Application made for day nursery on Sackville Street

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Application made for day nursery on Sackville Street

Owners of the property at 461 Sackville St. (at the southeast corner with Amelia) have applied for a minor variance to alter the existing building by converting the uses to a day nursery.

The item will be going to Committee of Adjustment on April 25, 2018.

The project would see the existing multi-unit residential building, whose Ontario Heritage Act plaque notes it was originally “Shops for Joseph Watson, 1888”, converted into space for one infant nursery (12 children), two todder rooms (15 children each) and two preschool rooms (40 children, total) plus supporting washrooms, sleeping areas, kitchen, servery, laundry, and staff offices.

Review the renovations plans (architectural drawings by RENEWArchitect – opens a PDF).

Residents can attend the Committee of Adjustment meeting hearing and speak to the item, or they can submit comments to the application technician, Daniel De Moissac, (comments cannot be registered by phone, only mail or email).

63 replies on “Application made for day nursery on Sackville Street”

I’m assuming this will be a government-licensed daycare/nursery. How can this be verified? Also, does the Committee of Adjustment focus solely on the renovation/construction side or do they also take into account increased foot and vehicular traffic/congestion at this intersection and along Wellesley St., which is the only vehicular access street to this section of Sackville. Sixty-seven children PLUS what would have to be a sizeable number of staff, PLUS each kid’s parents/caretakers descending on one Cabbagetown property twice a day every single weekday, if not on weekends, as well? Yikes!

40 children total. Nice to see the space used. Agree the traffic might be challenging for those driving through at those times. But one would hope that some of these children would live in the neighbourhood or close enough to come on foot.

THIS IS FOR 82 CHILDREN PLUS STAFF which will most likely ended up at more than 100 INDIVIDUALS in one building in a QUIET RESIDENTIAL AREA, where I live.

It is already hard, especially on winter days to get around in Cabbagetown and especially in this area of Cabbagetown. I myself can quite often not find parking on my street which is one street over from Amelia (Salisbury) as soon as I leave my overnight spot for a few minutes and this at around 8:00/8:30am. And I am not talking about winter conditions when because of snow removal being so challenging that many parking spots are lost to a point that even residents have to go parking on other streets even if they have a parking permit. Please note that many residents have a car but are not driving to work or are retired so most cars remain parked during daytime except on weekends, etc.

With at least 15 staff members which most will drive to work and for which there is already no parking and then with at least 50/60 cars (some parents might be coming on foot) dropping off their kids and that will need to park since infants and toddlers or preschoolers, there is no way that the streets around this facility will be able to handle this additional traffic, put aside the parking of all of those cars since there is parking on this property (according to the plans submitted) not even for staff. Has a traffic and parking formal impact assessment have been done?

While I have always and still support more daycare space (I am a parent myself), I CATEGORICALLY OPPOSE this project because this area is not designed for this amount of traffic or people in a building at the same time and there is other daycare in the neighborhood which have been excellent for decades and located in a walking distance but in the commercial sections of Cabbagetown.

How will staff be able to park their car all day when the existing by-laws does not allow more than 3 hours of continuous parking of a car in the same spot during daytime on those streets if it does not have a street parking permit and this to address the fact that parking should be used by its residents and not workers of the area, etc.? I know this as some people providing services to my children or renovating have got parking tickets from the city in accordance with this by-law and there is nothing that they could argue against this.

We moved to Cabbagetown because it was a quiet residential area where our children could walk safely without too much traffic due to very narrow streets, one way streets, etc….this would remove the safety for the kids already leaving in Cabbagetown and make it an overused area.

As a resident it is very upsetting that this project has ever gone so far as it demonstrates a lack of understanding of what Cabbagetown is about and more specifically what this area of Cabbagetown is for its residents and is not promising of future relationship between the new owners of this building and the residents of this area who are already challenged by parking even during the day (including on only one side of the street since too narrow) and one-way streets, waste management trucks or buses picking up our children and blocking the traffic because the streets are too narrow, etc.

A Salisbury’s street resident.

I’m looking forward to this! There are not many childcare options in the community and parents are already having to pack up their children in cars to drive them to Riverdale, Leslieville, and other spots downtown.

This new daycare could reduce traffic as parents could drop-off on the way to work via walking, bike, or TTC. We lose a part of our community when kids are packed up & shipped off to other parts of the city each day.

