Don Valley Daily Updates
A quick look at news, views and things to do locally
Entertainment company moving from Sunrise
Abby Tobias is moving his company Sole Power Entertainment from its headquarters on Sunrise Boulevard to new, three-storey digs on Yonge Street in North Toronto.
The move comes as the company which represents more than 250 deejays, dancers, emcees, musicians and bands emerges from a trying period during the pandemic, Tobias says. See the story.
Residents reportedly stopped man from starting fire in their building
On Dec. 8, officers responded to a call for a fire near York Mills and Valley Woods roads area and found residents of an apartment building had stopped a man who had been pouring flammable liquid on the floors.
Police have now released images of the man sought in their investigation of mischief endangering life. Here’s the story.
Medication stolen, police say
A container of drugs was stolen near Victoria Park Avenue and Ellesmere Road in the early morning of Jan. 27, police reported today.
The package contained Percocet pills, which could be harmful, even fatal, fatal if ingested, especially to children, police warn.
Police shut down highways, warn residents to stay home
The Don Valley Parkway and the Gardiner Expressway have been shut down due to the snowstorm that has dumped more than a foot of snow on our streets as of about 10 a.m. today
HIGHWAY CLOSURES: Due to extreme weather and for the safety of drivers, the @TorontoPolice is temporarily closing the DVP and Gardiner. All ramps will be closed. This is to help move any existing vehicles that are stuck and allow snow plows to clear the routes. ^CdK
— Toronto Police Operations (@TPSOperations) January 17, 2022
Via social media, police were also warning Toronto residents to stay home. “We’d ask people not to travel unless it’s absolutely necessary,” they said. They advised those who had to drive to take their time, have a full tank of gas, wear warm winter clothes and pack emergency supplies.
Not everyone though thought the warnings were timely.
A little late, no?
Due to extreme weather or:
>roads not salted/plowed
>idiots that can’t drive
>idiots in SUV’s/PickUps that believed the commercials
>snow tires lack of
>Pple driving like it is August – staring at the sky saying “what TF is this white stuff”
— JD (@FranlinVice) January 17, 2022
UPDATE: By early afternoon, police reported the eastbound Gardiner was fully open and westbound was open from Jarvis. The DVP remained closed.
Town hall on east-end police station planned
A virtual town hall is planned for Jan. 24 to discuss the design of the new 55 Division Station on Danforth Avenue, which is to replace the current station at Coxwell and Dundas avenues and sub-station in the Bermondsey area.
See the Things To Do listing for details.
Indoor attractions closed
Indoor facilities, like the Ontario Science Centre and the Toronto Botanical Garden buildings, are closed as of today as the province moves into Step Two of its “reopening” plan, the government has announced.
Entertainment venues listed as being shut down by the recent rapid increase of hospitalizations due to COVID-19 include concert halls, theatres, cinemas, museums, galleries, zoos, science centres, landmarks, historic sites, botanical gardens and amusement parks.
Library branches to close temporarily
Victoria Village Library on Sloane Avenue is among the public libraries to shut down as of Monday. The Toronto Public Library has announced nearly half of its branches are closing temporarily due to staffing shortages during the COVID pandemic.
Other Don Valley-area branches — including the Don Mills, Eglinton Square and Flemingdon Park libraries — will remain open with 50-percent capacity limits. See the full story.
What’s open over Christmas weekend in the Don Valley area
Think you might need to pick up supplies sometime between Friday and Sunday over the holidays? Or pick up a prescription? Buy a last-minute gift? Or just get out of the house and go skating, visit a museum, or have some other fun?
Here’s our ever-growing list of what’s open over the Christmas weekend in this and other communities across Toronto.
More towers proposed for Flemingdon Park
A developer has applied for a zoning bylaw amendment to allow the construction of three condominium towers to replace several long-standing rental buildings.
Damis Properties aims to tear down the four low-rise units at 7–11 Rochefort Dr., in Flemingdon Park across Don Mills Road from the Ontario Science Centre.
The three towers of the proposal are 30, 41 and 46 storeys high with a total of 1,194 new units.
The building plan comes amid intensification near the Don Mills and Eglinton Avenue East intersection, where the Eglinton Crosstown LRT is concurrently being built, expected to ultimately transform Flemingdon Park.
The developers and the city are awaiting the finalization of plans to begin consultation with local residents.
UPDATE: See the more recent full story on this.
Boy allegedly assaulted on northbound bus
Police reported yesterday a 15-year-old boy was assaulted on a TTC bus near O’Connor Drive and St. Clair Avenue East on Dec. 14.
A man who allegedly attacked the boy got off the bus at Sloane Avenue Eglinton Avenue East in the Victoria Village area.
It was reported the boy was sitting with friends at the back of the Route 91 Northbound bus, when a man seated behind the group suddenly stood up and assaulted the boy.
Police have released a photograph of the person they call a suspect in the assault investigation.
He is described as 20 to 30, 5-foot-11, thin, and wearing eyeglasses, a burgundy Adidas hoodie, a black puffy jacket, black/grey pants, and construction boots.
He was also wearing a grey and black backpack and carrying a neon yellow construction jacket, police said.
Video captures fire ripping through townhouse storey
Fire destroyed the upper floor of a townhouse on Grenoble Drive yesterday afternoon. A neighbour caught the scene on video made available to Streeter.
No injuries were reported in the Toronto Community Housing blaze. See the story and video.
North York Knights shut down hockey play as COVID surges
The North York Knights hockey association is suspending all hockey activities in the face of difficult pandemic news.
“We are hearing from neighbouring hockey clubs of players and entire teams that need to self-isolate due to positive Covid tests or confirmed exposures; and modelling by the provincial government task forces suggest that cases will escalate exponentially in the coming days,” Knights president Scott Lowry says in a statement on the website today.
