Don Valley Daily Updates

A quick look at news, views and things to do locally

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.

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One male shot, one in custody, another sought by police

A shooting near Victoria Park and O’Connor Drive this evening has left one male in hospital injuries and one being held by police. Meanwhile police are looking for for another male and a white SUV that fled the scene. Read the full, updated story.

Vehicle fire in Victoria Park driveway

A vehicle has been reported on fire on Victoria Park south of Lawrence Avenue East late this afternoon. Officers arrived to find flames coming from the engine block of a vehicle parked in a driveway, police reported on Twitter. Police called fire services to put the blaze out. No one was found in the vehicle. No further information is available yet.

Put out your yard waste at least one more time

The city has extended its yard waste collection for another two weeks. It had been suspended as part of Toronto’s COVID-19 response but the city resumed it for a period from April 6 to 17. Yesterday it was announced the service would be continued to May 1. For more details see our report.

Better behaviour found by enforcement officers in parks

Have you noticed it in Sunnybrook, Windfarms or other local parks? Fewer people flouting the city’s social distancing rules and gathering in groups, or using closed park facilities, like playgrounds and fitness stations?

That’s what enforcement officers have discovered on the first two days of their four-day holiday weekend blitz of the city’s parks. This comes as they move from issuing warnings to issuing tickets — up to $1,000 — for infractions of the public health measures. Read more about it.

Windfields dog owners among groups hit by distancing police

The city set a record for the number of tickets issued and people talked to for using shutdown facilities and congregating too closely in parks on Monday. This includes a large gathering in the off-leash dog area of Windfields Park.

For more, see the story.

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Doors closed and other local cancellations

The street festival known as Taste of Lawrence, originally scheduled for July 5–7, is among the local events that have been shut down in the latest wave of cancellations due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Now the cancellations and postponements extend right into summer. See our updated guide to the changes.

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.

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 media release this morning.

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

Ontario’s and Toronto’s chief medical officers have issued their warnings and recommendations about combating COVID-19 through local distancing. And now the speed of local shows being cancelled, venues shut down and programs postponed has accelerated.

We’re trying to stay on top of it with an updated tips list in Streeter news. If you’ve learned of any other schedule changes in our communities due to coronavirus concerns, let us know.

Local events cancelled across our neighbourhoods

We’re starting a running list of events that have been cancelled or postponed and venues that have shut down or reduced hours in the local areas due to the growing coronavirus crisis. See the list in Streeter news.

Coteau places second in Liberal leadership race

Don Valley East MPP Michael Coteau came a distant second in the race for leader of the Ontario Liberals yesterday. Coteau won the support of almost 18 per cent of the elected delegates to the convention that concluded on March 7.

The winner was Steven Del Duca with more than 56 per cent support, despite having been personally defeated in the 2018 provincial election.

Coteau, however, came out ahead of four other leadership candidates, including one other sitting MPP, Scarborough-Guildwood’s Mitzie Hunter.

Garbage deal ratified by city and union

We should be getting garbage pickup and other services in our 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.

Safe bike lanes pushed by local group

A cycling group that meets in Midtown every month is pushing the city to create safe lanes. Holly Reid, who co-chairs Cycle Don Valley Midtown, says one of the group’s focuses now is getting city funding for protective lanes in the plans for Eglinton Avenue, as well as in Thorncliffe Park and Flemingdon Park areas.

Get the story in Streeter news.

Garbage pickup to continue as tentative deal reached

It looks like garbage will continue to be collected and other public services provided in our area 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.

Wrong target hit in Flemingdon shooting: police

It was a targeted shooting near St. Dennis and Grenoble Drives but the woman put in hospital with a serious leg wound was not the intended target, police believe. More on the Feb. 26 shooting in Streeter news.

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.

Don Mills crash sends driver to hospital

Police are reporting a serious collision at Don Mills Road and Lawrence Avenue East shortly after 7 a.m. yesterday. A 49-year-old man was taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries, while a 26-year-old woman suffered minor injuries.

The man was driving a blue Mazda 3 southbound on Don Mills Road and entered the Lawrence intersection against a red traffic signal and struck a black Chevrolet Cruze eastbound on Lawrence Avenue East, approaching Don Mills Road, police said.

The crash is being investigated by investigation by officers in Traffic Services. They are asking local residents, businesses, and drivers to check their security or dash cameras for footage of the incident.

Fire in vacant Victoria Park building

A dilapidated commercial building at 1680 Victoria Park Ave. was the scene of a fire early this morning. Toronto Fire Services arrived at about 2:30 a.m. and found flames erupting from the building. The fire was put out quickly and no one was found in the building which had been sitting vacant, according to the fire department. The cause of the fire and cost of damages are unknown as of yet.

Don Valley area relatively crime-free in 2019

In a year when it seemed shootings — and worse — were being reported almost every day, the Don Valley East area was relatively unscathed in 2019, judging by a summary of police figures.

Homicides, for examples were few and far between east of the valley, with only one showing in Don  Valley East ward and two more in the Beaches-East York ward to the the south. See the full Streeter analysis.

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Posted: May 25 2020 11:24 am

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