October 6, 2023 – Newsletter

ByBrad Bradford

Hi Neighbour,

The fall season is officially upon us, and with it has come new school routines, cooler weather, and the anticipation of exciting autumn memories with family and friends just waiting to be made.

Thanksgiving is something my family always looks forward to. With two young kids and a busy work life, Kathryn and I both cherish time to spend together and reflect on everything we have to be grateful for. It’s the perfect amount of time to recharge before diving back into all things city-related.

Speaking of which, I’ve also had the wonderful opportunity to join some great events in our community.

Last weekend, I dropped by the Community Centre 55 Classic Car Show at Bob Acton Park. It was great to see so many enthusiasts sharing their passion and the long work they’ve put into restoring and maintaining these beautiful vehicles.

I also visited the Seniors Active Living Fair at Beaches United Church. Our community is fortunate to have so many ways for everyone to stay active and engaged as they age – and there were some very impressive dance and musical performances as well!

I also attended meetings of the Planning & Housing Committee, CreateTO, and the Toronto Parking Authority. Read on below for some of the highlights.

As always, my office is here to help you with any questions or concerns you have. Reach out anytime.

See you out there,

 – Brad

In This Issue

Updates & Announcements from City Hall

  • City Hall Updates 🆕

Local Events

  • Panel of Professionals from Diverse Fields: Beyond COVID-19 🆕
  • DECA Story Trail 
  • Harmony Good Food Market 
  • Big Band Music Night – fundraising for Beach Cares 🆕
  • The Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub: Youth Open House 🆕
  • The TSC Toronto Waterfront Marathon is Coming Up
  • Pumpkin Parade!🆕

Community Programs & Employment

  • SING Toronto 
  • SCHC – Fall Bereavement Support Groups 
  • The Neighbourhood Group – Job Assistance 
  • Woodgreen’s Meals On Wheels: Volunteers Needed 
  • Seniors Assistance Home Maintenance (SAHM) Program 
  • Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub 

Neighbourhood News

  • Back to School – Road Safety 
  • Housing Rights Advisory Committee 
  • Coyote Sightings 

Work in the Ward

  • Ted Reeve Arena – Noise Exemption 
  • Construction work on Don Mills Road Bridge to restrict Don Valley Parkway lanes overnight
  • TTC service changes
  • Staircase Repair at Coxwell Subway Station 
  • O’Connor Construction – Updates
  • Hydro Work: Danforth Overhead Rebuild Phase 2A

Thanks for taking the time to read my bi-weekly newsletter! If you have any events, news, or ideas to share for our next one – please reach out to my office. Send me an email at [email protected], and we can get you included in our next issue. 

Updates & Announcements from City Hall

City Hall Updates 🆕

This month, the Planning and Housing Committee met to discuss a number of important items – including an update on the City’s HousingTO Action Plan which is geared at creating more affordable and supportive housing in all our communities. This includes an exciting new agreement with the Co-op Housing Federation of Toronto (CHFT) to build new co-op housing. The City is also looking to make it easier to build townhouses and walk-up apartment buildings on Major Streets like Kingston Road and Gerrard Street East. 

I hear from a lot of folks who are interested in making their next vehicle an electric one. For those looking to make the transition, the Toronto Parking Authority also met today with an exciting update on the City’s Electric Vehicle Program. By the end of 2023, Toronto will officially have more city-operated EV chargers than any other municipality in Canada. This includes a number of new public, on-street EV charging stations coming to a street near you in #BEY. 

Local Events

Panel of Professionals from Diverse Fields: Beyond COVID 🆕

The Membership Committee for Leaside East-York University of Women have planned a special virtual event on Wednesday, October 25, 2023 from 7pm – 8:30pm. 

It is a panel discussion from various perspective entitled “Beyond COVID”. The three panelists will be looking at COVID from a sociological, health and financial perspective. Participants are able to register at [email protected]

Dr. Janine McCready, an infectious disease physician who worked closely with East York schools during COVID-19 will be one of the panelists. Dr. McCready is currently a physician at Michael Garron Hospital in Beaches-East York as well. There will be a Q&A period at the end of the session. 

DECA Story Trail 

Small businesses are the backbone of our community and are facing a more competitive landscape as a result of competition from online retailers, effects of the pandemic, and rising costs. The Story Trail offers an innovative way to bring people back to our local small businesses, including the DECA Farmers’ Market, and to encourage them to get outside and explore our local neighbourhood. 

