Archive for the ‘People’ Category

The Right To Accommodate Is Well Established But…

It’s maddening to think that people continue to be oblivious to mobility issues. I’m sure that the latest fight won by a man in the GTA may be a good reminder that the fight is far from over.

With an aging demographic and well established rights for elderly persons and those with mobility problems it’s hard to believe such a fight was so difficult. Paul DiSalvo had to wait a year and a half to have his condo to equipped with an accessibility ramp.

Why the condo was built without some form of accessibility in the first place? An entirely valid question. Too often simple design features like a wheelchair ramp are omitted or simply excluded from the plans. This often means expensive retrofitting for relatively inexpensive enhancements that add value. Unfortunately the dwellers of the condo will get tapped for the Halton Condominium Corporation’s damages/fees. Sad since the condo corporation’s board were not doing them any favours by fighting such an easy accommodation and for so long. Wouldn’t take a genius to come up with the cost benefit of accommodation (of a legal requirement) versus a year and a half of legal fees, damages and a ramp! Whoa!!!

At the end of the day whether or not one or many residents need a wheelchair ramp everyone benefits. Who knows whether a resident will eventually need one due to health or have a relative or visitor that would require it? Such a feature only enhances the value of the property and improves the quality of life of the people who use it. The more that employers, businesses, transit authorities and the general public are mindful of these issues the more we stand to gain.

Don’t Call It A Comeback – Thomas Morgan

Thomas Morgan keeping it Canadian in an Alien Workshop ad for his pro model back in the 90's..

Thomas Morgan keeping it Canadian in an Alien Workshop ad for his pro model back in the 90's..

I was pleased to see Thomas Morgan ripping again this past Spring at CBMK. For those who don’t know he was one of only a handful of Canadian’s that managed to make it into the pro skateboarding ranks in the 80’s and 90’s. He started out as a vert skater riding for Alien Workshop and later adapted to become one of their most technical and stylish street skaters.

Good to see that Thomas is killing it still (along with other OG’s like Bokma and Hoffman)!

As Expected Smitherman Wants To Be Mayor

George Smitherman made it official. The Ontario MPP has said he will present himself as a candidate for mayor. Smitherman is the MPP for Toronto Centre and intends to serve his community in that capacity, at least until March 1st. He stepped down from his role as deputy premier and Ontario’s minister of energy and infrastructure on Sunday.

The potential big name challengers are Glen Murray and John Tory. Glen Murray is the chief executive officer and president of the Canadian Urban Institute and former Mayor of Winnipeg for six years. John Tory is the host of The John Tory Show and of course the former leader of the Ontario PC Party. There will likely be several more confirmations of candidates, so far Giorgio Mammoliti has put himself forward as a candidate.

While last week’s Angus Reid poll showed John Tory at the top of the list of decided voters that’s hardly cause for any celebration for his hopefuls. The poll showed that 47% of all respondents were undecided as to whom the next mayor should be. It’s early yet but I’m sure this race will be heated.

Check Out Werd Life

WERD LIFE

I was talking to Mark Appleyard about his new site during the Flip Premiere. It’s finally live, Werd Life. The new site is a collaboration between Mark, Geoff Rowley and artist Todd Bratrud. With these strong skateboard personalities the site should be epic and live up to the definition.

Getting Flipped Off By A Fed

Not sure what is with the Conservative Party these days? Are they daydreaming about golf, summer vacation or “sexy” isotopes. No matter I’m hopeful that the funding the TTC is supposed to get for the new accessible streetcars goes through.

Federal Transport Minister John Baird apologized to Toronto Mayor David Miller for using colourful language criticizing the city’s application for stimulus funding. The June 27th deadline to pursue the TTC’s Bombardier contract is approaching. I’m glad Baird apologized and that everyone can move on. It looks as though something constructive will actually happen between the two levels of government. Good thing we didn’t just F__@ off and wait to see if we would actually see some stimulus money.

Short Of The Record But Not Of Greatness

Yesterday afternoon’s Guinness Book of World Records attempt at largest guitar ensemble attempt was astounding. In 2007 Leinfelden-Echterdingen, Germany brought together 1,802 guitarists to play Smoke on the Water. Neil Young’s Helpless was to be The Great Canadian Tune to rally Toronto guitarists and beat the record. We were close. “Just” 1,623 made it! While just shy of the record seeing a city block wrapped with a line up of guitar players was pretty cool.

Francis And The Lights – A Hat Trick Of Shows

New York City’s Francis and the Lights are rounding out their third of three shows in three nights at Drake Hotel. Kanye called them “a mix between Prince and Phil Collins”. If you haven’t heard A MODERN PROMISE or STRIKING Friday night is a great time to find out what they can do for your dancing shoes.

Francis and the Lights @ The Underground – Drake Hotel
Friday May 15, 2009
1150 Queen Street West
8PM
$10

Luis Mora – Last Minute Art Show

last-minute

I had the pleasure of catching up with CONTRA magazine contributing photographer Luis Mora in Hamilton last night. This Toronto vet had just a couple of days to put together a huge show. Damn! The aptly named “Last Minute Art Show” was Luis Mora’s addition to the Hamilton Art Crawl at the Assembly. The volume and quality of the work was impressive and considering that he put it together in less than a week it’s amazing.

The pieces are due to come down just as fast, probably by the end of this week. If you can’t make it down to Hamilton don’t fret. Luis will be one of 10 area photographers shown at the Drake Hotel’s “The People’s Paparazzi curated by Vanessa Gronowski and Studio Gallery. An exhibition part of this month’s CONTACT photography festival.

Luis Mora's massive collection of spraypaint stencils, sewn images and photography as part of the LAST MINUTE ART SHOW at the Assembly in Hamilton May 8th.

Luis Mora's massive collection of spraypaint stencils, sewn images and photography as part of the LAST MINUTE ART SHOW at the Assembly in Hamilton May 8th.

Walk The Walk

Jane’s Walk kicks off May 2nd and 3rd, rain or shine. Jane’s Walk is simply a series of free neighbourhood walking tours. A great way for people to connect (or reconnect) with their environment and with each other. Since its inception back in 2007 Jane’s Walk has been all over Canada and selected partner cities in the United States. The event is a wonderful way to celebrate Jane Jacobs and great way to spend an afternoon. Check the schedule for a walk near you, or better yet learn about another neighbourhood in our great city.

Jane’s Walk
May 2nd and May 3rd
(Various Locations)

http://janeswalk.net/participating_cities/toronto

Toronto Man Arrested Trying To Export Transducers

A man is being held under the on charges under the Customs Act and Export Import Permits Act . The Toronto Star has reported that a Toronto man is being held for trying to export nuclear technology. Transducers, while not always innocuous as a lab beaker, can be used for legitimate as well as mad scientist purposes. Caution is not a bad thing but it will be interesting to see whether these charges stick and the intent of this man was to export weapons or restricted goods.

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