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What does the future hold for Kensington Market?

Posted by Guest Contributor / June 23, 2013

Kensington MarketIt is the ultimate tribute to a neighbourhood that anyone who spends time within it will walk away feeling as if they have an investment in it. Everyone cares about Kensington Market. I do. Who wouldn't have an abiding respect for a place that somehow manages, despite its prime downtown location, to keep its cool even if it doesn't change as fast some would like (or too quickly for others). Its appeal, you could say, is that its identity is suitably complex such that no single group can lay claim to it.

It's no secret that, given Toronto's changing demographics and inflating property values, intense pressure has been put on those who make this their home. Many non-residents are concerned about what happens to the Market, which is great, but often their only tangible investment is intermittent patronage and their own romance; they buy some groceries once a month then they leave, perhaps with a coffee in their hand on the way out.

When people who don't live here talk about the Market it can be like hearing Americans talking about Canada; you wait in preparation for the inevitable Mounties/moose/hockey reference. The Market's so funky. I hope it keeps its magic! A petition being circulated on Facebook pictures a stone-faced woman holding a hand-scrawled sign on Augusta Avenue with Zimmerman's Discount prominently featured behind her. I would love to survey those who signed the petition to see whether any have actually been to Zimmerman's Discount let alone bought anything from there.

Kensington MarketThe Market is complex. And it's changing. And it has to.

Shortly after moving here from Ossington with my partner, I bumped into an acquaintance — a bartender who'd lived in Kensington for several years already. He told me in no uncertain terms that people who move here become disenchanted, typically go crazy within two years, and then run away screaming. Why, I wondered. It's the Market. I told myself this as if its truth were self-evident. It's the sort of rookie mistake anyone who has only known Kensington as a visitor would make.

And the longer I treaded the sidewalks, the closer I came to some answers. One of the chief presumptions I'd had was that the Market was a community which embraced its residents. Short of seeing the ghost of Al Waxman walking down Augusta, I figured there was some sort of modest local currency which came with living here. Dead wrong. The Market, for all its strengths, can be strangely impersonal, even stand-offish. There are no insiders. Only groups of outsiders.

The recent concern over a proposed Loblaws opening at College and Spadina makes many of these fault lines visible. No matter that it won't actually be in the Market. No matter that its customers will probably be the same crowd who loyally shop at other Loblaws and Metro stores. No matter that no one can speculate what the realistic run-off from the Market would actually be (or influx considering, technically, there would be more people visiting the area).

Nonetheless, activists both local and otherwise raise the spectre of Starbucks. You don't want another Starbucks, do you? they say, wide-eyed, in reference to a rightfully and successfully fought proposal several years back. But, in a reversal of roles, I'm reminded of the club owners on Ossington who spun scary stories for journalists of gun-toting Vietnamese drug gangs whenever someone questioned unobstructed development on the strip between Dundas and Queen West. Today that same stretch is chock-a-block with bars and there's still nowhere to buy a newspaper. Or groceries. And if the battle of yesterday's Kensington Starbucks War was won by the good guys, that battleground now sits occupied by an anonymous burger joint aimed at tourists.

Kensington MarketThe debate has become more complex with RioCan's newly proposed Wal-Mart at the site of the former Kromer Radio at Bathurst and Nassau. Like Loblaws, it's not in the Market, but unlike Loblaws it is not, generally speaking, a good (which is to say fair) dealer of goods. Wal-Mart represents retail's race to the bottom, where no employee save a tiny few make a living wage — a free market incinerator which leverages control from those companies it does business with in order to provide the magic trick of low, low prices. It worries me that both Loblaws and Wal-Mart will become intermixed in the talking points of the SAVE KENSINGTON brigade since the former really hasn't done anything but, well, be big.

