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Flashback Friday: politics, raccoons and development threats, circa 1978

Volunteer Eric Morse peruses the first half of October, 1978, through the archives of 7 News, a community paper in the Cabbagetown area in the 1970s and early 1980s.

In October 1978, the voters of Ward 7 faced two elections; the municipal election, with John Sewell running for mayor. But first came the federal by-election in Rosedale riding, with Toronto’s former Tiny Perfect Mayor David Crombie as the PC standard-bearer against Liberal establishment candidate John Evans, who – as recounted a couple of columns ago – had emerged victorious from an epic nomination battle against Anne Cools. Crombie took out a tiny perfect ad in 7 News, as did NDP challenger Ron Thomson. Evans, who expected to win, didn’t.

The issue carried a centrespread discussing the federal races in both Rosedale (Crombie, Evans, Thomson) and Broadview (Bob Rae NDP, Philip Varelis LIB, Tom Clifford PC). There was an all-candidates’ debate at Dixon Hall, the high point of which (according to 7 News) was Crombie forgetting the name of his own leader (it was Joe Clark).

Not everyone thought Crombie was both tiny and perfect. The issue carried a lengthy Open Letter (advertisement, political, paid) from Helen Valli, apparently on behalf of the residents of Winchester Square (Bleecker/Wellesley/Ontario/Carlton), denouncing him for betraying them to Meridian Corp, the developers of St James Town and the by-then-approved St James Town South:

The editors filched one of the better known strips from The Wizard of Id by way of counterpoint:

 

Politics aside, plenty was happening in the neighbourhood. Consultations were under way for the use of expropriated city land between Oak and Cornwall streets. The land had originally been expropriated by the Toronto Board of Education, but the plan for school construction was dropped. As of October 1978, the community-based Oak Street Committee set up in 1977 was recommending a mixed retail and affordable housing development, with the following guidelines:

These, apparently, were the seeds of the Oak Street Co-op, which opened in 1985.

Local historian George Rust d’Eye had a piece called “Walking to Work in Historic 7”, with lists of landmarks along various routes. Challenge: pick a route and follow it, comparing George’s account of 40 years ago and see what’s changed. Here’s one from the piece:

The accompanying photo furnished an example of developer blockbusting on Rose Avenue.

Cabbagetown Boxing and Youth Centre was having another fine season.

And, finally, a charming photo of Reefer the Raccoon by Cherry Hassard.

 The full stories introduced above are available at http://www.connexions.org/SevenNews/Docs/7News-Volume09-Number11.pdf . The PDF archive is a remarkable achievement by Connexions, a collective dedicated to preserving social activism, of which 7 News is surely a shining example.

 

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Ward 13 All Candidates Meetings for Oct. 22 municipal election

The community in Corktown got off to an early start with an Oct. 2 all-candidates’ meeting at the Cherry Street YMCA for the 19 individuals running to be the new councillor for Ward 13, which follows the boundaries of the provincial Toronto Centre riding – a change imposed by the provincial government, which cut the number of city wards in Toronto from 47 to 25 the day before nominations closed in the summer.

We’ve received notice of two more Ward 13 candidates’ meetings – if you know of another one, please append it in the comments section to this post!

Date: Thursday, October 11, 2018 
Time: 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
5:30 p.m. Screening of Politalks videos and meet-and-greet
6:30 pm. to 8:30 p.m.: Panel and questions
Location: 246 Sackville Street, Regent Park
Hosted By: Community Civic Engagement Collaborative (CCEC)

Date: Tuesday, October 16, 2018 
Time: 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Location: 349 Ontario Street, Central Neighbourhood House (CNH)
Hosted By: Cabbagetown South Residents Association and CNH
More Info: cabbagetownsouth.com

Registered candidates for city councillor have been invited to come share their vision with Cabbagetown South residents for our New Ward 13. Each candidate will have a maximum 5 minutes to introduce themselves and their platform. The balance of the meeting will be questions and answers from the residents for the candidates.

Background:

On September 19, 2018, the Court of Appeal for Ontario stayed the Superior Court of Justice decision of September 10, 2018, which had quashed the provincial ward-boundary change legislation, and reinstated Bill 5 – Better Local Government Act, 2018 requiring the October 22, 2018 election to proceed on the basis of 25 wards.

