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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Letter from the President, CCQLD

A very important stage in the decades long battle by our community to encourage responsible development in the quarry lands will be taking place soon.  A proposal by the development arm of the City, Build Toronto, will be put forward for public consultation and feedback this spring. If you live in the quarry area or are on the CCQLD mailing list, you will be notified about where and when the consultations are being held. We encourage you to come make your voice heard.
We at the CCQLD already have a pretty good idea where you stand on the proposals. A recent survey of community priorities in the quarry lands tells us people want to see a good sense of community integration. We take that to mean ‘no towers.’ You also told us you wanted green space and bike paths.  The Build proposal includes a four storey apartment building and a 110,000 sq. foot big box store that would sit roughly on top of a portion of the former driving range.  Some are opposed to the big box store and are worried about how the city plans to manage the dramatic increase in traffic that it will bring.  These are legitimate concerns and CCQLD will insist they be addressed, if in fact it turns out that this element is part of the final plan
For the most part though, you told us that the Build proposal is a starting point.  Let’s get to work.  We now have something on paper for the city owned portion of the quarry that does not include towers.  Let’s fine tune this and make it the best that it can be.  How will customers enter and exit the parking lot? What kind of housing do we want?  What changes need to be made to take into account that the city has been unable to acquire the land for the extension of Blantyre north of Gerrard?  The upcoming consultations are your chance to let Build Toronto and city planners know how you want to see your neighbourhood shaped.
As for the development plans in the eastern portion of the quarry lands, CCQLD, the community, urban planners and all levels of government stand united in opposition to high rise towers in our community. We need to be prepared to move together on very short notice to drive home that point.
  In closing, I want to thank outgoing president Mark Brender for his time and devotion to the cause over the last ten years. Mark is a passionate proponent of community building and responsible development and it is our good fortune that Mark has agreed to remain on the board. We didn’t want to lose his experience.  Mark has played a huge role in keeping high rises out of our community and we are grateful for all his hard work.

Tim Weber