So, what does Kensington actually want? Like in all Toronto politics, even if it results in mediocrity the Market seems to be motivated by what it doesn't want. So, along with Starbucks, the neighbourhood veto was also applied last year to a proposed farmer's market — the kind enjoyed in less neurotic regions of the city, like Trinity Bellwoods and Dufferin Park. The NIMBYism took on absurd proportions when European Meats closed its doors around the same time and the owner blamed his decision on that 80s bad-guy: yuppies. It came across like a sad fuck-you but also a dissonant reflection of a generational shift, where older family-run shops have to fight harder for relevance, especially given the ransom storefront leases have become.

Despite the bartender's omen, I eventually found my footing, even if I'm not high-fiving people on my way to get an Americano in the morning (this is Toronto after all). New ventures such as Hooked the renovated Kid Icarus, the commercial renewal of Augusta's abandoned south-end at Dundas have helped me see that the Market, in its sentient if opaque wisdom, can respond to the needs of residents and visitors without necessarily pitting one against the other.

And yet, everyone who lives and works here will always feel a heightened sense of vigilance, even if that ends up being a mirage. For me it's not allowing it to turn into a mindless arcade of baubles and burgers. The spectacle of Pedestrian Sundays aside, Kensington is not a wind-up toy to be measured for the quality of its user-experience. As someone choosing to stay (even if I am honestly tempted from time to time to run away screaming) I should hope we err on the clear-eyed side of what's ahead of us. After all, to paraphrase John Ralston Saul, only dead things need preservation.

Guest contribution from Matt Cahill / Photos by Jimmy Lu



WalMart fan / June 23, 2013 at 11:22 am
Only Communists fear WalMart and Loblaws. Let the market decide where us poor people can shop. I'm poor and would prefer WalMart to the randomly stocked hardware store in Kensington Market.
Walmart fan / June 23, 2013 at 11:32 am
I think what people fear is the loss of overpriced goods guarded by the neighborhood drug dealer. I prefer Walmart and Loblaws to the expensive secondhand shops and boutique fruit stands that call Kensington Market home. More franchise shops mean more cops and less likely that the cool kids will be able to score their dope in the park. Kensington Market is a sewer. A trendy one but still a sewer.
mm / June 23, 2013 at 11:56 am
I feel sorry for anyone that identifies as poor or working class and in the same sentance supports walmart and denounces communism. Maybe you should re-examine whose interests you are supporting and furthering.
lol / June 23, 2013 at 12:06 pm
Serious question.. why would anyone want to live in the market.... it is a cess pool for bugs, rats and garbage.
W. K. Lis / June 23, 2013 at 12:29 pm
City regulations made Kensington Market leas of market as it once was. I remember the live animals they once had available, but now no more abattoirs. Its the same thing with food carts or trucks, once the city gets its fingers in, it goes downhill. If the city does not support the market, it will allow Wal-Mart in.
A / June 23, 2013 at 12:33 pm
Kensington market is where all the suburbanites have their "third world experience".
Matt / June 23, 2013 at 12:57 pm
If people could actually make a living off of complaining, the BlogTO comment section would be the biggest employer in the city. Change is inevitable in a big city. For those that don't like change, I heard Mayberry is looking for a new Sheriff.
ATM / June 23, 2013 at 01:01 pm
I personally like the market because it is colourful and there are people who are walking at an other than break neck pace. There are places there where you can get all kinds of foods, the Big Burrito, the Cheese stores, and all of the coffee shops. Also there is somewhat of a sameness to the place. I have been going there and hanging out since I was about 16 and the place is almost exactly the same as it was then. Some of the places in there like the Last Temptation and the Courage My Love store I would go to even if they weren't in the Kensignton Market. One does have to face the fact that the place is relatively dangerous and dirty. But it still has a certain attraction for something different that you cannot find in other cities in Ontario . While I was a volunteer at the Traveller's Assistance Booth in the Bus Station on Dundas and Bay, alot of young people from abroad ask for the Kensington Market, so that's cool. Though I think the bartender is right. It's a place to frequent , not to live in.
Ad Lib replying to a comment from mm / June 23, 2013 at 01:08 pm
I agree MM. If you are poor, it's worth taking a closer look at Wal-Mart to see they are part of the problem.
Zach / June 23, 2013 at 01:09 pm
I love to walk through there when I get the chance...but it's really a rundown venue. I get thats part of its character, part of the reason I like is because it reminds me of a few markets in the Dominican Republic. That being said I'd hate to see a Wal-Mart in its place. I think the city should revitalize that neighbourhood rather than steamroll it.
Jen / June 23, 2013 at 01:27 pm
Kensington market is a part of toronto's culture and sure it's not for everyone so in that case don't live there or visit it. But bringing in a big box Walmart store takes away from what makes that area unique. Walmart should stay in the suburbs and if that in need travel to one go to bloor and dufferin there is one there! Also all this complaining about Kensington being unsafe I never realized a Walmart would bring in safety. Lastly the market is cheap for groceries and I'd rather support those retailers then a giant corporation. Also no other big city I've travelled to ie New York, London, Paris build huge walmarts in the city. Cannot imagine a Walmart type store in London's Camden market or NY east village. They respect what is cool and unique about their city the charm of these places and the tourist it attracts
P. Ln / June 23, 2013 at 01:43 pm
It's funny how kensington people are so admantly against a wal-mart that isn't even being built right inside the market. Have you seen this vid?
Gimli replying to a comment from Walmart fan / June 23, 2013 at 01:43 pm