How to play:

  1. Register as a participant in the DECA Story Trail by visiting this link.
  2. Visit the participating retailers in any order you’d like and find the QR Code that is hidden in each shop.
  3. Open the camera on your smart phone and scan each QR Code to reveal the special animal character hidden in that location. 
  4. Record the name of the kind of animal you find in each location.
  5. When you’ve found 11 characters visit DECA Tent at the East Lynn Park Farmers’ Market any Thursday 3-7pm until October 12, 2023, to receive your Story Trail completion button and a promotion pack from local businesses.
  6. If you choose, continue to collect all 22 characters! Then, when you’re done, return to DECA Tent at the East Lynn Park Farmers’ Market to be entered into a reoccurring draw to win prizes from businesses along the Danforth beginning July 21st through October 6th!

Take a picture, video or screenshot and share on social media if you’d like! @danforth.east.community #DECAstorytrail

Harmony Good Food Market 

Harmony Good Food Market is organizing an affordable and fresh produce market from now until October 2023. This great initiative, led by Harmony CFC, is promoting an affordable farmers market to shop for fresh local produce and a space to socialize and meet others in the neighbourhood. 

Visit the Harmony Good Food Market on Tuesday afternoons from 3pm-5pm! You definitely do not want to miss it.

Big Band Music Night – Fundraising for Beach Cares

Check out the Eventbrite link to the event here!

The Beach Cares is a church and community organization founded in 2015 to sponsor Syrian Refugees. It is a joint project of Beach United Church, The Anglican Church of St. Aidan and members of the local community.

If you’d like to support Beach Cares financially, please consider making a donation at the St. Aidan’s donation site. TBC welcomes volunteers for the ongoing refugee work.

The Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub: Youth Open House

You’re invited to join us for a Youth Open House at the Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub on Thursday, October 12 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.!

The free in-person event will feature games, raffle prizes, food and more! All youth aged 12 to 25 living in Thorncliffe Park, Flemingdon Park and the rest of East Toronto are welcome to attend the event! Youth are welcome to bring their friends and family. Have fun, meet our team and get a sneak peek at the Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub, which recently opened a brand new space for youth at East York Town Centre.

For more information, please visit ethp.ca/news or follow them on Instagram @ThorncliffeYouthHub

Save the date! The Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub is hosting a Youth Open House on Thursday, October 12 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. The free in-person event will feature games, raffle prizes, food and more! Youth will have the chance to check out the new space, meet staff and learn more about the services offered. Learn more about the Youth Open House Linked Here!

The TSC Toronto Waterfront Marathon

Gear up! The Toronto Waterfront Marathon back on October 15th! If your planning on running or standing on the sidelines be sure to plan in advance and check for road closures before you head out!

Pumpkin Parade!

It’s that time of year again! Bring your finest orange master piece to Ed McCleverty Playground (a.k.a. Ted Reeve Playground – YES, it reopens late Oct.!) along with a tea light out for a final night to glow together with the neighbourhood pumpkins! Pumpkins need to be brought to the wading pool area within the playground. It’s a go, rain or shine! Stay for the final spooktacular lighting or simply drop and go. Pumpkins will be disposed of in a City provided bin.

Community Programs & Employment

SING Toronto 

SING! Toronto International Vocal Arts Festival in partnership with the Redwood Theatre will be organizing a singing program with the finest instructors, Randolph Academy’s Jeannie Wyse and Latoya Hall-Downer. 

They welcome all who want to learn and sing! To learn more, visit: singtoronto.com.

SCHC – Fall Bereavement Support Groups 

Scarborough Centre for Healthy Communities is a not-for-profit organization that provides a variety of holistic programs to support the health and well-being of the community. One of the programs offered is the Bereavement Peer – Support Groups. They provide several different types of virtual and in-person options. 

For more information, please visit: SCHC – Bereavement Care.

The Neighbourhood Group – Job Assistance 

The Neighbourhood Group is offering FREE Employment Services to help you prepare for and find work. Whether you’re out of school and looking for a job, new to Canada and want your first Canadian work experience, looking to change your career, or trying to get back into the workforce, they have various training programs, work placements, workshopsonline job board, and resource centres.

For more information, visit The Neighbourhood Group.

Woodgreen’s Meals On Wheels: Volunteers Needed 

WoodGreen is one of the largest social service agencies in Toronto with a Meals On Wheels program that has operated for over 25 years in Toronto’s east end to residents who reside anywhere from the Don Valley Parkway in the west to Victoria Park Avenue to the east, and south of Danforth Avenue to Lake Ontario.

WoodGreen Community Services is seeking help from local residents for the Meals On Wheels program, a service dedicated to increasing food security and independent living for seniors and adults with disabilities.