As a result of the Court of Appeal’s decision and in order to conduct a municipal election in October 2018, the nomination period reopened for the offices of councillor and school board trustee on Thursday, September 20 and Friday, September 21. Nominations are now closed. You can view the final list of candidates though MyVote or the List of Candidates / Third Parties  web applications.

Cabbagetown, which used to be in Ward 28, would have been Ward 23 under the new 47-ward system and now is part of a massive downtown Ward 13. (Under the old system, Ward 13 was Parkdale-High Park area.)

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Throwback Thursday: A busy September 1978

Volunteer Eric Morse summarizes the (very newsy) September of 1978 in Cabbagetown from Seven News, a community newspaper published in what was then Ward 7, Toronto.

As noted in our last Throwback Thursday, the brand-new Riverdale Farm opened on Sept. 9, the very day that Seven News appeared. In the Sept 23 issue, Cabbagetowner and photographer George Rust d’Eye adds a few photos from the great day.

The Great TTC Strike of 1978 had time to come and go between issues of Seven News (it lasted eight days before the employees were legislated back to work). Howard Huggett weighs in with a slightly novel take on labour relations in public transit, arguing from the starting point that, after all, labour unions are players in the capitalist system, and, like private and public corporations, are selling a product (labour) in a market economy. But…

Not the first or last time the argument has been made. The 1978 strike was a flash in the pan compared to the 23-day monster of four years before, when TTC workers demanded a 40 per cent increase over their minimum wage of $5 an hour (that’s $26 in 2016 dollars).

Election season was upon us, then as now, and Ald. Janet Howard’s final column from City Hall contains this tidbit, reminding us of how local all politics really can be. Recalling that Howard’s Ward 7 colleague John Sewell (or at least his pooches) was the focus of a recurring theme in Seven News (dog-do), one wonders whether Howard might not have gotten more than her fair share of animal complaints.

In this issue, the election ads began running. The municipal election was November 13. Howard herself was running again. (Her erstwhile colleague John Sewell was running for mayor.)

Barry Tulip was running for Toronto board of education.

And in the federal by-election over across the river in Broadview, Bob Rae enters the lists.

Still on a political theme, one of the Communist Parties of Canada (there were always several) was trying to fundraise.

Of interest to us over west of Parliament in Upper Lower Middle Cabbagetown, aka Cabbagetown South North, they were changing the direction of the one-ways on Seaton, Ontario and Berkeley. “The idea seems to be to prevent through traffic from going through the neighbourhood.” That may or may not have been code for “John deflector”; at least that was certainly the avowed purpose for the next redirection around 10 years later, when the three streets became one-way-north between Gerrard and Carlton.

Regular photographer Cherry Hassard contributes a photo from the Cabbagetown Cultural Festival, which was a great deal more earnestly cultural than its lineal descendant.

And finally on a note of pop culture, look at these prices! Look at these covers! Remember VINYL, now said to be making a comeback? Woolworth/Woolco was having a grand opening at 772 Queen W. with these lovelies and many more for a mere $3.99. Not to mention that Seven News scored a two-page ad spread, a rare bounty.

The full stories introduced above are available at http://www.connexions.org/SevenNews/Docs/7News-Volume09-Number10.pdf . The PDF archive is a remarkable achievement by Connexions, a collective dedicated to preserving social activism, of which 7 News is surely a shining example.

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Security alert: Toronto police change policy on alarm response

By Des Ryan, a retired police officer, who is the volunteer safety and security lead on the CRA’s board of directors.

How many times have you accidentally tripped your house alarm? Too often to remember?

More often than not, false alarms are the result of user error. This results in having to dispatch two (yes, two!) officers to an address only to discover that all appears to be in order (as we like to say in policing circles!) each and every time.

This is an extremely costly process and consumes an enormous amount of deployable police hours: Toronto Police report that, in 2016, more than 97 per cent of alarm calls turned out to be false.

As a result, as of September 10th, the Toronto Police Service has implemented a new policy. Going forward, Police will be responding to alarm calls under the following conditions:
– the Monitoring Station is registered with the TPS, complied with call-processing requirements and is not under any TPS suspensions; and,
– the Monitoring Station must also comply with the verified response requirement as applied to burglar alarm system signals.

Since these conditions have to do with your alarm company, be sure to contact them asap to ensure that they are doing their part.

