1985 Weston wish list

Cycle YorkSouth-Weston has tweeted this fascinating wish list for Weston drawn up by residents back in 1985. Some very forward looking ideas were proposed and some have actually come to pass (the Humber footbridge). Would the people who created this list 33 years ago be pleased or disappointed with the progress made since then?


14 thoughts on “1985 Weston wish list”

  1. Gosh! I haven’t seen that list in forever! I did a paper while at Ryerson regarding the main street, our product mix, etc. back in 1986 and spoke of some of the same issues and used that list as a guidepost. It also illuminates that we had main street and community concerns about the health of our neighbourhood back then – 30+ years ago! And nothing significant was addressed even at that time when business was good, the community was considerably more ‘homogeneous’ and we were still able to get stuff done without the weight of the current bureaucracy and rules.

    I’m really thrilled, Roy, that you have dug this up and posted. It shows that there were concerns, there were solutions or at the least ideas and that some were paying attention. Sadly, most of these ideas just stayed on paper and were never put into motion. Everyone waited for someone else to do it and it was never done. I have been speaking of this to customers when they say: the community is so changed or there is no where to shop or it’s scary or any combination of those comments. The lack of perspective and understanding why the community is the way it is actually makes me both sad and really angry because I know that it was apparent over 30 years ago what Weston was missing, what it was losing and that no one was truly working on fixing it. Anything done was a band-aid solution and with the next amalgamation, we lost even more ability to fix our issues and then had them compounded in various ways.

    This store is 91 years old and it is by the grace of God and some hard work that it remains. You want something? Work for it… make it happen. There are lots of opportunities for entrepreneurship. You just have to have vision, gumption and perseverance. Otherwise, we would have closed in 1988 or 1993 – my parents chose to stick it out and so did I. I truly hope that our current wave of construction and the new residents who will choose to make Weston their home will bring some life back to the main street.

    1. LOL….where is the local community centre? where is the strong BIA ? Why isn’t Weston Rd following the city official plan? why is weston getting more rental towers??? Hope doesn’t bring business…..clean up the area and have proper planning then you will see things change. FYI…the parking lot at UP station is a real example of poor planning in Weston.

      1. You missed the point of my comments…. and in fact, are part of the problem with that kind of attitude!

        Why do you think market-rent rentals are detrimental? Because it’s not a condo? Condo-dwellers, especially young millenials, might not have extra disposable income if paying both mortgage and monthly maintenance fees. So how to support businesses on main street? If they pay market-rent, then they might have extra cash to spend. What makes you think that rentals will only bring negatives instead? Why presume that every renter will bring negatives? How will you control a condo buyer from renting it out as many are around the City? How does that make it any different than a rental building? How is bringing a project to Weston that brings more needed good rental along with an arts centre ‘bad planning’? And where would you have built a community centre in Weston? What would you have knocked down? I’m not happy where it landed but at least it’s finally built and used.

        Some people just want to shit on everything instead of being part of the solution! Sheesh!

        1. Great post! Seriously the amount of people on here that want to shit on rentals being built is disturbing.

          1. Exactly! I was all over the condo idea too until I realized that anyone buying would probably be ‘house-poor’ and not have disposable income to spend locally. And we rented before we were able to buy and it was a hard stretch for us to pay our mortgage. No extras! Hopefully, these renters will be more into the main street and making it vibrant vs. those who continue to shit on it but do nothing to support it. LOL!

          2. We have enough rentals in Weston…guess you folks like trash….this just in…TD Bank moving to Superstore property….Weston Rd continues its fall from classy to trashy.

          3. Bob, you obviously didn’t understand what Roy posted nor my comments afterwards. Haters gonna hate. And keyboard warriors will still be trashing and bashing Weston in another 30 years of no one doing anything but shit on others. And I’m sure ALL the people who rent in Weston, including those who rent houses, would be thrilled to be called ‘trash’…. good job! you just negated a large segment of our community who just want a home to live in. Do you really think every rental building houses ‘trash’ or low-income? That’s a mighty bold statement there!

            If you have an issue with TD moving, tell them. If you think making nasty comments here is going to solve a problem … knock yourself out!

            This is exactly why Weston has issues… unfounded elitism.

