No Pearen Park rink this year

Sad news: there will be no Pearen Park skating rink this year. The MDCA announced that a combination of global warming and few volunteers has led to the difficult decision.

Simon Chamberlain and other excellent residents put endless hours of work, always in the cold and often in the middle of the night, into the community rink, which they hoped would help newcomers enjoy winter in Canada.

The MDCA says they “the fall, we will decide if the rink can ever be re-activated, and what to do with the skates, helmets, and clothing.”

It will be much missed.

 

Some openings

Hot on the heels of Black Cat Espresso comes another sign of Weston’s hipness: Pilates classes.

Christina from Matter of Movement will be hosting Tuesday night classes at Artscape (they’re full, alas). If there’s interest, there may be Thursday classes, too.


In other fitness (and Artscape) news, we’ll be getting our first dojo since Seneca taekwondo closed .  Yoyo Dojo is opening at Artscape and having classes for youth on Mondays.


Finally, I hear Tim Horton’s is open on Weston Road. I haven’t been, and I likely won’t.

Staff blast Greenland proposal

Roy will have his own article in a moment, but here is my summary of the city’s report on the Greenland building: Absolutely not.

The report rejects the proposal on many different levels. But, in short, the building is far too big and will hurt, rather than “regentrify”, Weston.

The report will be presented to community council on January 8.

At issue is a proposal for two 29-storey towers joined by a very large podium on a relatively small site at Weston and Little.  The official plan for Weston limits buildings to 8 storeys, and fewer close to the road, so the proposed building is far larger, far denser, and far more imposing than permitted. Indeed, the buildings look like a tornado dropped Toronto onto Weston’s heritage.

The developer’s concept drawing of the finished product. Note the size of the storefronts at the base of the structure. Click to enlarge.

The city report says that the proposed building “would result in a bulky, overwhelming presence”, “fails to address the local and planned context” and “is inappropriate for the site”. Staff say the plan should be rejected and redesigned as a “mid-rise building with a 45 degree angular plane provided from the Neighbourhoods, open space and low-rise areas and that particular attention be paid to heritage features”.

It’s not just the architecture. The building will have effects on community space and infrastructure—perhaps for decades. The report says Weston will need:

  • a new elementary school,
  • a new public community centre and
  • a new child care centre

None of these will be built quickly. St John The Evangelist took 5 years just to build—and months were wasted on legal wrangling over a culvert.  A culvert. Could you imagine what it would take to build a school from scratch?

The developers aren’t only asking to draw down Weston. They’re hoping to provide too few common elements for the future owners. They would like to provide less than half the required amenity space and too few parking spaces.

The city has made it clear that residents and representatives  must reject this proposal and demand it be redrawn, from scratch, with the community in mind.

Woman murdered

A 66-year-old woman was murdered last evening at 1765 Weston Road. She was found with serious injuries in an apartment on the upper floor. She was later pronounced dead in hospital.

A man fled the scene. At around midnight, he was captured near Peter and Queen St West.

 

 

In other Mount Dennis news…

V’s vegan restaurant was named one of the 50 best vegetarian restaurants in Toronto by BlogTO. Nice! And well deserved. It’s great.

 

V’s Vegan food

The annual Pearen Park skating rink is looking for volunteers. It’s probably the best skating rink in the city, if you ask me. The all-volunteer group introduces newcomers to Canadian winters, and loans out skates to all comers. If you have time (or money), I know that you couldn’t spend it better.


Thanks to the MDCA newsletter for this news.