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Morning Brew: Ford vs. Dale day two, Councillors not elephants go to California, residents want electric air-rail link, Ford's war on bikes gets international attention

Holy mackerel - what a day yesterday. The dust is finally settling on Fencegate - the mayor's Press Freedom Day altercation with Star reporter Daniel Dale - and a consensus is forming among reporters about what exactly went down. In an interview yesterday, Dale once again gave his account of the events - claiming he really was out to photograph an area of parkland the mayor is trying to buy. Ford says he feared a peeping tom and took appropriate, though suspiciously OTT, action. This morning, The Star says someone made a call from Dale's cellphone to executive assistant to councilor Maria Augimeri 45 minutes after he dropped it - with a dead battery - in the altercation. This one is getting good.

If you're having a hard time imagining all this, the Star has a handy map and timeline. Elsewhere, The Grid's Edward Keenan calls what transpired in Etobicoke assault. Is this just another Ford sideshow meant to distract us from something else?

In other Toronto Zoo news, Councillors Giorgio Mammoliti and Michelle Berardinetti say they'll be flying to California with zoo staff to help decide whether to send the Markham attraction's three ageing African elephants to a sanctuary. Guys, the elephants are supposed to go - not you.

West end residents are soldiering on with their fight to convert the Air Rail Link between Union and Pearson from diesel to electric trains. According to Torontoist, residents are concerned train emissions will adversely affect the overall health of the neighbourhood before the line is upgraded by Metrolinx after the 2015 Pan-Am Games. The regional transit authority says it can't make the line electric and meet its construction deadline.

Rob Ford's war on bikes (see how that's been turned around?) is now an international topic of conversation thanks to a piece on BBC News' Magazine website highlighting our mayor's history of incendiary rhetoric and bogus bike infrastructure plans. The article includes a video interview with Globe and Mail columnist John Barber on the tensions between cyclists and drivers in what was once the best city in North America for biking (seriously).

In other two-wheeled news, the Toronto Cyclists Union (or whatever they're called now) says car-bike collisions are down 29% on Jarvis Street. What'll happen to that stat when the bike lanes are scrubbed?

And finally, today's Tweet of the Day comes courtesy of Matt Elliott, weighing in on the news of the mysterious phone call made from Daniel Dale's cellphone after it was grabbed by Rob Ford.

There's a perfectly rational explanation for why Daniel Dale's phone was used after Ford took it. And that reason is -- HEY, GET OFF MY LAWN 8 hours ago via Echofon · Reply · Retweet · Favorite · powered by @socialditto


Photo: "Jam Band at College & Yonge" by GregoryIV in the BlogTO Flickr pool.

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