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Morning Brew: MLS strike looms, students burned in science class, doctor accused of sexual assault, OMB rejects Giraffe condo, Project Folkstone, 2012 NHL Winter Classic in Toronto?

The Toronto FC and the rest of the teams in the MLS might not be kicking off the season as planned. Players have voted in favour of strike action, citing both pay and problems with free-agent rights. Without a new contract, we've known for some time now that the 2010 season might be in jeopardy. So far ticket sales haven't been hurt too badly, but if history repeats itself we all know that when professional sports leagues are interrupted by labour disputes the effects on fan support can be profound.

A routine science class experiment at Mississauga's St. Marcellinus Secondary School went horribly wrong for teacher Shelley Barros and a number of students, when a beaker of methanol was inadvertently ignited and dropped, spreading flames onto students in the front row. Five students were sent to hospital and one is in severe condition with second- and third-degree burns on her face, hands, neck, and chest. A joint investigation by the Ministry of Labour and Peel police is underway to determine how this freak accident could occur.

Talk about twisted opportunism. A doctor at North York General Hospital is charged with the sexual assault of three patients who were anesthetized and undergoing surgery. And there may be more victims. Accused is Dr. George Doodnaught, a veteran anesthesiologist. The hospital is doing its best to assure the public that this is an isolated case, and that the hospital is a safe place for patients to receive medical care.

The Ontario Municipal Board has rejected the proposal by developers to build the staggering 27-storey "Giraffe" condo at the northeast northwest corner of Bloor and Dundas, calling it "too large for the site and inappropriate for the area." The City had opposed it because it's not "smart density," and local residents who were opposed to the development are rejoicing in victory. It's not clear from the article if a scaled back version of the project will proceed or not.

A major, lengthy investigation dubbed "Project Folkstone" has resulted in the arrests of 22 people who stand accused of gun and drug trafficking and possession of stolen vehicles. The raids were centered on the U.S. border and southern Ontario, and police are touting the project as a blow to organized crime and illegal gun proliferation into Toronto.

And the Toronto Maple Leafs have expressed interest in hosting the 2012 Winter Classic on New Year's Day. The idea is to host an NHL game, outdoors, for approximately 30,000 fans crammed into BMO Field. This all depends on acceptance of the bid by the NHL, of course, but if we scored the privilege, it would be very cool!

Photo: "Chinatown multiples" by PJMixer, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.


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