Many Cabbagetown parents are lamenting the loss of the co-op preschool on Lancaster Ave.

This daycare would be great for local businesses (dozens more people buying lunch from the butcher, etc). It may also deter crime too – feet on the street have a way of doing that.

Re: Gail’s comment, it will be hard to run a clandestine/illegal daycare smack in the middle of Cabbagetown…if it isn’t legit I am sure the squeaky wheels will show up in their legion to complain!

FYI – daycare on Lancaster was closed due to lack of children.

It is not the issue of a daycare in Cabbagetown however that we are objecting to, but the appropriateness of THIS site. Far more appropriate would be the grossly underused former St. Martin’s school, with a large playground and ample parking!

The daycare/preschool on Lancaster was closed because they were not charging enough per child, not because of lack of children.

Oh give it a rest. It’ll be great. I can’t wait for this to open! This is so needed in Cabbagetown where I live too. Oh, but the traffic, the noise, the children! Absolutely ridiculous. It will be FINE. It’s a freaking daycare, not a dragstrip they’re putting in. Only the most NIMBY’s of NIMBY’s could possibly oppose this.

As a resident in very close proximity to this proposed development I will be opposing this project as it stands.

As a new very new parent I understand the need for (convenient) child care facilities, but we did not recently move to this beautiful residential area only for sections to be re-zoned as commercial.

I am disappointing in both the City Council for already issuing a building permit (significant excavations are already taking place) and the what appears to be a significant neglect in reviewing the broader operational considerations associated with a commercial operation like this including; waste management plans, increase vehicle traffic on one-way streets, no allowance for parking and the overall aesthetics as per the heritage zoning.

Many will comment about the convenience of this facility and how parents/carers will walk to drop off their children…. not in this age of entitlement, where parents wish to drop their children off right at the front door – the city needs to immediately review accessibility to daycare facilities, schools and high schools (

The proposed development is for 82 children, plus sufficient staff and administration, would mean a approximately 100 people at this facility. The waste associated with this business would be significant, which may result in increase pest problems.

Concerning traffic, the roads in this area are already in dire need of repair (Carlton St) and just recently a large sinkhole opened up at the corner of Amelia and Sackville, which took the City Council 2-3weeks to repair.

I am certainly not opposed to development or a business establishing its in this location, however there is a distinct lack to forward planning concerning this proposal.

Amelia Street and Sackville Street are both one way and very narrow streets, in particular Amelia. The daily drop-off and pick up of 60+ children and infants morning and afternoon will effectively close down the streets for long periods of time twice a day as parents and care givers park, deal with car seats and taking the infants or children into or out the day care centre. For those familiar with the traffic jams on Elm Street, Mt Pleasant, and Sherbourne caused by the pickup and drop-off of students attending Brangston Hall will appreciate the situation is very difficult. And these are for Students that only have to hop into the car rather than the situation dealing with car seats and physically picking up the children inside the day care centre.

The proposal should be required to address and solve the traffic impact to go forward. I am also surprised that a commercial establishment in the centre of Cabbagetown is a minor variance.

This property is NOT appropriate for a day nursery. There is limited exterior space and it will cause a traffic and parking nightmare on tiny streets that are already over-prescribed for parking. There is no drop-off area. Having had children at the local school and witnessed the traffic chaos there, I have no doubt that people will drive to bring their children to school and pick them up.

As an Amelia Street resident, I am against this project as a daycare. As mentioned by other residents, I do not see how feasible this is going to be from a traffic perspective. Both Amelia Street and Sackville Street are one-way street and they will not be able to support drop-off and pick-up traffic for 60-80 kids. I’d like to see the study that shows that all these kids will come from Cabbagetown. As I doubt it would be the case, that means parents will drive to the daycare. Also as mentioned in other comments, the daycare will require at least 10 to 15 staff. Where are they going to park? As again, I doubt that the staff will all come from Cabbagetown. There are by-laws for parking and they will be in violation of them.

I am also disappointed at the fact that as resident of Cabbagetown there has not been better communication and involvement with the community to discuss if this was appropriate for the neighborhood.

Honestly, are cars more important than children?

