Riverdale Daily Updates
The latest news, views and things to do in Riverdale neighbourhoods
Woman sought after business break-in
Police are looking for an unidentified female after a business near Queen Street East and Logan Avenue was broken into on May 17 at about 4:35 a.m.
More information, including a description and surveillance camera image of the woman, are available in the police news release.
Clubhouse frontage to get upgrade
Work is expected to start soon on upgrading Riverdale Park East in front of St. Matthew’s Clubhouse, which faces Broadview Avenue at Langley Avenue.
The aim of the renovations is to improve the connection for pedestrians and cyclists using the pedestrian crossing on Broadview to access the park and trail system. Benches, signs, water fountain and Bike Share station will also be moved around.
Construction is expected to be completed in June.
Ticketing rules relaxed for holiday
Parking enforcement officers will not be enforcing all on-street parking bylaws on Victoria Day, police say.
In particular they’ll be turning a blind eye on Monday to parking on rush-hour routes and in areas with Monday-to-Friday regulations.
Hundreds of motorcyclists expected at charity event
Don’t panic if you find hordes of well-dressed motorcyclists inundating the area on Sunday, May 21. They’re here for good causes‚ including raising funds for men’s mental health and prostate cancer research.
That’s the message from the Leslieville BIA today.
More than 200 riders are expected at Flying Squirrel Motorcycle, 1345 Queen St. E., between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., according to the BIA’s statement. The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, as it’s called, is an annual charity event.
“Participants dress in their most refined attire, embodying the spirit of timeless elegance and sophistication,” the BIA says.
Enjoy the fireworks on Victoria Day
The city is presenting its annual Victoria Day fireworks at Ashbridges Bay Park starting at 10 p.m. on Monday, May 22. Beautiful fireworks and a spectacular finale are promised.
You’re encouraged to walk or take public transit to Ashbridges and leave your vehicles at home, as the area will become quite congested with visitors here for the show.
Parking enforcement officer attacked, police say
A 39-year-old man has been arrested after a parking enforcement officer was allegedly assaulted near Dundas Street East and Carlaw Avenue yesterday.
The officer was issuing a ticket to an illegally parked vehicle when a man opened his car door, striking the officer, and then punched him in the chest, police say.
See the police news release for more details.
Donate, recycle and dispose on Saturday
Community Environment Day, hosted by Toronto-Danforth Councillor Paula Fletcher, is to be held at Dieppe Park on May 20.
It’s your opportunity to bring in items to donate, items to recycle, or hazardous waste to dispose of.
See the Streeter Things To Do listing for more information
Sexual assault reported at noon hour in Riverside
Police say a woman was sexually assaulted yesterday at about 12:30 p.m. near Dundas Street East just west of Broadview Avenue.
A man reportedly crossed the street, stood behind the woman, and sexually assaulted her, before running away.
See the police news release for more details and images of a wanted man.
Pothole-fixing blitz on tomorrow
If you’re out driving Saturday, watch for crews working on the roads. The city says it is launching a blitz to repair as many potholes as possible between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m.
It’s probably too late to get your favourite local pothole on the list for repair tomorrow, but call 311 or go to www.toronto.ca/311 to report it for future filling.
Toronto-Danforth MP supports Erskine-Smith for Liberal leader
Toronto-Danforth MP Julie Dabrusin has apparently endorsed Beaches-East York MP Nathaniel Erskine-Smith for Liberal leader.
Erskine-Smith cited his riding neighbour’s support online after he became the first candidate for the Ontario Liberal leadership yesterday.
.@juliedabrusin has been an invaluable partner in representing our east end since 2015. I’m glad to have her support.
If you’re with us, sign up at:https://t.co/AL9q75uyzh pic.twitter.com/OyANG3yYA7
— Nate Erskine-Smith (@beynate) May 9, 2023
See the Streeter news story on Erskine-Smith’s announcement of his candidacy.
Parks washrooms opened—splash pads, fountains and pools next
The city has finished opening park washrooms today, its earliest date ever, the city has announced. Only six seasonal washrooms are still closed for repairs or construction.
