A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Posts Tagged ‘downsview park

[PHOTO] In memory of the fallen, LiUNA Local 506 (@LiunaCanada)

In memory of the fallen (1) #toronto #downsviewpark #liuna #liuna506 #chesswooddrive #statue #latergram

In memory of the fallen (2) #toronto #downsviewpark #liuna #liuna506 #chesswooddrive #statue #latergram

In memory of the fallen (3) #toronto #downsviewpark #liuna #liuna506 #chesswooddrive #statue #latergram

Written by Randy McDonald

December 2, 2019 at 12:00 pm

[PHOTO] Four photos of Downsview Park subway station

Downsview Park subway station is impressive, spacious in the right ways. If only it was more heavily used!

Downsview Park (1) #toronto #ttc #subway #downsviewpark #architecture

Downsview Park (2) #toronto #ttc #subway #downsviewpark #architecture

Downsview Park (3) #toronto #ttc #subway #downsviewpark #architecture

Downsview Park (4) #toronto #ttc #subway #downsviewpark #architecture

Written by Randy McDonald

December 2, 2019 at 9:45 am

[URBAN NOTE] Five Toronto links: Netflix, McArthur, Downsview Park, Winter Stations, winter rain

  • Netflix is opening up a new production hub in Toronto, creating as many as two thousand extra jobs. CBC reports.
  • The inquiry into a policeman charged with unfairly dismissing a 2016 report of an attempted choking by Bruce McArthur continues. The National Post reports.
  • Is there a possibility that Downsview Park might undergo a renaissance as a hub of aerospace industry? CBC reports.
  • CBC Toronto reports on this year’s iteration of Winter Stations, this one based around the theme of migration.
  • Freezing rain is expected for Wednesday night, contributing to a winter that so far as been quite full of precipitation of all kinds. CBC reports.

[URBAN NOTE] Five Toronto links: Little Tibet, #650Parliament, Downsview Park, #topoli

  • blogTO took a look at the history of Little Tibet, the stretch of Parkdale home to one of the biggest Tibetan communities outside of Asia.
  • Extensive electrical issues with 650 Parliament, the property manager claims, will keep that huge tower’s inhabitants from their homes for months. Global News reports.
  • Urban Toronto notes how the new Downsview Park will make its densifying neighbourhood that much more attractive.
  • John Lorinc at Spacing considers the contributions, and possible threats, posed by fringe candidates in this year’s mayoral election in Toronto.
  • Samantha Beattie at the Toronto Star reports on what some of the candidates who have dropped out of the race following the halving in the number of Toronto’s wards are doing now.

[URBAN NOTE] Five Toronto links: flooding, bioswale, CNE strike, real estate data, St. Basil’s

  • Heavy rainfall puts serious strains on the sewer system of Toronto. (I’m just grateful for my good drainage, the historic proximity of Garrison Creek notwithstanding.) Global News reports.
  • Christopher Hume reports on the flood-minimizing bioswale installed at Downsview Park, over at the Toronto Star.
  • The CNE projects losses of 1.5 million dollars on account of the strike by workers. CityNews reports.
  • I entirely approve of this lawsuit requiring the publication of real estate sales data. Toronto needs to be able to know itself. CBC reports.
  • Katie Daubs writes about the heart of John Elmsley, a convert whose heart was buried in the wall of St. Basil’s Church, over at the Toronto Star.

[URBAN NOTE] Five Toronto links: police, Downsview Park, Harbourfront, U-Pass at U of T, Jollibee

  • The Toronto Police Service was claiming as recently as four months ago that, contrary to community concern, there was no serial killer at work in the Village. How are they to believed, especially when police chief Saunders lies about people not approaching the police with their concerns? Why should it be marching during Pride this year? The Ottawa Citizen preserves the truth.
  • Tess Kalinowski suggests that the impending departure of Bombardier from Downsview Park might lead to the regeneration of that neighbourhood, over at the Toronto Star.
  • That the Harbourfront Centre, despite its prominence, is apparently unable to pay $C 1.4 million in rent and back taxes to the City of Toronto is alarming. The Toronto Star reports.
  • The rejection by University of Toronto students, in a very recent vote, of a subsidized U-Pass for the TTC surprises me. I suppose if they live downtown and don’t want access to the rest of the city that might be a partial explanation, but still. The Toronto Star reports.
  • Justine Torres writes at NOW Toronto about the importance of the Jollibee opening for her, as someone of Filipino background.

[URBAN NOTE] “Public Works: Finding New Uses for Old Infrastructure”

Torontoist’s Peter Goffin has pointed to the Minsk Forest City project in the capital city of Belarus that might have interesting lessons for Toronto, specifically in the area of Downsview Park.