Other criteria that determine whether your alarm will be responded to include what is called “acceptable verified response criteria.”. These include:

– Audio devices (i.e., alarm systems that transfer real-time audio to an actual person listening in on the alarm);
– Video device (same as above, only real-time video transfer);
– An eyewitness (i.e. private security or person at scene); or
– Multiple zone activations (i.e., an alarm system that separates and reports incidents or alarm signals by areas that are monitored by the Monitoring Station. Zone 1 – Front Door, Zone 2 –Front Entry Motion, Zone 3 –Kitchen Motion, etc.).

What this means is that, rather than chasing after alarms like a dog after a ball in the park, TPS will only be responding to alarms that are legitimately verifiable. Having so said, there is nothing saying that the aforementioned ball-chasing dog could not be frolicking in your home, setting off multiple zone alarms in your house.

Note to self: do not set zone alarm unless dog is out of house.

Then, be sure to do your part in reducing false alarms (and getting yourself suspended from police response!). This includes changing the batteries of your alarm. Frequently. Make sure the sensors are clear of cobwebs and other debris that can send a false reading. Make sure your keyholder information is up-dot-date and be sure to schedule regular maintenance on the alarm. Finally, make sure your family and anyone else who uses the system knows how it works.

If you have any further concerns, or you just really like to read policy, check this out.

As an aside, this does not affect police response to Panic Alarm.

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Petitions for Spruce Street and Broadway Lane improvements

Our colleagues at the Cabbagetown Business Improvement Area are spearheading two petitions: one for parking and safety improvements on Spruce Street as well as some traffic calming/deterring on Broadcast Lane. They’ve asked us to reach out to residents in the area: all are encouraged to email the BIA a scan of the completed forms — send to bia@cabbagetownto.com — or drop off a printed and signed form in the BIA office mailbox at 237 Carlton St.

Download and sign the Spruce Street petition

Download and sign the Broadway Lane petition

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Cabbagetowner according to … Jim Clark

 Jim Clark has been a resident of Cabbagetown for two years along with his wife Jenny and son Sebastian. He lives on Wellesley Street and was recently was elected to the CRA Board of Directors.

Best Place For A Bite to Eat:
Park Snacks. While not haute cuisine, Park Snacks has the best location and a patio to rival F’Amelia. I look forward to their first day open each season as a sure sign that another magical summer in Cabbagetown is near at hand. The operator is a remarkably kind, accommodating, and is reason alone for my nomination. 

Favourite Block:
Carlton to Winchester and Sumach to Sackville. Riverdale Farm and Park. Tree-lined lanes and beautiful homes and gardens. No matter my destination or mood, a walk in this block inspires some sort of positivity or appreciation. Also, Park Snacks may be here, as well!

Best Public Space:
Wellesley Park. I discovered this park a number of years ago while walking my dogs. We returned almost every night as it is such a beautiful space.  On one of these walks, I (and independently my wife a couple of days later) noticed a “For Sale” sign and now live close enough to consider the park a proxy backyard. 

Favourite Store:
Tie. Steak and Chops and Labour of Love. Both have great staff that welcome and guide towards the ideal dish or gift no matter how vague or contradictory my “input”. Both carry a broad yet well-curated selection of goods and are local institutions for good reason. 

Cabbagetown Pet Peeve:
Limited, really. If anything, I feel it is the lack of genuine discussion around areas of contention. Instead, groups or individuals (sometimes very limited in the scope of their position) attempt, and all too often succeed, in forcing their singular agenda. I realize that is the tone of the age we live in, but feel we, and I, can do better. 

Best Kept Secret:
You will never have enough Hallowe’en candy to meet demand. 

Best Reason to Join the CRA:
To be an active member of the community and to help add to the work of so many who have made our neighbourhood the amazing place it is. Also a great way to meet your neighbours, immediate and extended. Finally a great forum to share my views and appreciate the perspective of others.

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Throwback Thursday: The opening of Riverdale Farm, and other news from September 1978

Volunteer Eric Morse continues his look back at Cabbagetown through the lens of Seven News, a community paper covering the then-Ward 7, including Cabbagetown.