I think we’re all forgetting that Cabbagetown is served by 3 transit lines – the 65 Parliament bus, 94 Wellseley bus, and 506 Carlton. Each of these connects to a subway. Each morning, you can see loads of 1) people going to work (perhaps even to work at a daycare) and 2) people travelling with children to drop them off at daycares, schools, etc. I know of many downtown families which use the TTC and/or cargo bikes to get around.

Many families and workers do not use, or do not rely, on a car to get around. It’s why we all live downtown in the first place! There are many ways to access the proposed daycare without a car…let’s not let cars spoil this potential neighbourhood amenity.

Having been a PARENT at a LOCAL school, I can assure you that there will be considerable car traffic.
The issue is not whether cars are more important than children, the issue is how does a site with insufficient parking and no drop-off handle inevitable traffic on streets already completley full? We view children as dreadfully important, which is why we view their safety as a high priority. If the developer would like to make it a rule that people can only bring their children by transit, walk or bike then my concerns are resolved!

There is no way to predict or control how people will drop their children off. I have a child who walks to attend Winchester PS. I am there daily, and there are a large number of Cabbagetown residents who drive their kids to school. I’m sure they all have good reasons, for instance they may be en route to work, but it does not lessen the traffic congestion on Winchester, Rose and other streets.

All these not-in-my-backyard attitude is really sad.
These kids are going to grow up and pay tax to feed YOU.

The city needs more daycare spots, the regulations are hard enough and resulting all the new daycares are only opened in the suburbs. I applaud owner’s courage to jump through all the hoops of the city and the provincial government.

Education is THE way to bring up the quality of the area, this will increase local business and will deter crime. I’d rather have a daycare than another property that squeeze in 10 rental units.

Noise issue? school hours is only till 4pm, it makes little impact. Plus, what about the three public schools we already have in the hood? let’s kick them out too?

Parking issue? let the staff deal with it, the by law shall be respected.

What’s really sad is that a businessman could possibly enter a beautiful and quiet heritage neighbourhood and disrupt our neighbourhood with this bad idea.

As for bringing up the quality of Cabbagetown ironically this business proposal will lower the quality of Cabbagetown. The false logic (and attempt to reference nimbyism) is really sad.

As for more rental units it’s really sad that you’ve taken the position of an elitist homeowner who wants to deny other people housing because they would be renters. Shame!

Noise will be inevitable and make everyone really sad.

As for the other schools in the neighbourhood what’s going on with that school on Winchester? It has parking for 82 cars and the building looks abandoned, which is really sad. Wouldn’t it make sense for the city and all others concerned to develop a daycare at this site? And a daycare that would be nonprofit and publicly-controlled rather than a private venture run by a businessman which is what you seem to be asking for.

But the big kicker will be the long stream of cars blocking one-way Sackville and one-way Amelia, every morning for an hour and every afternoon for an hour, while moms and dads park their cars in the street (for lack of parking along the side of the street) to take their little ones into the building, or pick them up. The noise, the air pollution, the congestion, and the negative energy of angry parents jockeying for non-existent parking will LOWER the quality of Cabbagetown, everyday. That is really sad!

I am a Cabbagetown parent. I live about a block from the site of the proposed daycare, and I fully support the project.

One commenter says “there is other daycare in the neighborhood which have been excellent for decades and located in a walking distance but in the commercial sections of Cabbagetown,” but I am a Cabbagetown parent in need of daycare for my children, and I don’t know where this “other daycare” is. I have had to consider daycare south of our neighborhood, in the Parliament/Queen area, and in Riverdale, Leslieville, etc. Currently our children are in daycare in the Annex, which is not very convenient.

A few points to serve as counterpoint to the “not in my backyard” reactions recorded here:

80 children is not a lot of children, and it seems VERY likely that these spots would be taken by local families–i.e., by families living within a few blocks of the daycare. Given the existence of excellent daycare in adjoining neighbourhoods, I doubt that people living further away would commute to Cabbagetown just for a daycare spot.

This is important, because it means cars would almost certainly be little used for pickup and drop-off. The car-traffic problem is a false monster.

Foot traffic, yes. Moms and dads with strollers, perhaps bikes, baby carriers. Not a bad crowd.

As for parking: It seems extremely unlikely that daycare workers would drive to work in an area well served by public transport and very difficult when it comes to street parking.