“We feel we have no choice but to suspend all North York Knights hockey activities effective immediately,” the statement says. “There will be no exception to this decision and we ask that all families and coaches respect this decision with no teams or players entering the arenas this weekend.”
The Knights join other hockey organizations in the city, including the North Toronto Hockey Association and East York Hockey Association, who have reached similar decisions.
This break could help the Knights return to their normal schedule by the weekend of Jan. 8–9, the association says.
Liberals name candidate for Don Valley East
Ontario Liberals have nominated Adil Shamji to run as their candidate in Don Valley East for the next provincial election, to be held in 2022.
Shamji is a physician currently working in the emergency department at Michael Garron Hospital but also serving as medical director in 10 Toronto homeless shelters. He has also worked extensively in Indigenous communities across Northern Ontario, the Northwest Territories and the high Arctic, the party says in a news release.
His only opponent in the Liberal nomination race was businessman Jason Carvalho.
“As a physician, I have dedicated myself to improving the health and well-being of my patients wherever that help has been needed most,” Shamji said in the release. “I will be proud to bring this same commitment to Queen’s Park so that we can lead Don Valley East and all of Ontario towards a brighter, more prosperous future.”
Don Valley East has been held by the Liberals since it was created in 1999, although city councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong came close to taking it for the Progressive Conservatives in 2018.
The seat has been vacant since Liberal MPP Michael Coteau left provincial politics to run in September’s federal election.
Students back in class at Grenoble
Students at Grenoble Public school in Flemingdon Park have been cleared to return to the school as of today, the school board announced online yesterday.
Grenoble had been shut down since Nov. 23 to give Toronto Public Health time to investigate a COVID-19 outbreak at the school.
Guns, drugs and money seized in Thorncliffe arrests
More than 70 charges have been laid so far and $1.26 million worth of drugs have been seized in a firearms and narcotics trafficking investigation in Thorncliffe Park, police say.
Four teens and young adults have also been arrested in “Project Malibu,” and two more people are being sought.
School shut down by public health after COVID outbreak
Grenoble Public school in Flemingdon Park is closed today with a reported 15 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the worst outbreak in Toronto schools at the moment.
Toronto Public Health announced the closure of the elementary school at 9 Grenoble Dr. late yesterday afternoon. Get the news story.
City’s outdoor rinks to open over next two weeks
The city’s outdoor rink at Broadlands Community Centre is set to open next week — Nov. 27 — along with 37 others across the city. More will follow Dec. 4.
You won’t need a reservation to skate on the outdoor rinks as you did last year, but you will have to take the province’s pre-screening test first. See the full story.
Victoria Park Collegiate scene of triple stabbing, leaving one boy dead
A boy, 15, is dead and a 19-year-old has been arrested for second-degree murder after a triple stabbing at Victoria Park Collegiate yesterday afternoon.
Two others, age 14 and 16, are in hospital with non-life threatening injuries. See the full story.
Don Valley man faces 93 charges in child luring investigation
In what police are calling a “very significant arrest,” a 36-year-old man now faces 93 charges.
His first arrest and 25 charges followed the search of a residence in the Wynford Drive and DonValley Parkway area in March. Since then the investigation has led to another arrest in September and an additional 68 counts.
And police warn there could be further victims. See the full story.
Shop and Vax is back for anti-COVID doses
You’ll be able to get your first, second or third COVID-19 vaccination while you visit a mall over the next four days.
The city has released its schedule of Shop and Vax locations at 15 mall clinics across Toronto, including at Eglinton Square and Parkway Mall in the Don Valley area.
The Eglinton Square clinic is running three days, Nov. 11–13, 10:15 a.m.–6 p.m. All doses at the clinic are available for walk-ins (without appointments).
The Parkway Mall clinic is open two days, Nov. 12 and 13, noon to 6 p.m. Availability of the third dose is yet to be confirmed.
65 bikes matched with new owners
The Women’s Cycling Network has been successful in getting 65 bicycles to women who need them this year, it announced today.
The network is a group of nearly 100 women from the Thorncliffe Park and Flemingdon Park area whose BikeMatch program collects donated bikes to empower women by helping them learn to ride.
“We want to thank the many people who donated bikes,” the group said in an email message.
The BikeMatch program is shut down for the season now but will start up again next year. So store your unused bike over the winter to donate it in 2022.
Second Don Mills rec centre proposed by developers
Don Mills residents are appealing a court decision that let the city re-allocate resources from a proposed community centre in central Don Mills to a much larger regional recreation centre further south, closer to Eglinton Avenue East.
In the meantime, developers are proposing a compromise by which they would build both the regional centre near Eglinton and a small centre in the Don Mills community. See the full story.
Vehicle ties 55 Division station shooting to gunshots at house across town
Police said today they are looking for a man driving a Volvo after shots were fired at two locations widely separated across Toronto on Oct. 29 evening.
At 8:05 p.m., officers began an investigation when a man scattered a container of sharp objects at the entrance to the parking lot of 55 Division substation, 41 Cranfield Rd. near Bermondsey Road in the east end and fired shots at the building.
At 9:34 p.m., officers responded to a call for the sound of gunshots after gunshots were reportedly fired at a home near Gilbert Avenue and Eglinton Avenue West. The bullets broke windows and travelled through the home, police said.
Police have released images of a silver or light-coloured four-door Volvo sedan, with a sunroof and seven-spoke silver rims, seen fleeing both scenes.
No injuries have been reported in either incident.
Car hits light pole, wires down
Police, paramedics and hydro workers have been called to Victoria Park Avenue and Ellesmere Road where a car has reportedly hit a light pole and knocked possibly live wires onto the road.
