Tag: Scarborough

Decimation of the Middle Class in Scarborough/Toronto, Canada

Anyone who lives here in Scarborough, Ontario, Canada, a suburb of Toronto, can tell you that incomes have markedly dropped. We see it in our schools and neighbourhood. A Toronto Star article on the widening income gaps here in Toronto brought me to a couple interesting maps by Dr. J. David Hulchanski. His paper “Report: The 3 Cities within Toronto, Income Polarization, 2007” gives much food for thought.

Dr. Hulchanski’s paper includes a couple of maps of Toronto by change in income from 1970 to 2000. It is a very sobering map for those of us who live in Scarborough, a suburb of Toronto. It is not that we are special, because other suburbs of Toronto have also experienced similar income drops.

Business Process Re-engineering: Summer Sports Camp 2012 in Agincourt

While I consider myself a project manager, I can also play the role of business analyst. Situations often occur in life that scream for the need to re-engineer the business process.The Little Weed has attended the same summer sports camp here in Agincourt for the past couple of years, and each year there are many inefficiencies related to the initial first day of camp: registration. I have written about these in past posts, but today I will re-engineer the registration process that I participated in this year, 2012. Note that I do not work for the camp nor am I in anyway related, other than the Little Weed participates, and therefore I am only a consumer. Please note that this and other articles on this camp should not be considered a criticism of the camp. The Little Weed and I have verified that this camp is largely well run, the kids have a lot of fun, and to me, this is much more important than the inconvenience and inefficiencies that parents experience on registration day.

Living in a Chinese Enclave in Toronto, Canada

We did not intend to live in a Chinese enclave when we moved into our Scarborough, Canada home in Toronto. It seemed like when a white elderly couple would move out, a Chinese family would move in. As the years passed, this continued, until 50-60% of our street is now Chinese. It also was not our desire to live in a Chinese enclave. Our intention was to live in a multiculturally mixed neighbourhood.

I write this post after being prodded by this article on Markham Chinese enclaves. Markham is just north of the Scarborough and Toronto border, and can be considered an ethnic extension of Scarborough. In fact we often shop there.

OneCity TTC Proposal: Comments from Scarborough

OneCity proposal for the TTC, Toronto, Canada. Will this reduce congestion? I think not.

OneCity proposal for the TTC, Toronto, Canada. Will this reduce congestion? I think not.

Admiration is what I feel about Karen Stinz, Glen De Baeremaeker, two City of Toronto councilors, and their OneCity TTC proposal. While I might not agree with their complete plan, they have collectively invested time and effort into making commuting in Toronto better, and have a financial plan to pay for it. This is a damn sight better than Rob Ford, who shouted for subways but had no hope in hell of getting there.

Neighbour’s Tree Falls, Toronto, Canada

Trees are something I cannot live without. It was with great regret that I saw my neighbour’s maple tree downed, a huge branch ripped off and cast aside in their backyard. Such is life.

Apparently unbeknownst to us there was rot in the crotch of the limb, which became a stressor. With the recent windstorm this stressor proved to be the straw that broke the camel’s back, so to speak. The crack was at the 12′ level, hidden from us puny humans. This downed limb was as thick as my waist and probably weighed in at about 1,000 lb. Overall this was just under half the tree.

The loss of this limb ripped half the circumference of the tree, severely weakening it. I am sure it will topple over sometime soon. It should be cut down.

We live in this area of Scarborough partially because of the plentiful canopy of trees. They are everywhere, providing shade, cleaning the air and habitat for birds and squirrels. They make the neighbourhood much more inviting.

Usually trees are quite strong, but they are also very resilient and will sway in heavy winds. Maybe we can all learn from this age old model. The tree that does not sway will break in stormy weather. Even the strongest will sway, something to keep in mind for the stiff upper lip crowd.

I have many trees in our backyard that I care for. With a minimum of pruning each year they reward me by growing stronger and taller, further beautifying our neighbourhood. One mulberry also gives us fruit, which tastes great. The birds feed on these as well. Our crabapple tree provides us with fresh blooms in the spring and shade in the summer. I simply prune it minimally each year, and it takes care of itself.

Maybe we all could learn more from trees.

My neighbours tree broke off a huge branch during a wind storm, Toronto, Canada

My neighbours tree broke off a huge branch during a wind storm, Toronto, Canada

Toronto City Council Bans Plastic Bags, effective 2013

Rarely do I see any progressive movement from my City of Toronto municipal government. Rob Ford, elected mayor during the last election, had promised to clean up city hall, but all we have seen so far has been further politiking and delays in large infrastructure, such as the Sheppard subway. Yesterday Ford proposed a motion to stop the $0.05 charge on plastic bags from retailers, but council turned the proposal around and banned all plastic bags, effective Jan 01 2013. Quick and efficient, yes, and I approve, but what happened to due process?

Scarborough, Canada Bikeability Rating

Here is a great map on the bikeability of various cities. Seeing as I am from the suburb of Scarborough, in Toronto, Canada, I naturally wanted to see my areas’ score. Thankfully, you can use a Google maps tool to drill down to your street, making the whole experience much more useful.

I am unsure how they get their scores, because I don’t think the area is very bikeable. There are few streets in the area that encourage bikes, and plenty of fast thoroughfares and dangerous drivers that discourage biking. That being said, we have a fair share of bikers, namely the geriatric Chinese group, who ride all year. They are not insignificant.

North-East Toronto, Scarborough and Walkability

In my quest for more information about North-East Toronto, Canada, specifically Scarborough, here is information about walkability. The City of Toronto has published a report about how easy it is to walk about the city. The theory is that ease of walking contributes to better health and well-being, and therefore better living overall. How does my area of Toronto, heavily biased towards Mainland Chinese, rate on walkability? Overall, not very well.

The Walkability project is interesting to me in that I would rather walk or ride a bike to shop or go places yet I live in the suburbs, a statistically less walkable area of Toronto. While we do have better air and a far greater supply of Chinese groceries, I hope that my neighbourhood’s walkability will increase.

Toronto Chinese Neighbourhoods: Location and Safety

By destiny, luck or fate, I live in a Toronto neighbourhood that has a high percentage of Chinese families. I have often wondered, like many families, if by neighbourhood is safe, relative to other Toronto neighbourhoods. As well, if a friend from China was about to migrate to Toronto and wanted to live in a safe Chinese neighbourhood, where would I recommend? This blog post tries to answer these questions.

Clo-vents Chronological: I learn so much

Regret is how I feel about not posting these earlier. Still, life goes on and so I go. All these events have been memorable, and at each one I learn more as I continue on my way, either through technique, talking to people, or myself. Overall, it is 3 x win. Clovent clovents