I own a car but would never use it to drive to my job in a congested downtown location. I use public transport or walk . I also use public transport or walk to pick up and drop off my own children at a daycare (one that is unfortunately quite a distance from our Cabbagetown residence).

A daycare will provide care only during the day, and almost certainly not on weekends (I’ve never heard of a daycare offering weekend care). The sound of little children laughing and playing during weekday mornings and afternoons will be the extent of the noise impact.

As another commenter said, the city needs more daycare spots–in fact, I would add, the city is desperate for this. And Cabbagetown is notoriously underserved.

Just a bit of feed back on the comments and proposal for going forward.
A bit of internet searching found 4 current day cares located in Cabbagetown listed on just one site.
Wellesley mom writes with a lot of usage of terms such as “..seems very unlikely…”, “I doubt that people living further away would commute to Cabbagetown just for day care (Although Cabbagetown mom does just that using a day care in the Annex), and “…almost certainly…”. This seems to come under wishful thinking.

Bottom line is that there are apparently no study of the impact on the neighborhood traffic, the removal of required green area required by bylaw for our community, etc. Real facts and conclusion on impact and recommendations for acceptable usage and accommodation would be positive step for the proposed operators of the day care, property owner of involved building and city to address with the community.

“A bit of internet searching found 4 current day cares located in Cabbagetown listed on just one site.”

There are 4 day cares in Cabbagetown – really? The CRA’s boundaries are north of Gerrard and east of Parliament. Can you please tell us where they are?

Somewhat unrelated.

Everyone is so worry about not enough parking on the street.

YET. my neighbour who converts her backyard parking into giant back yard so she can enjoy 15 dollars city street parking is giving me trouble of rebuild my falling down garage.
The city is also going to increase my property tax due to the new garage.

seems like there’s little incentive to free up the street parking!

Sure traffic is going to be a real headache, but what concerns me the most is the turning of the garden area in front of the property and directly abutting Amelia St into a playground complete with a sandpit. This, and all the noise associated with up to 40 children effectively playing right on the street, will be carefully hidden by glass panels.
This is a beautiful and quiet neighborhood about to be changed by a commercial enterprise which really should be positioned in a location that can handle the traffic and noise. I’m looking into replacing my ornate fence with high glass panels to block the noise and ensure I can marvel at the cars stuck on the street with engines running.

As a lifelong C town resident I have never understood why people fly into hysterics at the smallest development proposals. Cabbagetown is a neighbourhood like any other that should be open to the entire city, and concerns about children from other neighbourhood being disruptive have nasty undertones. It reminds me of the splashpad debacle. There is no reason why cabbagetown should resemble a gated community, without resources and businesses to serve the entire city.

This sounds like a wonderful addition to the neighbourhood. It is sure to enrich the quality of life for families living nearby and to make Cabbagetown even more appealing to parents considering the area. When we had daycare age children, we had to take them to the west end, and to the Beaches, which was a huge stressor. Mind you, the daycares our kids attended happened to be in residential areas and I don’t recall traffic being an issue with drop off and pick up,

A few people have cited the Lancaster “daycare”. This was actually the Cabbagetown Coop Nursery School. Our kids also attended the CCNS, however, as a nursery school the option was a 2.5 hour stretch either morning or afternoon (not both!) and the max was three days a week. So while a wonderful option for stay at home parents or families with nannies, it was not a comprehensive childcare solution for those seeking daycare.

As an urban geographer, I applaud mixed land uses in the community. Facilities such as Day Care Centres not only add life to a community but also make the neighbourhood more attractive and increase property values. For those concerned about increased traffic, I suggest sitting down with the owners and working out a proposal whereby people who live within a kilometre or so of the Facility get priority bookings so that the Centre primarily serves the local, walking community. This could be a terrific local resource for families.

I have just received the Committee of Adjustments hearing notice for the proposed Daycare minor variances. The hearing date is Wednesday, April 11, 2018 at 1:30 p.m. which is two weeks earlier than stated in earlier comments. (City Hall, Committee Room #2, 2nd floor)

There are a total of ten requested variances to the Zoning By-law.


Dear Neighbours,

My wife and I have started the process with the City of Toronto to get approval to open a daycare at 459/461 Sackville Street. We would like to clarify a few points that have been raised and provide more information about the potential daycare.