Seriously, thanks for your two cents. Deep, nuanced, and insightful opinions like yours are exactly what the world needs more of. Your intellect is like a piercing ray of sunlight on a dark, commie-filled day. Thank you beyond words for enlightening me, and opening my mind up to new and original ways of thinking. Also, eat a bag of dicks.
Matt replying to a comment from Zach / June 23, 2013 at 02:02 pm
"That being said I'd hate to see a Wal-Mart in its place" THIS is the problem! It is NOT replacing the Market. I appreciate what you wrote and agree with you, but it's small comments like this that set people off in the wrong direction.
MrsPotato / June 23, 2013 at 02:14 pm
I wish I could say Kensington is a great little pocket, blah blah blah .. but it isn't.

It's super dirty - the produce is rotten and not any better/worse than the crap you find along Spadina (it's all coming from the same food terminal) so it's not like you're paying more for a reason beyond their rent costing more; the owners of most of the stores are rude as hell.

I never buy produce or fruit in the market anymore, because the quality is so terrible. And the owners are nasty pieces of shit.

The area itself is super dirty and smells like piss.

And the sit-down-food places are MEH. And often hard to identify ... plus, i'm not sure how approachable most of the places are with homeless crack heads hanging out in front.

The 'vintage' stores are hilarious - selling nasty ugly smelly sun dresses at inflated prices, for those who actually think they're buying a 'treasure'. Just watch out for those fleas and bed bugs hidden in most of the clothing stores. And no, i'm not kidding.

It's just not what it used to be.
And it's hard for me to defend what used to be such a special area. It's reeeeallllly gone downhill over the past 5-ish years.
MrsPotato / June 23, 2013 at 02:15 pm
PS. the WALMART isn't going to 'replace' Kensington.

It's actually no where NEAR the market itself, on the west side of BATHURST!
Dr. Acula replying to a comment from MrsPotato / June 23, 2013 at 03:39 pm
I kinda feel sorry for whoever you were with, because they got an earful that day. How was the parking? I'll bet it was awful :)
sobes / June 23, 2013 at 03:47 pm
Seems like the main argument people are making is that it'll affect the local economy of Kensington Market, as people will be able to now buy "cheap things" a block west (at the new Walmart).

IMO that's a very weak argument. Businesses adapt. If anything it should make Kensington Market better, as it will specialize in selling everything that Walmart won't.