Riverdale Farm was about to open its gates for the first time on Sept. 9, 1978, and great was the anticipation. The old Riverdale Zoo had closed in June 1974 but the Donvale Association of Homeowners and Residents (the CRA’s forerunner) had formed a Riverdale Farm Committee back in 1972 and, after several iterations and changes of membership, the Committee was able to implement a plan to convert the old zoo to a working farm.

One barn (the Francey Barn) was brought in from the countryside (Markham) and carefully rebuilt on new foundations.The other was designed and built from scratch, as was the Simpson House, designed on the model of a 19th-century farm home. As Ald. Janet Howard notes in the article below, it was named for local architect and conservationist B. Napier Simpson, who was among the members of the Canadian Historic Sites Commission killed in a Newfoundland plane crash in June 1978. Howard notes that the house will contain, among other things, a snack bar “serving no junk food”.

The opening managed to coincide with Seven News’s Sept. 9 publication date but, in the Sept 23rd edition, George Rust d’Eye fills us in on the great day. Everybody who was anybody in Toronto was there with the exception of John Sewell, who was out of town. As the municipal election was imminent, candidates abounded. Rust d’Eye notes regarding the Simpson House that it was “a handsome and appropriate addition to the Don Vale neighbourhood”.

Speaking of Don Vale, many current residents of Cabbagetown might not really be aware that what we call Cabbagetown (the area bounded by the Necropolis, the Don, Gerrard Street East, and Parliament) is not the original Cabbagetown. That was south of Gerrard, and local author Hugh Garner’s famous Depression-era novel Cabbagetown really referred to the areas south of Gerrard that were razed in the ’50s to become Regent Park, and farther south to what is now Corktown. The old Don Vale neighbourhood only gradually acquired the new name as it gentrified. (author’s aside – I’d have thought that “Don Vale” sounded much more stylish than “Cabbagetown” but who knows what lurks in the minds of real estate agents? Incidentally, the shifting of place names in any locale is a common phenomenon; for example, of all the ancient bridges of the City of Rome, none still bears its original Roman name. The ancient names themselves are still in use, but for different bridges!) In any case, the cultural appropriation of “Cabbagetown” was well under way by 1978, and aroused some ire, as the following letter to the editor bears witness:

“I find it nauseating to have to witness all this ‘Old Cabbagetown’ ballyhoo,” writes Peter Parker of Ontario Street. “These people who are now calling themselves ‘Cabbagetowners’ would never have set foot in Cabbagetown.”

Still on neighbourhoods and their fates, but moving a couple of blocks westward, the area now known as Winchester Park but then occasionally referred to as South St. James Town was seemingly dealt its deathblow as, in the final stage of an approvals process, Cabinet approved the development of Winchester Square by Meridian Corporation, the developers of St James Town.

The article mourned the defeat of residents’ resistance. The odd thing is that the development appears to have gotten into the ground, but never got out of the ground. The foundations were dug, but the hoardings remained up for some thirty years until a much more-modest structure was finally built on the site around in the late 2000s.

And the 519 Community Centre held a community festival.

The full stories introduced above are available at http://www.connexions.org/SevenNews/Docs/SevenNewsFront09.htm . The PDF archive is a remarkable achievement by Connexions, a collective dedicated to preserving social activism, of which 7 News is surely a shining example.

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Throwback Thursday: Anne Cools’ political entrance

Volunteer Eric Morse looks back at 1978 and the launch of the political career of Anne Cools.

A postscript accidentally omitted from our last Throwback Thursday noted that Senator Anne Cools had retired from the Senate of Canada at the mandatory age of 75. Appointed by Pierre Trudeau in 1984, Anne Clare Cools was the first female black Senator in North America, and on her retirement was the last serving senator appointed by Trudeau the Elder. In 1978-80 she became an exciting and polarizing figure in what had been the vary staid and Establishment Liberal politics of Toronto Centre/Ward 7.

Darrell Dick /Toronto Star

Born in Barbados in 1943, she immigrated to Canada with her family in 1957. As a student at Sir George Williams University (now Concordia) in 1969, she was a participant in the famous (or notorious) sit-in that culminated in the destruction of SGWU’s computer room, for which she received a four-month jail sentence. In 1964, she moved to Toronto where she founded and ran one of the first shelters for abused women in Canada, Women in Transition Inc.