Police reported the incident online at 10:52 a.m. today after receiving several calls and lanes have been blocked in the area. We’ll find out more about the incident later.
Learn to reduce waste at free city workshops
Toronto and its partners are hosting online events and workshops to help residents reduce the amount of waste going to landfill during the 20th anniversary of Waste Reduction Week from Oct. 18 to Oct. 24.
You can register starting now for the series of free events held each day of the week. See our Things To Do listing for details.
Woman dead after being struck by car
A female pedestrian has died of her injuries after she was hit by a vehicle this evening, police say.
Police, firefighters and paramedics responded to several callers reporting a pedestrian struck near Don Mills Road and The Donway before 8 p.m.
The woman was rushed to hospital in life-threatening condition, but she succumbed to her injuries and was pronounced dead at the hospital.
No further details are available yet. The incident is being investigated by Traffic Services.
The Donway West was temporarily closed from Don Mills Road to Burdock Line.
Stabbing sends man to hospital
Police received reports of someone being stabbed near Don Mills road and Dennis Drive at about 10 p.m. last night. A man was found with a stab wound and medics took him to hospital with serious injuries.
The incident is being investigated, police say.
Boy, 15, arrested after school stabbing
A 15-year-old boy faces several charges after police investigated a stabbing at a Don Valley-area school yesterday.
Officers were called to the school near Don Mills Road and Graydon Hall Drive at 1:41 p.m.
A 16-year-old boy was reportedly walking in the school hallway when he had a verbal altercation with a 15-year-old. The incident escalated into a physical altercation in which the older boy received a stab wound to his torso.
The injured boy made his way to hospital where he is currently in stable condition, police said.
The suspect allegedly fled the area but was arrested by police a shortly afterwards.
The 15-year-old boy faces four charges, including aggravated assault and assault with a weapon. He is to appear in court today.
Become your community’s champion for local climate action
The city is inviting you to become a Neighbourhood Climate Action Champion. It’ll take four or five hours a month of engaging with the local community to develop neighbourhood-based projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
You’ll get training and support to empower you to support residents in developing projects that reflect the needs and values of their communities — and you’ll receive a modest honorarium. See more in our Things to Do listing.
Shop and vax at the mall this weekend
The city and its public health partners are holding mobile clinics at five malls, including Shops at Don Mills, 1090 Don Mills Rd., this weekend.
First and second vaccines are to be offered Saturday and Sunday between 12 p.m. and 5 p.m.
Clinics locations were selected as part a strategy to bring vaccines to residents in areas and settings that have low vaccination coverage, or who are at high risk of contracting COVID-19.
Besides the #ShopAndVax clinics, more than 25 additional mobile clinics are in operation across the city, as listed on the city website.
Coteau goes to Ottawa with majority win in Don Valley East
Former MPP Michael Coteau not only held onto the federal riding of Don Valley East for the Liberals in yesterday’s election but he matched the previous and longtime Liberal MP’s commanding vote totals.
With 99 per cent of ballots counted, Coteau has won Don Valley East with more than 59 per cent of the vote.
His closest challenger, Conservative candidate Penelope Williams, might have thought the Liberals were vulnerable in the riding, since the outgoing MP, Yasmin Ratansi, was forced to leave the Liberals and sit as an independent as a result of a hiring scandal last year. But Williams ended up a distant second with only 22 per cent of the vote.
Before her downfall, Ratansi had won five out of six elections for the Liberals, racking up totals of nearly 58 and 60 per cent in the last two.
New Democrat Simon Topp won 12.9 per cent of the vote yesterday and People Party candidate took 5.6 per cent.
Thank you #DonValleyEast for the trust you’ve placed in me & support you’ve given me. I’m so honoured to be going to Ottawa to represent you
To my fantastic team of volunteers, I can’t thank you enough & couldn’t have done this without you
On to a new journey🇨🇦 #cdnpoli #Elxn44 pic.twitter.com/mRk7AWsld0
— Michael Coteau (@coteau) September 21, 2021
Bermondsey drop-off hours expanded
You have a larger window for dropping off waste at the Bermondsey Transfer Station, 188 Bermondsey Rd., beginning Sept. 13. The city is announcing an expansion of public hours at the drop-0ff depot to 24-hour service from Monday at 6 a.m. to Friday at 9 p.m., as well as on Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Residents can drop off general waste such as garbage, recycling, yard waste and renovation waste. Household hazardous waste and electronic waste can be left Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Pool hours extended during heat wave
The city is extending pool hours at seven outdoor pools, including Parkway Forest Pool at 55 Forest Manor Rd. and McGregor Park Pool, 2231 Lawrence Ave. E., after a heat warning issued by Environment and Climate Change Canada yesterday.
The selected pools will be open, weather permitting, until 11:45 p.m. tonight and may continue to have extended hours until the heat warning ends.
During the extended evening hours, from 8 to 11:45 p.m., pool access will be walk-in only and online reservations will not be available, the city said in a press release today.
Speed bump pilot program to cut collisions at intersections
Two Don Valley-area intersections are among the eight sites where the city is installing rubber speed bumps to reduce left-turn collisions.
Locally, the pilot program is being put into effect at the intersection of Victoria Park Avenue and Lawrence Avenue East and at the intersection of Lawrence Avenue East and Curlew Drive.
“The Left-Turn Calming Pilot is one of these solutions that I’m confident will ultimately protect people walking and cycling by making them more visible to turning vehicles,” Mayor John Tory said in a statement today.
Left-turns are among the most prevalent causes of collisions in Toronto resulting in fatalities or serious injuries to pedestrians and cyclists, especially at wide intersections, the statement said.
The bumps are to be in place by the end of August.
Suspicious deaths in Wakunda Place apartment
Police are treating as suspicious the deaths of two people whose bodies were found in an apartment at Wakunda Place and O’Connor Drive at about 11 a.m. today.