The building has historical designation and has a history of mixed retail and residential uses. Retail use is not a permitted in the current zoning but is permitted as an existing non-conforming use. The residential zoning does permit a daycare use.

The construction work that has already been started at the property are improvements to the building that will be needed whether or not the use remains as multi-unit residential and retail or it is changed to daycare use. The interior renovations and basement foundation work are being done with all the appropriate City permits and approvals, including review and approval from Toronto Preservation Services.

While the City By-law permits the daycare use in this residential zone, the change of use to a daycare would require a few minor variances to the by-law that can be summarized as follows:
• A minimum of 2 parking spaces are required. The proposal has 0 parking spaces on private property.
• The use is permitted in a detached or semi-detached house. The City records currently show the building use to be a rooming house with ground floor retail.
• The zoning by-law permits a gross floor area of 1.0 times the lot area. The existing buildings, including the ‘coach house’, have a gross floor area of 1.72 times the lot area. This is not being changed.
• The by-law requires a minimum side-yard setback of 0.5m. The existing building has 0 setback from the north property line (adjacent to Amelia St.) and 0.33m from the south property line. This is not being changed.
• The by-law requires a 0.6m setback to an exterior stair. The exit stair has a setback of 0.52m from the south property line.

The most significant variance is the requirement for 2 parking spaces. The property currently has 3 legal boulevard parking spaces. We understand that these will need to be re-applied for with the change of use but the re-establishment of these as legal spaces would fulfill the intent of the by-law.

We have seen the letters from area residents that are primarily concerned about increased traffic and parking congestion arising from the daycare population. While it is true that a daycare for maximum 82 children and 16-18 staff will bring more cars into the area, we believe the impact is not that substantial. Similar daycares in residential areas are reporting that between 20-30% of their families use cars, and the number of families are reduced by about 15% due to sibling placements. Additionally, the location of the proposed daycare is ideal for families that want to drop off children and then use public transit, and staff are expected to arrive by public transit. Based on this, we would expect that there may be approximately 15- 20 cars over a period of 1-2 hours, parking for periods of 3-5 minutes each. The boulevard spaces should be sufficient to handle most, if not all of that demand. Children can move easily from the parking area to the daycare without crossing traffic. In addition, a staff member will be at the drop off zone to greet each child which will encourage all parents that drive to abide by “Kiss N’ Ride” rules.

We would like to stress that we are excited about the prospect of bringing a daycare to this area where there is a real need for more quality care for children. Additionally, we have been working with Toronto Preservation Services to ensure that all renovations will be respectful to this historic building and to preserve the significant features it offers. We have taken great care in planning a facility that respects the needs of the children while having minimum impact on the heritage building and the neighbourhood. We are committed to gaining all required approvals including zoning, building permits, heritage approvals and Ministry licensing. The application for these minor variances to the by-law are the first step in the process and we hope that you will support our application.

A quick email or letter of support addressed to would be highly appreciated if you share our enthusiasm and are inclined to do this, or even if you just have no objection to the minor variances. If you have interest in securing a daycare spot, please click on the link below

Thank you,
Robert Ulicki
Sherry D’Costa

This all sounds wonderful to me, and well thought out. As a Cabbagetown resident and parent, you have my full, unequivocal support. It is exactly this type of development our neighborhood needs to keep Cabbagetown a vital place to live… for EVERYONE (including people with young families).

This answers many of the questions I have had, and I find it very reassuring. I really hope the daycare is approved. It is a much-needed amenity and would make a wonderful contribution to our neighbourhood.

I agree – this was well written and helpful. I emailed the City and cc’d our Councillor ahead of he 3pm deadline yesterday.


Cabbagetown had a daycare and it shut down due to a lack of interest. We don’t need this proposed daycare.

This is what we also don’t need in Cabbagetown:

-Additional traffic congestion and competition for parking (82 cars and 0 parking spaces?!)
-Lots of unwanted noise (82 children and 15 staff?!)
-Private businesses encroaching on the sidewalk (a playground in the front yard?!)
-Private businesses, especially of this large scale, in the middle of a unique residential neighbourhood (this is a downtown RESIDENTIAL neighbourhood, not a suburban plaza with a parking lot!)