But it was her bid for the Liberal nomination for Rosedale in the October 16, 1978 by-election in Toronto Centre that gained her real local media prominence. The reform movement had been going locally in Toronto politics since 1966, and by 1978 it was peaking (Ward 7’s John Sewell was elected Mayor just after the by-election, in November 1978). Federally, things were more placid, until Cools came along.

Pierre Trudeau was entering the fourth year of his 1974 mandate looking decidedly threadbare (the by-election series of 1978 was a disaster for the Liberals, presaging defeat in May 1979). Rosedale riding had been held non-stop by the Liberals since Donald “Thumper” MacDonald first won it under Lester Pearson in 1962. It was, if anything, a bastion of small-c conservatism, and MacDonald’s resignation in March 1978 (he could see the writing on the wall) was not expected to change things. Seven News noted that U of T President John Evans had been nominated by the party establishment to assume MacDonald’s mantle. Seven News also noted that Anne Cools had been nominated but that Evans was expected to win easily. It was not so easy and turned into a two-candidate free-for all that became the largest contested nomination meeting ever held in Canada.

The National Film Board made a half-hour film — The Right Candidate for Rosedale — about the ensuing nomination battle. Since it was filmed from Cools’ perspective it is not balanced coverage but it casts the contest into sharp relief. Evans was the salon candidate (so depicted) and Cools the upstart. In most ways the battle defined the split between the top (above Bloor) and bottom (below Bloor) halves of the old Toronto Centre riding.

John Evans, party establishment nominee

It also mirrored the social split. By 1978 the area south of Bloor was already well launched on the road to being the most diverse district in Canada, both ethnically and economically; the film describes it as the south end of the riding as containing “The fragments discarded from the [urban] mosaic”.

The Liberals had never troubled to get out the vote in large numbers before 1978, so most of the south end was an untapped resource. Cools set out to recruit those who had never voted and sign them up for the Liberal nomination. The party elders dismissed her as “not the right candidate for Rosedale,”  but that was a bad miscalculation.

Cools went where Liberals had never gone before. She went into Regent Park. She went into St James Town. She signed up women – not exclusively, but especially – who had never voted before in their lives. There were massive phone campaigns, using only the human voice and the archaic touch-tone phone, with lists compiled in handwriting (the Evans campaign, forced to deploy unanticipated resources, fielded the modern Selectric).

Anne Cools with new women voters.

As June Callwood said, “It’s a very big wrench that she’s throwing in that machine. What she represents to me is the attempt of people who live in a riding to get their own candidate – to choose the candidate in the way we fantasize democracy should be … The way democracy does work now is the people in the backrooms shoose who is the easiest candidate to get along with.”

On the Evans’ side of the fence, spokespeople emphasized that Rosedale had had a cabinet minister almost throughout living memory, and that Evans, if elected, was certainly Prime Ministerial material. The media grabbed hold of it and it went national.

Some of the coverage wasn’t pretty.

“On a rainy nomination night” in April, the Cools campaign began busing supporters in to the Sheraton Centre hotel, which the film suggests was chosen for its intimidation factor but may simply have been the only place that could hold the crowds besides Maple Leaf Gardens.

There were 45 members of the Rosedale Liberal Association at the end of 1977. By April – more than 5,000. (The inaccuracy may not be accidental, since as an Informed Contemporary Source tells us, “in those days you could get away with just about anything.”) In any case, they packed the Sheraton ballroom.

In the presence of Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, Cools lost to Evans by an undisclosed margin. On October 16, Evans lost to PC David Crombie by nearly 2-1.

Cools won the Liberal nomination in 1979 and 1980, but lost both times to Crombie. In 1984, she was appointed to the Red Chamber by Trudeau. Her years in the Senate were largely quiet, but she continued her advocacy for women and was instrumental in the creation of the Special Senate-House of Commons Joint Committee on child custody and access after divorce. The Joint Committee’s 1998 report For the Sake of the Children recommended shared parenting. In 2004, the CBC chose her as one of the top 20 Canadian Women of all time.

But the greatest day of her career remains that wet April night in 1978, when she made the Liberal Party shudder.

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Safety and security tips for back to school

Des Ryan is a CRA volunteer board director and retired police officer who leads our safety and security work.

It is the end of August. Already! Summer holidays are nearly over, and the roads will be packed again as people return to work and the kids return to school.

If you are a driver, you are likely already aware of the usual pre-school drill: watch for children, be mindful of school buses loading and unloading, keep your speeds down in school zones (Always, you say!).