From the other comments, sounds like Kensington Market is ripe for a change anyways. This might not be the best comparison, but the CB2 on Queen and Bathurst actually seems to have helped the neighborhood (Big Bop was an eyesore to say the least), and all the quaint / quirky independent furniture stores along that strip seem to coexist just fine amongst both CB2 and Urban Barn.

But correct me if I'm wrong, of course.
Theo / June 23, 2013 at 03:49 pm
Nostalgia is a double edged sword.
Gregg / June 23, 2013 at 04:39 pm
Those photos don't look appealing at all. Just some grimy dishevelled neighbourhood, that I would make a big detour to avoid. Certainly wouldn't eat anything from there.
Matt Y replying to a comment from sobes / June 23, 2013 at 04:56 pm
As soon as I saw the title of this article, I couldn't wait to see all the "I'm so negative, therefore I'm cool" comments. Nice to see a voice of reason among the masses.

I'm also glad to see people agreeing that Walmart is not replacing the market. Nor will the new Walmart be built IN the market. Try as people might to say otherwise, it just isn't true.
MrsPotato replying to a comment from Dr. Acula / June 23, 2013 at 05:02 pm
Actually, I don't even own a car.
I live (i OWN a loft) 4 blocks away from Kensington.

Good try on the stereotype, though.
Phil / June 23, 2013 at 05:44 pm
The market will be fine, I think, but it does require defending. I am afraid it will go the same way Queen east of Spadina did. To those who are sceptical of its charms - no, I have never been inside Zimmerman's, but take a closer look at those fruit stands and drygoods stores. And cheese stores. And butcher shops. You can get either better quality (and pay for it) or cheaper than Walmart. You'll have to pay cash, but spend so much less time waiting in line. And personally I love the atmosphere on the weekends. Who goes to Walmart just to hang out? No, Walmart is not a threat, but in general the market is worth fighting for.
sobes replying to a comment from MrsPotato / June 23, 2013 at 06:01 pm
I also own a loft downtown, and have been living downtown for the past 10 years. I agree with MrsPotato in that Kensington Market and ESPECIALLY Spadina St (Chinatown) have really gone downhill. They have a much more "slummy" feel than what I remember 5+ years ago.

I'm not saying that a Walmart in the area is going to solve the problem (or even make things better). That really depends on the specifics of the plan. The Loblaws / Winners at Queen and Portland has turned out to be a boon for the neighborhood, in my opinion (my neighborhood actually).

But what I will say is that I disagree with statements like, "Kensington Market hasn't changed over the years" or "there's nothing wrong with Kensington Market, we should leave it the way it is." From what I see, I be to differ.
sobes replying to a comment from Phil / June 23, 2013 at 06:19 pm
I'm confused -- "go the same way Queen east of Spadina did". What exactly is wrong with that stretch of Queen W? If you're alluding to the big box clothing outlets (Zara, Gap, H&M etc.), I'd point out that interspersed between them you still have plenty of boutique / independent stores. Even second-hand stores like Black Market. And old favorites like Steve's Music Store and Active Surplus (a hidden gem) are alive and kicking.
hamish / June 23, 2013 at 08:33 pm
One thing that bothers me a bit: some stores are really really taking over the sidewalk space - and others don't have any patio or encroachment occurring. Some of the takeover should be taken back for the public realm as it is public space.
And Kensington was once a very residential area once; and yes, at times the construction is bad eg. bad party walls/blocking.
Starry / June 23, 2013 at 08:49 pm
"Everyone cares about Kensington Market." I live about a 10 min walk from Kensington and I could really care less about it. I sometimes get dragged there by friends who are visiting who think it will be a neat place to visit. They're usually disappointed. If feels like an outdoor flea market. The only good thing about Kensington is some of the restaurants.
Gabriel / June 23, 2013 at 09:46 pm
I think the future of Kensington Market is a futuristic cyber underground. Stepping into kensington will be like stepping a head 20 years BUT a bad part or the future.
Picard102 / June 23, 2013 at 10:46 pm
I can't imagine the working folk of Kensington are making much more then the working folk of a walmart. Both live on cheep labour and cheep products.
Wax / June 23, 2013 at 10:54 pm
There are amazing spice shops, natural food shops, coffee shops, etc. but christ, the empty useless store after empty useless store selling nothing of value to anybody- how they stay open I have no clue because there are never more than 2 customers or less in any of them and I go through the market at least 10 times per week.

