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Morning Brew: new TTC headquarters proposed, Smitherman vs. Ford in first mayoral debate, Canada Post mailbox overflows, wind turbines in schoolyards, pessimism about Toronto's future, man dies while fleeing police

The TTC has revealed what was up until now a confidential proposal to amalgamate a number of leased offices and replace their aging head office at Davisville by building a new, larger head office at Yonge & York Mills. Arguments by the TTC that the move would save money in the long-term and will be required when Transit City expansion is in full swing are drawing fire from critics, who feel that the money should be dedicated to service improvements instead.

Referring to questionable comments Rob Ford made publicly about homosexuality and AIDS back in 2006, George Smitherman (who is openly gay) was gung ho to expose his rival as unfit to lead a diverse Toronto. The video posted by the Star show how heated things got between Smitherman and Ford in round one of the mayoral candidates debates, which kicked off yesterday.

Was it a heart attack or a broken neck that resulted in the death of an 18-year old who was reportedly fleeing from police near York University last night? Early media reports suggest he suffered from cardiac arrest, but an anonymous caller from the hospital alleges that the deceased may have broken his neck when tackled. The SIU has been called in investigate, and with any luck, the media will remember to follow up on this story when the truth is finally learned.

Canada Post is looking into complaints that mailboxes aren't being emptied on schedule, in some cases resulting in them being filled to the brim (which creates the potential for privacy breaches and/or mail theft). Although information on the boxes reveal twice daily pickup times on weekdays, it would appear that advertised pickup frequency isn't being met. Last minute mailers run the risk of their mail arriving even later than they think.

What's the worst thing about Toronto? Where do you see things 10 years from now? According to a survey commissioned by George Brown College, the primary concerns amongst 18- to 35-year old Torontonians are cost of living and taxes, poor transit, and traffic. Also worth noting: only 11% think Toronto is very successful at integrating immigrants, and just 28% believe Toronto is more environmentally friendly than other Canadian cities.

Despite vehement opposition by concerned Scarborough residents to a renewable energy wind farm being created on the lakefront (on the basis that vibrations pose a risk to public health), Toronto Hydro is still very much keen on implementing wind turbines. They're currently conducting wind assessments on the proposed site, and also discussing the possibility of using schoolyards and TTC property for future sites.

Photo: "bathurst bend." by tanjatiziana, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.

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