaker series with the ability to ask questions of an expert!

Join on Saturday, August 14 at 1:00pm ET, along with a staff member from Colborne Lodge who will discuss the park’s and the zoo’s history.

Please visit our website ( for Zoom meeting details.

EVENT 3:  (October 2)

ZOOVIEWS is Friends of High Park Zoo’s live speaker series with the ability to ask questions of an expert!

Join on Saturday, October 2 at 1:00pm ET, along with Joan McKenzie of the Etobicoke Handweavers and Spinners Guild for a spinning llama fleece into yarn demonstration and talk.

Please visit our website ( for Zoom meeting details.

Important steps to help prevent basement flooding

Posted on June 24, 2021

The City is encouraging residents to protect their properties from the devastating impacts that can be caused by basement flooding. Summertime can bring more rain events and, during heavy rainfall, the sewers can become overloaded. It is essential that homeowners take appropriate action to reduce the risk of basement flooding.

Some of the causes of basement flooding can include: stormwater (from rainfall) or groundwater seeping into the home (drainage failure) due to a crack or leak in the home’s foundation, basement walls, or basement windows or doors; poor lot grading or drainage; failure of the weeping tile system (foundation drains); failure of a sump pump used to pump weeping tile water; overflowing eavestroughs; and/or leaking or plugged downspouts.

To help reduce the risk of basement flooding, the City offers owners of single-family, duplex and triplex residential homes a subsidy of up to $3,400 per property to install flood protection devices. Eligible work includes: installation of a backwater valve; installation of a sump pump; and severance and capping of a home’s storm sewer or external weeping tile connection.

To aid property owners in better understanding how they can prevent basement flooding, the City has launched a series of videos called “How to Flood-Protect Your Home”. These videos show potential exterior and interior causes of basement flooding and provide practical tips on how to help prevent them.

“How to Flood-Protect Your Home: Part 1” explains how the City’s sewer system operates and the relationship to private property, how to clean blocked or plugged eavestroughs, preventing overland flooding, disconnecting downspouts and the importance of sewer cleanouts. “How to Flood-Protect Your Home: Part 2” provides information on flood prevention devices, such as weeping tiles, sump pumps and backwater valves and the up to $3,400 financial subsidy available (per property) from the City to install flood prevention devices.

Over the next 10 years, City Council has approved capital investments of more than $2.2 billion to upgrade infrastructure as part of the Basement Flooding Protection Program. The City also undertakes regular inspections and cleans and maintains more than 10,000 kilometres of sewer pipes to ensure the sewer system operates well and has crews available 24/7 to respond to flooding calls.

Information on the Basement Flooding Protection Program is available here

Information on the Basement Flooding Protection Subsidy Program is available here

To learn more about how property owners can help protect their home from basement flooding and to view the videos visit here .  Individuals experiencing basement flooding should contact 311.

June 2021