Upcoming events

The last episode of “Run it Black” will be tomorrow, July 30 at 6 PM. It will feature Tafari Anthony, a “Toronto based artist whose music blends R&B, pop, and soul…. Known for his sleek vocal tones, sultry melodies and music which oozes with personality, Tafari leaves listeners in awe.”

You can watch this, or past shows, on Facebook.

On Friday, Frontlines will host “Beats in the Streets”, with free games, workouts, and movies for youth.

And, of course, the Weston Farmers’ Market opens this Saturday, at its new (old) location at the 16 John Street lot.

Fight against Bill 184 has a strong local base

Local groups are a large part of the push against the Conservative government’s bill that will allow landlords to evict tenants who don’t meet the terms of rent repayment plans. The bill “would allow for landlords to cut the [Landlord Tenant Board] out of the equation and offer tenants their own repayment plan”.

The bill does not resume evictions, which have paused since the start of the COVID epidemic. It does, however, allow landlords to strike deals with tenants and could evict tenants who do either do not agree to a deal, or do not meet the terms of the deal. It also punishes landlords who act in bad faith by renovicting or forcing tenants out under the auspices of personal use.

The York South–Weston Tenant Union fought the bill before it was passed, and was part of protests downtown, along with Faisal Hassan, our MPP. They have also been organizing Weston apartment buildings at 245o–2460, and 2220-2222 Weston Rd. Chiara Padovani, a local organizer, tweeted that Starlight‘s property taxes went way down, but they still haven’t given the tenants of 2450/2460 Weston Rd their automatic rent reduction even though they’re required by law to do so.”

Marcia Stone, co-chair of the  Weston branch of ACORN, was also scheduled to speak to Toronto City Council today about the bill.


An intriguing idea for Weston

The city is studying an intriguing idea that could change the character of Toronto neighbourhoods: gently increasing density in low-density areas.

I think it’s great idea—certainly better than gigantic high-rises on residential streets. City Hall could “loosen up rules on triplexes, allow ‘garden suites’ behind houses, allow development on major streets where it’s not currently allowed and more.”

This works for me. Because of COVID, I recently moved my office into my garage, and that got me thinking about my ex-girlfriend. (Please note that my move to the garage came first! I’m not in the doghouse any more than usual.)

She lived long-term in a coach house on her parent’s medium-sized property. It was great. She had privacy, and her parents had her nearby. I got to thinking that my garage was just about the right footprint for a little place for my growing kids.¹

I’m not the only one to think so: the NY Times, among many others, has been reporting on backyard spaces, doubtless because COVID has focused the minds of white-collar workers on making the most of their living space.

Of course, that has long been a concern of people priced out of home- and yard-ownership in this wildly-expensive city.

From Summerwood
From the NY Times

 Toronto’s  planners suggest looking into allowing more:

  • Duplexes
  • Triplexes
  • Townhouses
  • Small apartment buildings
  • Laneway houses, and
  • Garden suites

Doing so would, they hope, increase housing supply and affordability. The changes would not likely come quickly, though. The planners’ report lays out a two-year warm-up period. It will considered by City Council this week.

¹ My daughter’s response to a free house for her twenties was “No way. I’m moving as far away as possible.” My son’s was more positive, presumably because I wouldn’t be able to monitor his PS6 time.

WAES seeking supplies

The Weston food bank (Weston Area Emergency Support) is looking for some supplies that are in high remand. They say

Currently Superstore at Crossroads has a couple items on sale that are in high demand. PC Family Pack Jumbo Rolls of Toilet Paper and large cases of Pampers size #5 & #6 diapers.

Donation drop off can be Monday, Wednesday and Thursdays from 9am to 12pm or call Chris at 647-444-0418 to arrange pickup or alternative drop off times.

Visit us at www.waes.ca for more information, location and donation details.

Upcoming events

 There will be yoga in Swanek Park every Tuesday morning and Thursday afternoon. The cost is $10, and it is will be socially distanced. Sounds great to me.

UrbanArts will he having its annual CultureShock festival online this year, from August 5–7.

Thames River Melons sells in Toronto, not far away

If you can’t wait until the Weston Farmers’ Market opens August 1, you can get Thames River Melons produce at North of Brooklyn Pizza’s Sunday pop-up shop at 511 Rogers Road, Toronto from 12-5pm.

You’ll know Thames River Melons by their excellent asparagus, corn, and, yes, melons that they have sold at the Weston market for years.

And an apology. E told me about this ages ago, and I forgot to mention it until now. Sorry.