Few details are available but police are not at this time carrying out a homicide investigation, they said. Here’s all we know so far.
Vaccination rates below average in Don Valley area
With 61.1 per cent of Torontonians completing their vaccinations for COVID-19, Don Valley neighbourhoods are falling below the municipal average. Only the community the city calls Banbury-Don Mills comes close, while Flemingdon Park has the lowest vaccination rate in the area.
Here’s a breakdown of Don Valley-area neighbourhoods showing completed vaccination rates from highest to lowest, as of today.
- 60.9% Banbury-Don Mills
- 56.6% St. Andrew-Windfields
- 53.1% Victoria Village
- 52.4% Parkwoods Donalda
- 49.2% Flemingdon Park
These figures are derived from the neighbourhood map on the city’s website.
No COVID-free neighbourhoods here
The city’s latest COVID-19 map now shows 23 neighbourhoods in Toronto without any new cases of the virus over the past three weeks. However, this is a drop from 31 communities a couple of days earlier, as the Delta variant spreads in Toronto.
And no Don Valley communities are among the COVID-free areas. In fact, one of them — Flemingdon Park — remains among the worst-hit areas in the city. Get the whole picture.
Local novelist follows WWII bomber command
Victoria Village writer Malcolm Kelly has published his first novel, Sprog, which follows Canadian recruits to bomber command during World War II. Writing the book was a 15-year adventure and publishing it was the result of a happy coincidence, he says.
He discusses it and the great feedback he’s received so far with Brian Baker. Read all about it.
Video released in shooting investigation
Police have released video showing three people in Flemingdon Park where 32-year-old Chavaughn Jones was shot to death and three people were injured July 2.
The three alleged shooters are still outstanding, police said today as they released security camera footage. See the story and video.
Flemingdon and Thorncliffe youth group awarded
Youth Leaders of East York were among recipients of the Mayor’s Community Safety Awards announced today.
Mayor John Tory and other other municipal representatives, along with sponsor Bell, presented the awards virtually to six safety projects in Toronto, each receiving $1,000 to continue their work aimed at improving community safety.
“The Youth Leaders of East York came together to address concerns in the community through youth-led and youth-driven initiatives, such as forums to address the presence and impact of racism on the community and its youth, as well as increased violence in neighbourhoods,” said a city news release announcing the winners today.
Also known as Youth of East York the group was formed to serve the marginalized communities of Thorncliffe and Flemingdon parks.
“They have uniquely tailored and blended social media, personal engagement, podcasts and online forums to engage on multiple issues and concerns affecting youth,” according to the city statement. “The team consistently demonstrates a nuanced capacity to receive input and bring it back to their constituency as well as shape it for youth and mobilize networks to reach populations across the community.”
Man shot to death in apartment lobby
A 32-year-old man was killed when shooters directed gunfire into the lobby of an apartment building in Flemingdon Park early Friday morning.
Three other people were injured in the two volleys of gunshots in the apartment complex, police report. See the full story.
On-street parking enforcement to resume Monday
Be careful when and where you park after this weekend. During the lockdown months you may have gotten away with parking on streets longer than the city-wide three-hour limit or in front of your house without an up-to-date permit, as police have been been lax in enforcing these and other parking rules.
But that’s about to change. As the province begins to reopen and traffic increases, routine enforcement of on-street parking regulations is to resume, starting 12:01 a.m. on June 14, Toronto police announced today.
You’ll have a little more time to get your residential on-street permits in order though. Enforcement of those violations will begin on June 21.
Another pop-up vaccine clinic
Another round of pop-up vaccine clinics is hosted Michael Garron Hospital and its Toronto East health partners including one the Don Valley area on June 11.
Starting at 2 p.m. they’ll be delivering about 300 doses at Victoria Village Public School, 88 Sweeney Dr. in the gymnasium.
Priority access will be given to students 12 and up and the immediate family of students at Victoria Village Public School, Sloane Public School, Precious Blood Catholic School, Milne Valley Public School, Wexford Public School, Don Mills Collegiate Institute and Victoria Park Collegiate Institute and
École élémentaire Jeanne-Lajoie.
Non-priority access is for those 12 and up who live, work or attend school in any “M” postal code.
More information about MGH’s pop-up clinics is on the vaccine clinics page of the hospital’s website.
MPP and councillor call for action against stunt driving
Toronto-Danforth MPP Peter Tabuns and councillor Paula Fletcher are calling on Toronto police to identify and charge stunt drivers.
This comes after an incident involving motorcycles on the Don Valley Parkway — that left one person dead and two seriously injured. (See June 1 item below.)
This is just the latest stunt driving incident that residents living along the Don Valley have been reporting. Since last summer, the number of complaints has increased, according to a joint statement from Tabuns and Fletcher. See the full story.
Fatality in double motorcycle crash on DVP
A woman was killed a motorcycle collision on the Don Valley Parkway north of Don Mills Road.
At about 10:40 p.m., several motorbikes were travelling south on the DVP at a high rate of speed, police reported this morning.
A 2016 black Suzuki struck a metal barrier and a 2009 red Honda also became involved in the collision.
A 39-year-old woman received life-threatening injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. Two men, 35 and 40, also suffered serious injuries and are in hospital, police said.
A police message on social media shortly after the collision referred to reports that “several motorcycles were speeding and cutting through lanes” before the accident.