I've lived 4 blocks away from Kensington for 13 years and the only bright spots I see are the new businesses - the market needs more Sanagans and Hookeds and Kid Icarus's - small entrepreneurs selling useful shit. With the opening of each new one of these, the market gets better. It's going to take forever, though, since all the useless surplus and used clothing stores are like cockroaches and will outlast armageddon.
KMart / June 24, 2013 at 12:47 am
For better or worse Kensington provides cultural diversity and a needed escape from big name consumer brands.

Why would you advocate getting a Walmart or Loblaws, you can travel to one in 20 minutes on the TTC no matter where you live downtown.

The comments about the poverty and it's consequent vices are appalling. If you are concerned about the prevalence of ne'er-do-wells in Kensington then do a lick of research and donate money, clothes, food, volunteer.

The idea of putting in a bunch of clean, corporate superstores as a way to push out poverty stricken people is such an ugly way to handle the situation.
Alex / June 24, 2013 at 01:43 am
Smelly slippery slimey sad slum.

"The rising phenomenon of slum tourism has western tourists paying to take guided tours of slums. This tourism niche is operating in almost all major slums around the world, including in Mumbai, Rio de Janeiro, Kibera, and Jakarta."

We shan't have Toronto added to this shortlist?

Good riddance.

userxyyyz / June 24, 2013 at 02:58 am
Kensington is a zillion times cleaner than it used to be.

Those that are saying super dirty, slum, filthy, drugs, cesspool, bugs, rats, rotten produce, smells like piss, grimy dishevelled, avoid, flea market, poverty, slum tourism... well just don't bother with Kensington.

What I don't get is why you bother to comment. Hating seems to be a suburban Toronto thing. Move to Etobicoke and say Hi to the Brothers Ford for us mkay!
Phil replying to a comment from sobes / June 24, 2013 at 07:11 am
Sobes, *some* of the original flavour of Queen and Spadina remains. Compared to a decade ago, there are many fewer restaurants and bars with patios, particularly along the stretch on the north side near Spadina where the sidewalk is enormous, to be replaced by chain restaurants and clothing stores. That's the worst part in my mind, since it has reduced the area's attraction as a destination. I especially regret the loss of the Beverley (replaced by a Spring Rolls) and Gorilla Monsoon (A&W).

Beyond that, there has been a gradual erosion of all types of businesses other than chain clothing stores to the point that I rarely go there anymore. I would be surprised if there are not also fewer independant clothing stores, but I admit that I don't know about that.
Heyzues / June 24, 2013 at 07:59 am
They should level Kensington so they can make a parking lot for walmart
Holly / June 24, 2013 at 08:21 am
Neat, thoughtful artice! Thank you.
sodapop / June 24, 2013 at 08:34 am

So many people are hating on the market. It is no more dirty and slummy then ten years ago. you guys are just pussies, honestly you want to take out the livelihood of one of the last neighborhoods with a little character. regardless of how much you like shopping their, part of what makes this neighborhood so attractive to me is the grittiness. from the sounds of it many of you would turn it into another glass condo filled with annoying yuppies just like the rest of our once vibrant city

I don't want to see a walmart in any neighborhood. it strips away money from working class citizens who are trying to do their own thing in the city, and gives the money over to a bunch of American fat suits who are getting products from children in china paying them 5 cents a day. walmart sucks.

