In other news…

In other news (literally), has a new Weston correspondent. Veronica Appia has been covering our area, and others, for the past month or so.

Some of the news she’s broken:

John and Weston Signals to get Fixed

For some time, I have thought that the signals at John and Weston were broken. It cycles through continuously, with a green signal on Weston Rd for only a few seconds before it starts to change again. It makes traffic in rush hour a nightmare.
I reported it several years ago, and was told it was fine. I reported it again a few weeks ago when I noticed it cycling in the middle of the night.
I was again told it was working fine.
I asked the 311 operator if someone could call me back. I got an email from Henry Chu, who advised me to email him the nature of the issue. I did yesterday.
Today I got a call from one of the staff of transportation, who advised that indeed the car detection loop under John Street was broken and was calling for a change all the time. It will take a few weeks to fix, he said.

Car insurance

Our expensive car insurance is back in the news.

As many Westonians know, car insurance here is rather dear. I pay about $210 a month for one car, and I’m 44, with no accidents and no tickets.

It seems a lot, and I’m not the only one to think so.

The Star says that Ontarians pay the highest premiums in the country, and we in Weston spend more than average. It’s because, the Star says, insurance rates are determined by postal code. Parm Gill, a PC member from Brampton, is looking to change that by introducing Bill 42, which will forbid “postal code discrimination”—a bill that, to my mind, rather loosely throws around ‘discrimination’.

The critics quoted in the Star were not kind. They point out that insurance is a zero-sum game: if we pay less, someone will pay more.

Fire at Plank Road building

There was a fire this week at the Plank Road building, one of Weston’s hidden gems.


CTV News has video of the fire,  though they describe the building as an “abandoned house”. That’s not accurate.

Image from Wikipedia.

The building is one of the oldest in Canada—in fact, it predates Confederation by a quarter century, and it was named for the plank road  made there that ran through Weston—part of an ingenious, if misguided, way to build roads on the cheap.

The building has, however, been abandoned for at least 20 years.

Frances Nunziata says  “I was on site during the fire and spoke to the Deputy Chief of fire to request a full report on the incident, which we expect to receive shortly. The damage was primarily contained to the interior of the Heritage designated building. Following the report, I will arrange a meeting with the city’s Preservation Services as well as the Weston Historical Society to determine how best to move forward and address the damage.”


Weston Road Flows: tons of fun

UrbanArts launched “Weston Road Flows”, a Myseum showcase, last night. The Myseum program makes “museums without walls” across the city, and UrbanArts’ gallery is an audio exhibition that blends interviews, spoken word, and beats. It’s totally worth checking out over the next two weeks.

The launch last night included performances from musicians and spoken -word artists, and boy, was it fabulous. It was a warm, welcoming party of truly gifted performers. Each of them took the stage for only a few minutes, but any of them could have stilled the room all night.

Wanted man surrenders


Dwayne Banfield, who was wanted for an assault of a police officer, turned himself in Tuesday.  Police had appealed to the public to find him.

According to The Star, he was “charged with one count of assault on a police officer causing bodily harm, one count of escaping lawful custody and one count of obstructing police.”

Contest Mar 14 and New Club opening


Weston and Mount Dennis is about to get a Toastmasters Club. Its start-up meeting will be at the Anglican Church of St.Mary & St.Martha (south east corner of Weston Road at Eglinton) in mid April. Watch for details or contact Al Farrington at 416-722-0254 [email protected]

Joining a Toastmasters Club can be a great way to improve your public speaking skills, and is especially helpful for those who may feel too nervous to speak in front of large groups or strangers, or who want to work in sales or public relations. Toastmasters International has existed since 1924, has nearly 375,000 members and has a very solid reputation in over 145 countries world wide. Membership is open to anyone over 18, but anyone can attend meetings as a visitor. It’s free to the first 20 who become new members for the first 12 months.

For a demonstration, everyone is invited to the International Speech Contests with 45 clubs in Division “G” participating this Thursday March 14 at York Civic Centre 6:30-9:30. Come and see what confidence-building can do to enhance your job interview skills and how it can lead to career advancement.