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Issues & Policies

Improvements to Pottery Playground

Construction will begin spring (2018) through mid-summer, and ready to enjoy by late summer (weather permitting)! Renderings of splash pad coming soon.

 

Glen Edyth Parkette Concept Plans

I'm excited to announce that improvements to Glen Edyth Parkette and Playground will commence this spring of 2018. Construction will take place through the summer, with the park being ready to enjoy by late summer (weather permitting).

 

 

 

   

Sharon, Lois & Bram Playground Improvement UPDATE

Dear residents,

 

Thank you to  everyone who has contributed to improving  Sharon, Lois & Bram Playground and June Rowlands Park. Whether you were able to participate by attending Tuesday night's meeting, or took the time to share your feedback through email, I appreciate all of the thoughtful insight comments and ideas on how we can make our community park even better! As you may recall, a few years ago, I named our playground in honour of Sharon, Lois & Bram to celebrate the beloved children's music trio and created the Music Garden as part of that celebration of their legacy and our community. There have been several improvements to the playground including: replacing the concrete stage with a wooden surface, adding a black gate to provide definition around the garden, a harvest table for gatherings and birthday parties, a community garden and several other features that I'm confident that you'll enjoy.

 

We certainly heard different opinions of what the vision for the Park should be. However, I respect how people at the meeting actively listened to each other to ensure that as many viewpoints as possible could be reflected in the park design.

 

Although there has been a community consultation process, including a public meeting that lead to what has been constructed so far, the decision to reengage the community about the playground improvements was the result of feedback I had heard after the play structure was completed late last year.  While I have heard positive comments from parents about how their children are enjoying the new structure, I also heard valid concerns centered around safety and that there was a lack of equipment geared towards younger children.

 

The City Parks Staff I invited to be in attendance at the meeting have presented creative and  feasible additions for both this upcoming spring season, and for 2019, based on the feedback we've provided.

 

Here's the summary of what was discussed at the meeting and what was resolved by consensus on how to move forward together.

 

For this Spring 2018

 

  • The City has available play equipment in storage that will provide more options for toddlers in the interim, until they will be replaced by Earthscape equipment in 2019.  Given the restriction on the play area space by mature trees, they were able to find several pieces that could be installed temporarily for this spring/summer season. This includes two spring toys and an elephant monkey bar set (see images below)
  • City staff will also construct new permanent toddler-friendly pieces including:
    • an elevated Alpine hut with steps and another small slide
    • An outdoor kitchen that will be placed in the sandbox

**Note, City Staff are able to apply a more earth tone paint colour to fit in with the other equipment

 

 

For 2019

  • We reengaged Earthscape and they have provided retrofits and additions that can be implemented in the existing space for next year. The elephant monkey bars and spring toys would be removed (alpine hut and kitchen remain), and would be replaced by:
    • A Climbing Net to provide easier access to tower platform and slide.
    • Additional hand-holds/ grab bars at tower platform entryway.
    • Post and Rope underneath existing horizontal logs
    • Climbing Hoops to be placed underneath existing horizontal logs.
    • Playground Sign explain the benefits of 'Risk Play'.
    • I have attached PDF renderings that were shown at the meeting of Earthscape's proposal

 

 

** There were also a number of creative ideas about additional retrofits to the structure that we will be consulting Earthscape about. When Earthscape provides us updated renderings and designs for additional retrofits and improvements, I plan to host a third meeting to further consult with the community. I will be certain to update you when details of the time, date and location have been secured.

 

Given the diversity of views amongst community members about what the playground design should look like, I've worked hard to ensure that these retrofits and additions serve to address as much feedback as possible that we've received about the play equipment. Ultimately, we all want our children to have an amazing place to play, and that all users feel included. Let's continue working together as a community.

 

Melissa, Molly and I hope to see you and your family at Sharon, Lois & Bram Playground soon!

 

Sincerely,

 

Josh

   
   

Groundbreaking Tenant Protection Legislation Passes Final Hurdle

As Chair of the Tenants Issues Committee, I am very pleased to report that my colleagues supported our new Tenant Protection by-law to provide much needed protection for Toronto renters. The provisions in the by-law will be in force by July of this year.

This success was the result of years of hard work with local tenant advocates and city-wide organizations, including the Federation of Metro Toronto Tenants’ Associations, ACORN, Advocacy Centre for Tenants Ontario, and community legal clinics.

At present, far too many renters live in sub-standard housing.  The City’s Multi Residential Audit Building (MRAB) program has found over 58,000 deficiencies in approximately 1000 buildings since Building Audits began.  Leaking roofs, stained carpets, non-functioning elevators, and pest infestations are far too common.  And these violations are mostly from just the shared areas in buildings and don’t capture the serious problems tenants face inside their units.

Some landlords have ignored City orders to fix their properties for years with little consequence; they treat the small fines as the cost of doing business, drag out performing the repairs through court appeals, and are even granted time extensions.

The system certainly doesn’t give tenants the same leniency when their rent is due.

This comprehensive new by-law includes several motions I moved to address some of these concerns, including:
  • A “Rentsafe” rating program for buildings modelled off of the “Dinesafe” program for restaurants that requires landlords to post a colour-coded sign that displays the City's rating in a prominent, publicly identifiable location, along with posting the same information on the City's website.
  • Requesting that the Province grant the City the power to fine landlords for property standards violations
  • Establishing guidelines for when the Property Standards Committee can grant time extensions on work orders for violations and to limit those criteria to situations that are only extraordinary circumstances
  • Developing standard operating procedures for City enforcement officers which provide targeted timelines by violation category to bring landlords into compliance with City by-laws from the date an order is issued, and make the standards available to the public on the City website
  • Ensuring that landlords will not be able to rent vacant units if they have outstanding property orders in the building for vital services such as heat or water

These measures, and many others contained in the program, were the result of extensive consultation with tenants across the city.

For more information on this ground-breaking legislation, please see this article.


UPDATE, August 2017


Progress continues to be made on rolling out the Rentsafe program and new by-law.

 

Although still in the early stages, you can view the web pages for Rentsafe here and learn more about the program here.

 

The full by-law can be accessed here.

   

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