Parkette adds beauty to shopping district

[attach]4959[/attach]Montclair Avenue Parkette has been spruced up thanks to a partnership between the city and the Forest Hill Village BIA.

“It was a dramatic change actually,” said Peter McClelland, chair of the Forest Hill Village BIA.

“Before … there was some old shrubs and I think there was one table where people could play chess. This is an amazing beautification project.”

A snake-like path now intersects the parkette, bordered by rock walls and a long, curving bench. It also has new lights, more plants and an irrigation system.

The parkette rests at the village’s southernmost boundary greeting guests as they approach Montclair Avenue heading north on Spadina Road.

“The parkette is kind of the entrance to the BIA so they wanted to beautify it so that would act as a gateway,” said Rajashree Kumar, streetscape designer with the city’s BIA office.

According to Kumar, the project costs were within the $425,000 budget, which will be split between the city and the BIA.

[attach]4960[/attach]“The benefit is a city property gets improved, but 50 percent of the cost of it comes from the local businesses,” said Kumar.

McClelland said 50 percent of the shoppers in the village walk to stores so he is quite pleased the project will beautify their experience.

He added the renovations aren’t good only for the area’s shoppers.

“It’s also good for the employees who work in the business area,” he said.

“They have a place where they can go sit and have their lunches.”