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Morning Brew: Matlow fights hockey ban, Port Lands report delayed, a Brampton alligator, Toronto Islands access issues, and Toronto to get a "Before I Die" wall

It might be Canada's pastime but hockey and other ball games have been banned on many residential Toronto streets for several years under threat of a $55 fine. Councillor Josh Matlow wants to rescind the harsh bylaw on streets where it is generally safe for kids to play, but other councillors say Matlow is creating a solution where there isn't a problem because the law is so rarely enforced. Should kids just continue to ignore the rules or do we need to figure out a way of making street hockey safer?

We won't know how city staff and Waterfront Toronto plan to boost development and increase parkland at the mouth of the Don River until fall due to delays announced this morning. The setback could be a sign a casino is starting to factor into the plans to revitalize the inner harbor and surrounding area (let's hope not, though).

What has pointy teeth, a long tail, and lives in the burbs. That's right - a backyard alligator! Surprised Elliott Street residents in Brampton found the three-foot, steely-eyed death machine hanging out in a shady backyard Sunday and quickly called animal services - but not before snapping a few pictures. The authorities successfully wrangled the creature and brought it to Indian River Reptile Zoo for a health evaluation.

Should we scrap the Toronto Island ferries in favor of a fixed link for pedestrians and cyclists? Speaking to the CBC, columnist John Lorinc says the frequent delays could put people off enjoying the vibrant, outdoor space. One solution would be to make tunnels at the east and western ends of the Islands to create a loop. What are your thoughts?

Toronto will join Kazakhstan, Montreal and Portugal this summer when a "Before I Die" wall is erected by New Orleans-based creative studio Civic Center. The large chalkboard encourages users to complete the sentence "Before I die..." with their wishes, regrets and other words of wisdom. No word yet on where the art installation will go.

Nick Wallenda - the tightrope walker planning to cross Niagara Falls next month - could be attacked by nesting falcons during his attempt according to wildlife experts. Jeepers.

Today in Toronto Tumblrs: Awful Front Yards, which isn't as awful as some of the other local efforts at humour of late - even if the title over-promises a bit.


"All these kids were hanging out, all gang-banging and everything that was happening at night time, so I went there and sponsored a league."

Doug Ford should probably work on his street slang while he's sponsoring a new basketball league at a Toronto Community Housing complex. Rob Ford, the councillor's brother, is also a fan of sport in the community and coaches football at Don Bosco High School in Etobicoke.


Photo: "Cut & Shave" by Dominic Bugatto in the BlogTO Flickr pool.

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