This is what we do need in Cabbagetown:

-People who actually ask us in advance of making plans for our neighbourhood, and who show respect for the heritage qualities of our neighbourhood (a constant struggle with developers!)
-More housing (both owned and rented)

The immediate residents are opposed to this proposal, and we suspect that the “supporters” posting here are either the same person or live far away from this site (and will be arriving by car!).

This communication really does not address the specifics of the issues. I would like to see the report to substantiate the claim “Similar daycares in residential areas are reporting that between 20-30% of their families use cars, and the number of families are reduced by about 15% due to sibling placemenot”.

I am also concerned of the developers original intentions to fast-track this development by initially applying for a building permit under the guise of residential zoning but suddenly changed their mind – does this have anything to do with the bylaws surround the limitations of the construction of a daycare when they have not received approval from MAESD?

There IS a very real need and I’m glad that you are doing this. Though there is some very vocal opposition, there are many many of us who support this project going forward. I look forward to having more children in this neighbourhood and on our street. Good luck.

This is a very misleading post. We have had to call the City to involve heritage due to work proceeding without heritage approval, and have documented evidence to that fact. Furthermore, this Owner has not managed his Contractors on site, they continually drive the wrong down Amelia Street despite being requested by neighbours to stop which leads us to believe Owners do not care about neighbourhood safety and will not manage traffic. Trees on Amelia Street have been aggressively cut back to allow for construction and severely damaged during construction. The exterior has not been majntained on this property allowing great deterioriation to paint, woodwork and the wrought iron fence. Furthermore, operators of proposed daycare have a long history of disregarding traffic and parking in the neighbourhood, repeatedly blocking other neighbours property.

This is a tight urban site that simply cannot handle traffic safely. We have children and want keep them safe as well as those attending daycare. These are valid stakeholder concerns. There is a fantastic opportunity in the redevelopment of Regent Park to provide daycare with safe drop-off and adequate staff parking.

Unfortunately we are waitlisted at both city run Regent Park daycares (Cole Street and Regent) and are still not been able to get in. So yes, Regent has some great potential but also can not fulfill the needs of our community. There really is a shortage of spots, especially for infants. Not sure why people say there isn’t. It’s a huge stress for many families with young children including ours.

This post is done by a compulsive liar, and had a long history of harassing neighbors nearby. She uses her professional knowledge to misguide people. The owner of the property has written letters from both the city and the heritage board indicating his work is legal. Unless you can provide evidence to state otherwise, please stop spreading lies.

The tree is fine and the cropped section has regrown. The owner did not damage the tree and the trimming had nothing to do with construction. However, the tree cutting and the subsequent reporting to the city and trespassing to harrass the contractor working on the site by certain neighbours contributed to the animosity between the parties.This is personal and both parties have dug in their feet.
This is totally not at all what Cabbagetown is known for and I hope cooler heads will prevail

This post is done by a compulsive liar, and had a long history of harassing neighbors nearby. She uses her professional knowledge to misguide people. The owner of the property has written letters from both the city and the heritage board indicating his work is legal. Unless you can provide evidence to state otherwise, please stop spreading lies.


There are many truths being expressed on this board, and we have a Win-Win solution which could be effectively taken up by Councillor Troisi (who could reach out to the Honourable Barbara Hall for help, if needed).

On the YES-daycare side:

-A number of people are asserting that they do need daycare and that their local options are limited.

On the NO-daycare side:

-A number of people are asserting that they will experience a loss (traffic congestion, compromised parking, noise, lack of respect for heritage conservation) with the introduction of a daycare at the Ullicki site.

Win-Win solution:

-The St. Martin’s school on Winchester appears to be underused and would provide more than enough space to host a new community-based and not-for-profit daycare, and provide all-day parking for staff, and provide plenty of room for parents to drop off and pick up their kids safely.
-A new daycare on Winchester would be centrally located in the neighbourhood and as the site is underused it could easily facilitate the expansion/contraction of the new daycare based on need (as it’s already set up as a school!).
-A new daycare on Winchester would leave the Ullicki property as a space for rental housing (already licensed for 5 units, as that’s what was bought), which is always needed.