U.S.-based designers Sasaki Associates [. . .] have created an innovative master plan for the city of Minsk, Belarus, that, if implemented, would transform a disused airport into a a residential, commercial, cultural, and ecological hot spot.

Commissioned by a Russian consulting firm to conjure up a vision for what used to be Minsk-1 Airport, Sasaki has come up with “Forest City,” a 3.2-square km mixed-use district in the middle of the Belarusian capital, where museums, homes, businesses, and, yes, forests lie side by side. It’s still just the stuff of renderings and project descriptions, but whether or not the City of Minsk bites, Forest City is garnering a fair amount of buzz on architecture and urban design blogs from around the world.

Under the Forest City plan, structures that once served the airport would be updated and integrated into what Sasaki calls “a 24/7 vibrant, diverse, and balanced mixed-use program.” In a nod to the area’s history of aviation, the original terminal would be transformed into an air museum. Meanwhile, the old airstrip has been reimagined as “Runway Park,” a long strip of green space, in which vegetation grows through holes cut into the tarmac.

In fact, Forest City would be veined with a whole connected system of parks, woodland, and waterways winding their way toward a natural tributary south of the district. With space earmarked for everything from canoeing, to ice skating, to art galleries and community centres, Forest City would be just what its name suggests: rural and urban, all at once.

To Torontonian ears, this Forest City thing sounds a lot like Downsview Park—a derelict airfield due to come back from the dead as a mixed-use community where urban housing abuts parkland. Could Toronto offer a real-world model for Sasaki’s master plan? Perhaps not. Downsview Park has been a divisive, ever-changing, sometimes ignored initiative since it was announced in 1999 by the Jean Chrétien government. Originally planned as a National Park in an urban setting, it was handed over in 2012 to Canada Lands Company, the guys who sell off government property for profit. Last November, builders Mattamy Homes struck a deal to construct 1,000 residential units on the park’s lands. In fact, you can already stake your claim to one. To some, the Mattamy deal is the first step in developing a planned community of city homes in pastoral surroundings right by the subway line. For others, it’s sparked worry that the National Park vision is dead and that Downsview will one day be a Mississauga-style housing development.

Written by Randy McDonald

March 22, 2014 at 6:05 pm

[URBAN NOTE] On the relaunching of the Canadian Air and Space Museum

I’m very glad to hear that the Canadian Air and Space Museum, which closed down last year when it was evicted from its Downsview Park location, is set to reopen. I quite enjoyed my visit there with G. back in September 2010. The museum had a very large and well-presented collection, of which not the least impressive was a full-size model of the Avro Arrow. (The vintage space-age toys were also fun to look at.)

Vintage space toys at the Canadian Air and Space Museum (4)

Brian Quan’s Toronto Star article “Canadian Air and Space Museum seeks a soft landing at Pearson” explains the current plans. The museum’s biggest problems related to the lack of public knowledge of the museum’s existence–I’d a friend who had worked at Downsview Park for an extended period but knew nothing about the museum–and relatively low attendance.

[T]he Greater Toronto Airports Authority agreed to help the struggling, and currently homeless, Canadian Air and Space Museum find a new site for its aircraft and artifact collection — including a replica of the legendary Canadian-built Avro Arrow fighter jet — at Pearson International Airport.

“We are talking and hoping we can come to a good arrangement,” said airport authority spokesman Scott Armstrong.

More than a year ago the aviation museum, a non-profit organization run by volunteers, was evicted from its Downsview Park location after running into financial problems and the park corporation’s desire to repurpose the building.

By September 2011, the museum owed the park’s property owner some $100,000 in unpaid rent.

“It was a very unpleasant experience,” Ian McDougall, museum chair, said of the eviction notice that forced volunteers to dismantle and pack the collection into storage containers.

The museum struck a deal with the GTAA earlier this year to temporarily store its collection on airport property.

With most of its collection already shipped there, McDougall said, the museum pursued negotiations to secure a permanent home at Pearson.

According to McDougall, the museum has already found a location at the airport where a new building could be constructed to house the collection. A press release notes the museum is looking at land near the south end of the airport, near Highway 401.

[. . .]

McDougall added that “we’re still working out large details,” particularly how the struggling museum can afford to lease airport land, given its financial difficulties. After a year with its doors closed to the public, the volunteer-run organization has all but burned through its small cash reserve, he said.

Earlier this month, in a move to turn dreams of an airport home into a reality, the museum launched a campaign on crowdfunding site IndieGoGo, seeking $500,000 in donations to help fund a new home for its collection, which includes a full-scale replica of the Avro Arrow fighter jet.

The crowdfundng page mentioned is here.

Written by Randy McDonald

November 14, 2012 at 3:52 am