The Legacy of the St. Lawrence
Jamii Retrospective Reminds us of Our Legacy
As part of local arts organization Jamii's commemorative 10th Anniversary retrospective, the group recently shared on Facebook pictures and details from a 2013 Jamii event that welcomed former Mayor of Toronto, David Crombie and other reknowned city builders, to the courtyard of the Berkeley Castle for an outdoor panel discussion on the development of this neighbourhood. The following excerpt offers some local history and reminds us of the significance and legacy of our neighbourhood:
"Back in 2013 Jamii was only two years old and like the gardens in our community, our roots were growing in our beloved David Crombie Park and throughout the Esplanade.
A Highlight for Jamii’s third year was “The Esplanadians,”a series of talks with an amazing panel composed of three of the founders of The Esplanade development, David Crombie (former Mayor of Toronto, 1972-1978, who oversaw its creation), Alan Littlewood (architect responsible for the site plan), and John Sewell, (former Mayor of Toronto, 1978-1980 and prominent role in the project) - talks were moderated by Prof. Beth Savan from University of Toronto
The panel reminisced over the big plans, fierce battles, and hilarious anecdotes that make up the development of The Esplanade.
“At 45 acres, St Lawrence was the largest urban project ever created in North America,” recalled Alan Littlewood. “We looked at all the land south of Front Street which was then auto wrecking, demolition, cold storage…a total mess, and decided that we should try to do a really big development and make it part of the city,” added Sewell. “We needed a living vibrant downtown. St Lawrence became the flagship of building new neighbourhoods,” had closed Crombie.
All three had agreed that the long, linear Crombie Park, stretching along The Esplanade is one of the significant successes of the neighbourhood. It was a visual linkage throughout the length of the neighbourhood. Littlewood stressed, “You need basic principles of planning. Extend the street, make it part of the city, build neighbourhoods not projects, and most importantly make sure it’s a mix: mixed income, mixed family types, mixed housing. And keep developments small.” -- Jamii
CBC Feature - First Parliament Challenge
For a quick overview of the priorities of this community with respect to the historic First Parliament site at Front St. and Berkeley read this recent CBC feature.
Included in this feature is some insight into concerns of community partners, including the SLNA , and how together with other residents groups we are working to ensure that the province's recent expropriation of this land does not result in provincial agencies running roughshod over the community's 20-year effort and plan to install on this historic site a new library and needed park space.
Old Town Toronto - Hallowe'en Pumpkin Parade
𝗝𝗼𝗶𝗻 𝘂𝘀 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗮 𝗰𝗵𝗮𝗻𝗰𝗲 𝘁𝗼 𝘄𝗶𝗻 𝗮 $𝟭𝟬𝟬 𝗴𝗶𝗳𝘁 𝗰𝗮𝗿𝗱 𝘁𝗼 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗢𝗹𝗱 𝗧𝗼𝘄𝗻 𝗧𝗼𝗿𝗼𝗻𝘁𝗼 𝗯𝘂𝘀𝗶𝗻𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝗼𝗳 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗰𝗵𝗼𝗶𝗰𝗲!
The Old Town Toronto's annual Pumpkin Parade is BACK, Jack, with a new date for 2021!
Friday Oct 29th bring your jack-o-lanterns to Berczy Park for the ultimate Hallowe'en pre-game! Let your creation glow with delight atop the park’s stage for all to see before taking it home for the big night of trick-or-treating. Feel like dressing up? GO FOR IT!
Be sure to enter the Old Town Toronto (OTT) draw for a $100 gift card to the OTT business of your choice by sharing your best images of the evening in the park on instagram using #OldTownToronto and tag @OldTownToronto.
Join/Share OTT Facebook Event
The next SLNA Delegate and Community Meeting will take place on Wednesday, October 27th at 7:00 p.m.
Delegate Reminder: We ask all delegates to attend this week's SLNA Community Meeting so that we will have the necessary quorum to debate and pass motions currently awaiting review by the membership.