Moving Forward:

-Councillor Troisi could form a steering committee with the help of the Cabbagetown Ratepayers’ Association (CRA) to create a new not-for-profit organization tasked with creating a local daycare that would be professionally-managed and overseen by parents (e.g., a tentative name could be the Cabbagetown Daycare).
-The Cabbagetown Daycare, with the support of the CRA, Councillor Troisi, and Barbara Hall (if she’s available) could approach the school board about a long-term lease for a daycare at the St. Martin’s site (Mayor Tory, the media, and a community petition would help the cause).
-The Cabbagetown Daycare, as a not-for-profit, would be less expensive for parents, and with the ability for parents to be directly involved (e.g., Board of Directors) there would be high quality standards. This approach would likely be superior to the private (i.e., for profit) daycare proposed for the Ullicki site (remember, it’s for profit, they would want to be as efficient and as cost-effective as possible). Also, don’t hold out too much hope for the idea of future “free daycare,” as that political possibility will likely not occur this coming June (no intentional politicking here, but change is coming).
-The Cabbagetown Daycare, as a community-based and not-for-profit organization would be another point of pride for the Cabbagetown neighbourhood, while appropriately and wisely using available space; and could serve as a model for other neighbourhoods.

wonderful idea!
I hope the Catholic School Board is willing to lease that property out and our councillor can get budget to reno the place!

Brilliant Idea!

This will create a new community resource, managed by the community, for the community.

Councillor Troisi and a community committee, can easily organize a GoFundMe page and other fundraising, along with a grant from the city or province, to address the start-up costs that will be super low as the building is already a school.

A public appeal will easily convince the school board to lease the Winchester site.

Plus the Ullicki property remains as housing.

Everyone wins!

Thanks for the win-win idea. It could really work and you’re right that it would safely use an under-used and existing building already designed for this kind of use, with real parking. Let’s get Councillor Troisi on board!!

Just a suggestion for the name, how about, The Cabbage Patch?

This is a wonderful idea!!

I am opposed to the development of the proposed site for use as a daycare for a number of reasons, non of which I believe are NIMBY. This suggestion is wonderful and would have my support.

Thank you

I support this idea because it’s close enough I can walk my kid to and it’s not too close to me.
There, I am NIMBY, I am not afraid to admit it.

The St. Martin’s School site is under utilized and would be a fantastic site! We oppose the 461 Sackville location but brought up at a meeting with the CRA that the school would be ideal, gymnasium, playground and parking!

Our issue has never been with daycare, just that a suitable location is needed!

Wow, all the sudden the 82 kids’ noise and them marching down the street to the park all the once is not an issue. 100+ cars is not an issue for this site either. What if their grandparents are going to school with them! that would be 200+ cars!!!

All the new supporters must love to donate the money to open the daycare at this location, thank you in advance!


It’s just before 6pm on Tuesday and I’m working at home, but I’m distracted by this yelling noise from outside (we have double pane windows and we’re several houses away from 461 Sackville Street). I look outside and see a group of parents, with approximately 14 kids and a photographer, assembled at 461 Sackville Street. Presumably they’re organizing a photo op for some media outlet or the Committee of Adjustment hearing.

Here’s the IRONY. There are only 14 kids, all the windows are shut, and they’re LOUD, REALLY LOUD, and it’s just a photo-op. Imagine what the noise will be like with 82 kids (and with windows open), all day, every day.

Also, there are no parking spots available, anywhere!

Noise and congestion, as predicted by the many opposing this venture.

To the supporters.

Today’s COA hearing will likely be ruled in favor of the opposition. And it would be alright, most of the people who buy in the neighborhood already accepted the fact that it lacks daycare options. We all have workaround plan and will continue drive our kids to other daycares or have a nanny. Business as usual, right?


Started by this misleading post on Resident’s Association posted by a board member who doesn’t live in Cabbagetown. The neighbourhood already splitted. True colours were shown, and the NIMBYer’s got a sweet taste of making a noise and spraying fake news works. This is what likely going to happen.

* The owner of 461 Sackville, who had been framed as evil business corporation, would lost significant amount of time and money through this process. Any new plan, even housing will need to go through COA again with roughly 9 of 10 minor variances still true, since most of them are EXISTING issues. The subset of the opposition will continue to opposite because that’s what they do.

* Some of you will go through COA when you want to renovate your house in the future, because 99% of our existing houses already not complied with some zoning by-law. Your NIMBY neighbour will send in their objections, even though their own houses might already heavily renovated.

