York Urbanist

Archive for June, 2012

More Toronto Gardens

June 28th, 2012
annuals match salt and ketchup

More pictures from the Toronto City-Wide Gardens Contest

Toronto Gardens Judge

June 28th, 2012

North York Finalist

Although I cannot divulge the winners, here are some sample pictures from the finalists of Toronto-wide Gardens Contest.  Winners will be announced at a ceremony on October 15.  There were two particularly outstanding submissions in 2012.  Submitted were highrises, commercial properties, residences and residences whose environmental theme precludes grass in the front yard.  One submission was reminiscent of a hobbit home, whose gardens should frequent magazines.  Although most were not professionally designed, one which was is maintained in spectacular fashion.  A secret garden is fashioned into one small front yard while another featured a truly Canadian landscape. The 1970′s decade, represented in an Etobicoke highrise, is contrasted with a newer 2000′s apartment complex.

See more photos at: http://yorkurbanist.com/2012/06/more-toronto-gardens/


Etobicoke Residence

Toronto Garden Judging

June 28th, 2012

June 28 – Judging the best of Toronto’s gardens that face the public realm. Malcolm Geast, Patricia Landry and I will visit 12 sites across Toronto – residential, residential environmental, community and commercial

EDUCATE your children in SPORTS

June 25th, 2012

We believe “…by integrating sports coaching techniques into the classroom, educators can build a better student” http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/sport-psychology-makes-winners-in-school/article4367158/

RAM – Symbol of community

June 21st, 2012
Healthy Communities

Bindertwine Festival remnant

This may not be typically an urban design blog, at least until you read into the meaning – community.

On the Saturday after Labour Day, in 2001, the annual trek of cleanup crew for the Bindertwine Festival gathered at the barn to return the festival wood works for the winter. Within the barn, there stood a winged ram. The owner of the barn was embarrassed that it was there, as it had been a gift from an artist. She gave Leon permission to take it away.
Therein starts our story of Return of the Ram. It is a story of community, neighbours, and friends.
Leon really did not want the ram, but instead, hid it in our returning van. I certainly did not want it, but IT IS A PIECE OF ART! This lark by Leon turned into an expression of what community is. On his birthday, the opportunity arose to have the ram visit his birthday party. The guests were curious, but he got it back. Next was my significant birthday, to which the uninvited ram arrived regaled in party costume. It was returned and returned and returned again…but disappeared for almost 3 years.
My wife’s graduation became the featured event for the rise of the ram. A mortar board on his repainted head and booties that clash greeted our household at our large party.
The ram has become a symbol of community founded on the Bindertwine festival and about lasting friendships which are the foundation of neighbourhoods.
Thanks, Leon..back to you..perhaps not too soon.

Cycling is the New Golf

June 11th, 2012

Good and observant article in the popular press – http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/more-sports/cycling-is-the-new-golf-the-rise-of-an-on-trend-activity/article4246149/
Time for Vaughan to take up the torch.

Trails – for hikers ONLY?

June 11th, 2012

As a member of the HVHTA, my views of multi-use trails tend to be contrary to those of the longer term members. The purist hikers on our board of directors want pedestrian only trails through the Humber River.
I will be representing the group at a presentation to the TRCA and we will be requesting acknowledgement of HVHTA’s desires for safe and, at times, quiet venues for hikers and birders who make up the membership. This can be done both with construction and programming whereby motorized vehicles can be banned and other wheeled transportation can be limited by design and program.
As Vaughan urbanizes, the rural character will change. Yet there is still capacity for the expansive Humber River valley to accommodate many users. As a matter of fact, should we not be encouraging active transportation?

Parking to Parks

June 4th, 2012

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/03/svante-myrick-ithaca-mayor_n_1564151.html?ncid=edlinkusaolp00000003. While Rob Ford tries to buy parkland, another mayor is creating parkland from his personal parking space. Take Note, Rob Ford