Splash and spray pads are due to open by May 20, followed by fountains and bottle-filling stations by May 26.
Ten city-run outdoor pools are to open on partial schedules by June 17 with the rest of them by June 24. All outdoor pools and wading pools are to be open on a full schedule by June 30.
Call for affordable housing at Ontario Line station
Councillor Paula Fletcher has launched a petition calling for the planned Transit Oriented Community development at the future Gerrard Station on the Ontario Line include 20 per cent or more affordable housing.
The petition is to support Fletcher’s upcoming motion that city council ask the provincial government to require a minimum of 20 percent affordable housing at the Gerrard Street East and Carlaw Avenue site.
Discover the Don’s history and prehistory
Jane’s Walks are returning Friday, taking place from May 5 to 7, with at least one walk focusing on the Don River and its valley.
“Water Ways: Histories of the Don” is being held on May 5, starting at 5:30 p.m. at the Water Shed Wall at Evergreen Brick Works, 550 Bayview Ave., and finishing at 7 p.m. at the same location.
The first part of the walk follows the water’s history and prehistory, covering topics like land formation, Indigenous land management, the industrial revolution, community organizing, and sustainability.
The second half of the walk in the Don Valley Brick Works Quarry Park is a free-flowing exploration led by the inquiries of walk participants.
The walk is being led by April Nicolle and Floyd Ruskin of Evergreen Brick Works.
You can find more information on this and other walks at the Jane’s Walks website.
Local school to host climate change expo
The first-ever Danforth Nature and Climate Expo is sprouting in the schoolyard at Wilkinson Junior Public School on May 6.
The city-initiated event will feature 25 tables staffed by local organizations, presenting information about nature conservation, ecology and what you can do to fight climate change — as well as free plant-based foods, activities for kids and guest speakers.
The aim is to motivate both and parents to take action against climate change.
See Streeter news for the full story.
Pape residents concerned about impact of new subway line
Like many communities across Toronto, Pape Village may soon be hit by the effects of constructing the long-awaited Ontario Line.
But some Pape-area residents are preparing for their neighbourhood being taken apart and are working on ways to alleviate the damage.
See the full story in the Toronto Observer.
Free Compost Days in Toronto-Danforth
Gerrard vintage clothing shop listed among best
A Toronto Star article has named Coffee and Clothing among the top secondhand clothing stores in the city.
The café and clothing combo at 841 Gerrard St. E. is listed as the “best for designer classics,” with military surplus clothing, bucket hats, ’70s fashions, midi skirts and “fun outerwear.”
See the Star article for all the top-named stores.
IDs of three sought after east-end auto theft
Several images from a security camera, showing three people involved in the theft of a vehicle from a residence near Jackman and Fulton avenues, were released yesterday evening.
Police say they were made aware of the theft April 12 at 9:24 a.m. A black 2022 Chevrolet Tahoe was parked on private property when it was taken.
See the police news release for more details, images, and descriptions of the suspects.
Washrooms are opening early in our parks
With this warmer-than-average spring, city staff are opening public washrooms earlier than usual. A quarter of Toronto’s seasonal washrooms have been opened already by mid-April, though most were originally scheduled for May.
If you’re planning an outing, you can look up the status of washrooms and drinking fountains in the park on a new interactive map from the city.
See the full story in Streeter news.
Man, 46, wanted after alleged sexual assault
Police are looking for a 46-year-old man who is wanted for sexual assault near Broadview Avenue and Gerrard Street East.
It was reported that between April 1 and April 7 a man sexually assaulted a woman at her home and then fled.
See the police new release for more details and an image of the wanted man.
A café you can pig out at
Leni Poki is the latest themed café to arrive in Toronto, this time at 1027 Gerrard St. E. in Leslieville.
The shop, opened by artist and art teacher Pham Duy, is pig-themed. Colourful porcine images decorate the walls and furnishings, as well the beverages and treats it offers.
Read about it in the Toronto Observer.