They are looking for volunteer drivers, usually with their own vehicles, who transport the Meals from Hennick Bridgepoint Hospital in Riverdale which provides the meals. They are also looking for volunteer runners, who package the Meals on route and deliver them to seniors who may otherwise be left without an accessible source of nutritious food.

For more information on the Meals On Wheels program and to volunteer as a DRIVER or RUNNER, please send an email to [email protected], or call 416-405-5059.

Seniors Assistance Home Maintenance (SAHM) Program 

The Seniors Assistance Home Maintenance (SAHM) program has been organized to support the seniors community with services ranging from garden and yard work to light housekeeping. 

If you or anyone you know is looking for more assistance around their home, contact Kevin at 416-531-8447 or email [email protected] for more information.

Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub 

We’re thrilled to share that in-person services are  available at the Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub, a new welcoming space at East York Town Centre that provides health, wellness, employment and other services for youth and young adults! To access services, come by the Thorncliffe Park Youth Wellness Hub during its drop-in hours: Monday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

It is located at East York Town Centre, 45 Overlea Blvd. (Please use mall Entrance 6; the Youth Wellness Hub is located beside Dollarama). All services are free and open to everyone aged 12 to 25. Youth and young adults do not need a health card, family doctor or medical referral. Services include wellness counselling, peer support, employment services, settlement services, food support, primary care and more. No matter what you might be dealing with, their team can help.

For more information, please visit Thorncliffe Youth Club or follow them on Instagram @ThorncliffeYouthHub.

Neighbourhood News

Back to School – Road Safety 

What is the City of Toronto doing to increase road safety around schools? 

The City continues implementing several Vision Zero Road Safety Plan actions, programs and initiatives to protect students, parents, guardians and teachers on the roadway. These include mobile speed cameras, school crossing guards, school safety zones, pedestrian head starts, speed limit reductions and in-road flexible speed signs. 

How many School Crossing Guards are there in Toronto? 

There are 851 school crossing guards placed at intersections across the city to help children safely cross the street and remind motorists of the presence of pedestrians at key intersections. 

How many School Safety Zones are there in Toronto? 

The City has installed 413 School Safety Zones – a designated stretch of roadway which includes school safety zone signs and a variety of measures such as watch your speed signs, improved pavement markings, flashing beacons and more – around Toronto and aims to complete 80 more by year’s end.

To learn more, visit: Vision Zero Road Safety Plan.

Housing Rights Advisory Committee 

Starting September 8, 2023, the City of Toronto will begin accepting applications for the recruitment of public members for the City’s new Housing Rights Advisory Committee (HRAC). 

Interested residents can apply at www.toronto.ca/ShapeYourCity. The application period will remain open until October 13, 2023 and the nominated candidates are expected to be considered by City Council in December following a recommendation from the Civic Appointments Committee.

Coyote Sightings 

Seeing more coyotes in your neighbourhood? It’s quite normal to see or encounter more coyotes in parks and green spaces across Toronto. They are typically shy and timid in nature and generally do not pose a danger to people, however they have been known to pose a danger for small pets. Here are a few ways to help keep you and your pets safe:

• Always keep your dog close to you and on a leash, especially in areas where coyotes are known to live.

• Never feed coyotes and do not leave food, including pet food, outside.

• Properly dispose of garbage and waste at home and at parks.

• When encountering a coyote, do not run; instead make a loud noise to scare the coyote away.

• Do not approach coyotes, their dens or their young.

• Do not touch coyotes, even if they appear tame, sick or injured.

Most interactions people have with coyotes are a result of a regular food source, caused by people either intentionally or unintentionally leaving food or garbage behind. Feeding wildlife may seem like the kind thing to do, but it can be very harmful. Letting wildlife forage for themselves is truly the only kindness they need.

The City of Toronto in partnership with Coyote Watch Canada has created an e-learning module that provides a lot of great information about coyote behavior and ways that we can co-exist peacefully with our wild neighbours safely. To learn more, visit toronto.ca/Coyotes.

Work in the Ward

Ted Reeve Arena – Noise Exemption 

The Ted Reeve Arena renovation is nearly complete! As one of the final stages of the renovation, hockey rink slabs will be poured this week, starting on October 3 with the estimated completion date of October 5, 2023. This work will require 30+ concrete trucks over a 24-36 hour period.

While this is an exciting step to reopening this wonderful community asset, it will involve a noisy two days as the concrete must be poured continually. To ensure that it is a seamless process, the City of Toronto has provided a Noise Bylaw exemption for the contractors to successfully complete this critical stage of work. The contractor has been instructed to minimize all noise, but some noises (like the backing up of concrete trucks) is unavoidable due to health and safety regulations.  