DVP & Don Mills Rd
– several callers reporting of crash involving a few motorcycles
– police responding
– reports that several motorcycles were speeding and cutting through lanes
– unknown injuries
– reports that motorcycles hit guardrail
– expect delays#GO1013918
— Toronto Police Operations (@TPSOperations) June 1, 2021
Vaccine clinics popping up in coming days
Michael Garron Hospital and its Toronto East health partners are hosting a new round of pop-up vaccine clinics in the coming week, including at these Don Valley-area sites:
- May 31, Flemingdon: St. John XXIII Catholic School, 175 Grenoble Dr. in the gymnasium, with priority access for anyone 12 and up who are students or immediate family members of students at St. John XXIII, Marc Garneau Collegiate, Valley Park Middle School, Grenoble Public, Thorncliffe Park Public, Fraser Mustard Early Learning, Gateway Public and St. Patrick Catholic School. Non-priority access is for those 12 and up who live, work or attend school in any “M” postal code. About 500 doses will be available, starting at 2 p.m. until they run out.
- June 1, Flemingdon: Grenoble Public School, 9 Grenoble Dr. in the gymnasium, with priority access for anyone 12 and up who are students or immediate family members of students at schools in M3C and M4H postal codes. About 500 doses will be available, starting at 2 p.m. until they run out.
- June 3, Victoria Village: Victoria Village Public School, 88 Sweeney Dr. in the gymnasium with priority access for anyone 12 and up who are students or immediate family of students at students at Victoria Village Public, Sloane Public, Precious Blood Catholic, Milne Valley Public, Wexford Public, Don Mills Collegiate, Victoria Park Collegiate, École élémentarie Jeanne-Lajoie and O’Connor Public School. About 500 doses will be available, starting at 2 p.m. until they run out.
See more about the MGH schedule of clinics on the hospital’s mobile and pop-up clinics webpage.
Man, 19, hit in bus shelter by speeding car
A pedestrian was critically injured and a driver arrested at the site of a collision near Don Mills Road and Gateway Boulevard last night, police say.
Shortly after 11 p.m. three vehicles were reported speeding south on Don Mills when one of them struck a 19-year-old male sitting in a bus shelter on the east side of Don Mills. See the full report.
Golf, tennis and other outdoor recreations are back
Local golf courses, tennis courts and fitness areas should be busy with people getting their outdoor exercise again this long weekend, as long as they keep physically distanced.
Following Ontario’s go-ahead yesterday, the city is reopening its outdoor recreational amenities — albeit with public health restrictions in place — as of May 22.
Searches here and in Sioux Lookout led to child porn charges
A Toronto man has been arrested and faces four charges related to child pornography after police searches in both the Don Valley area and the northwestern Ontario town of Sioux Lookout.
On April 20, Toronto Police Service’s child exploitation section executed a search warrant near Victoria Park Avenue and Lawrence Avenue and reported a user had uploaded a large quantity of child sexual abuse material to the internet.
Another search was carried out in Sioux Lookout where the person of interest was temporarily residing and child sexual abuse material was again located, police said.
Obayda Alrajabi 38, is scheduled to appear virtually in court on June 8.
New Don Valley East locations for speed cameras
The city is moving its 50 automated speed enforcement (ASE) devices to begin a third round of ticketing in June.
The ASE devices, commonly called speed cameras or photo radar, have until recently been located on Fenside and Underhill drives in Don Valley East ward.
The new locations where you’ll have to watch your speeding in this area are:
- York Mills Road east of Rayoak Drive
- Grenoble Drive west of Spanbridge Road
Two-alarm fire at Parkwoods bungalow
An elderly woman and her neighbour in their semi-detached homes were forced into the street by fire and heavy smoke on Lynedock Crescent this morning.
No one was seriously injured but the woman’s home was badly damaged, firefighters say. See the full story.
Assault on man and dog led to two-and-half hour drama across town
It started with the report of a man and a dog being assaulted near Bayview and Eglinton avenues, but it continued down Bayview and into Moore Park, and eventually in Don Valley’s Parkwoods area.
Police released details today that tell of a much wider-ranging drama taking place than the earlier reported story. (See May 9 item below)
The trail of assaults and crashes committed by a suspect and the off-and-on pursuit by car and on foot led across several Toronto neighbourhoods, ending in 10 charges, police are now reporting. Read all about it.
Arrest for assault after collision with fire truck
A man has been arrested following reports of a car colliding with a fire truck at Victoria Park and Ellesmere Road at about 1:30 p.m. today. The driver of the car was reported to be assaulting the firefighters who were trying to de-escalate the conflict, according to police on Twitter.
The car driver was also said to be trying to leave the scene but was arrested, police said.
A tow truck was assisting on the scene and traffic was delayed in the area. The incident is being investigated by police.
Man rescued after being pinned under truck
A man was sent to hospital with unknown injuries after being released from under a truck following a collision at Victoria Park Avenue and O’Connor Drive yesterday at about 10 p.m.
Police, fire services and paramedics were called to the scene.
Little more has been released about the incident, except that both Traffic Services and the Ministry of Labour are investigating. Anyone with information or dash cam footage is asked to call (416) 808-1900.
Transfer stations shut down once again
Bermondsey Transfer Station has been closed to the general public, as part of today’s shutdown of Toronto’s depots for dropping off garbage and recycling.
The drop-off depots are closing on public health advice because the city’s solid waste management services have suffered an increasing number of COVID-19 cases, according to a news release yesterday.
Police crackdown on gatherings starts today
If you’re getting together with friends or family who don’t live with you in our parks or in your party rooms, watch out for the cops. They’re taking the latest prohibition against large gatherings — indoors and outdoors — quite seriously.
Like other divisions, 33 Division has even formed a special unit to find, break up and fine large groups flouting the rules. (The fines can surpass $10,000.)
Or better yet, give us all a break in the fight against COVID-19 — and don’t do it. See the full story.
All Toronto schools shut down
Only yesterday Toronto Public Health advised the closing of 20 schools across Toronto for COVID investigations. Today the rest of Toronto’s elementary, middle and secondary schools are shuttered on the orders of Toronto’s chief medical officer, Dr. Eileen de Villa.