I'm ashamed of what our city has become, a bunch of half ass yuppies making decisions that suck the character out of our city in a feeble attempt to make it world class.

this is all coming from a fifteen year old

Rob replying to a comment from sodapop / June 24, 2013 at 08:55 am
Gotta love the transplants. They come from soulless towns and grow up DYING to move here, yet can't wait to welcome the sameness they fled when they do show up. Walmart, Starbucks, and David's Tea for everyone... because the alternative is "dirty" and "dangerous" since it's not like a power center in Oakville.

forwardconcern / June 24, 2013 at 09:11 am
I've lived in this neighborhood for 14 years. That bartenders omen is false. I have people I see and stop and talk to on a daily basis. It's not a place of perpetual outsiders especially if you embrace the neighborhood as are personable.

The Walmart is as close to Kensington you can get and a terrible idea. Build it on the waterfront. It's obvious that's the market of consumers they want. The car driving condo tower dwellers.

Kensington is not slummy it's just real in most respects (yes that statement has it's flaws and it's a neighborhood constantly trying not to become a caricature of it's former self). Just like Parliament or Spadina or Queen west of Dufferin are not slums. They are real neighborhoods. Any development that tells you they need to be improved by their investment don't know how to work in the existing framework of the neighborhood and cannibilize local business and communities. The mediocrity of chain shops and business are not an improvement anywhere. They are and illusion of progress.
Matt replying to a comment from Walmart fan / June 24, 2013 at 09:11 am
Apparently Travis Bickle is a Walmart fan.
Rob replying to a comment from Walmart fan / June 24, 2013 at 09:12 am
Dad, get off the internet.

Do you honestly know how easy it is to find pot outside of Kensington Market?
forwardconcern / June 24, 2013 at 09:12 am
*and are personable
*an illusion of progress
Dr. Acula replying to a comment from MrsPotato / June 24, 2013 at 09:38 am
I'll try again. How was the ice cream that day? I'll bet it was awful. See how that works?

Andrew / June 24, 2013 at 01:43 pm
A well-versed and educated article. It's going to be quite a ride for Kensington market and the small businesses in the area within the next few years.
pat bisset / June 24, 2013 at 02:36 pm
The market is a place where I was always accepted as a creative individual It grew up on the backs of many hardworking individuals into an area unique in the world. A bit shabby perhaps but name me another neighborhood with dozens of songs and much artwork. You find your own route of stores there In 20 years of living there the odd trip to a supermarket or mall made me feel like I was on an alien planet fight against bland conformity and preserve the special areas in our city

tommy / June 24, 2013 at 04:09 pm
Walmart is just a shitty retailer with crappy products that break after being used/worn once. This is a bigger fight than the market. Until people realize all the money they waste re-buying the same item over and over again at the big box retailers of the world, then there's no stopping them.
george replying to a comment from tommy / June 24, 2013 at 05:48 pm
"Walmart is just a shitty retailer with crappy products that break after being used/worn once. "

Well don't shop there genius!

"Until people realize all the money they waste re-buying the same item over and over again at the big box retailers of the world, then there's no stopping them."

It is amazing how smart you are and how dumb everybody else is.
Dr. Acula replying to a comment from Trolly / June 24, 2013 at 08:45 pm
You're first three sentences are almost a Haiku.
Picard102 replying to a comment from sodapop / June 24, 2013 at 10:07 pm
oooh a fifteen year old calling people pussies. Tell us more about your righteous teen angst!
Moaz Ahmad / June 24, 2013 at 10:46 pm
Yes, almost a haiku.

Too bad BlogTO comments don't have paragraphs after being posted.
Donald / June 25, 2013 at 12:18 am
Good article, excellent comments.

I moved to Toronto in 1986 and soon explored Kensington Market due to its notoriety. First visit, sitting at the 2nd Cup (yes back then) on Nassau, grabbed the newspaper, Xtra! (quite the introduction), and the first article I read was about the drug den above the 2nd Cup in Kensington Market with dire police warnings about criminal and gang activity in KM.

