Grange Park Advisory Committee

Meeting of December 8, 2008

Held at the University Settlement House

Members in attendance:

Rupert Duchesne, Co-Chair, AGO

Councillor Adam Vaughan, Co-chair

Bev Carret, AGO

Ken Greenberg, resource person, AGO

Mazyar Mortazavi, member-at-large

Debbie McGuinness, resident

Dr. James Moy, OCAD

Marguerite Newell, resident

Ceta Ramkhalawansingh, resident

Debra Shime, University Settlement

Observers and guests:

Jim Melvin, PMA Landscape Architects

Pearl Quong, resident

Jennifer Tharp, City of Toronto Parks Dept.


John Burns, St. George the Martyr Church

Mark Emslie, City of Toronto Parks Dept.

Pat McKendry, resident

Matthew Teitelbaum, AGO

Margie Zeidler, member-at-large

Summary of Discussion:

  1. 1. Welcome new members

Adam welcomed Mazyar Mortazavi as a new 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.

  1. 2. Approval of the minutes of November 3

Minutes were approved as circulated.

  1. 3. Business arising from the minutes

Film Crews

Adam advised the meeting that he will be asking the Police Services Board to address enforcement of Film Office regulations for film crews shooting in neighbourhood locations, including Grange Park.  As well a concern was expressed that parks were not being considered part of “neighbourhoods” and this is being addressed.

  1. 4. PMA study progress report  – Jim Melvin, PMA

Jim Melvin of PMA Landscape Architects provided a verbal interim report on work undertaken to date and any preliminary findings.   All trees in the park have been tagged and the arborist has prepared a report on each tree.  Sixteen trees have been identified as dead, hazardous or in poor condition and the report will recommend their removal.  The arborist has also identified a number of trees that require pruning of dead wood. Six trees located close to the AGO’s construction site require special soil aeration, fertilization and mulching.

The soil in the park is loam which compacts under high traffic. While this soil condition is good for agriculture it does not work for the current use.  Soil compaction throughout the park is a problem that will require consistent aeration and drainage.

Sunlight studies are indicating that the dense tree canopy is not allowing sufficient light in to sustain grass.  Solutions to consider include thinning the tree canopy and/or finding alternative ground covers that are more resilient to shade and high traffic.

Discussion noted that ten per cent  of the total number of trees were in distress.  In other words 90 percent of the trees are healthy and that should be the public message.

  1. 5. GPAC presentation at December 8 community meeting
  • Review of key messages

Adam and Rupert reviewed the key messages from GPAC for the community meeting:

–          Adam will recap the formation of GPAC and will introduce GPAC members

–          Rupert will provide overview of the phased timeline and explain the priority given to strengthening the natural environment.

–          Jim Melvin, PMA will provide a recap of work undertaken to date in environmental audit

–          Ken will describe next steps in the timeline and will review the design brief

–          Rupert will describe the ways the GPAC will communicate with the community

–          Adam will describe GPAC’s relationship with the City.

  1. 6. Next meeting

The next GPAC meeting will take place Wednesday January 21, 2009, 6:00pm at University Settlement – Staff Lounge, 2nd floor