Big Carrot cited as leader in sustainability
The Big Carrot food store, with locations both in Greektown and Upper Beaches, is among “10 food businesses in Toronto that make it easier to practise sustainability,” according to BlogTO today. The employee-owned store is noted for its organic and non-GMO products, the article says.
See the full story, including all 10 places specializing in “ethical eats,” on BlogTO.
‘Roofer’ sought after damage to house
The image of a man who claimed to be a roofer has been released by police who are seeking him.
On March 25 a man offered to inspect the roof of a house near Langley and Logan avenues, after which the homeowners heard loud banging on their roof, police say.
The man is then reported to have advised the homeowners they had a hole in their roof and advised he could repair it at a cost. After he left, the homeowners found their roof damaged.
See more details, including description and image, in the police news release.
Danforth Church to be converted to seniors housing
WoodGreen Community Services has announced it plans to build an “affordable and supportive housing facility for seniors” at the site of the Danforth Church at Danforth and Bowden avenues.
“We have contracted R-Hauz to develop this best-of-class and environmentally-friendly rapid-build affordable housing project,” the social service agency says on its website.
The church, built in 1931, and its congregation are to maintain their presence in the new building.
Plans for the eight-storey development also promise to keep heritage elements, such as the two towers and the church front on Danforth.
Beach Metro News has the full story.
Stabbing alleged in Thorncliffe Park, not Playter Estates
A 14-year-old boy was arrested today and charged with attempted murder, five days after an alleged stabbing in Thorncliffe Park.
It was first reported on social media that officers were called on the evening of April 1 to a fight at Chester Hill and Thorncliffe Avenue, a location in Riverdale’s Playter Estates area. But the site was corrected to Thorncliffe Park Drive in today’s police news release.
A 16-year-old was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries from an apparent stabbing.
See the story in Streeter news.
Warning of ‘constant threat’ to Don Valley and our ravines
Activist Floyd Ruskin is proud that much restoration has been accomplished in the Don Valley.
But the east-end resident finds himself himself continually in demand as an advocate for the restoration and preservation of flora and fauna.
The valley and our ravines in Toronto are under constant threat from encroachment by developers and others, Ruskin warns.
Get the full story in Streeter news.
Double the tickets: more speed cameras coming
The number of automated speed enforcement cameras in Toronto-Danforth neighbourhoods is to be doubled from three to six, after city council’s recent approval of the installations.
Council unanimously passed a motion to have city staff look into increasing the ASE devices from the current 75 to 150, shared evenly by each of Toronto’s 25 wards.
This comes just months after a previous increase from 50 across the city.
Get the full story in Streeter news.
Clean up our communities together, city urges
Toronto is asking communities to register local litter cleanups to take part in the city’s annual spring cleanup from April 21 to April 23.
We can register three kinds of cleanups:
- The 20-Minute Makeover on April 21 is for local businesses (BIAs, are you listening?) to clean up public spaces, like parks, sidewalks, ravines or beaches (though local residents can take part too).
- Also on April 21, students and staff of schools, colleges and universities can spend 20 minutes cleaning up their schoolyards or neighbourhood parks.
- On April 22 and 23, community groups, families and individuals are encouraged to visit local parks or other public spaces to help pick up litter.
Get more information and register for whichever cleanup works for you on the city’s Clean Toronto Together page.
Robbery at knifepoint on Coxwell platform
Two males are being sought after a reported robbery at knifepoint on the subway platform at Coxwell Station this afternoon, according to police posts on Twitter.
Coxwell Subway Stn
– reports of a robbery on the subway platform
– male victim reported he was robbed at knifepoint by two suspects
– no injuries
– police responding
– no TTC service to Coxwell Stn at this time#GO709690
— Toronto Police Operations (@TPSOperations) March 31, 2023
Later posts said service had resumed to Coxwell and gave descriptions of the alleged robbers.
Subway passenger attacked with bottle near Donlands
Donlands Station is the site of the latest transit system assault — this one with a weapon — to be reported by police.
Late yesterday afternoon, a man on an eastbound train near Pape began to argue with a male passenger and, by the time they reached Donlands, struck the male passenger with a bottle several times causing non-life threatening injuries, police said.
