Local business shutdowns to spread after premier’s announcement
A lot more local businesses will be shut down tomorrow — temporarily, it is hoped — as Premier Doug Ford has announced only “essential workplaces” can stay open in the province.
This latest move to combat the spread of the coronavirus will leave our local grocery stores, pharmacies, hardware stores, pet shops and several dozen other types of businesses operating from their storefronts and offices, while many more others are forced to close their doors. The closed shops, however, can still offer their products and services online and by phone, and eateries can still provide takeout and delivery service.
Here’s what we know so far about how it will affect the businesses in our communities. We’ll have much more about the local business scene later.
You can still get a coffee in the east end…
…though you may have to line up for it, observing social distancing. Coffee shops are setting other restrictions too. Here’s our updated and expanded guide to cafés still offering take-out treats during the coronavirus pandemic.
Now we have to avoid extreme weather too
It’s bad enough our streets are already almost empty with people avoiding the coronavirus, but now we have another reason to stay home. Toronto Public Health is asking residents to avoid non-essential travel today, according to a city media release.
This comes after Environment and Climate Change Canada issued a weather statement warning of possible extreme weather today. See the story in Streeter news.
Local shutdowns and cancellations prompted by coronavirus crisis
Even the Fox is shutting down now. Ontario’s and Toronto’s chief medical officers have issued their warnings and recommendations about combating COVID-19 and now the speed of local shows being cancelled, venues shut down and programs postponed has accelerated.
Coronavirus testing centre open now at Michael Garron
Michael Garron Hospital on Coxwell Avenue has opened a coronavirus assessment centre with an entrance separate from the rest of the hospital, MGH announced today. It’s to meet the expected growing demand for testing in Toronto.
But before you rush up there, be aware the centre is taking only patients exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 — and only by telephone appointment. Read the full story with photos of the new centre.
Garbage deal ratified by city and union
We should be getting garbage pickup and other services in this area for quite a while longer after union members and city councillors ratified a five-year deal with the city’s outside workers. Read the latest news.
Garbage pickup to continue as tentative deal reached
It looks like garbage will continue to be collected and other public services provided in the east end for at least another week.
Negotiators for the city and union announced late yesterday a tentative deal had been reached to avert a work stoppage. It still has to be ratified by the union members next week.
See more information in the full news story.
Will we get garbage pickup (and other services) next week?
Garbage, recycling and green bin pickup are being carried out as scheduled in Toronto communities east of Yonge Street today. But it could be the last pickup for a while if city-union negotiations don’t result in a deal before before midnight tonight.
A strike would mean losing several other public services in our neighbourhoods too. Read the latest news on the possible strike in Streeter.
Art installation removed due to damage
Winter Stations communications team, KG&A, released a statement this morning that the “Noodle Feed” art installation on Woodbine Beach had been removed due to it being damaged “beyond repair.” See the full story.
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Visitors find art installation missing from beach
This morning, even during the light snowfall, art lovers on Woodbine Beach were surprised to find one Winter Stations installation, “Noodle Feed,” was gone. Apparently it was withdrawn due to having been damaged. Winter Stations communications company KG&A says it is about to release a statement on the matter.
We’ll have more on this story here as details are revealed.
Racist tirade at Leslieville store draws outrage on social media
A video making the rounds on social media shows a man spewing racist and obscene slurs at a security guard who had asked him to leave the Leslieville store.
The security guard at Value Village claims on the video to have seen the man attempting to shoplift.
The video on YouTube has been viewed more than 50,000 times and has elicited hundreds of comments from viewers denouncing racism and praising the security guard for keeping calm.
The man is wearing a dark cap and a dark jacket over a t-shirt displaying an American flag.
His furious remarks include slurs against South Asians and immigrants.
We’re providing a link to the video for those who wish to view it, but we’re not embedding it here due to the objectionable language.
Review of Winter Stations finds it intriguing and confusing
Winter Stations opened officially on Feb. 17 with four interactive art installations built upon lifeguard stands on Woodbine Beach. This is a reduced size for the event, which had six and seven works installed in the previous two years. But the installations still drew interest from visitors, even if some of them couldn’t figure out what to do with certain works. Our reviewer found both good and bad work on the beach.