Students are to transition to remote learning which is to continue until April 18 — although this end date may also be extended, TPH warns. See the full story.
Eleven schools now closed for COVID investigations
Yesterday, the Toronto school board announced classes at four more schools were being shut down and moved online as of today.
With the previous announcements about Victoria Village and Brian public schools (see March 29 below), the number of TDSB schools closed in two days now totals six, and with Catholic school board closures the total for this week has reached 11. See the full story.
City golf courses to open Thursday
Don Valley Golf Course at Yonge Street and the 401 is among the city-run courses to open Thursday, several days ahead of schedule.
The city announced all five of its golf courses are opening for the 2021 season on April 1.
Guidelines have been developed in consultation with Toronto Public Health, including physical distancing between golfers and disinfection of equipment and surfaces, the city said in a press release today.
Tee times will be 10 minutes apart, starting at 7 a.m. and ending at dusk. Tee times are expected to sell out quickly, so residents are encouraged to book early. (Call Don Valley at 416-392-2465.)
Victoria Village school closed by COVID-19
Victoria Village Public School closed today on the advice of public health officials for an investigation of COVID-19 outbreaks.
The school at 88 Sweeney Dr. is listed as having seven confirmed cases, all among students, on the COVID-19 Advisories page of the Toronto District School Board. Read the story.
Images of suspects released after tow truck arsons
Police have released today images of two people and a pickup truck suspected of being involved in the burning of two tow trucks. On Feb. 23, officers were called to fires near Victoria Park Avenue and Sunrise Avenue and near Victoria Park and Parma Court areas. Both suspects were seen fleeing the area in a silver Ford F-150 with stolen licence plates, police reported.
How safe do you feel? Tell the city
The deadline is approaching to fill out the SafeTO survey. The city wants to know the level of safety and wellbeing you feel in your community, and your priorities for the SafeTO plan to guide social systems — like community services, healthcare, policing — in serving Torontonians.
The online survey, which should take less than 10 minutes, has to be completed before March 12.
Boy arrested after alleged homicide of 62-year-old
A 16-year-old boy has been charged with first-degree murder about 10 days after the death of a man in the Wexford neighbourhood.
Responding to a call about gunshots at 1853 Lawrence Ave. E. on Feb. 8 after 7 p.m., police a man with injuries. He was pronounced dead and identified as Cam-Thanh Tat, 62, of Toronto.
The boy, who cannot be identified due to the Youth Criminal Justice Act, appeared in court today.
As a new season of the gun shapes up….
We need strong gun control to help stop handgun violence that is once again terrorizing Toronto residents — in all parts of the city. And the federal government ban on military-style assault weapons, while welcome, is not nearly enough, Streeter editorial argues.
Read and comment on the editorial.
Gunshots heard, one believed wounded
Gunshots heard last night about 9:45 p.m. sent police looking for two people believed to have been shooting at each other near Wynford Drive and Wynford Heights Crescent. One person was thought to have been struck, though police did not report finding a victim.
They did, however, find a shell casings in the area and a car with bullet holes. Police closed the area as the investigation continued.
One person on Twitter claimed to have heard 10 shots and described three vehicles that left the scene.
Heard around 10 gunshots. Noticed 3 cars mysteriously moving on wynford drive after one another after the incident. 1 was white sedan which went towards eglinton east and 2 black suvs towards don mills road .
— Varun Choudhary (@varun_choudhary) February 11, 2021
Longo’s first local COVID-19 case of the year
Longo’s at York Mills Road and Yonge Street has joined the list of Don Valley-area food retailers reporting COVID-19 cases among staff. (See Jan. 25 item below.)
Today the chain announced an employee, who last worked there Jan. 16, has tested positive for the virus.
Four cases of COVID at food retailer’s outlets
Yesterday was a bad day for Loblaw-related businesses in the fight against COVID-19. Three of their stores in the Don Valley area recorded a total of four staff had tested positive on presumptive tests for the virus. The retail conglomerate reported the following instances on Jan. 24:
- Two staff members at No Frills, 1450 Lawrence Ave. E., who tested positive, last worked at the store on Jan. 17 and 20.
- One staff member at Real Canadian Superstore, 825 Don Mills Rd., last worked on Jan. 13.
- One staff member at Shoppers Drug Mart, 747 Don Mills Rd., last worked there on Jan. 19.
Don Valley East drivers drew fewer ASE speeding tickets
Note to traffic cops: If you want to catch speeders in Don Valley East, a good place may be on Gateway Boulevard near 10 Gateway Blvd. Nearly 3,273 speeding tickets were issued by a photo radar station there over five months last year, according to figures released today.
A poor location for catching speeders may be on Ness Drive, north of York Mills Road. A measly 32 tickets were issued there at the other Don Valley East location.
Across the city, 50 automated speed enforcement (ASE) devices issued 53,090 tickets during the first round — an average of nearly 1,062 per location.
These tickets were from the first round of ASE locations from July 6 to Nov. 30, 2020. The devices, placed mainly near schools, were moved to new locations beginning in late November.
Local libraries open for pickup and drop-off
Branches of the Toronto Public Library will remain open during the lockdown beginning tomorrow — but for pickup and drop-off of library materials only.
Current operational hours are being maintained. A previous communication that branches will close at 8 p.m. were mistaken, the TPL says.
Flemingdon Park child care shut down by COVID
Parents were informed two days ago the Flemingdon Early Learning and Child Care Centre is being closed temporarily after four cases of COVID-19 were found there, the city said today.
Two staff and two children reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 at the Flemingdon Park centre during the recent holiday break. Read the story.
