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Toronto's Kew Gardens, in the Beaches with Queen Street East to the north and Lake Ontario to the south, is a lovely park in summer, dense with greenery and people.

Yoga in the park #toronto #beaches #kewgardens #parks #yoga #latergrams

Looking at the baseball diamond #toronto #beaches #kewgardens #parks #baseball #latergram

Back #toronto #beaches #kewgardens #parks #yoga #latergram

At play #toronto #beaches #kewgardens #parks #baseball #dog #latergram

Urban forest #toronto #beaches #kewgardens #parks #trees #latergram

Tennis greens #toronto #beaches #kewgardens #parks #tennis #latergram
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East end, Queen Street East #toronto #beaches #queenstreet #queenstreeteast #fallingbrookrd

I was standing here, three blocks east of the end of the 501 Queen route on Queen Street East just where Queen Street ends in the east, veering north to become Fallingbrook Road.
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  • The Globe and Mail describes how the flooding of Lake Ontario is starting to impact buildings built near the waterfront on the mainland, like some of Toronto's new condos.

  • All of Toronto's beaches will be, CBC reports, at least partly closed on account of the flooding.

  • Lucas Powers' photo essay at CBC tracks the impact of flooding on the Toronto Islands.

  • Steve Munro continues his study of buses on Queen Street, noting that the frequency of buses needs to be increased to keep pace with streetcars.

  • Edward Keenan argues in the Toronto Star that Michael Ford's call for a study for Queen Street transit will reveal that streetcars are the better way.

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  • Daily Xtra notes that, in the 1930s, the shops of Yonge and Dundas supported a queer community. The tours described sound interesting.

  • Torontoist's Tricia Wood arguesthat the proposed high speed rail route in southern Ontario is wasteful spending, reflecting a two-tier transit network.

  • Steve Munro crunches data on the Queen Street route to find that buses have an advantage over streetcars.

  • The Toronto Star's Ben Spurr notes that the TTC is planning to noticeably expand its express bus network.

  • NOW Toronto's Lisa Ferguson writes about potential NIMBYism in the opposition to new high-rises in High Park.

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The Toronto Star's Peter Goffin reports on the online response to the TTC's plan to close down the Queen streetcar line this summer.

The TTC’s announcement that it will replace streetcars with buses during repairs to Queen St. this summer has jumpstarted conversation on social media.

Facebook and Twitter were flooded Wednesday morning with Torontonians bemoaning the change to their commute, criticizing the timing, and complaining about the construction projects that are causing the conversion.

Some were worried that putting more buses on the road would create more pollution.

“Buses are more harmful for the environment than streetcars, as streetcars run on electricity and not fuel,” wrote TJ Phelan on Facebook.
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Global News' David Shum describes how, this summer, the Queen streetcar line will be replaced by buses.

For the first time in TTC history, transit riders will have to make due with buses along the entire 501 Queen streetcar route this summer.

From May 7 to Sept. 3, streetcars will not be travelling the busy corridor due to a number of construction projects.

“Because of a number of construction projects along Queen Street that would disrupt regular streetcar service, it was decided that replacing them with buses would allow for a better customer experience in the short-term,” TTC spokesperson Stuart Green said.

In total, 65 buses will be replacing 27 streetcars from the Neville Loop in the east end to the Long Branch loop in Etobicoke.
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The Globe and Mail's Brad Wheeler reports from Queen and Broadview, where the closure of hamburger restaurant Dangerous Dan's signals the impending transformation of this Riverdale intersection.

The news this week that Dangerous Dan’s will close at the end of May hit Riversiders like a ton of ground beef. But while the venerable burger joint’s demise is a blow to the meat-loving masses, the restaurant’s passing is just another sign of the changing times at the junction of Queen and Broadview. For 18 years, from his window seat at the front of his bustling diner, Dangerous Dan’s owner James McKinnon has watched the corner gentrify, literally in front of his eyes. We got his grill-hot take on the morphing intersection.


