Friday, October 21, 2016Light Rain 11°C
MB Toronto

Morning Brew: A new DRL funding poll, Santa Claus visits Toronto, the fifth Jarvis lane and Spadina streetcar return, a weird Christmas tree, and the Argos advance

Posted by Chris Bateman / November 19, 2012

toronto royal ontario musuemAccording to the The Star, a new poll says Toronto is split on how to finance a downtown relief line. 45 per cent of respondents said they were willing to pay for the infrastructure with a $50 annual property tax hike, while 40 per cent said they were opposed. 15 per cent said they weren't sure. The proposed line would connect Pape and King stations to take pressure off the Yonge line. Does these results surprise you? Where do you stand on a property tax hike for transit?

The 108th annual Santa Claus parade brought festive cheer to late November this weekend. The parade, which featured Rob Ford handing out candy canes, ran from Christie Pits Park to the St. Lawrence Market. CTV helpfully notes the candies were stored in a "reusable black canvas bag." The parade was shown on TV in New Zealand, Norway and Ireland, apparently. We'll have pictures shortly.

Doug Ford defended his "workaholic" brother on a special solo edition of their weekly this weekend. Guest starring councillor Frances Nunziata while Ford was busy on parade duty, the show featured a justification of the mayor's dedication to time spent coaching the Don Bosco Eagles. Is the coaching justified now his team is seeing success?

Speaking of councillors, the Toronto Taxpayers Coalition, a group dedicated to monitoring municipal spending, has handed out report cards for each member of the 45-person council, rating them A+ to F. Doug Holyday, Cesar Palacio and Denzil Minnan-Wong all received the top grade. Rob Ford got a B.

The reversible centre lane on Jarvis Street is set for its first major workout this morning. Two bike lanes made way for the additional vehicle lane, which has been open since Saturday. Perhaps the hardest pill to swallow for cyclists still smarting from the loss: the reappearance of on-street parking on the west side of Jarvis. Will you use the street if you commute by car? Will you still ride if you're a cyclist?

Also in transportation, the Spadina streetcar is back this morning between King and Bloor streets. The TTC was replacing sections of track on the street and renovating stations.

The Toronto Sun's fixation with Christmas trees and what people choose to call them continued this weekend. Coverage of the Eton Centre's weirdo pink tree made the front page this Sunday.

Finally, in case you missed it this weekend, the Toronto Argonauts are heading to the Grey Cup thanks to their closely-fought win over the Montreal Alouettes Sunday. The championship game will be played against the Calgary Stampeders at Rogers Centre next weekend.



Photo: "18/365 - ROM" by mcdux from the blogTO Flickr pool.



Simon Tarses / November 19, 2012 at 08:19 am
It's the obvious thing to do, and the most easiest (since the provincial and federal governments won't pay for public transit anymore) and yet, what does half of the population of Toronto (the idiots who voted for Rob Ford that support subways and nothing but subways)say? No, we won't pay increased taxes for it.

I hate to break it to these neocon morons, but most public transit initiatives, and the building of the lines in the United States and Europe are paid for by this kind of thing (Los Angeles and Salt Lake come to mind in the case of the former mentioned above.) How else do/did they expect that a DRL be built, by private funds? Then, neither they or anybody else would be able to use the subway due to the high cost. Like it or not, taxes are the lifeblood of a civilization, and the only way (barring the election of a majority Green Party or NDP government to power at Queen's Park and in federal parliament) we'll be seeing public transit funded.
steve / November 19, 2012 at 08:31 am
Oh Simon, you lefty pinko.
This is a proposal for a subway
steve replying to a comment from Simon Tarses / November 19, 2012 at 08:34 am
Many people have no idea what taxes are for, or how a government is run. They think it all just happens.
steve replying to a comment from steve / November 19, 2012 at 08:38 am
well you certainly have nothing to say. Why post? Had an urge to insult? If that's what get you through the day, post all you want, no one is listening to you.
iSkyscraper / November 19, 2012 at 09:06 am
Hume is more ticked-off than usual at Ford this morning. Flat-out pissed:
Subway Rider / November 19, 2012 at 09:07 am
I'll pay $100 if we can get it in half the time.
Betty / November 19, 2012 at 09:25 am
On what planet does the 18th day of a 30-day month count as "late November"?
Steve / November 19, 2012 at 09:32 am
Rob Ford 2014, he will put end to raising taxes, like the pinkos like to do!
mpolo / November 19, 2012 at 09:38 am
I like bike lanes in the city, so it's sad to see the Jarvis lanes go, but why does no one talk about the Sherbourne bike lanes immediately east of Jarvis. They are separated, which is massively safer....

