toronto patios construction

Toronto neighbourhood unable to reopen patios because of brutal street construction

As patios reopen in neighbourhoods across Toronto, street construction is preventing them from doing so in one area.

A bar called Grand Trunk on Queen St. W. in Parkdale posted to their Instagram on June 11, the day that patios were allowed to reopen in Toronto: "It's patio season! HAHA! Just kidding. We don't currently have a CafeTO patio at this time, BUT we do have a LOVELY view of a Toronto construction site."

They also posted photos of rocks, broken bike posts and rusted rebar lying around outside the business, and described hearing the sound of jackhammers and idling or reversing trucks. Not exactly a breezy patio ambience.

Nearby cafe El Almacen made a similar Instagram post around the same time: "If ripping up the street tracks wasn't bad enough now you have to go thru a labyrinth of fences and walk a plank to get coffee and empanadas."

According to Marc Buenaventura of restaurant Islas Filipino along the same Parkdale strip, the current bout of construction is an issue that's been troubling the neighbourhood for years.

"We were expecting the construction to be done in 2019 or 2020 but like every project the timing landed in 2021," Buenaventura tells blogTO.

"This could be looked at as a good thing since we are already closed for the pandemic but it also hurts because it came at a time when we've already been closed for the last half of the year, resulting in us not being approved for a patio in the front for all of us on this block."

Fortunately, Islas does have a backyard patio that can be booked for outdoor dining.

Either way, make sure to stop by these businesses for some takeout or if it's available, a seat far away from the dusty street construction. They could really use your support during this time when the area isn't so pedestrian-friendly.

Lead photo by

El Almacen


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