REMINDER: You're Invited to a Community Skating Party at June Rowlands (Davisville) Park!
After working closely with parents in our community, I'm delighted to announce that the "SkinnamaRink" natural ice rink (near our newly named Sharon, Lois & Bram Playground) at June Rowlands (Davisville) Park is now open for fun! This season, Hodgson Rink is temporarily closed for necessary repairs. While I was very upset about the timing of this work, members of the community and I felt that it was important there still be a local rink for our kids to skate in the interim. I deeply appreciate our remarkable local parents/residents who worked incredibly hard to make this happen including Chris Trussell, Jon De La Mothe (our human Zambonis), Jennifer Dobson Matheson and many others!
To celebrate the opening of our new rink, AppleTree Markets has organized a Community Skating Party on Sunday, February 23. The party will be from 10 am to 12 pm, and will feature refreshments, music and an ice show. I hope to see you there!
Update on Addressing the Roots of Youth Violence
I am pleased to announce that, after nearly a year since I first moved a motion at Council to create this strategy, the final report to address the roots of youth violence, titled the Toronto Youth Equity Strategy, was supported unanimously by my colleagues at Council this week. This comprehensive report contains 110 recommended actions to support our most vulnerable youth.
I look forward to seeing the thoughtful and proactive measures to deal with youth violence implemented in community centres, libraries and TCHC facilities across Toronto. The staff-recommended initiatives to assist our city's most vulnerable youth include mental supports, employment training and crime diversion programs in targeted areas. This strategy also uses every dollar allocated to these programs in a more efficient, deliberate and focused way to get the best result for at-risk youth.
Motion to Stop Unfair Rent Increases Supported at Council
Our community's campaign to stop unfair rent increases has kicked into high gear. My motion to request the province to eliminate Above the Guideline Increases (AGIs) for basic upkeep and repairs passed Council this week. Please read this Toronto Star article for more information and to learn how you can take action against spiralling rent increases and unexpected fees, please visit my page on AGIs.
Congratulations to new TTC Chair Maria Augimeri
At Council this week, Councillor Maria Augimera was elected to replace Councillor Karen Stintz as Chair of the TTC. I look forward to working with her on the many important transit issues facing our city. In particular, I will continue to advocate to move up the timeline for the Relief Subway Line, increasing capacity on the existing Yonge subway line and local bus routes that are already overcrowded, returning evening service on the Mt. Pleasant 74 along with many other initiatives critical to reducing gridlock and moving us all to our jobs, school, family and friends faster.
After several years of consultation, City Council voted this week to support taxi drivers by moving toward an owner-operator system. The reforms will cut out the middle-men who owned the licenses and ensure that more of the profits will go to the drivers who put in the hard work. Taxicabs were also made more accessible. Please see this article for a more detailed description.
Protecting Ward 22 at the OMB
The applicants for the Art Shoppe development have taken the City to the OMB. At the pre hearing yesterday I ensured that our community's interests were well represented by City Planning and Legal staff. The OMB has suggested mediation and I will be fighting for a more reasonable development on this site. The developers have proposed two towers of 38 and 29 storeys on a site where a midrise is more appropriate. The Art Shoppe is directly adjacent to single family homes on Soudan and Hillsdale, has direct impacts on condo residents in adjacent buildings and many other residents, and is outside the provincially designated Urban Growth Centre.
Metrolinx’s Free Social Media Workshop for Businesses
Metrolinx is currently working with local businesses and BIAs to ensure that the public is aware Eglinton Avenue West will be open for business during the construction of the Eglinton Crosstown. Metrolinx will be hosting a free Social Media Workshop for small businesses on Friday, February 28 at 10 am in Northern District Library’s Room 244A (40 Orchard View Blvd.) If you are interested in attending, please RSVP to [email protected] by this Tuesday, February 25.
Eglinton Crosstown Construction Public Meeting
On Thursday, February 27, Metrolinx will be hosting a public meeting for information on the construction of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT. The meeting will be an Open House format with an opportunity to view displays and speak one-on-one with Metrolinx staff.
The meeting will be held from 6:30 pm to 8 pm at the Northern District Library, located at 40 Orchard View Blvd.
New Circles Prom Drive
New Circles is collecting new and gently used dresses, suits, shoes and accessories to help make a graduating student's prom memorable. From now until Friday, April 4, items can be dropped off with Patrick Rocca at Bosley Real Estate (290 Merton Street). If you are unable to drop off the items, please e-mail Alexa Rocca or Christian Rocca to make arrangements for pick-up. Please note that all donations must be laundered.
If you do not have any clothing items to contribute but would be interested in donating, a donation can be made and an item will be purchased on your behalf. To make a donation, please e-mail Poppy at New Circles for more information.
Clean Toronto Together 2014
The City of Toronto’s Clean Toronto Together campaign returns this April during Earth Week. With the recent snow storms, Toronto's public and private spaces need our support more than ever! Led by Live Green Toronto, this year's campaign theme, Clean and Green, is encouraging participants to pick up litter, plant greenery, mulch and become involved in community gardening and graffiti clean ups.
Community clean up dates include:
- Corporate and School Clean-up Day on Friday, April 25
- Community Clean-up Days on Saturday, April 26 and Sunday, April 27
To register your clean-up event, please visit Clean Toronto Together 2014.
Last year, I joined many of you for your clean-up events. I would be delighted to participate again this year so please do keep me informed of any events you are organizing in our community!
For ongoing council and community news, my contact information, along with a calendar of events, please visit www.joshmatlow.ca.