Leaside Daily Updates: July–August 2020
A quick look at news, views and things to do locally
Ride a bike for free on Wednesday
Bike Share Toronto, which has a station on Bayview Avenue at Fleming Crescent, is letting would-be cyclists ride for free all day every Wednesday in September.
Check Streeter’s Things To Do for how to do it.
Should you buy or rent a condo here?
If you’re looking for a condo in the Leaside area, there may be no clear choice between buying or renting. The real estate district encompassing Leaside, Thorncliffe and Flemingdon ranks right in the middle of Toronto neighbourhoods in the latest report by Zoocasa, which looked at purchase prices versus rental costs.
The best area to buy in may be East York and Danforth Village, while the best area to lease in may be Rosedale and Moore Park, the study suggests. Get the full story.
Outbreak of COVID-19 at Sunnybrook Hospital
The hospital that treated Canada’s first two COVID-19 cases back in January is now reporting the latest outbreak. Four confirmed new cases of coronavirus were found in one hospital unit, the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre announced yesterday.
Affected patients have been isolated and additional precautions taken, but otherwise the hospital is open and operating normally — and safely — the hospital assures. Get the full story.
Two caught, one sought in Roehampton stabbing
Police have arrested two of three men allegedly involved in the assault and stabbing of a client of Roehampton Residence on Saturday. The third man remains at large. Here’s the latest.
Client stabbed outside Mt. Pleasant homeless shelter
Three men are being sought by police after the latest violence related to temporary homeless housing in the Mt. Pleasant area. Yesterday police released images of the three, apparently taken from Roehampton Residence security video when the assault and stabbing took place outside the shelter at about 10 p.m. on Saturday.
The city says the victim was a client at the residence on Mt. Pleasant Road but the three wanted men were not. Get the full story.
Midtown nearly free of recent COVID cases
Leaside and Bennington Heights are free of new cases of COVID-19. And other midtown neighbourhoods are the same or close behind, according to the city’s coronavirus map.
It shows zero to three confirmed or probable new cases recently for most neighbourhoods in midtown, as well as in the east end and central Toronto, for the past 21 days — for all of August actually.
Check out how the neighbourhood compares to others in the Streeter article.
Go to the Ex without leaving the comforts of Leaside
Toronto’s traditional end-of-summer show and exhibition is back in 2020, though in anything but traditional form. The CNE continues online starting today until Sept. 7.
Without leaving home now, you can go to the Ex via the new CNE portal, where you can take in shows and performances, share food recipes, learn how to be a busker, take virtual rides, enjoy trips through history, and even enjoy a virtual air show.
More information in the Things To Do listing.
Leaside leads city in condo rental growth
The condo market in the Leaside area has experienced a growth in both rented units and available rental units during the pandemic, according to a new real estate report. In fact, Leaside leads all Toronto neighbourhoods in both categories.
The best news though — at least for tenants — is that average prices for condo apartments in the area has fallen.
Across Toronto the formerly tight condo rental market has loosened up dramatically. Read all about it here.
Leasider reports Lexus stolen from home
A member of the Leaside Community page on Facebook reported this morning her Lexus RX 350 was stolen last night. The keys were inside the house in a metal box, as she heard other Lexuses were recently stolen, the owner said in the post. “Obviously these criminals are pros.”
Other members sympathized and told of similar incidents in the area.
Thorncliffe teacher receives anti-racist and equity award
The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario has presented Thorncliffe Park Public School teacher Diana Hernandez an award for her work with refugee students suffering trauma and PTSD.
The award recognizes teachers who have demonstrated outstanding commitment to anti-racist and equity activism in the classroom or community.
Hernandez implemented practices such as classroom calming corners and an outdoor Zen space to address the mental health needs of newcomers and children from war-torn countries, among many other innovations, said a statement from EFTO today.
“Diana has shared her amazing and deep understanding of the mental health needs of refugee and other newcomer students with educators and service providers to make a real difference for these students,” ETFO president Sam Hammond said. Read the full statement here.
Demonstrators clash over homeless shelters
Community anger over homeless housing drew about 100 protesters to Mt. Pleasant Road yesterday — but the issue also drew nearly an equal number of demonstrators supporting the shelters.
The two groups shouted at each other across the street in front of Northern Secondary School. Meanwhile local politicians indicated support for the shelters but lamented how the city has implemented them without consultation.
Get the full story in Streeter news.
Child porn charges after search in Bayview-Moore area
A 51-year-old man faces child pornography charges after the Toronto Police Service Child Exploitation Section searched a property in the area of Bayview and Moore avenues on Aug. 12, police reported yesterday.
The man is alleged to have recorded images of children while he worked as a security supervisor at the Eaton Centre. Child sexual abuse material was found during the search.
