Grange Park Advisory Committee

Meeting of November 3, 2008

Held at the University Settlement House

Members in attendance:

Councillor Adam Vaughan, Co-chair

John Burns, St. George the Martyr Church

Bev Carret, AGO

Mark Emslie, City of Toronto Parks Dept.

Ken Greenberg, resource person, AGO

Pat McKendry, resident

Marguerite Newell, resident

Ceta Ramkhalawansingh, resident

Debra Shime, University Settlement

Margie Zeidler, member-at-large

Observers and guests:

Max Allen, resident

Peter Couto, resident, alternate member

Jennifer Tharp, City of Toronto Parks Dept.

Regrets

Rupert Duchesne, Co-Chair, AGO

Dr. James Moy, OCAD

Debbie McGuinness, resident

Mazyar Mortazavi, member-at large

Mathew Teitelbaum, AGO

Summary of Discussion:

  1. 1. Welcome new members

Adam welcomed Margie Zeidler as a GPAC member-at-large. Margie is the founder of Urbanspace Property Group; president and creator of 401 Richmond Limited; co-founder of the Centre for Social Innovation, and received the Jane Jacobs Award in 2003.

Adam also announced that Mazyar Mortazavi has agreed to join GPAC as a member-at-large.  Mazyar works with Mavi Developments Inc., builder of sustainable development, including the M5V condominium at King and Peter Streets, designed to meet LEED accreditation.

A third member-at-large position may be filled in the future.

  1. 2. Approval of the minutes of October 1

Minutes were approved.

  1. 3. Business arising from the minutes

No business arising from the minutes.

  1. 4. Landscape and Maintenance sub-committee update

Ceta reported that the Landscape and Maintenance sub-committee met with PMA Landscape Architects on October 10.  At this meeting, PMA reviewed in greater detail the work to be undertaken as part of their study.   Since some of the work required small samples to be taken from some trees and soil, as well as tree tagging, the L&M sub-committee decided an e-mail should be sent to the neighbourhood to advise them of this work in advance.   This e-mail was sent out on October 21.

  1. 5. PMA study progress report

Ken provided a brief update on work undertaken by PMA to date.  The arborist has already undertaken a survey of all the trees in the park and will do a fine coring of selected trees.  The agronomist will be on site within a week to take soil samples and do sun/shade studies.  The City has provided PMA with the environmental test findings for 4 Grange Road and information on the existing irrigation system.  Mark suggested that PMA contact Tom Feeney at the City to get additional information about the irrigation lines. Overall, the work is proceeding on schedule. 

  1. 6. Update on the December 8th community meeting

Ceta reviewed the agenda for the meeting.  GPAC has been allocated 20 minutes for its presentation, including a question and answer session.  It was agreed the GPAC presentation should include a brief summary by Jim Melvin about PMA’s environment assessment.   Jim will present these findings to GPAC prior to the community meeting.

The GPAC presentation will include:

  • brief recap of formation, terms of reference, membership of the group
  • explanation of relationship between GPAC and the City
  • timeline for the Grange Park revitalization project – identify the phases
  • progress report of phase one – PMA study
  • timing of next phases – remedial work in spring 2009; development of a new design spring 2009
  • share GPAC design brief
  • ways GPAC will keep community informed

  1. 7. Communications sub-committee update

John provided a brief update on the Communications sub-committee meeting on October 28.  The sub-committee is considering the following vehicles, with a commitment to provide information in both English and Chinese whenever possible:

  • E-mail updates.  AGO has 300 e-mail addresses for local neighbours and has sent out GPAC updates.  We will also approach other neighbourhood organizations to circulate GPAC e-mail updates to their clients/community.  Deb offered to include messages in University Settlement’s e-blast message to members.
  • Meetings twice a year:  We should aim to hold meetings for the neighbourhood twice a year, to provide updates to the community, respond to questions and get feedback.
  • Neighbours bulletin twice a year:  Following each meeting, we could circulate a bulletin in English and Chinese recapping the information to the neighbourhood – perhaps by postal walk
  • Bulletin boards – Neighbours bulletin and other messages could be posted on community bulletin boards – eg: University Settlement, OCAD, CHU communities, etc.  We could consider having an information kiosk/bulletin board in Grange Park as part of the redesign.
  • Website – We could establish a “Grange Park” website – possibly a link on the AGO site.  It would provide a brief history on Grange Park, a description of GPAC, databank of past meeting minutes, advisories, etc. – a blog for neighbours to share ideas, etc.  It could also provide links to other community organizations, park organizations, etc.
  1. 8. Next meeting

The next GPAC meeting will take place on Monday, December 8, 5:30pm at University Settlement, Room 211, prior to the community meeting which begins at 7.30 pm

  1. 9. Other Business

  • Launch of transformed AGO:

Bev reported that the AGO will launch with three free days for the public, starting Friday, November 14 at 4:00pm.  McCaul Street will be closed from Dundas to the crosswalk just north of OCAD on Friday only, to accommodate the crowds waiting for the AGO to open.

  • Film Crews

Adam advised the meeting that in the short term there will be a moratorium on filming in the Grange neighbourhood except for the series that has already been approved. Public areas such as Grange Park would only have one shoot per year. All subsequent film shooting requests will require a neighbourhood poll.