Arrest after police raid finds child sexual abuse material
A man was arrested on child pornography charges on Feb. 6 after police executed a search warrant near Kingston Road and Main Street, police announced today.
Police allege the man, 42, accessed, possessed, and made available child sexual abuse material. He appeared in court at College Park on Feb. 7.
Peter MacKay lives among us
Did you know leading Conservative leadership contender Peter MacKay is a Beaches resident? If not, you’re not alone. Most east-end residents seem not to be aware of the would-be prime minister making his home in this area. More about this in Beaches-Leslieville news.
Love-hate relationship with photo radar
Residents in Leaside and East York have long called for a crackdown on speeding — but they’re divided on whether the newly installed photo radar units will help. Give us more such cameras, say photo radar supporters. No, give us more police patrols, say their critics.
But love them or hate them, at least midtown and east-end cameras are not being stolen or wrecked, as they have been in other parts of town. See the full story.
Reserve free tickets for assisted dying doc at the Fox
The Fox Theatre hosts a screening of the documentary Road to Mercy, as well as Q&A with experts, on Feb. 11 presented by Beaches-East York MP Nathaniel Erskine-Smith. It’s free but you have to reserve tickets. See the listing for details.
Man dead after shooting at Danforth and Greenwood
Toronto’s ninth homicide victim this year was found by police near Danforth and Greenwood Avenues early this morning. Police say they responded at about 3 a.m. to reports of shooting in the area and located an unconscious man suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. He was rushed to hospital where he was pronounced dead. Police are seeking several persons who fled the scene.
See the full story updated the same day.
Four art installations to cover Beaches’ lifeguard stations
The four winning entries in the 2020 Winter Stations art installation project should start taking shape soon. The annual outdoor art show transforms lifeguard stations along Toronto’s east-end shores. The installations created by designers from Spain, Austria, the United Kingdom and Toronto’s Centennial College will be shown from Feb. 17 to March 29. See more details in the Things To Listing.
Bike lane pilot project in Danforth Study
Bike lanes are in the Danforth Study now — a pilot project for up to two kilometres anyway — city staff said at the study’s second open house on Jan. 27. It was just one issue for the improvement of Danforth Avenue that the public was asked to comment on at the meeting that drew more than 200 local residents, businesses and workers. Read the full story.
Second open house on Danforth Study tomorrow
The second Danforth Study Open House takes place at Monarch Park Collegiate Institute on Jan. 27. The first open house on Nov. 7 drew about 400 east end residents and workers to discuss proposed development of Danforth Avenue.
More details in the Things To Do listing.
Winterlicious is back — reserve now
Winterlicious returns to 200 Toronto dining establishments presenting affordable, fixed price menus for two weeks starting Jan. 31. And there are lots of east end restaurants — in Riverdale, East York, Leslieville and the Beaches — taking part in the two-week food fest. Here’s where to make your reservations for local eateries.
Increased shootings and assaults, but few murders in east
Shootings may have increased dramatically in the city in 2019, according to year-end data from the police. But while shootings and shooting victims are up across Toronto, the number of fatalities and homicides is actually down.
In the east end, covered by the former 54 and 55 Divisions, only two murders were reported to have taken place both in East York, leaving Riverdale, Leslieville and the Beaches free of homicides last year.
The most common crime in the Beaches-Leslieville area was break-and-enters. See the full story.
Photo radar installed on local streets
Fifty speed enforcement cameras are ready to take your picture if you’re driving too fast on streets across Toronto — especially near schools or parks where kids play. Drivers have already started getting warnings in the mail. Stiff fines are to follow.
See the main article to find out more about this, including where the cameras have been set up in east-end neighbourhoods.
Free Friday skating begins at Brick Works
The fun begins at Evergreen Brick Works this evening with outdoor skating, food, beverages, and other family fun every Friday until Feb. 14. See more in our Things To Do listing.
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