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Find out what's happening in the Annex and with the Residents' Association
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  • 25 Oct 2018 10:21 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    The Struggle Continues

    Now, more than ever, we need to have strong community associations like the Annex Residents’ Association.

    The first two steps that caused so much chaos for the residents of Toronto are over. The legislation mandating a 25-member City Council is law, and the citizens of Toronto have now chosen who will be the 25 councilors and re-elected Mayor Tory. The Annex Residents’ Association (ARA) welcomes Mike Layton as our new councilor for the Annex (Ward 11 University-Rosedale), while saying adieu to Joe Cressy who worked so well with us for the past four years.

    The next task for the City under the new 25-ward structure will to properly organize its legislative affairs to manage proper representation for City residents and attend to the very real responsibilities for its’ many agencies,boards and commissions.

    This work, which was previously managed by 44 Councillors, will now be done by just 25. As most councilors were already working at capacity, something will have to change. Some of our neighbors have already put together a proposal that suggests a new approach encouraging greater citizen input.

    The ARA works to improve the quality of life in our community and enhance our environment. We will all need to be more vigilant and attentive as we go forward in the new municipal reality.

    Your involvement is more important than ever, and we ask for your continued support.

    David Harrison
    Chair, Annex Residents’ Association

    Fraternity Houses in the Annex
    As many of us live near a fraternity house, the Annex Residents’ Association (ARA) wants to share some important news and to let you know about a new Fraternity Liaison Committee.

    Fraternity and Sorority Houses Must Now Be Licensed By the City
    As of May 23 of this year, fraternity and sorority houses must be licensed under the City of Toronto’s Multi-tenant Houses (Rooming Houses) by-law.  Up until then, these houses were exempted from this by-law and were not subject to any regulatory regime. (Despite popular belief, frat houses are neither affiliated with nor governed by the University of Toronto.)

    The Rooming House exemption was removed by City Council on May 23 following a multi-year push by the ARA,its members and Councillor Joe Cressy.  The Rooming House regulations will now ensure that:

    • the houses adhere to minimal fire, safety and sanitation standards;
    • the Fire Marshall will now be able to conduct regular inspections of these old houses, some of which host large-   scale parties.
    • each house must have a waste disposal plan and post the contact information of a responsible person.

    Importantly for neighbouring residents, the licensing process means that community members will now be able to offer input when a particular house applies for or renews a Rooming House licence. If a house chooses to regularly disrupt neighbours or refuses to meet minimal standards, it can be denied a licence or have conditions imposed.

    We expect that if the licensing regime works as intended, it will improve the safety and well-being of Frat house residents, their party guests and their surrounding neighbours.

    What the ARA Is Doing
    The ARA has formed the Fraternity Liaison Committee led by ARA Director David Sterns (dlsterns@gmail.com).David was actively involved in the process which led to the repeal of the Rooming House exemption.  The committee will interact with neighbours, Frat houses and the City to ensure that the new regime operates as intended.

    The committee has begun its work by reaching out to certain houses and distributing a flier listing the five things Frat houses can do to improve their relations with their neighbours. The houses approached so far have responded positively to the outreach.

    So far, none of the houses identified as “rowdy” by the Toronto Star in a2011 article have applied for a licence. The Fraternity Liaison Committee intends to make submissions if and when the houses that have posed the most serious problems in the past apply for a licence.

    What Neighbours Can Do

      The ARA welcomes Frat houses that respect their neighbours.  We will also play an active role in the licensing application and renewal process to ensure that they all operate safely and respectfully.

      Annex Residents Help Residents of 650 Parliament
      The Annex Residents’ Association (ARA) last week handed over the proceeds that local residents donated to help the tenants left homeless by the 650 Parliament Street fire.

      Moved by the distress the tenants were facing, the members of the ARA moved quickly last month to turn their annual fall Corn Fest into a fundraiser for the tenants. Hundreds of Annex residents showed up, making it the most successful CornFest ever. The donations and a silent auction raised a total of $3165.

      L-R: Terri Chu, Chair David Harrison, Rita Bilerman, Micky Fraterman from the ARA. Ingrid Cumberbatch; Larry Akinyele, Shabana Sohail from Community Matters.

      ARA Chair David Harrison says “people in the Annex jumped at the chance to help other Torontonians.

      What started out as one person’s idea became a neighbourhood-wide effort in a matter of hours.”

      “I was astounded by how quickly local business came forward with goods and services for the silent auction,” says organizer Terri Chu. “It showed, once again, that the Annex is a caring and sharing neighbourhood.”

      ARA Board members today donated the proceeds to the charity Community Matters, which provides direct services to residents of the St. James Town neighbourhood.

      For more information or to arrange for interviews, contact: David Harrisonchair@theara.org

    • 24 Oct 2018 11:30 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      November 8, ARA Board Meeting, 7 p.m. at  the Alliance Française, 24 Spadina Road. All welcome!

    • 24 Oct 2018 12:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      The ARA would like to thank Workin' Moms Productions III for their very generous donation of $500. They were recently filming in the Annex. We ask film and production companies to make donations to the ARA in recognition of the inconvenience that filming can cause in our neighbourhoods.

    • 16 Sep 2018 1:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      Sunday, September 23, 2018 noon to 4:30 pm
      Tickets:  $25 single and $40 for 2.

      Purchase tickets to join us for a great afternoon exploring the stories and houses of the original Yorkville Annex.