      1. Martin would know best… 🙂 He’s the keeper of that kind of info. He also worked on one of the local newspapers…

        We had LOTS of great things back in the day…. including 2 movie theatres, a bowling alley, lawn bowling, a lacrosse team. Retail-wise, beautiful dress shops, another gift store, a yarn shop, a cycle and sports shop, a Canadian Tire, Loblaws, Hunt’s Bakery, a tv & radio shop.

      2. Not exactly sure, but the cable company that served the area back in the day (70’s and into the 80’s) was called Graham Cable TV.

        And yes, they did create a lot of local community generated programming on Channel 10.

        Their office building and production facilities were located at Scarlett Rd., just north of St. Clair.

  2. Nicely done, Worker Bee.
    Good fighting spirit, and stated from a position of a long time small business owner and as a resident.

    And yes, good job digging up that bit of history, Roy.

    I’m not sure what a proper glance at a Urban Studies history would show regarding Weston’s slow degeneration, but often times The Yorkdale Shopping Centre experience was held to blame, as many drove over to Dufferin Street for that new indoor opportunity.

    Same story with many small communities across the province.

    But, many of those indoor malls are failing with folks deciding they would prefer something more specific – outdoor weather not always an issue.

    When our family moved to town in ’68 there were every imaginable large brand name-of-the-day stores present to coexist with smaller “Mom & Pop” shops, like Squibb’s.

    But, like Worker said, it’s imperative to have people come back to “Main Street” where they’ll hopefully share some of those hard earned dollars with the local shop keepers.

    Some hometown pride can go a long way. You just have to maintain a decent attitude as often as possible if it’s ever going to stand a chance.

    From this perspective, there are many from a new generation of hopeful investors who would love to see their vote of confidence come to fruition.

    We need more new, young & bold blood to enter with an understanding of where the community’s been during it’s best small town days and what might work in attempt to draw more optimistic decency to it, or back to it – especially with the improved rail transit opportunities.

    There are many successful “proud of their Weston roots” folks who have moved away in the last few decades – to all parts of the country – who, when they reappear for a visit (perhaps a funeral) are surprised and saddened. You can see that they fantasized a little about their “happy days”.

    Not sure what to add to Worker & Roy’s posting. But, on a superficial level here’s what I’ve tried to do with each and every opportunity when it comes to ideas like maintaining place names like “The City of Weston” or “Main Street”. And, it’s proven and quite doable, as done by a commercial group as large as the Real Estate Board.

    Go ahead – check a map, closely.

    Bureaucrats through amalgamation have changed our community’s name of Weston, Ontario much too often over the years, and with very odd justification. The immediate area became the “City of York”, “Toronto” and most often these days, “York”, Ontario.

    But, no matter the place name assigned to our Postal Code, it’s that very postal code that maintains our name on the property map for this part of Toronto.

    Example, my driver’s licence still has Weston, Ontario with the appropriate postal code on it. It’s official and aknowledged. No problems.

    Knowing that, with every given opportunity I try and tell that the place that I live is called Weston, no matter what the bureaucrats want me to say.

    And, that the most important thing about my address is that very postal code assigned to the home.

    Like I said, it’s a somewhat superficial effort, but for me it’s a starting point in trying to maintain the very name that the community was graced with back in the late 1700s.

    Maybe reviving this community begins with the simple, outer most layer – it’s official, historically given name, Weston, Ontario.

    A hopeful, new restart – sprung from the list of ’83.

    Just another thought.

    (Wait. What was the name given by the indigenous, First peoples? Oh, never mind. It’s an attitude thing.)

    1. Thanks anonymous for your kind words and thoughts … I too will always use “Weston” as my place-name whenever possible. I’m a proud transplant and chose to buy my home here as well as working here for over 35 years.

      If you figure out who I am, come and visit… 🙂

      1. wow someone has way too much to say…..honestly Weston Rd looks like a dump. I try my best to shop local by visiting the few remaining shops that are worth a visit that line Weston Rd, using the library, or visiting the farmers market. But from the ugly john st bridge, to a vast parking lot on the corner of Weston & Lawrence, to the invisible landlords, Weston Rd is a dump.

  3. Regarding bike related stuff..
    Can’t recall the year (mid-80’s?) or even if the CCM factory was still in town, but there was at least one “Tour de Weston” type bike race that ran through town on Main Street; then down Little Ave., around the bend toward Hickory Tree and then up the hill alongside Lions Park to Bellevue, and then around to Weston Rd., then northbound, back up to Little. Round & round. Seemed like a fun, successful event – with a pretty large field of riders.

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