Local child care free for essential workers
Maryvale Jr. YMCA at 1325 Pharmacy Ave. is one of 35 child care programs approved to provide emergency care for the children of essential workers in Toronto communities during the current lockdown of elementary schools.
Families that meet Ontario’s definition of essential workers can apply directly to the approved centres for this free service funded by the province.
Stay home for New Year’s
There’s nothing planned in Toronto for New Year’s eve tonight — so stay home. Celebrate in person only with people living under your roof or celebrate with others virtually. That’s the city’s message for residents during the strangest New Year’s most of us have ever faced.
Keep each other safe and #StayHome this #NYE2020. There are many ways to safely make the holidays memorable. Ring in the new year only with people you live with every day. Connect virtually with your family and friends for celebrations. More: https://t.co/xdQN6mm4I0 #StaySafe pic.twitter.com/MXHlVAYstG
— City of Toronto (@cityoftoronto) December 31, 2020
CampTO and winter instruction programs cancelled
City-run holiday camps and skiing or skating lessons have been shut down by Toronto’s rising COVID-19 numbers.
The cancellations were announced today, following recommendations from Toronto Public Health and the city’s medical health officer, Dr. Eileen de Villa.
Nine TDSB schools now closed by COVID outbreaks
Grenoble Public School in Flemingdon Park is among the latest schools to be shut down by Toronto Public health after outbreaks of COVID-19.
This brings the total number of school closures to 13, including nine in the Toronto District School Board system — and four in the Thorncliffe and Flemingdon Park area. Get the full story.
Apartment fire at Vic Park and Arncliffe
A two-alarm fire is being reported in an apartment building at Victoria Park Avenue and Arncliffe Crescent at about 11 a.m. today. Fire Services are on the scene and occupants of the burning unit are out of the apartment, police say. Further details are not yet available.
Night parking banned on North York streets to allow snow clearing
The annual North York Winter Maintenance by-law has been put into effect again, prohibiting street parking to let snow-clearing and emergency vehicles through.
The by-law prohibits parking on streets in the old municipality of North York between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. until the end of March,
Parking enforcement is to begin Dec. 4 at 2 a.m., according to police.
Doggy daycare and spa opens at Parkway
Bryan Ward grew up in the Don Valley area just two blocks from where he and partner Kelly Downing just opened Dogtopia, a canine daycare, boarding and spa.
But it took years from idea to launching the business for the couple who are passionate about dogs. And then they opened their facility in the middle of a pandemic — though this has turned out well for them. Read all about it.
Local parks ready for tobogganing and other winter activities
Graydon Hall Park is among the 23 sites where the city is encouraging tobogganing this winter in its Welcome T.O. Winter parks plan (though you likely know several other great hills to slide down on sleds and toboggans).
The city is also pushing other outdoor activities during the pandemic this winter, including skating, snowshoeing in city golf courses, playing disc-golf and exploring recreational trails.
See the story and where to go for the best tobogganing.
‘Suspicious incident’ in car
On Monday a woman driving a car in Don Mills with a male passenger is reported to have stopped at a light and asked a pedestrian to call police, before she drove off .
Police were called at about 4:30 p.m. and are carrying out a “suspicious incident investigation,” according to a news release.
The vehicle is described as a white Mercedes SUV with a licence plate beginning with “C” and ending with “639.”
The incident reportedly happened when the car was travelling northbound on Don Mills Road and stopped at a red light on Green Belt Drive. A woman was seen in the driver’s seat and a man in the passenger seat.
Police said they would like to speak with the woman and man to make sure they are safe, as well as with anyone who was in the area at the time or who have security or dash camera video of the area or incident.
Thorncliffe among areas to get added COVID-19 supports
Toronto announced enhanced COVID-19 supports today, mainly targeting the northwest and northeast corners of the city where the pandemic has “exacerbated long-standing, systemic health inequities related to poverty, racism and other forms of discrimination.”
But residents of Thorncliffe Park are also considered vulnerable and will receive targeted neighbourhood support, the city says.
The city is working with the Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Organization in the East York/Don Valley community to implement the enhanced supports.
Targeted measures include expanded testing sites, intensified community outreach and engagement, and income support for those who test positive and are unable to work due to mandatory isolation. They will also address the threat of eviction and improve newcomer access to COVID-19 services, among other measures, according to the city.
Woman stabbed to death on Rowena Drive
A 21-year-old man has been charged with second-degree murder yesterday after a 41-year-old woman was stabbed yesterday in the Parkwoods area, police say.
The stabbing took place on Rowena Drive near Victoria Park Avenue at about 1:29 p.m.
Officers reported finding a woman with multiple stab wounds. She was rushed to hospital but succumbed to her injuries. Here’s what we know so far.
Where to go when you have to go
If you’re a person who plans your outings around available washrooms, here’s welcome news for you. The city is refitting and reopening washrooms in parks — like at Edwards Gardens or Wilket Creek Park — this winter.
It’s also adding portable toilets to new locations, along with keeping washrooms going in the usual places like libraries and recreation centres.
Police seeking ‘violent’ suspect in robbery
Police are seeking the public help in finding a man suspected of a violent robbery and assault of a 61-year-old who was walking in the Victoria Park and Ellesmere area Nov. 8.
They have released a picture of Shawn Claydon, 32, who is not to be approached, as he is believed to be violent, police say. See more on this story.
Graydon Hall gunshots lead to two arrests
Two men, 18 and 19, face multiple firearm-related charges after arrests in an investigation of gunshots heard in the Graydon Hall neighbourhood two weeks earlier.
Police say they searched two residences in the Don Valley area yesterday and found at one site a semi-automatic handgun with ammunition and a laser attachment, fully loaded and readily accessible to a child. Get the full story.
Boy dead after falling through gymnasium skylight
An 11-year-old boy died yesterday afternoon after falling through a skylight in the roof of Victoria Park Collegiate and landing on the gym floor 10 metres below.
