Toronto Autumn

Morning Brew: Judge hears boths sides of the Occupy Toronto case, coffee houses experience boon thanks to St. James encampment, Toronto Zoo may lose accreditation thanks to elephants leaving, One Bloor is finally happening, and good news about Reimer

The hearing between the city and Occupy Toronto's protesters lasted the whole day yesterday and things, not surprisingly, got a little intense. The lawyer representing the protesters argued that by removing them would violate Charter rights. While the defence representing the city argued that the eviction doesn't violate the Charter because the protesters aren't really doing much at night, besides sleeping. The judge even suggested the protesters haven't even been truly evicted from the park. Yet.

However you look at the Occupy Toronto situation, the true winners of the cause appear to be the surrounding coffee houses. The local Tim Hortons and Starbucks have experienced a rise in business thanks to the encampment (though drinking Starbucks is frowned upon). However, some protesters, frustrated with their colleagues buying coffee from huge corporations, have opted to brew their own coffee.

With city council's vote to send the Zoo's three elephants to a sanctuary in California, the Toronto Zoo may now lose its accreditation with both the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the Canadian Zoo and Aquarium Association. The reason? The PAWS sanctuary, the proposed new home of the elephants, is not accredited with the former. The loss of accreditation would be very serious for the Zoo, which could even result in its closure.

We've all walked by the big dirt pit at One Bloor, at the intersection of Yonge, and thought: what's going on here? Well, it looks like something's finally going to happen. After a false start, thanks to the lousy economy, 70-storey condo tower/shopping complex has finally broken ground and is expected to be completed in three years' time.


Photo by Bobcatnorth in the blogTO Flickr pool

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