Your Chance to Say Preserve Parkdale Village: Nov 29, 2016. New Maps

You are invited to a city meeting Nov 29 on the West Queen West Heritage Conservation District (HCD) Study. Please tell them how you want our historic village preserved. New Historic maps have been added at end of this article!

Date: Tuesday, November 29, 2016
Place: The Theatre Centre – 1115 Queen Street West
Time: 6:00pm – Open House
6:30 – 9:00pm – Presentation and Facilitated Discussion & Activity

The evening will begin with an Open House from 6:00-6:30pm, followed by a presentation of the draft recommendations by FGMDA Architects. This will be followed by a facilitated discussion and activity.

“I believe preserving the heart of the village means preserving the Streetscape.
Preserve the original fronts of the buildings above the first floor, ensuring the windows retain the original look, while not regulating the materials they may be made of. The sight lines above the buildings are important too. We do not want to see condo towers behind historic buildings. Leave the apartment interiors unrestricted as they will be unseen by the public. Leave the main floor store fronts to the businesses and the BIA. Replacement buildings should conform to the original look.” Jack Gibney. Please have your say in comments at the end of this article.

The following maps were created by FGMDA Architects as part of this City Planning study DRAFT-REPORT. The full report is too large to display here but may be viewed in part in the following maps, formatted for better web site Viewing.

If you would like more information please contact:

Heritage Preservation Services Contact
Sharon Hong

Ward Councillor Contacts
Gord Perks (Ward 14)
Ana Bailão (Ward 18)
Mike Layton (Ward 19)

Consultant Contact
Dima Cook

Queen St W Historic Selection 2014 South Side
Queen St W Historic Selection 2014 North Side


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3 Responses to Your Chance to Say Preserve Parkdale Village: Nov 29, 2016. New Maps

  1. I returned earlier this evening from the WQW Heritage Study recommendations meeting, and suffice to say that they threw a central area of WQW—so-called ‘Area C’, from Shaw to Dufferin—under the bus. They are recommending that all of WQW from Bathurst to Jameson get an HCD—that is, be deemed a Heritage Conservation District—EXCEPT this area. Why? Get this: because the old heritage buildings on the North side of WQW in this area don’t ‘match’ the larger CAMH buildings on the South side.

    Why on earth does such a difference matter? Why not just recommend that the North side get an HCD? Good question. We received no good answer. The consultant just ‘felt’ that this made a difference. There was also some vague expression of how this difference in ‘typologies’ on North and South sides of the street would make it hard for them to ‘defend’ an HCD for this crucial part of WQW.

    This is bullshit, to put it nicely. There are at least six obvious reasons, any one of which would probably be sufficient on their own, for making ‘Area C’ an HCD just like the rest of QW and WQW:
    (1) Our buildings are among the oldest and most intact in the entire study area;
    (2) Our area is among the most historically important in the entire study area, with WQW/Ossington being, among other things, the first route out of Toronto;
    (3) Our area is hugely characterful, celebrated by the NYT choosing WQW/Ossington for their ‘Four Square Blocks’ feature precisely for its historical cultural value;
    (4) This celebrated character is under clear attack, as the recent eviction of MOCCA and other of our arts institutions by Urbancorp’s thankfully defunct 9-storey condo—approved by Planning!—makes clear;
    (5) There is a clear virtue in preserving continuity of WQW around Ossington with Ossington’s low-rise Official Plan Amendment (look North as well as South!);
    (6) There is a completely obvious virtue in there being a continuous *unified* QW and WQW Heritage District.

    This is a world-renowned street, and Heritage has just suggested that WQW between Shaw and Dufferin can go to the developer dogs, so far as it’s concerned.

    There was uniform opposition at the meeting to this astonishing failure of the Heritage Study to appropriately include this central, incredibly historically, culturally, and architectually important part of WQW as part of its HCD recommendations. There were dot stickers that the hundred-plus people at the meeting were to place on posters of the recommendations for the different areas, signifying agreement (green) or disagreement (red). Suffice to say that there was a sea of red dots, and not a single green dot, placed on the crummy Heritage recommendations for the ill-treated ‘Area C’.

    See the Ossington Community Association FB page for further info; we will be following up with a course of action. This must not stand.

    • jack gibney says:

      I attended the meeting too and observed the general agreement with HCD for the north side of Queen St , Dufferin to Shaw. “Why not just the north side?” is a good question indeed. There is a large community of historic homes between Queen and Dundas in this area. The residents appear to value heritage greatly. The residents of this area were, I believe, the ones who drove the HCD process.

      • Thanks, Jack. Yes, we have been pushing hard for HCD designation of WQW, as a continuation of the HCD for QW, as well as for Ossington (whose book-length HCD application, showing satisfaction of numerous criteria of the Heritage Act, will no doubt be similarly rejected for no good reason).

        What continually astonishes me is how City staff fail to appreciate what the rest of the world sees and appreciates: the unique, significantly materially historically intact, and culturally informed treasures that we have in WQW and Ossington. This basic failure to appreciate what we have here is a crying shame, that will have lifelong detrimental consequences not just to our area, but to Toronto and all those who love it.

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