Police say a group of youths were climbing on the school roof when the incident happened. They are calling it misadventure. See the story.
New home in Parkwoods razed by fire
Fire this morning gutted a house being built on Treadgold Crescent in the Parkwoods area. The flames were so intense that firefighters were unable to enter the building and had to fight the fire “defensively,” they said.
It took about two hours to get the fire under control. No injuries were reported. Get the full story.
MP Ratansi dropped from Liberals over hiring scandal
Yasmin Ratansi has resigned from the Liberal caucus but will stay on as Don Valley East MP after it was revealed she has employed her sister as a constituency assistant for several years, a violation of parliamentary rules.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he is “disappointed” in her and she will be dealt with by the House of Commons administration. Get the full story.
New locations for photo radar units
After three months of issuing tickets, the city’s photo radar units are being moved. All 50 automated speed enforcement (ASE) devices are to be moved to new locations starting this week “to address a greater number of areas with safety concerns and to encourage a wide-ranging deterrent effect,” the city said in a news release yesterday.
In Don Valley East ward, the two new ASE sites are on Fenside Drive, by a public school south of Roywood Drive, and on Underhill Drive, by a middle school near Beveridge Drive.
In Don Valley West ward, the two new ASE sites are on Erskine Avenue, west of Redpath Avenue, and on Thorncliffe Park Drive, near 79 Thorncliffe Park Dr. Both are near elementary schools.
The city reports 47,195 speeders were caught by ASE devices in the old locations, but the number of tickets dropped in the second and third months.
“The Automated Speed Enforcement program is working,” Mayor John Tory said. “Each month, fewer drivers were caught speeding in school and community safety zones where they’ve been placed, and they are helping to keep vulnerable people, especially school
Local street accounts for one in 10 photo radar tickets
Speeders on Gateway Boulevard in Flemingdon Park were caught by cameras 955 times in a recent one-month period, according to figures released by the city today. That’s nearly 10 per cent of all 9,719 tickets issued by Toronto’s 50 automated speed enforcement (ASE) devices over that period.
After three months of issuing tickets, the ASE devices are being moved to new locations to encourage a wider-ranging deterrent effect, the city say. Hopefully Flemingdon drivers have learned their lesson but, beware, four of the new locations are also in Don Valley East and West, including one in the nearby Thorncliffe Park area.
Man’s body discovered in parked car
Toronto police are investigating a “suspicious death” after a body was found in the back seat of a car behind a building on St. Dennis Drive. Residents called police on Oct. 31 after noticing a car that had been parked there for 10 days.
Police have identified the deceased and released his picture. Here’s the story so far.
Seven popup testing sites in east end
Seven COVID-19 testing sites are popping up in East Toronto, Michael Garron Hospital is announcing.
Operated by East Toronto Health Partners, the temporary testing centres offer drop-in and same-day appointments for residents of priority neighbourhoods in East Toronto, as well as for the homeless and those without internet access.
Five new testing locations open this week and join the two sites that were launched and recently extended in Thorncliffe Park and Taylor-Massey (Crescent Town). The five new sites are at:
East York Community Centre, 1081 Pape Ave.
Nov. 2 to 30: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday from 1 to 7 p.m.
Warden Woods Community Centre, 76 Firvalley Ct.
Nov. 5 to 30: Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 7 p.m.
Dennis R. Timbrell Resource Centre, 29 St Dennis Dr.
Nov. 3 to 30: Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday from 1 to 7 p.m.
Angela James Arena, 165 Grenoble Dr.)
Nov. 9 to 30: Monday, Wednesday and Saturday from 1 to 7 p.m.
South Riverdale Community Health Centre, 955 Queen St. E.
Nov. 7: Saturday, 7 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Nov. 10: Tuesday, 2 to 4 p.m.
Nov. 16: Monday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Nov. 17: Tuesday, 5 to 7 p.m.
Fourth TPH clinic to get your flu shot
The only community flu vaccine clinic east of the Don Valley is to open on Oct. 31, the city announced today. It’s to be located at Scarborough Town Centre, Exterior Unit D3, 410 Progress Ave. and is operated by appointment only.
It’s the fourth clinic launched by Toronto Public Health across the city, the other three launching Oct. 22. It will run until Dec. 31. The clinic next closest to the Don Valley area is at the North York Memorial Hall, Burgundy Room, 5110 Yonge St.
For more information on locations and to make an appointment, see the TPH appointment booking system online.
The flu shot is also available at many other locations in Toronto, including pharmacies, doctors’ offices and clinics. Find a location near you at MyFluShot.ca. [Link no longer available]
Four adults, four youths arrested after police fired at
Four youths were among eight people arrested early this morning after police were fired upon in Don Mills. The shots came while the emergency task force was executing a search warrant, police say.
The investigation has been turned over to Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit, which usually looks at cases involving police with death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault. Read all about it.
Public alert after Don Mills assault
Police are looking for a man in his 30s as part of an investigation into an alleged assault near Don Mills Road and Lawrence Avenue East.
It was reported on Oct. 13 at about 8:15 p.m. a woman was in a laneway when she was approached and assaulted by an unknown man who then fled.
A public alert has been issued. The man is described as in his 30s, 5-foot-10 to 6 feet tall, with a tanned complexion and a light brown scruffy beard. He was last seen wearing a dark baseball cap, grey sweater, dark blue jeans, and a grey t-shirt with a black vest.
Police seek canine victim of carjacking
Police are asking for help finding Sammy, a large, white dog. Sammy was in a vehicle carjacked near Victoria Park and Ellesmere early this morning.
Police recovered the car and arrested a man near Victoria Park and Eglinton later this morning but Sammy was not in the car. See the story.
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