This meeting will once again be hosted on Zoom.
Meeting ID: 859 6743 6858
To connect via telephone use either one of the following numbers:
+1 647 374 4685
+1 647 558 0588
Urgent Action Needed to Protect Vision for Ontario Place
The St. Lawrence Neighbourhood Association is a founding member of the advocacy group "Ontario Place For All". The following update from OP4All is of some urgency (deadline for survey response is Oct. 28) and we urge our community to support these efforts:
Put Ontario Back in Ontario Place
The Government says it has a new vision for Ontario Place, but what is it? Giving pieces of Ontario Place to three businesses who will charge people for pay-to-play entertainment does not amount to a vision!
If you share our concern about this, here are some things you can do:
A Big Caution about the Survey
The Government’s survey is full of leading questions designed to limit your ability to respond frankly and sincerely. The government has not yet committed to making the results of the questionnaire public.
The questions are written in a way to force respondents to accept the government’s development decisions. It is mandatory to answer all questions. Only three questions have a box where you can provide your own comments. We suggest you use those boxes to enter your concerns. Here are some suggestions:
Question 2 talks about Ontario’s vision and plan for Ontario Place.
Question 3 says open spaces with free public access will be key to the site. Of course, it does not tell you that most of the site will be privatized.
Question 4b asks which heritage features are important for you. You cannot say they all are.
Take a few minutes to fill out the survey and register for the Public Information Session.
Your voice counts.
Ontario Place for All - Core Principles
Volunteers Needed - SLNA 40th Anniversary Committee
In 2022, the St. Lawrence Neighbourhood Association will celebrate 40 years of advocacy and service to this community. Many of the SLNA's original founders and oustanding community builders who helped to make the St. Lawrence one of the most welcoming, vibrant and desireable communities in Toronto, are still residents here and we hope these individuals will join our 40th Anniversary Committee.
If you are interested in being a part of the SLNA's 40th Anniversary Planning Committee please send an email expressing your interest to: firstname.lastname@example.org by November 5, 2021.
CITY TV Interviewed SLNA Development Committee Chair Suzanne Kavanagh in this recent feature on the development plans in the St. Lawrence neighbourhood slated for the First Parliament site and the adjacent Ontario Line subway stop tentatively named "Corktown."
Click to view interview.
Toronto's Official Plan
rom the City of Toronto:
The City of Toronto's Official Plan is a city planning document that acts as Toronto’s road map for land use matters. It sets out our long-term vision, shared values, and policies that help guide decision-making on land development, economic growth, the environment, and more.
It’s important to keep the Official Plan up to date to accommodate growth. Toronto is expected to grow by 700,000 people and more than 450,000 jobs by 2051. Our Plan Toronto will focus on identifying where growth should go, and what it needs to support healthy, complete communities that are thriving and inclusive.
Here are three quick things you can do right now:
1) Watch this short video for a fun introduction to Our Plan Toronto and the big questions being asked as we plan for growth.
2) Fill out this poll to share your thoughts on key issues, values, and strengths that the City should focus on for Our Plan Toronto. It only takes 5 minutes and your feedback will help inform the conversations we’ll have over the coming months.
3) Download Your Guide to Our Plan Toronto to learn more about what the City is doing and why.
Please join us on October 20, 2021 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. (register) or from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. (register) for a city-wide conversation on how we can plan to address the most pressing challenges facing our city over the next 30 years. Please register prior to the event, and watch this short video for an introduction to Our Plan Toronto.
Market St. Survey Results
As was announced in our newsletter back in the summer, our neighbourhood's business improvement association - Old Town Toronto - hosted a survey to gauge support for pedestrianizing Market St.
You can view the results here.
Interestingly enough 93.5 percent of those completing the survey supported a complete summer closure of Market St. in 2022.
Waste Reduction Tips
The following tips are produced by the SLNA Waste Reduction Group for your reference and use (WRG tip sheets can also be viewed on the SLNA website at: https://www.slna.ca/wrg.html).