      Join us for a great afternoon exploring 

       the stories and houses of the original Yorkville Annex!

      Your ticket includes:

      • Guided tour of the original Yorkville Annex by popular architectural historian Marta O'Brien
      • Behind the facades self-guided tours of a small selection of some of the finest houses in the Yorkville Annex 
      • Registration, complimentary refreshments and tour of the historic Women's Art Association of Canada
      • Tours of three cultural organizations: 

        • First Church of Christ, Scientist, an Annex Landmark
        • Quaker Friends House in a historic Annex home, surrounded by a beautiful garden; and
        • Women's Art Association of Canada, founded in 1887
      Online ticket sales close before midnight on Saturday, September 22. Cash only at the door (Women's Art Association of Canada, 23 Prince Arthur Avenue.)

    • 26 Aug 2018 8:53 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      The ARA Invites You to Our Annual - Sunday September 16



      Sunday September 16th 4 - 6 p.m. Rain or Shine! Sibelius Park

      ALL Donations will be going directly to the victims of the fire at 650 Parliament St. through Community Matters Toronto

      Fabulous Silent Auction Items too!!

      Meet your neighbours!

      New members always welcome!

    • 19 Jun 2018 10:09 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      Mulberry Picking Returns to The Annex - A reminder

      It’ s Happening on July 7, from 3 to 5 pm and we need volunteers to help. 

      Come and taste the delicious treats from Bean and Baker Malt Shop and COBS bread while picking the berries. 
      The ARA thanks them for their support. Stop by the stores and let them know how much you appreciate their support of community events

      Click here for all details!

      We need volunteers:

      •         to set up and staff our welcome table at Sibelius Park
      •         to guide groups to the trees and lead the picking
      •         to pick berries

      We also need equipment: long ladders, tarps for collecting the berries, and long poles for shaking the trees. 

      And finally, we need trees identified for picking.

      If you wish to volunteer and/or supply equipment or if you wish to have your tree picked, please send us your name, email and telephone number to: events@theara.org.

    • 06 Jun 2018 8:51 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      The Return of the Farmers’ Market

      The Bloor- Borden Farmers’ Market started today!  The Balloon lady was there today and expect to see some of your favourite musicians all summer!

      Every Wednesday, you can find the Bloor-Borden Farmer’s Market at the Green P parking lot, between Lippincott and Borden, just south of Bloor.

         Image result for balloon lady   Image result for asparagus

      The market is focused on real farmers, selling what they grow.  An abundance of fresh products awaits you.

      When:            Every Wednesday
                             3pm – 7pm till October 

      Where:          Green P parking lot
                            Between Lippincott and Borden, South of Bloor

    • 05 Jun 2018 4:33 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      The back of the large sign for Sibelius Park will be graced with a new mural this summer. The Annex Residents’ Association has formed a partnership with the City’s StreetARToronto (START) and Councillor Cressy’s office to make this happen. You may be familiar with START projects in our neighbourhood, such as the Indigenous work along the wall of the building on the northeast corner of Spadina and Dupont. StreetARToronto will supervise the creation of the mural by local artist Talie Shalmon, who grew up in The Annex and played in the park.  Our hope is that not only will the mural be an attractive addition to the park décor, it will discourage the graffitists who have tagged the sign in the past, often with rather derogatory remarks.

      The ARA used the opportunity of people visiting the park  to collect free compost on June 2 to survey their opinions and ideas, and of course those of the children and their parents there simply to play. The reaction was overwhelmingly positive, as it was a few days earlier from students of Huron Street Public School. 

      Pictured in the photo from left to right: Sandra Shaul, The ARA; Councillor Cressy; artist Talie Shalmon; Margaret Cresswell, StreetARToronto artist and mentor, and Catherine Campbell, manager of StreetARToronto

    • 26 Apr 2018 6:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      The ARA is holding its annual general meeting on April the 26th, at 7:30 at the Friends Meeting House at 60 Lowther. The keynote speaker will be the Reverend Cheri DiNovo, the former NDP MPP for Parkdale-High Park and the new Minister at Trinity-St Paul’s United Church. Cheri grew up on Bedford Road, so her new post is a bit of coming back home. She will be talking about the vibrant asset that Trinity-St Paul’s has become for our community, and her plans to build on that.

      You will have the opportunity to renew your membership or join the ARA for the first time!

      For more information about membership, please go to http://www.theara.org/join-us


    • 18 Feb 2018 4:33 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      Crucial Meeting Next Week -  Wednesday, February 21
      6:30 - 8:30 p.m. Intercontinental Hotel, 220 Bloor Street West, Barclay room

      The Annex Residents’ Association is encouraging all local residents to come to a community meeting on a proposed development at 64 Prince Arthur.

      The meeting, sponsored by the ADI Development Group, is to get the Annex’s reaction to their proposed 29 storey high-rise (see drawing to the left).

      When ADI Development Group first met with the ARA, the developer was proposing a 16 -19 storey condo and waxed on about wanting to work with the community.

      In actions that made a mockery of these assurances, ADI then filed an application for a 29-storey high-rise (more than twice the height of the apartment building next door) that is totally out of scale to the neighbourhood. The developer is taking its plans to the OMB.

      Come to the meeting to discuss this latest threat to the fabric of the Annex!

      When:   6:30– 8:30 P.M.,
       Wednesday, February 21                           

      Where:  The Intercontinental Hotel, 220 Bloor Street West, Barclay Room


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