Oh and on the relief line, I would have thought the western end of bloor was more packed, is it just too difficult to get a line from Keele which runs under the park, then follows the waterfront to union?
Skye replying to a comment from steve / November 19, 2012 at 09:41 am
Honestly, right-wingers are more hopelessly idealistic than any left-winger. "We SHOULD have world class facilities, and we SHOULDN'T have to pay more taxes to get them!" Talk about wanting it all but wanting someone else to get it for them!
kdiddy / November 19, 2012 at 09:49 am
I'm all for the DRL (in fact it should run from Pape to Liberty Village IMO) but as a property owner I'm very much against an increase.

What about a traffic congestion tax similar to London's would or tolled highways. Not only would they raise money but reduce the amount of drivers on the already congested roads.
Constance / November 19, 2012 at 09:54 am
BTW its Eaton Centre not Eton Centre.
McRib / November 19, 2012 at 10:06 am
the Toronto Sun: getting to the heart of the issues that matter.

MrPotato / November 19, 2012 at 10:16 am
Maybe we wouldn't need a DRL if the TTC stopped leaving the wheel and chasing after people who actually didn't do anything wrong!
the lemur replying to a comment from steve / November 19, 2012 at 10:29 am
Where does it say that Simon didn't think this was about a proposed subway?

I think his point is that even when there's a proposal to build a subway, which should appeal to Ford supporters and others as well, slightly less than half of respondents are willing to help pay for it, but an almost equal group are not. It seems hypocritical to clamour for 'subways, as long as someone else pays for them' or 'subways, but not downtown'.
iSkyscraper replying to a comment from mpolo / November 19, 2012 at 10:29 am
Number of reasons why Sherbourne not being discussed:

1) Not really separated lanes, at least by the definition of such as used in places like New York, Chicago, Montreal. Bit of a bait and switch, which really ticks people off.

2) Three blocks over, not one.

3) The whole "use Sherbourne" thing is a red herring, like there should only be one bike route into downtown and who cares how direct it is. Do you think just because they built a bike lane on 8th Avenue in Manhattan that they don't need one on 6th Ave or 10th Ave or West Street? Of course not - you have to build a network if you want people to use something, not just a single wandering route. There is a concept called "complete streets", whereby all streets should be designed properly and functionally for cars, bikes and pedestrians.

4) It's not like the bike lanes were taken away for pedestrians or beautification (the original intent before the whole controversy). They were taken away to turn Jarvis into an at-grade highway! What year is this, 1958? Who does that in 2012? Oh, nobody. This is a real insult to intelligent planning. Sherbourne is irrelevant; this is all about foxes running the henhouse.

5) Sherbourne already had bike lanes, so it was not a wash. It was a removal. On principle alone, not one city in 2012 has removed bike lanes. Plus it costs money to remove things. No matter what the context, Toronto should not be the one to wear the dunce crown.

That enough rationale for you?
the lemur replying to a comment from mpolo / November 19, 2012 at 10:30 am
People are talking about the Sherbourne lanes - mostly about the fact that they're not finished yet, you can't ride them from end to end in either direction and that people are parking in them.
Jacob replying to a comment from iSkyscraper / November 19, 2012 at 10:34 am
Also, telling cyclists to "Use Sherbourne" is ridiculous for the fact that unlike motorists, cyclists are actually spending their own energy to get around and are exposed to the weather.

