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My Letter to the Toronto Lands Corporation Re: The Creation of a Midtown Community Hub

Toronto Lands Corporation

60 St. Clair Avenue East, Suite 201
Toronto, Ontario M4T 1N5

 

September 22, 2015

 

Re: City of Toronto Interest in Davisville Public School Lands

 

Dear Chair and Board Members,

 

I am writing to express strong interest by the City of Toronto in the Davisville Public School lands at 43 Millwood Road in Toronto.

 

Since my time as a Trustee I have been keenly aware that, while Davisville Public School offers a great education, the facility is in need of replacement due to small classrooms, regularly failing boilers, an inaccessible second-floor gym, inadequate lunchrooms, and other issues.

 

While I strongly support a new, state-of-the-art school for our kids, it is not in the students’ or community’s interest to turn over this public land for private, solely market-driven, residential purposes. Unlike Yonge and Eglinton or the south side of Davisville Avenue, where condos can be allowed under the City's official plan, only low-rise buildings are permitted on the north side of Davisville Avenue where Davisville P.S. sits.

 

My office has been working with a group of dedicated local parents who have formed a Davisville Hub advocacy group. Many of them have been involved in this issue for over five years. Together, we have identified several uses on this site that would benefit the wider community.

 

It is in the best interest of the Toronto District School Board, as well as the Province and the City, if this land is used – along with a new, modern school – for recreation, child care, supports for seniors, and other potential community uses.

 

I am pleased to report that after extensive work with my office, the City’s Parks, Forestry, and Recreation Division (PF&R) is very interested in exploring opportunities with the Toronto District School Board to cost-share an expansion of the proposed gym to 6000 sq ft (a double gym), a dedicated PF&R storage room off the gym, a small office, and a 1500-2000 sq foot community room exclusively for PF&R use on days & evenings with a secured entrance area.

 

PF&R is also interested in acquiring land on the site approximately +/- 45m by 45m to be located in close proximity to the gym and the PF&R community room. The space will allow for a temporary park to be constructed with a vision for a future standalone indoor Aquatic Centre to be built and maintained by the City.

 

In addition, my office is looking at opportunities to direct Section 37 and 42 funds from locally-generated developers’ fees toward the capital cost of an Aquatic Centre and other community uses. I am also exploring opportunities with other community agencies including SPRINT, which serves local seniors.

 

I am committed to working with local parents, the TDSB, the Province of Ontario, and appropriate community agencies to explore every potential option to keep this public land serving the public interest. I look forward to collaborating with you to serve our common constituents.

 

 

Sincerely,

 

 

Josh Matlow

Toronto City Councillor

Ward 22- St. Paul’s

 

CC:

 

Hon. Eric Hoskins, MPP for St. Paul’s

Shelley Laskin, Trustee for Ward 11- St. Paul’s

Chris Brillinger, Executive Director, Social Development, Finance & Administration

Jennifer Keesmaat, Chief Planner & Executive Director, City Planning

Janie Romoff, General Manager, Parks, Forestry & Recreation

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