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Morning Brew: Cleaner says he smoked pot with Sandro Lisi, special squad investigates the mayor, Keesmaat has doubts over Mirvish-Gehry condos, and cute dogs

The Etobicoke dry cleaner arrested with Rob Ford's friend Sandro Lisi says he sometimes shared a joint after closing with the mayor's occasional driver. Jamshid Bahrami, the owner of Richview Cleanera, told the Globe and Mail that Lisi also supplied him with pot to help ease his arthritis pain. Both were arrested on drug related charges at the business last week.

Meanwhile, the National Post says a special police squad has been formed to investigate the mayor and his associates. The special detail, led by accomplished homicide Detective Sergeant Gary Giroux, is also reportedly using a Cessna to tail the mayor from the air. Holy mackerel.

Toronto's chief planner Jennifer Keesmaat says she has serious concerns about the Mirvish/Gehry condos proposed for King and John. In an interview with the Star's Christopher Hume, she says the trio of 80-plus storey buildings allow too much density and are architecturally "trite." Keesmaat is also concerned the design could change significantly before shovels hit the ground.

This week is set to be a big one at city council. The Scarborough subway will resurface amid concerns over funding and on Thursday councillors will select a new member to replace former deputy mayor Doug Holyday. City Manager Joe Pennachetti says the city can either push ahead with a subway, with the associated $910-million bill and 1.6% tax hike, or revert to LRT.

A Scarborough hydro corridor is going to become a butterfly sanctuary. The Toronto and Region Conservation Authority is planting 20,000 shrubs in the grassy stretch between McCowan and Bellamy and hopes to attract the colourful critters by next year.

A cutest dog competition organized by cllr. Glenn De Baeremaeker at Thomson Memorial Park in Scarborough attracted more than 100 pets this weekend. A mastiff named Tank, a maltese poodle, and a King Charles spaniel were the winners. The Toronto Sun has video of the dogs, if you're in to that sort of thing.

A two-alarm fire in an abandoned home has closed part of Bathurst Street south of Dupont. There were no injuries reported but the 512 St. Clair streetcar is operating a shuttle bus service in the area as streetcars are unable to get north on Bathurst.

UPDATE 8:21: The Bathurst Street is back open and the trapped streetcars are re-entering service, says the TTC.

FROM THE WEEKEND:

IN BRIEF:

Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.

Image: Mary Crandall/blogTO Flickr pool.


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