We ask for your patience as we all look forward to the Ted Reeve Arena being back up and running.

Construction work on Don Mills Road Bridge to restrict Don Valley Parkway lanes overnight 

Starting Tuesday, September 5, the City of Toronto will undertake overnight planned construction on the Don Mills Road Bridge over the Don Valley Parkway (DVP), to provide structural maintenance of the bridge thereby prolonging its lifespan.

To complete the work safely, there will be nightly traffic restrictions on the DVP near Don Mills Road. The City is committed to planning construction in a way that minimizes the disruption to the public as much as possible and is why work is being done overnight when traffic volumes are lower.

The restrictions will be in place from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m., Monday to Friday, and 11 p.m. to 9 a.m., Saturday and Sunday.

From Tuesday, September 5 until Friday, November 3, the following overnight restrictions will be in effect:

  • southbound and northbound DVP will be reduced to one or two lanes
  • southbound off-ramp to southbound Don Mills Road will be closed
  • southbound DVP on-ramp from northbound Don Mills Road will be closed
  • northbound DVP off-ramp to northbound Don Mills Road will be closed periodically

This work involves cleaning and coating the structural steel on the bridge, which will help protect the structure from corrosion, prevent costly repairs and extend its service life.

During construction, people travelling in the area should consider alternate routes and allow extra time to get to and from their destinations.

Full details of this work are available on the City’s website: Don Mills Road Bridge Rehabilitation over the Don Valley Parkway

TTC service changes effective September 3, 2023 

Since September 3, 2023, there have been several changes made to streetcar routes in the east-end. There will be a reduction of streetcars using Kingston-Queen Loop as 506 Carlton streetcars return back to Main Street Station. 505 Dundas streetcars will also be extended to Neville Park Loop for a few weeks, between September 3 and 22. See further details below:

501 Queen

The 501 Queen route will generally operate along the following sections until further notice, unless a temporary diversion is required such as upcoming work at Queen and De Grassi (see below).

  • West-end: 501 Queen streetcars will operate between Roncesvalles Avenue and McCaul Loop (Queen and McCaul). Once construction along The Queensway is completed, streetcars are anticipated to resume travel as far west as Long Branch Loop.
  • Downtown: 501B Queen replacement buses will continue to operate between Queen Street/Bathurst Street and Broadview Avenue/Gerrard Street, diverting around the Queen Street closure due to Ontario Line work.

501D Queen buses are currently operating in the east end on Queen Street between Church Street and Neville Park Loop.

Starting October 8 until further notice, the 501D Queen route will convert into a streetcar service.

503 Kingston Rd

  • 503 Kingston Rd bus will continue to operate between Bingham Loop and King and York streets.

505 Dundas

  • 505 Dundas streetcars are currently operating between Dundas West Station and Kingston-Queen Loop.

506 Carlton

  • 506 Carlton streetcars have returned to Main Street Station, operating through the east-end regularly.
  • 506C Carlton replacement buses will no longer be operating due to the resumption of 506 Carlton streetcars to Main Street Station.

Staircase Repair at Coxwell Subway Station 

As part of the TTC’s state of good repair program, they will be conducting repairs to one of the staircases at Coxwell Station between July 24, 2023 and October 2023. Coxwell Station has two sets of stairs and an escalator taking customers up to bus platform level/street level. During this work, only one staircase will be closed for repair – the escalator, second set of stairs and elevators will remain open for customers. All work will take place behind construction hoarding. 

O’Connor Construction 

The sidewalk replacement and road reconstruction project on O’Connor Drive from St Clair Avenue East to Bermondsey Road is ongoing. As part of the work, the contractor will replace sections of damaged sidewalks, excavate the road, and install a new concrete road base. This will see Pedestrian Improvements, Vehicular Traffic Improvements, Sustainability/Green Features, and Underground Infrastructure Improvements.

My office continues to monitor the ongoing construction, which we know has been very disruptive for anyone attempting to travel through the area. We have continued to request additional notice for any closures that are required, and to maintain as many lanes for travel as possible. For the latest updates on the project and any required road closures, please check here.

Hydro Work: Danforth Overhead Rebuild Phase 2A

Toronto Hydro is currently doing some upgrades on Danforth. The boundaries for the project include Dentonia Park Avenue (North), Thyra Avenue (East), Danforth Avenue (South), and Avonlea Boulevard (West). 

Thanks for taking the time to read my bi-weekly newsletter! If you have any events, news, or ideas to share for our next one – please reach out to my office! Send me an email at [email protected] and we can get you included in our next issue.

Have questions, comments or concerns? Just hit reply to this email and get in touch with me.

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