Hey, you, in the weatherproof, gas-powered vehicle. Why don't YOU drive three streets over?
mark / November 19, 2012 at 10:46 am
Great day for Toronto. Jarvis is back to normal finally.
DL replying to a comment from Simon Tarses / November 19, 2012 at 10:55 am
I immediately lose respect for anybody who calls the voting public "idiots" and "morons", regardless of the side of the spectrum the vitriol is coming from. You ever consider that people may not want to raise property taxes to fund transit because it's not only Torontonians who use the TTC, and it's a little unfair that it's only Torontonians who pay for such expansions? It's unfair, and it's an issue that needs to be handled regionally, not just at the city level.
DL replying to a comment from kdiddy / November 19, 2012 at 10:57 am
Congestion taxes only work if there is sufficient alternate methods of transportation. Toronto cannot make this claim, even in the core.
Velvet replying to a comment from DL / November 19, 2012 at 11:05 am
"it's not only Torontonians who use the TTC, and it's a little unfair that it's only Torontonians who pay for such expansions"

By that logic, why are we building a subway to the airport? Those pesky tourists don't pay Toronto property taxes either! It's opinions like this that have held back innovation in this city by 40 years.
vampchick21 / November 19, 2012 at 11:10 am
Bottom line is that no matter what transit you are discussing, it costs money and it has to come from somewhere. And sometimes that somewhere is us. Infrastruction costs money. End of story. Fairy dust and unicorn tears won't do it for us. Stop whining, stop pointing fingers, pull up your big kid underroos and deal with it.
DL replying to a comment from Velvet / November 19, 2012 at 11:18 am
Yeah, tourism doesn't contribute to the city's economy at ALL!

DL replying to a comment from Velvet / November 19, 2012 at 11:23 am
Oh, and we aren't building a subway to the airport. Not sure where you got that tidbit from.
mpolo replying to a comment from iSkyscraper / November 19, 2012 at 11:33 am
All great points, glad they are in the discussion.

Personally I'd be fine moving over 3 streets for a quality separated bike lane (and I agree the ones on Sherbourne are not good enough, if cars/buses can park in them, they will)

Al / November 19, 2012 at 11:46 am
I don't see why motorists need to use Jarvis when there's a perfectly good North/South route they can use a few blocks over on the DVP.
Todd replying to a comment from Velvet / November 19, 2012 at 12:23 pm
Opinions like that wouldn't have been expressed before Mike Harris came in and ruined this city.
CanoeDave / November 19, 2012 at 12:52 pm
It is disgusting that the School Board is looking at selling off green space and playgrounds to raise money for the School Repair backlog. The point being that there would be little or no infrastructure deficit if the Board had open and competitive tendering for maintenance projects but the Trustees are to chicken to confront the Building Trade Union monopoly that controls their tendering and gouges the Board every day of the week. When are people and politicians going to smarten up.
McRib replying to a comment from DL / November 19, 2012 at 01:26 pm
perhaps you haven't heard about the 8 billion provincial tax dollars that are being spent bulding and expanding the LRT network in Toronto?

