Outside of the City’s ongoing work to address climate change, there are three local initiatives I support to improve quality of life for Beaches-East York residents.
1. Increase the amount of parkland to at least the City average.
Parts of Beaches-East York have the lowest amounts of parkland per person in the city. In stretches along the Danforth between Woodbine and Victoria Park, the amount of parkland is less than half a hectare per 1,000 people. This is below the city average and leaves many of our residents disadvantaged. In order to address this, we have to prioritize securing on-site parkland for new developments and be proactive about acquiring parkland in the ward.
2. Increase our tree canopy coverage to 40 percent and make Toronto the top tree-friendly city globally.
Toronto is the fourth best city in the world for its tree canopy, trailing only Vancouver, Geneva and Seattle for the top spot. Roughly 26-28 percent of the city has tree coverage. Trees are an asset for our neighbourhoods; they support our climate resilience. We will support Toronto's Tree Planting Strategy and make sure that new developments are replacing and increasing the number of trees on site, and contributing to the City's tree replacement reserve fund.
3. Make the ward and Toronto a leader in reducing plastic waste.
We will work with our local businesses and community leaders to set an example by banning single-use plastic straws and plastic bags and cutting the number of non-recyclable containers we use in half.
We should also work with the provincial and federal governments to find ways to coordinate recycling programs across cities and regions to make recycling more affordable. When cities save money recycling, we can re-invest in the community and do more to protect our environmental future.