A Great Planner Leaves Downtown

Al Rezoski speaks at the opening of a new pedestrian promenade in our neighbourhood.
Al Rezoski speaks at the opening of a new pedestrian promenade in our neighbourhood.
Our wonderful urban planner, Al Rezoski is moving away from downtown to become manager of planning in North York. It is a big blow to us, because so much of what YQNA has accomplished in the last decade was due to Al. He has been our source of information about what is being developed (or not!) in our neighbourhood. We would pore over complicated plans of huge buildings, streets, public spaces and the PATH in his office, while he explained everything patiently in his soft-spoken manner. He sat us down with architects, developers and politicians and showed us how we could influence the decisions made in City Hall. In fact, he turned us into activists for a better neighbourhood and expected us to step up to the plate. What an exceptional guy! We wish him a great future in North York and hope to see him on his bike around the Waterfront.
Every walk-about with Al Rezoski on the Waterfront was a lesson in urban planning.
Every walk-about with Al Rezoski on the Waterfront was a lesson in urban planning.

Al sent us this generous email:

“During the last 12 years I have been blessed to work with 5 progressive downtown City Councillors, amazing colleagues and many wonderful neighbourhood associations such as the YQNA. I am very sad to leave City Hall. We have accomplished so much. I owe much of my passion to the YQNA. You helped inform me how terrible the streetscapes were in the Central Bayfront. You set the bar high for developers and had a clear vision for how the central waterfront should be developed. Together we produced 6 downtown pedestrian promenade plans that guide development and pedestrian improvements. Thank you for your diligence in reviewing development applications and being involved in the planning process. Please carry the torch. I’ll miss working with you. Keep up the great work. You are making Toronto a much better City!”

— the same to you, Al.

Ulla Colgrass, YQNA Planning Committee

Save the trees!

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The access ramps in our neighbourhood to the Gardiner will be redesigned. The circular ramp at York and Queens Quay is coming down and a new park will be created from the green space inside.  YQNA has saved this parkland from various proposed  developments — from sewage treatment plant to roadways for parking. Because of our long fight to keep this park on the Waterfront, we are taking stock of the many trees on the site. They are fully grown and some appear very healthy. It is our wish to get a green park that is not dominated by hard surfaces, and to keep as many trees as possible. Here is a beautiful maple tree, ready to shade the centre of our new green entryway to the Waterfront.