A couple other things I’d like to highlight:
– Never pass other vehicles, change lanes, or make U-turns while driving in a school zone.
– Unless licensed to do so, never use handicap or emergency vehicle lanes or spaces to drop off or pick up children at school.

So how about the kids? Regardless of how old they are, going back to school can still cause a bit of anxiety. Even getting to school can be a big deal. As you know, the best way to keep your little one (more or less) calm is for you to be (more or less) calm, which means anticipating some of the obstacles they may encounter.

If you’re walking your child to school, leave enough time to arrive at school at least 10 minutes prior to start time. Expect delays (Squirrel!). No point being in a panic before the day even begins. And take the same route there and back every day. It’s easy for little ones to get confused and turned around (did I say Squirrel already?), and they need to know how to get home alone, even if you anticipate always dropping off/picking up.

Of course, you’ll be walking on sidewalks, using designated crosswalks and/or traffic-controlled intersections and street corners as part of your route. And nobody’s running across the street. Oh, and remind your charge not to pop onto the street between parked cars — nobody needs that.

If your child is now too old to be seen in public with you, encourage them to walk to school with their friends. Safety in numbers. Remind them not to talk to strangers or get into a vehicle with anyone, even if they know them (you don’t want to know those stats about offenders known to the victims, I’m sure), unless you have already agreed that this person is okay.

Pre-emptively give your child the language and a few moves that will help them if a stranger approaches them, regardless of their age. And make sure you child knows that they need to tell someone in authority (i.e. you, a teacher, or a caregiver) about the incident as soon as possible.

If your little one is going to ride a bike to school, do a couple of practice runs before school starts. Make sure they know how to get there (and back) safely, even if you intend on going with them every day. Of course, they will have a helmet that fits that they will wear the entire time that they are riding their bike (see previous post for helmet safety and Highway Traffic Act fines!). As well as being the law, stats suggest that, in the event of an accident (which could be as minor as falling over at the stop sign) wearing a helmet reduces the risk of head injury by as much as 85 per cent. Good enough for me!

Also, if your child is big enough to ride on the road, make sure they know the rules, stay on the right-hand side, and uses the appropriate hand signals (signals, not gestures). If your child is old enough to ride to school on their own, suggest that they ride with a buddy. It’s easier to see two or three bikes than one.

And now that we are on the road, what about those backpacks? I’ve seen ones that look like they weigh more than the kid! To prevent injury, backpacks should have wide straps, padding in the back and shoulders, and should not weigh more than 10 to 15 per cent of a child’s body weight. And, while it may seem obvious, place the heavier items in the backpack first. The closer the heavier stuff is to the child’s back, the less strain it will cause. And try to have your child use both backpack straps and distribute their stuff as evenly as they can. I know….

Last little reminder: Depending on your child’s age, get rid of the drawstrings on their jackets and hoodies. They don’t serve any real purpose and they can cause some problems.

And now that the kids are back in school, we can all have a moment to ourselves for a coffee, beginning to end!

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Cabbagetown according to … Kate Steinmann

Kate was elected to the board of directors for the CRA in June 2018.

Best place in Cabbagetown for a bite to eat: It’s a toss-up among Kanpai Snack Bar, Sukho Thai, House on Parliament, and Salt and Tobacco—there are just too many great places to choose from! I also love Jet Fuel for the coffee and the great neighbourhood vibe. 

Cabbagetown needs: A branch of Tabule, an amazing Toronto Middle Eastern restaurant.

Favourite block: The Wellesley Cottages, a tidy row of Victorian workers’ cottages tucked away north of Wellesley St. E.

Best public space: The Necropolis, a very old Toronto cemetery with picturesque topography featuring winding paths and a wonderful array of flora, fauna, and stones (and, at the gate, beautiful Victorian Gothic buildings).

Favourite store: Epicure

Cabbagetown pet peeve: The Parliament bus is ridiculously undependable — often there’s no bus for 20 to 30 minutes at a time during evening rush hour, even in light traffic.

Cabbagetown’s best kept secret: The Children’s Book Bank, hands down—not to be missed if you have young children!

Best reason to join the Cabbagetown Residents Association (CRA): Stay up to date on what’s happening, get to know your neighbours, support local initiatives, and make your voice heard!

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