* When your contractor works, your neighbour will call 311 because the truck parks in front of their house.

* They will continue to sigh loudly when your kid blocked their way on Parliament St.

* Next time when you have a backyard party, your NIMBY neighbour will call 311. When he has one, you’ll just shrug.

* Next time when you walk your dog in front of their house, they will call 311 to complain that your dog barked. Even if you are the one truly irritated about their uncontrolled, never stop barking dog, but you won’t do anything, because you feel that’s just too low.

Nothing will change! You will continue to ignore it, they will continue to bark. They will teach their children to be the same. They will grow up just slightly more successful, just like their parents who signed PhDs, Professors and Engineers in their opposition letters, because they know how to make noise to get what they want. This is how our society works, accept it.

Random thoughts…

1) That was a grim read!
2) But I bet you’re mostly right!
3) The property owner should have just sliced it up into 3-5 rental units, each with 2-3 bedrooms fetching $2.5-4k each monthly. More money, less headache.
4) The property was a grocery store through at least the 1970s. I kind of wish it still was!
5) So thankful to have lovely neighbors on our street

Today’s wise decision by the Committee of Adjustment now opens up the opportunity for Cabbagetown to work together to create a community-based not-for-profit daycare, ideally located at St. Martin’s underused school on Winchester Street.

Let’s hope that Councillor Troisi and the CRA get the ball rolling on this project in response to the need espoused by several parents. And let’s all of us as Cabbagetowners, regardless of our views on 461 Sackville Street, support our neighbours and this initiative.

So now the NIMBYs are gloating and calling parents, who have been denied a local childcare option, “losers”? This is Trumpian behavior.

Somehow, cars and parking were placed at the top of the decision tree. Guess what – cars aren’t citizens, they don’t vote, and they don’t pay taxes.

We let our unelected, Conservative-leaning Councillor fall under the NIMBY spell. Maybe it was predictable. At least we will have the chance to elect a progressive later this year to properly continue Pam McConnell’s legacy.

This was a grocery store and a rooming house for decades. It has always been a commercial property.

I want to love my neighbors…but honestly guys you’re not making it easy!

– Disheartened, sad

PS – have you seen the bad press this is getting on Twitter and in the Star?!

PPS – Jane Jacobs would be sad, too

No one is gloating and no one is calling anyone a “loser.” In fact, many of those opposed to the 461 Sackville Street proposal are ready to support a daycare in an appropriate location.

Unfortunately, the first response to our post above urging everyone to move forward, together as a neighbourhood, was for Anonymous to sarcastically nominate Sackville opponents to lead the way forward; and in response, another Anonymous pointed out the “sore loser” attitude being expressed with the sarcastic nominations (not unlike the repeated sarcasm in your posts, Multi-Modal, which is just like how You-Know-Who behaves).

Anyway, moving forward, the Winchester Street idea has a lot of merit and would attract strong support throughout Cabbagetown, and we look forward to supporting Councillor Troisi at the next election!

This building has housed a commercial enterprise right up until the time the current owner bought it. It was a convenience store since before and during the 50’s. 60’s, 70’s and part of the 80’s it housed various commercial enterprises.
If you are worried about traffic congestion,how about contractors of all kinds taking up several parking spaces for an entire day?

To those who opposed this project but claim to support daycare facilities: I sincerely hope that you put your money–or at least your advocacy–where your mouths are and fight to have a daycare opened at St Martin’s, as the above comment suggests. Otherwise, it will be hard to view your opposition to the 461 Sackville project as anything other than ridiculously privileged NIMBYism. I predict that your enthusiasm for the St Martin’s facility will wane now that you have what you wanted, but please prove me wrong!

We’re now on a new path.

We look forward to supporting a new project at St. Martin’s (it makes sense).

We encourage all Cabbagetowners, regardless of their views on 461 Sackville, to support a new project at St. Martin’s.

Further (and we’re NOT being facetious), to restore Beth MacPhee’s faith in humanity (and to prove her wrong), when signing a donation cheque in support of the St. Martin’s project, please record the following along the memo line on your cheque: “We opposed 461 Sackville, but we support this project.”

Just checking in – how is that St Martin’s project coming, “Another Way for Everyone”?

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