See the police news release for more details, plus a description and image of the alleged assailant.
Feeding any wildlife, anywhere in city to be banned
On April 1 a new city bylaw comes into effect prohibiting the feeding of wildlife anywhere in Toronto.
And for good reason, according to wildlife experts. You may think you’re helping the animals but you’re not.
Even the traditional practice of throwing bread crumbs to birds is not helpful, the experts say.
Read Dennis Hanagan’s full story in Streeter news about the bylaw and the dangers of feeding the animals.
Man sought in robbery investigation
Police are looking for a 35-year-old man they’ve identified in the investigation of a robbery in the area of Gerrard Street East and Marjory Avenue.
On March 26 a man threatened a loss prevention officer with a knife, police reported.
The man’s identity, his description and his picture, along with other details, are provided in the police news release.
Taste of the Danforth welcomed back
Greektown shops and residents are excited for the return of A Taste of the Danforth this summer, according to a story in the Toronto Observer today.
The article quotes 7 Numbers restaurateur Vito Marinuzzi as saying the street festival, which has been on hiatus for the past three years, promises to be just the boost that businesses have been looking for after a rough period.
Free tax clinic at community centre
The Ralph Thornton Community Centre, 765 Queen St. E., is currently running its income tax clinic to file 2022 returns for eligible residents. Consultations are by phone appointments, virtually by Zoom, or by a limited number of in-person consultations.
Coming in-person dates are Saturdays on March 25, April 22 and April 29.
To book an appointment call 416-392-6810 or send an email.
Tree and shrub giveaway for Pocket residents
If you’re a homeowner in the Riverdale neighbourhood known as the Pocket — between Jones and Greenwood avenues and between the Danforth and the CN lines — you’re eligible to receive free trees and shrubs. It’s part of the Pocket Sustainable Neighbourhood Action Program and an initiative of the Toronto & Region Conservation Authority.
You have until April 1, or until quantities last, to order the plants. Check the Pocket Community Association website for more information and the TRCA’s online form to order.
Taste of the Danforth to return
One of the city’s most popular street festivals, A Taste of the Danforth, is back on (see March 1 item below) — after a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic and a controversial decision by the Greektown BIA last year.
And excitement seems to be building with the hiring of an event planner and local businesses welcoming the return of the festival that draws thousands to the area. See the Toronto Observer story for more about it.
Workshop on self-defence on TTC sells out, second one added
An east-end gym plans a self-defence workshop for transit riders to be held on April 2.
FIIT Co at 1047 Gerrard St. E. is hosting the workshop, run by the Toronto Krav Maga Academy and Kombat Arts Training Academy.
But, according to the website, the April 2 class is full. Another session is now scheduled for April 23.
The cost is $55 for one person, $99 for two people.
Local stores need city help to survive, Pape business says
Many stores have not been able to bounce back after the pandemic, Kiss the Frog owner Karen McNeilly told the Toronto Observer. They need help from the city, she said.
The Pape Avenue shopkeeper is asking Toronto’s next mayor — whoever that may be — to provide economic support for small businesses to keep more of them from closing.
See the Toronto Observer story.
Outdoor skating continues to Sunday — if the ice holds up
The city is encouraging skaters to enjoy the last few days of the official outdoor skating season at our local rinks. However, the weather seems poised to end the season earlier than the scheduled March 19 deadline.
Sunday evening is when the city starts to close its outdoor artificial ice rinks, natural ice rinks and skating trails and begin its annual conversion of spaces into skateboarding parks, tennis courts and pickleball spaces.
Meanwhile the forecast for the next four days calls for rainy and overcast days with temperatures mainly above zero.
Locals upset by cutting down of Don Valley trees
Nearly 2,800 trees in the Don Valley are being cleared to make way for construction of the Ontario Line.
It’s a move that reportedly appalls nearby community members and representatives who say Metrolinx has not communicated adequately about the massive cutting.
See the recent Toronto Observer story about the local reaction.
Arrest for crosstown bank robberies 20 minutes apart
A man was arrested yesterday after a bank robbery near Danforth and Coxwell avenues, police reported today.