Dangerous Dan’s (named after owner McKinnon’s grandfather) opened in 1999. Early in 2015, McKinnon put his business and lease up for sale. Corporate fast-food chain Pizza Nova bought the whole building, and now, after failing to come to a new lease agreement, McKinnon and his outrageous burger inventions (including such meat monstrosities as the Big Kevorkian and the Colossal Colon Clogger Combo) are leaving. Nearby, a new Korean fried chicken restaurant has opened. Kaboom Chicken attracts a crowd more hip than the blue-collar clientele of Dangerous Dan’s, but Mr. McKinnon never saw the eatery as competition. “The chains have half the market,” he says. “Little guys like me and Kaboom Chicken are just nibbling on the edges.” Speaking of chains, Pizza Nova released a statement this week saying it hadn’t decided on future plans for the corner location.

The other corners are covered, too.
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  • blogTO reports on how a trespasser at track level disrupted subway service today.

  • Crooked Timber argues Trump's migration ban is best under stood as an elaboration of existing Western immigration policies, taking them to their logical conclusion.

  • Dangerous Minds looks at 1980s New York City industrial rockers Missing Foundation.

  • The Dragon's Gaze examines the orbit of Proxima Centauri around the A-B pair.

  • The Everyday Sociology Blog profiles four millennial students to attack the idea of their generation as lazy.

  • Language Log and Strange Maps look at how the list of countries whose citizens are banned from the US does not map onto the list of countries which have provided terrorists who have attacked the United States.

  • The LRB BLog looks at the first ten days of the Trump Administration.

  • The NYRB Daily looks at the scale of the popular mobilization against Trump.

  • The Power and the Money's Noel Maurer looks at how modest immigration controls in Argentina are overshadowed by the US.

  • Transit Toronto reports on streetcar line repair on Queen Street.

  • Window on Eurasia wonders if Trump will allow Russia to do as it will in most of the former Soviet Union, and <a href="http://windowoneurasia2.blogspot.ca/2017/01/moscow-now-taking-seriously-that-russia.html'><U>looks</u></a> at the prospect Russia might lose out in international sporting events.</li> </ul>
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Looking up the Don River #toronto #donriver #rivers

Toronto's Don River may face significant ecological challenges, but the northwards view from Queen Street East at least evokes a functioning urban riverine ecosystem.
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Looking up at the Broadview Hotel #toronto #riverdale #broadviewhotel #queenstreeteast #broadviewave

After an enjoyable noontime coffee with a friend in Leslieville, I walked west on Queen Street East. I passed by the Broadview Hotel, newly cleaned and prepared for a shiny new future. I decided to take a look up at the brick, through the streetcar wires, and was impressed.
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Back in May 2014, I noted that the Broadview Hotel at Queen and Broadview was set for a sweeping renovation. The aim is to repeat in east-end Toronto something that happened with the Drake and Gladstone in west-end Toronto, to make a down-at-the-hells hotel (this one, known for strip joint Jilly's) into a high-end boutique hotel.

To this end, the entire hotel was wrapped up tightly in construction cladding while it was subjected to repairs. I took the below picture in November of 2015.

Broadview Hotel and streetcar wires #toronto #broadviewhotel #broadviewavenue #queenstreeteast #streetcar

Now? Urban Toronto's David Rudin reported on what the repairs' completion and showed what it looked like now.

The Broadview Hotel, until recently home to one of Toronto’s last licensed strip clubs, was itself stripped of its temporary drapes on Wednesday when scaffolding on the corner of Broadview and Queen streets came down and the newly-renovated boutique hotel showed its buffed skin for an assembled audience.

The ERA Architects-designed project, which is being led by Streetcar Developments, will eventually be home to a 57-room boutique hotel, restaurants and bars operated by the team behind Enoteca Ascari, along with event spaces. While the exterior and mechanical aspects of the renovation are now largely complete, the hotel’s interior will not be completed and ready for opening until the spring of 2017.

“I don’t know how many times people said, ‘When’s something going to happen with Jilly’s?’” Ward 30 councillor Paula Fletcher said before the unveiling. Through various iterations, the 125-year-old building has long been the architectural anchor of the Riverside neighbourhood, but over that time its use rarely matched up with its position.

“So many people have wanted to restore Jilly’s to its beautiful glory,” Fletcher said.