I agree with you to a certain extent about funding, but saying we don't want to raise our taxes to fund our transit system because we aren't the only ones who use it is a ridiculous argument. It needs to be paid for, and if nobody else is going to help out then we just have to fucking grow up and do it ourselves.
Alex / November 19, 2012 at 01:44 pm
Toronto desperately needs a relief line for Yonge. I took it this weekend and it was just as packed as rush hour, and that was going north! There is no more time for debating, but we don't even have a viable plan yet. This is ridiculous. Plus, $50 property tax increase = ~$1.25 billion I think (I think there's about 2.5 million residents in TO). So that is only one of the many funding options required. Congestion taxes can't be applied to a subway unless they are on a route that is an alternate for the subway proposed, so those aren't really applicable. I don't know where the rest of the money would come from, or the money to pay for the operating costs.
Alex replying to a comment from Alex / November 19, 2012 at 01:46 pm
Ooops, my math is way off. It's only $125 million, which would be practically nothing toward paying for a whole new subway line.
steve replying to a comment from mark / November 19, 2012 at 01:47 pm
Amen, and i enjoying watching the pinko bike riders cry about it. Good day indeed!
vampchick21 / November 19, 2012 at 02:24 pm
The 50's called. They want their insulting terminology back. Care of McCarthy.
Chris replying to a comment from mark / November 19, 2012 at 02:52 pm
You're so right, Mark - it was definitely the most pressing issue facing the City, and thanks to our inestimable Mayor, its been rectified. I'm so glad that those poor hard done by North Toronto commuters are getting their 2 minutes back. It really was the tragedy of our times. Truly, City business could not move forward until this had been dealt with.

Ford and DMW - what a team!

j-rock replying to a comment from Chris / November 19, 2012 at 04:22 pm
Don't feed the trolls. Nothing you say will make any difference to mark, and those like him.
mark replying to a comment from Chris / November 19, 2012 at 04:36 pm
Over the course of the year that 2-5 minutes a day equals a full day of their lives stuck in traffic. And for what? So some overgrown child can ride their bike like they're 12 years old heading to school? Jarvis is back and your whining and bitching won't change that fact. As stated above, a Great Day for Toronto.
Realist (mostly) replying to a comment from mark / November 19, 2012 at 04:55 pm
No, it's so some overgrown child can get to work and not need to have a car on the road or use up a parking space. You know, things that also benefit drivers.
Simon Tarses replying to a comment from DL / November 21, 2012 at 08:14 am
I consider then to be idiots because they are the ones who are opposed to any LRT lines being built (and elected Rob Ford for this very reason and purpose) yet like him expect that subways can be built with unlimited private money, sunshine, and rainbows. They can't, and most of the time, and in many other part of North America and Europe, are built with public money AND taxes (sales and otherwise.) Where will the money come from for the DRL and the other ones that they want in suburbia? Will it come from reserves of gold made in replicators? Or from wishes made to genies? Of course, it won't come from raised taxes, but it'll come from cut programs, since the sheeple mentioned in the article hate all of those and think that their fellow Torontonians in need don't need anything from the government, and should do without.

These reasons, and a lot of others, are why I think of them as stupid. If they don't wish to be though of as such, then said people can rectify this by saying YES to taxes for a change instead of trying to avoid them. Of course, knowing people these days, it'll be the latter instead of the former...
realityCheck / November 23, 2012 at 03:03 pm
@SimonTarses, so long as you consider those who don't agree with you "idiots", you will do very little to change their mindset. Unfortunately, way too many folks in this town who claim to be pro-transit seem to exemplify your approach, which is basically that of a child.
Simon Tarses replying to a comment from realityCheck / November 24, 2012 at 04:04 am
Then, as I said (and others, namely vampchick21) have also said before, it's way past fracking time for these people to grow the frack up and deal with what has to be done to get these various transit lines built. Crying about it and being wish-washy about it won't get the job done.

Besides, these people have no problem what so-fracking-ever with the federal government buying crappy expensive fighter jets that may not be good against an invader, which their tax money is going to. What's the problem with same money going to build a much needed subway and LRT line, or similar transit projects across the nation?
Simon Tarses replying to a comment from Alex / November 24, 2012 at 04:12 am
Hey, I liked the first (mistaken) one-that would be enough to pay for a DRL AND two of the other LRT lines (Harbourfront and Jane) PLUS get us some more streetcar lines. People will say, 'Oh Simon, you're dreaming in Technicolor' but a guy can dream, can't he?
samsung tablet / February 13, 2014 at 12:28 pm
Magnificent beat ! I wish to apprentice while you amend
your website, how could i subscribe for a blog website? The account
aided me a acceptable deal. I had been a little bit acquainted of this your
broadcast offered bright clear idea
Other Cities: Montreal