Morning Brew: Council ready for subway debate, heat alert turns extreme, electrifying the GO, King Edward Hotel gets a new name, and the Sun's "City Hall hotties"
The stars appear to be aligned for city council to approve an eastward extension of the Bloor-Danforth line later today (or possibly tomorrow.) The provincial and federal governments appear ready to back the project, though its not how much money is on the table, providing the extension gets the green light.
Ditching the planned LRT and opting for a subway will cost in excess of $1.1 billion more then what's already been budgeted and Rob Ford seems happy with a small property tax hike. Could this project blaze a trail for a Yonge relief line or it a byelection ploy?
The City of Toronto has just declared an extreme heat alert, meaning temperatures are expected to rise to dangerous levels by the end of the day. The forecast calls for temperatures of 33 C but the humidex will make it feel closer to 43 C. Additional cooling centres are open around the city.
Could Toronto's new subways be ready and waiting on GO Train corridors? An advocacy group is hoping the provincial government will back a sweeping plan to adapt and electrify the existing diesel train routes in the form of "surface subways." Are the city's existing rail lines underused?
The famous King Edward Hotel on King East is getting a new name. When new operators take control of the building it will become The Omni King Edward Hotel (officially at least). Omni Hotels and Resorts is taking over running the historic property from the current group of operators. Omni also runs Montreal's Mount Royal Hotel.
Yesterday was a slow news day, no doubt, but it certainly wasn't enough to excuse the Toronto Sun's cringingly awkward "City Hall hotties" poll, which is exactly what it sounds like. At time of writing chief planner Jennifer Keesmaat was leading the women's vote while Rob Ford was top man with more than three times as many votes as his nearest competitor, Cllr. Josh Colle. Yikes.
Finally, some dubious posters at the Front St. customs office have been removed after complaints from the public. The pictures, accompanied by sweary messages like "Offended you are? I a shit I do not give" and "Everyone calm the fuck down," were quietly removed after an enquiry by the Toronto Star.
Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.
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