Craig McCourt was arrested and charged with two counts of possessing child pornography and two counts of accessing child pornography. He is scheduled to appear in court on Oct. 23.
Permit parking enforcement begins tonight
Permit parking enforcement on residential streets is resuming at midnight tonight. It had been paused due to COVID-19 but the period to purchase or renew permits began on July 2 and ran to Aug. 7.
In case you missed the window, temporary daily and weekly parking permits can be purchased online anytime.
The parking permit office remains closed but can be accessed by phone at 416-392-7873 or email at email@example.com, Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m..
Concern over Roehampton Hotel as a homeless shelter
Local businesses and residents have expressed concern over crime and drug paraphernalia seemingly on the rise in the community since the Mt. Pleasant Road hotel has been used as a physical distancing shelter for the homeless. The hotel joins housing for the homeless also recently opened on Broadway Avenue.
Locals and a city councillor are careful to say they are not NIMBYists and care for the most vulnerable during the pandemic, but are getting the city to address the public safety issue.
Read all about it and the mayor’s reply in Streeter news.
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NDPers back Toronto call to cut back construction noise
Twelve opposition MPPs are asking Premier Doug Ford to give Toronto back the power to limit construction noise. This comes after city council made a similar request, on a motion from councillors Josh Matlow and Mike Colle, and after residents and residents’ associations have complained about noise keeping them awake.
In April the province issued orders allowing “essential” construction projects to generate noise earlier and later than the city had previously allowed. Get the whole story.
Four evenings of slow traffic on Mt. Pleasant
Mt. Pleasant Avenue drivers may be used to delays due to Eglinton Crosstown construction, but they’ll be facing even worse north of Eglinton Avenue East over the next several days. From July 27 to 30, the northbound and southbound lanes of Mt. Pleasant will be partially occupied due to testing for roadway structural assessment, the city says. The work is to be carried out daily from 7 to 11 p.m. between Roehampton and Dawlish avenues.
Leaside house prices up over last year despite shutdown
The average single-detached house in the real estate district that includes Leaside is priced at about $2.4 million in the first six months of this year — a nearly 11-per cent increase over the same period last year — according to a real estate report released yesterday.
The nearby Mount Pleasant area has experienced a comparable rise, while the Rosedale and Moore Park district has seen prices actually drop by an even greater amount.
Get the full story on how we compare to other neighbourhoods.
Child struck by vehicle in Thorncliffe
A child was sent to hospital with a serious leg injury after a collision with a vehicle, police advised on Twitter at about 8:30 this evening. The child had apparently been struck by a vehicle at Leaside Park Drive and Overlea Boulevard.
The vehicle driver remained on the scene and Traffic Services is investigating, police said.
More gunfire in east Leaside
Police reported a shooting early this morning at Vanderhoof Avenue and Glassworks Drive, about a block from the shooting at Vanderhoof and Research Road that left one young man dead more than a month ago. This time, however, only minor injuries appear to have been caused.
Officers were alerted to gunfire in the area at about 5:30 a.m. They found shell casings and holes in buildings at the scene, according to police. Two black males carrying a black backpack are being sought in the ongoing investigation.
Free outdoor programs for kids start Monday
The city announced today it is launching its ParksPlayTO initiative for kids up to age 12 and the Summer in the 6ix program for young people age 13 to 24 on July 20.
No registration is required for these drop-in programs in spaces across the city. In the Leaside area, this includes Leaside Memorial Gardens Pool, Leaside Outdoor Pool and other local locations.
See the story and get the details in Streeter news.
Training on local sports fields gets the go-ahead
You should start to see teams and coaches practising, as the city has reopened outdoor sports facilities as of today. But you won’t be seeing soccer, baseball or other games taking place. The reopening comes with strict rules about physical distancing and the number of people on a field at any given moment — which severely restricts the kind of activities players can get involved in.
See the whole story about parks and fields reopening.
Time to resume your parking permit
If you’re parking on the street with an expired permit, you should be aware the free period due to coronavirus has come to an end. Beginning today the city is restarting its permit parking program. The office remains closed but it can be accessed by phone at 416-392-7873 or by email Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.
You can also renew an existing permit holders using the online renewal system or by mail, though you should call first before mailing in an application.
The parking permit renewal window will be open until Aug. 3, and enforcement is expected to begin again starting Aug. 14 at midnight. More information on applying for a parking permit on the city website.
Bicycles needed for women to learn to ride
Women in Thorncliffe Park and Flemingdon Park need bicycles to gain the empowerment of being able to ride. The Women’s Cycling Network and Cycle Don Valley Midtown are seeking donations of bikes for 50 women to learn on. See the Things To Do item to find out more about making a contact-free donation.
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