The Suzanne Kavanagh Campaign has a busy week planned as Kavanagh continues to promote key components of her progressive urban vision for Ward 21. This week she’s focused on affordable housing and traffic safety. Here’s a look at what’s coming up.
Where to find Suzanne
Tuesday, July 24: Kavanagh and representatives of Civic Tech will meet with Sidewalk Toronto to discuss the launch of BikeSpace, a tool that will enable cyclists to identify places where there is not enough bicycle parking. Civic Tech is a group of Torontonians committed to using design and data to make the city more responsive, prosperous and sustainable.
Thursday, July 26: Kavanagh will attend Movies in St. James Park for a free screening of Academy Award winner Coco. As president of the St. Lawrence Neighbourhood Association, Kavanagh supported the movies program and ensured the SLNA was a sponsor.
St. James Park, 120 King St. E., 9 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Friday, July 27: Kavanagh will attend the planning meeting for David Crombie Park. This ribbon of green runs from Berkeley St. to Jarvis St. and welcomes families and tourists every day.
On the Agenda: Affordable Housing
On July 21, Kavanagh attended the Karma Kitchen with a diverse group of guests in Moss Park for an event that shines a spotlight on affordable housing in Toronto.
“As I walk and talk to people in Ward 21, affordable housing is consistently the number one issue,” Kavanagh said. “I’m constantly asked where people will be able to live in a city with rapidly increasing rent, condo and housing prices. The waitlist for city housing is too long and people should not have to choose between buying food or subway tokens as a way to cobble together rent.”
Kavanagh’s priorities for affordable housing include working to ensure that 10 per cent of new residential developments are affordable units, that new affordable housing includes non-profit and cooperative housing in addition to long-term affordable ownership options, and the renewal and revitalization of Moss Park apartments to improve quality of housing and community livability.
As part of Kavanagh’s Green, Complete Streets plan, a team of volunteers has been monitoring intersections across the ward to record problems such as rolling stops, failure to yield at crosswalks, cars blocking intersections, and jay-walking.
In 45 minutes at Jarvis St. and The Esplanade, they logged 29 cars blocking the intersection, 46 drivers who failed to obey a stop sign and 13 rolling stops. One driver took 7 minutes and 55 seconds to get from to Frederick St. to Jarvis Street to enter the Gardiner on-ramp.
“Our city needs to change so we can get people moving. It will have to be a coordinated effort between the TTC, car drivers and workplaces. We need to encourage businesses to incentivize carpooling and remote work days for car commuters,” Kavanagh said. “If we don’t tackle this growing problem, we’ll be left with gridlock on the streets and at city hall. I’ll help change that as Ward 21’s next councillor.”
On July 20, Kavanagh, along with other community members, met with MPP Chris Glover (Spadina-Fort York) to discuss the importance of the north-south connections to the waterfront and provide Metrolinx with more options. Earlier that day, she met with senior staff at Metrolinx and was able to schedule meeting with the Community Advisory Committee for August 14.
As president of the St. Lawrence Neighbourhood Association, Kavanagh was instrumental in establishing the Community Advisory Committee and ensuring that residents are at the table in support of expanded transit. She is hopeful that this community partnership will support neighbours along the Union Station rail corridor and introduce noise mitigation measures where needed.
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