Don Valley Daily Updates: May-June 2020

Heated, spacious Access Hubs providing transit shelter

If you’re catching transit at Victoria Park Avenue and Ellesmere Road or at Overlea Boulevard and Thorncliffe Park Drive, you may appreciate the new large, heated shelters the TTC calls Access Hubs. They’ve been set up all over the city, including in the local area. Read all about them.

Start signing up for CampTO tomorrow

Registration for the city’s new day camps initiative, CampTO, starts in this area tomorrow. Sign up by phone or online to send kids from age 6 to 12 for the camps that feature physical distancing, regular health checks and other measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Camp locations include several sites in the Don Valley area. Find out all about it on Streeter.

Wider reopening finally gets the okay

You can soon take the family out to a local restaurant or hang out in a local bar again. Take the kids to the pool or splash pad. Go shopping for more than groceries. Get a haircut or your nails done. All this and more as Toronto reopens businesses, cultural places and recreational centres in the move to Stage 2 of the province’s reopening plan.

Read more about today’s long-awaited announcement.

Another local grocery store employee tests positive for COVID

Grocery chain Metro announced yesterday a positive test for COVID-19 of an employee at the York Mills Road and Bayview Avenue store. The employee’s last day of work was June 16, the company said.

This is the second recent instance of a positive test at 291 York Mills Rd., as a similar announcement had been made two days earlier. In that case the employee’s last day of work was said to be June 14.

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Man arrested soon after bank robbery yesterday

Police arrested a 40-year-old man yesterday after a bank was robbed near Ellesmere Road and Victoria Park Avenue.

A man with his face covered by a baseball cap, sunglasses and a medical mask allegedly entered the bank on June 15 and shouted at a teller while handing over a note. The note demanded cash and indicated the man was armed with a gun, police said.

The man was given cash and fled the area, but was tracked down by 41 Division officers, the Emergency Task Force and police dogs who arrived on scene quickly, according to police.

Dae Ung Ium of Toronto has been charged with robbery and disguise with intent. He is to appear in court today.

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Farmers’ markets coming back?

City-run farmers’ markets, like at Flemingdon Park, may make their reappearance this summer, if not earlier.

The city says it is working with the markets it operates to get them back up and running while complying with the new public health requirements. Read more about it.

If you gotta go while in the park….

A few washrooms in North Toronto and other parts of the city are scheduled to reopen this week. But for public facilities in parks closer to the Don Valley area, well, you’ll just have to hold it till next week. The city is reopening about 50 parks washrooms by June 6, with the rest of the 200 washrooms to open by mid-June, it was announced today. See the story.

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Thorncliffe woundings among citywide shooting wave

Two teenage males are in hospital after gunshots were exchanged Saturday afternoon on Thorncliffe Park Drive. It was one of at least six shootings across Toronto over the weekend, including two along Danforth Avenue. Get the whole story.

Pothole-fixing blitz continues today

If you run into traffic delays today, it may be because the city is on a massive project of fixing potholes on expressways, major roads and neighbourhood streets. Sixty-six crews and 162 workers are fanning out across the city today in the final round of pothole repairs for this month, the city has announced.

About 18,000 potholes have already been repaired in May — and 105,000 so far in 2020. But in case those numbers sound impressive, bear in mind they are only slightly ahead of last year’s pothole-fixing pace — and well behind the numbers racked up by May in each of the two previous years.

If your least favourite pothole is not filled in by today’s blitz, you can report it online, by email or by calling 311. It will likely be be repaired within four days, the city says.

Some local libraries to start accepting book returns

Don Mills Library on Lawrence Avenue East is among a short list of public library branches to reopen their drop boxes for returned items on Monday. Other branches will follow on June 1. And curbside pickup of materials ordered online is to begin shortly after that.

Read the whole story on Streeter.

Some fun in the parks is back, as long as you keep your distance

Toronto is following the province’s lead and opening more of the city’s parks facilities. Yesterday, Mayor John Tory announced skateboard parks and other facilities are opening immediately, followed by soccer fields, tennis courts, picnic shelters and other amenities by the weekend.

But no team activities are being allowed and physical distancing rules are still in place. Get all the details.

Gunfire reported last night at DVP and Eglinton

Officers found a vehicle with suspected bullet holes after gunshots were heard near Eglinton Avenue East and the Don Valley Parkway at about 11:15 p.m. yesterday, according to a police Twitter report. Police are investigating.

This follows by minutes reports of gunshots in the area of Don Mills Road and Overlea Boulevard. That led to police shutting down the intersection to investigate. It has not been reported whether the two incidents are related.

Bermondsey depot reopened to public for drop-off

The Bermondsey Transfer Station on Bermondsey Road is among two drop-off depots reopened — partially — to the public in Toronto. But the hours for getting rid of your garbage, recycling and yard waste are limited mainly to evenings and nights. And you have to follow public health guidelines to use the depots.

Read all about it.

More festivals shut down as city cancels permits to end of August

Summer events scheduled for up to Aug. 31 have been cancelled, as the city has extended its cancellation of permits for major festivals to the end of August. Mayor John Tory announced the cancellations in his daily press briefing today.

See the latest news on what’s been cancelled, postponed and moved online.

City program sets up shops online

The city has joined with BIAs and other partners to offer a free program to set up independent businesses and artists with online stores. Up to 3,000 small businesses are expected to take up this offer, allowing consumers to shop online, ordering delivery and arranging pickup at places offering curbside service. Read all about it.

Demand is up at food banks but they’re coping

With so many unemployed during the pandemic, food banks in midtown and east-end wards are facing long lineups and big changes to how they serve those in need. But, so far, most are dealing with it well. See the full story and photos.

You can continue putting your waste out, city says

With a record amount of yard waste being generated while residents are stuck at home, the city has decided to resume its collection. Yard waste pickup was cancelled early this spring but brought back in April for a four-week trial. The trial must have been a success, because now the city says yard waste is returning for the season. Just when garden centres and landscapers are also reopening their businesses.

See the full story in Streeter news.