Affordable Housing Parkdale

Major Toronto intersection blocked for affordable housing protest

The streets of a busy, west side neighbourhood were slower than usual during rush hour this morning thanks to a good ol' gentrification protest in Parkdale.

Dozens of affordable housing advocates joined together at the corners of King and Dufferin around 8 a.m. today, many of them carrying coordinated signs and a gigantic banner that stretched across the intersection.

Being that today is National Housing Day in the City of Toronto – an annual event created in 1998 when homelessness was declared a national disaster – the timing of the protest makes sense.

Of course, this isn't the first protest staged by residents of Parkdale lately.

Just last week, members of the community protested a meeting of Toronto and East York Community Council over a new condo complex.

Despite their efforts, council voted to approve a contentious Lifetime Developments project that is set to bring 703 new "high-end" condominium units to the Parkdale area.

That development will be built on the site of today's protest, right at Dufferin and King, where currently stands a Burger King, a Hasty Market and Island Foods among other local businesses.

Those in opposition to the condos worry that new developments are further driving up the cost of living in the neighbourhood.

Still, they were respectful of vehicles trying to pass through during their protest, taking care to only block the road in one direction at a time, causing just minor traffic delays

"For the most part they are being respectful of traffic laws," wrote one local commuter of the scene. "But they are slightly slowing down traffic in the area so be prepared."

The protest appears to be ongoing as of late this morning.

Lead photo by

Laura Beeston


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