Gentrification notwithstanding, this is beautiful.
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Fire Station No. 17 and streetcar #toronto #thebeach #queenstreeteast #architecture

What could be a more iconic sight of the Beach than that of a TTC streetcar passing east in front of the Kew Beach Fire Hall (1904 Queen Street East)?
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The Toronto Star's Verity Stevenson described earlier this month promises to increase service on the Queen Street streetcar line. Here's to hoping these get fulfilled.

If you take the Queen streetcar often, your experience may be similar to Effy Lustgarten’s.

“Sometimes I stand in the middle of the street to see if it’s coming,” Lustgarten said while aboard the city’s third busiest tram around noon Sunday, noting the wait was consistently more than 20 minutes. “Then, I might take the King Street car . . . it’s more frequent.”

A few seats back, Dave Crawford, who takes the 501 streetcar to church on Sundays from Carlaw Ave. to Spadina Ave., said he’s waited up to 30 minutes for it.

“There’s some mornings where I just start walking because it’s actually quicker,” Crawford said.

You could say their desire is named Streetcar. That is, until Sunday morning, when their yearning for service might have been gratified: as of Jan. 3, the Toronto Transit Commission has added extra morning trips and split the route in two for daytime ones.

Crawford waited no more than 10 minutes and another rider, Corey Jones, noticed the higher frequency, too. “Sundays are usually very crowded, but today it’s a special day,” Jones said as he disembarked. The streetcar, headed east, carried no more than 30 people, but Jones remained skeptical.

“It’s just one day, you see what I mean?” he said. “It’s too early to tell.”
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  • blogTO notes an upcoming Instagram meetup here in Toronto.

  • Centauri Dreams notes the latest Voyager 1 findings on interstellar space.

  • The Dragon's Gaze notes exoplanets orbiting red dwarfs are more likely to exhibit high abiotic levels of atmospheric oxygen.

  • The Dragon's Tales reports on the news Chinese C919 jet plane, meant to compete with Airbus and Boeing.

  • Geocurrents maps religion in insular Southeast Asia.

  • Joe. My. God. and Towleroad both look at how Yusuf Mack, an American boxer who claimed he was drugged into participating in a gay porn film, has actually come out via a convincing apology.

  • Marginal Revolution wonders why short-term interest rates are negative.

  • The Planetary Society Blog's Emily Lakdawalla shares her updated chart showing the round worlds of the solar system.

  • Spacing argues for the importance of urban forestry.

  • Towleroad notes same-sex couples in the United States who, having made use of adoption to create a legal relationship, are now unable to marry.

  • Transit Toronto notes ongoing streetcar diversions on Queen Street East.

  • Window on Eurasia notes the harm done to Ukrainians so far by Russia and the dim prospects of this being stopped any time soon.

rfmcdonald: (photo)
Pawnbrokers' row #toronto #churchstreet #pawnbrokers

The row of pawnshops extending north on Church Street above Queen Street has seen better days, but in the right light on a late autumn day it can still look interesting.
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The R.C. Harris Water Treatment Plant is, as Wikipedia notes, "both a crucial piece of infrastructure and an architecturally acclaimed historic building". A modernist icon sprawling over the hilly slopes of the eastern end of the beaches, descending from Queen Street East into Lake Ontario, the plant is a lovely place to see. Skateboarders, I would note, seemed to love the long sloping roads, while birds nest on the buildings' walls, as the second photo indicates.

At the R.C. Harris, 1 #toronto #rcharriswatertreatmentplant #latergram #architecture

At the R.C. Harris, 2 #toronto #rcharriswatertreatmentplant #latergram #architecture #nests #birds

At the R.C. Harris, 3 #toronto #rcharriswatertreatmentplant #latergram #architecture #lawn

At the R.C. Harris, 4 #toronto #rcharriswatertreatmentplant #latergram #architecture

At the R.C. Harris, 5 #toronto #rcharriswatertreatmentplant #latergram #architecture

At the R.C. Harris, 6 #toronto #rcharriswatertreatmentplant #latergram #architecture

At the R.C. Harris, 7 #toronto #rcharriswatertreatmentplant #latergram #lakeontario
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Ephemera of Leningrad #toronto #leslieville #ephemera #leningrad #sovietunion #stpetersburg #russia #cyrillic

Leslieville's Gadabout Vintage ((1300 Queen Street East) has a vast collection of knick-knacks, including this thing, a box with a photo of a statue of Peter and Catherine.


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