I've never liked KM although really tried. I think the market offerings have been adequately and voluminously replaced by the myriad little stores in myriad little pocket neighbourhoods all over the city. Simply put, whatever KM offered in the 70's and 80's I can get same or better elsewhere with the same neighborhood effect attraction, not just single specialty store.

I deeply appreciate the more recent efforts at pedestrian free, night events with fireworks; KM remains relevant. But, my overwhelming feeling is that KM is age dependent like no other Toronto neighborhood, i.e. 19 - 24.5 years old. Any older and KM's scummy, dirty, quaint, epithet's become meaningless when there are so many replacements.

BlogTO, I suggest a look at the Beaches of 1990: the exact same issues were being discussed, with histrionic event of the crazy florist lady Elizabeth Doolitle chaining herself to a tree to stop Subway sandwich store renovators cutting it down. Then coffee shops, Club Monaco, predictions of utter neighbourhood destruction....
Amy / June 25, 2013 at 02:15 pm
I moved to Kensington a year ago from Yorkville. I live in the Kensington market lofts and it is the furthest thing from a dirty infested abode. I can honestly say given the choice I will always pick shopping in the market over any grocery store. The produce is the exact same but much less expensive in the market. The organics stores in the market are the cheapest in the city - most stuff is half the price of Whole Foods. And the meats and cheeses. Oh man they are the freshest and best priced in the city. I would say with the exception of the produce stands these retailers are all very friendly and they do get to know you.

I am a bit of a suit so no I don't shop at the thrift stores but I do drink at the bars and eat at the restaurants and cafes. If a Walmart or Loblaws ends up in my neighborhood I won't be shopping there because there are closer better options in the market. Unfortunately if these did open up and increase real estate prices then my beloved shops would have to increase their prices and we would have another Ossington on our hands. I really hope it doesn't come to that because I love the market, even with its crack heads and tourists.
Linden replying to a comment from forwardconcern / June 25, 2013 at 09:34 pm
you re so wrong about the waterfront.The fact that developers decided to destroy the area, has nothing to do with the residents lifestyle.
Jason replying to a comment from Amy / June 28, 2013 at 07:21 am
I'm a suit and live near Ossington and shop there too, but I agree the market is a special place. It's not dirty or dangerous - what a ridiculous comment - rather vibrant, eclectic and energizing: an oasis from the corporate hustle in must of the rest of the city. I go there to pick up cheese, produce, meat and sample Ecuadorean fried tasty things and get some Jamaican bun and cheese. It's an adventure. I never know what I'll come back with, but I'll always have a good time.

Nobody can really predict what the addition of a Wal-Mart or a Loblaws would have on the market. Probably a lot less than most fear, but why would anyone support a Wal-Mart under any circumstances? What is good about Wal-Mart unless your last name is Walton? The calculus of whether you should support Wal-Mart or Loblaws should not be "Will they kill Kensington?", but rather what good will they do for any neighbourhood in the area? Why does Kensington need to justify its existence? The onus should be on Wal-Mart and Loblaws to prove they will add value.
forwardconcern / July 3, 2013 at 10:21 am
@linden I feel for you and the bullsh#t that has been erected around you. You must be one of the few in the nice community oriented places and housing snuggled in between the towers you can walk onto the Gardener from.
Thomas replying to a comment from Walmart fan / October 12, 2013 at 06:14 pm
At one time the largest companies in the world wanted to pay his people enough that they could buy the product it made, like Henry Ford. Wal-mart wants to make sure that not only its employees, but everyone can only afford to shop at Wal-mart.
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Nomad replying to a comment from Thomas / January 28, 2014 at 01:33 pm
If employees of walmart can shop a store then anyone can. That is like saying something is not only affordable to beggars but to all.

Henry Ford was many things so it is hard to idealize him.
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