It was the second such bank robbery of the day, they said. Twenty minutes before the East Danforth holdup, officers had responded to a holdup call near Bloor and Bathurst streets.
In both cases a man is alleged to have worn a mask and gloves while handing a teller a note saying he had a firearm and demanding cash. The man then fled the areas with the money, police said.
A 24-year-old Toronto man faces six charges, including two counts each of robbery and disguise with intent.
Images released of car in interrupted sexual assault case
Police have released better images of a car thought to have been used in a sexual assault near Felstead and Lamb avenues on Feb. 25. (See March 3 item below.)
The victim is reported to have fled the car when another vehicle approached on a dead end street.
The suspect’s vehicle is described as a four-door, light-coloured sedan, believed to be a 2011–2014 silver Hyundai Sonata with a sunroof.
Grainy photos of the suspected vehicle were released with the first report but clearer images have been released in police news releases on March 8 and March 9.
Identity sought in robbery investigation
Police have released images to identify a man being sought after a robbery near Queen Street East and Carlaw Avenue late on March 2.
It was reported a business owner was closing up near midnight when a man entered and took items off the shelf without paying for them.
When asked to pay, the man punched the face of the business owner who fell, police said.
Police received the call shortly after midnight, but the suspect had fled before their arrival.
See the police news release for more details.
Driver sought in interrupted sexual assault
Police are trying to identify a male who allegedly sexually assaulted someone in his vehicle in the east end on Feb. 25.
Police reported the incident began at about 3 a.m. when a man, described as in his 20s, offered a ride near Danforth and Greenwood avenues.
The vehicle was driven to a dead end street around Felstead and Lamb avenues where the victim was sexually assaulted, police said.
When another vehicle approached the dead end street, the man was reportedly startled and the victim escaped.
A description of the suspect and murky images of the suspect vehicle have been released. For more,
Metrolinx to move planned layover facility from Don Valley
Metrolinx appears to have given in to demands that a planned layover facility not be built in the Don Valley alongside the parkway north of the Prince Edward Viaduct.
Yesterday the provincial agency overseeing public transport announced it has found a new location in a light industrial area near York Mills Road and Leslie Street.
The proposed 11-acre site in the valley has been the subject of protests and petitions from environmentalists and community members who said building the facility there could damage the valley’s sensitive ecology.
Success! Metrolinx has moved the proposed Don Valley Layover facility out of the Valley. Thank you to all the advocates who’ve spoken up to protect this important natural area. https://t.co/i6sgwF41bc pic.twitter.com/5vNSnHUWh1
— Paula Fletcher (@PaulaFletcherTO) March 1, 2023
Taste of the Danforth is back on — but different
The Greektown on the Danforth BIA has voted to hire an event planner for the return of Toronto’s biggest street party built around food.
For the first time since pre-pandemic days, A Taste of the Danforth festival will take over Danforth Avenue over three days — this year Aug. 11–13.
But the event may not go quite as we recall it. Organizers are saying A Taste of the Danforth is to be “reimagined.” See yesterday’s CBC report for the breaking story.
Summerlicious applications open
Winterlicious seems barely over and it’s already time for local restaurants to sign up for the summer edition of the fixed-price dining festival.
Applications to participate in the Summerlicious program will be accepted from today to March 22, the city announced today.
This year’s Summerlicious runs from July 7 to 23 and there’s good news for participating restaurants: the fees have been cut to less than half the pre-pandemic rates. The new fee is $550. The city says this reduction should “make it easy and affordable for restaurants to participate and will encourage more Toronto residents to dine out and celebrate Toronto’s diverse culinary scene.”
Restaurants can find more information on the City’s Summerlicious 2023 Restaurant Participation webpage.
to identify a man suspected of spraying a passenger with an unknown substance at the Greenwood subway station.
On Jan. 4 at about 5:45 p.m. a man approached the passenger and, without provocation, sprayed him in the face, police said.
The man then allegedly travelled to Finch Station and sprayed another passenger on the bus platform.
Security camera images have been released to help identify the man in the assault investigation.
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