York Quay Neighbourhood Association covers Toronto’s iconic Central Waterfront, with members in every building. YQNA is actively engaged in what shapes our neighbourhood – traffic, transit, planning, cultural and social events, policing, environment, noise, businesses, and the great urban renewal transforming Queens Quay. YQNA welcomes all residents to participate, share their ideas and enjoy our events.
Christopher Hume, who has spoken often about the Waterfront in his Toronto Star columns, is ready to retire. His opinions and sharp pen will be greatly missed. When you live in the midst of North America’s largest urban renewal project, our Waterfront, it is invaluable to have friends who will listen to ideas and concerns of citizens, especially in the media. Christopher Hume has been such a friend to YQNA.
We have learned much from him, and some of his columns have been inspired by information and arguments that YQNA made about buildings, parks, roads, noise and the controversial island airport. He welcomed it, did the necessary research and drew his own conclusions, which resulted in some pithy columns that sometimes were at odds with the Star’s own editorial policy. That is quite a feat for a journalist.
We assume Chris will continue his pursuit of knowledge about what makes cities tick. He has travelled the world and reported on big cities that develop with plans for the next 50 years or more, and transit that is built before buildings shoot up like mushrooms — almost foreign concepts in Toronto! His love of architecture made him grade our newest Toronto buildings like a schoolmaster, and he strongly backed Waterfront Toronto as the lead agency for our area. YQNA got a taste of Chris’ passion for urban life at a talk for our members. This photo shows him at the farewell party for John Campbell, former CEO of Waterfront Toronto. YQNA wishes Chris a great retirement, but we hope he will find new ways to educate us about this city that grows and grows.
The City is trying to change the Noise Bylaw — and not in our favour. The changes would allow noise inside our homes from an outside source (amplified music, construction, clubs , etc.) at 85 dBA from 7 am to 11 pm. That is equal to a snow blower running all day! New York City’s dBA limit for homes is 42 dBA.
To make matters worse, residents can only contest excessive noise by having an inspector from Municipal Licences and Standards (MLS) visit their homes to measure the sound levels. The MLS’s few noise inspectors failed to monitor outdoor noise levels in the past, so how could this new system work for us?
York Quay Neighbourhood Association (YQNA) studied the proposed changes and strongly objects. On the Waterfront, we have more than a dozen outdoor concert venues with hundreds of live music events a year. We also have party boats on the lake with amplified music, and airplanes overhead from the island airport.
We urge you strongly to speak up. Insist on keeping the old bylaw, which protects residents from being disturbed in their own homes at all hours, and allows them to present evidence of disturbance. Once these general prohibitions are gone, your health and privacy could be on the line. Provincial legislation limits the noise at point of reception — such as your home — to 50 dBA. The City now asks us to live with 85 dBA, which is 12 times the 50 dBA on a calibrated scale!
YQNA is urging residents, councillors and neighbourhood associations to object to this change. We have until Feb. 15, 2016 to add our voices. The City document is here.
You may use this content in your protest:
- I, (or neighbourhood association or other civic group) strongly protest the proposed changes to the City Noise Bylaw. I request that the General Prohibition (591-1), which protects residents from being disturbed in their own homes at all hours, and allows them to present evidence of disturbance, remain unchanged.
- No multiple noise exemptions can be granted to concert venues, but must be granted one by one and be approved by the local city councillor.
Emails or letters should go to:
Senior Policy and Research Officer
Municipal Licensing and Standards
City Hall, 100 Queen Street West, West Tower, 16th Floor
Toronto, ON, M5H 2N2
Please share this information with as many as possible.
You can speak to this issue at the next public meeting by Municipal Licensing and Standards on February 17th, 2016 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm at City Hall, 2nd Floor, Committee Room 1.
TAKE PART IN THE FUTURE OF OUR WATERFRONT. Waterfront Toronto is holding a public meeting to bring citizens up-to-date on the master plans for the revitalization of the Ferry Docks and Harbour Square Park. We encourage everyone to come out to this important meeting which will define the future of our Waterfront. NOTE: Included in this presentation will be the proposed changes to the Ring Road around the back of Harbour Square condos and to the parking lot now there. In lieu of an Open House, there will be an extended Q&A session.
DATE: TUESDAY, JANUARY 26
TIME: New Time: 6:30 – 8:30 PM
PLACE: Brigantine Room at Harbourfront Centre, 225 Queens Quay West
For more information, contact Waterfront Toronto at email@example.com.
The seismic shift in Parliament brings us this cheerful team: Ange Valentini, chief of staff to MP Adam Vaughan (top right) and the new Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. We congratulate them on the outcome of their successful campaign that brought them to the Waterfront many times. YQNA has always worked closely with our elected officials. We are pleased that this new government already is committed to maintaining the tripartite agreement that governs the Island Airport. Not opening the agreement to negotiations allows the current airport operations, but will prevent massive jet expansion that would seriously threaten life on the Waterfront. Go team, go!
John Campbell is stepping down after 12 years as CEO of Waterfront Toronto (WT). He has navigated many beautiful projects through choppy waters on the Waterfront, and has prepared for new developments as far as the Port Lands. John’s tremendous business skills and diplomacy made him a perfect leader of what is North America’s largest urban renewal project. His popularity reached into the Waterfront communities, where he engaged residents and businesses in the planning of parks, streets, WaveDecks, Queens Quay redesign, boardwalks and new buildings in precinct plans. Our ideas were welcomed, as we soaked up lots of knowledge during hundreds of hours in committees and public and private meetings.
YQNA decided to throw a farewell party for John on a warm September evening on the pool deck of the Radisson Admiral Hotel overlooking the lake. Five other neighbourhood associations joined as hosts – from Gooderham Warts, West Don Lands, St. Lawrence, Toronto Islands and Bathurst Quay – as well as the Waterfront BIA. A large crowd of residents, business owners, planners, civil servants, politicians, architects and developers paid tribute to John.
Among the gifts was a new song, “T.O. the Waterfront,” created by local artists Michael Colgrass and Anna Prodanou. It was dedicated to John and performed by the WBIA’s Singing Ambassadors. Hear the song with Waterfront clips on YouTube. Another gift from residents was a one-of-a-kind book of images, collected from many sources to capture the Waterfront transformation under John’s tenure. The party was a heartfelt send-off for a person who is well-liked and will remain in Toronto’s history as an important city builder. The new CEO of WT was not yet announced at this writing.