Tag Archives: Beaches

No decision on Kippendavie

After months of deferrals, community council makes no ruling
Condo proposal will go to city council then OMB
Kris Scheuer
(Written for Town Crier March 23. UPDATE.)

Artist rendering of Kippendavie proposal.

Despite months of deferrals and a six hour debate, Toronto and East York Community Council still didn’t make a decision on a controversial condo proposal at 66 to 76 Kippendavie Avenue. It voted instead to refer the issue to city council without recommendation.
Leading up to the vote, it was unclear what would happen as council members had differing views on the project. Chair Gord Perks wanted to take city staff’s advice and approve the 65 unit project while Beach rep Mary-Margaret McMahon recommended rejecting it.
In the end, the body followed Councillor Janet Davis’s advice to punt the ball to April 12 city council meeting. But time is not on the city’s side as an Ontario Municipal Board hearing on the project has been scheduled for April 19.
Following the advice of councillors Pam McConnell and Paula Fletcher the city will hire a third party mediator to work on reaching a settlement on the outstanding issues between the residents and the developer, including reducing the unit count to 54 and requiring $10 million in insurance to cover any impacts on adjacent homes during construction, before council meets. Continue reading

Bussin, McMahon transition stand off

No smooth transition in Beaches post election
Neither Sandra Bussin or Mary-Margaret McMahon called either other
Kris Scheuer
(Written for Town Crier Nov. 11)

Mary-Margaret McMahon is sworn in as Ward 32 councillor Dec. 1. Photo courtesy of Mary-Margaret McMahon.

Councillor Sandra Bussin has been criticized for not reaching out to Mary-Margaet McMahon, who soundly defeated her in the Oct. 25 election.
“I have not heard from (Bussin) or her staff. It’s disappointing,” McMahon told the Town Crier Nov. 9.
But communication is a two-way street.
“Ms. McMahon has not called me,” Bussin said this afternoon.
McMahon admitted that it’s true she’s not called Bussin either but was waiting for her to call either on election night or after McMahon’s family vacation.
“I’m planning to call her,” McMahon said today.
Conversation or not, from Bussin’s perspective the idea of a transition between two councillors is something new and has not been done in the past.

Outgoing Councillor Sandra Bussin. Photo by Francis Crescia/Town Crier.

Continue reading

Toronto swim conditions Sept 5

For third day in a row, all eleven beaches safe to swim
City water tests post positive results today for beaches
By Kris Scheuer

Never mind that this gentleman "flashed" me before he dove in. It was a great shot of him splashing into the lake at Woodbine Beach. Photo by Kris Scheuer/Town Crier.

Is it just me or does it seem like summer is finally here?
Better late that not at all. I will take what I can get.
For the third day in a row it has been sunny and warm.
And with the Labour Day long weekend here many of us city folk may be flocking to the beaches to soak it all in.
All the beaches have safe levels of E.coli. This means 100 E.coli (or less) per 100 ml of water.
The city tests water at eleven beaches plus the Sunnyside Enclosure daily during the summer season.
I have the results below for Sept. 5.

Safe to SwimSafe to swim Unsafe to SwimUnsafe to swim
Swim 1. Marie Curtis Park East Beach Swim 6. Ward’s Island Beach
Swim 2. Sunnyside Beach Swim 7. Cherry Beach
Swim 2a. Sunnyside Enclosure Swim 8. Woodbine Beaches
Swim 3. Hanlan’s Point Beach Swim 9. Kew -Balmy Beach
Swim 4. Gibraltar Point Beach Swim 10. Bluffer’s Park Beach
Swim 5. Centre Island Beach Swim 11. Rouge Beach

Results are posted online and updated at 3 p.m. each day. Continue reading

Beach water safe for swimming Aug 16

Water tests show positive results at ten Toronto beaches
Marie Curtis the only beach unsafe to swim today: city
By Kris Scheuer

I went for a 3.5 hour walk in the hot sun today that took me right down to Sunnyside Beach.
It is one of eleven beaches the city tests daily and results posted today show it was safe for splashing about.
I saw lot of people tanning on the beach, on the grass in the park and also cooling off in the lake water at Sunnyside. Not only were they in the beach water, but kids were at the splash pad and the outdoor pool was packed.
I did not make it to the other beaches today, but I am sure people were having just as much fun at them. Continue reading

Toronto beaches unsafe to swim

City water tests reveal four city beaches temporarily contain too much E.coli
Sunnyside, Woodbine, Balmy, Bluffer’s beaches are risky for swims today: city
By Kris Scheuer

Swimmer dives in at Woodbine Beach. Photo by Kris Scheuer/Town Crier.

The good news is Cherry Beach is totally safe for a splashing in, according to the July 24 test results by the water department.
Unfortunately, that is the only Toronto beach with safe levels of E.coli posted today.
The city recommends against swimming at Sunnyside, Woodbine, Kew-Balmy and Bluffer’s due to high levels of E.coli detected in beach water.
So Torontonians and visitors, would you swim at any of the city’s beaches?
Have your say, are our beaches swim worthy or not? Continue reading

Strike suspends water tests for Toronto islands

City temporarily stops E.coli testing at four isle beaches

By Kris Scheuer
It’s swim at your own risk on the Toronto Islands at all four designated beaches at Hanlan’s Point, Gibraltar Point, Centre Island and Ward’s Island. Interestingly, Hanlan’s Point is a nude beach so for swimmers going without a bathing suit during the strike keep in mind there’s no city testing for E.coli levels in the water at this time.
Normally, the city does daily water tests at eleven designated city beaches including these four on the islands. But due to the strike that began June 22, water testing was suspended.
That is still the case on July 4, day 13 of the strike for the four island beaches plus two on the mainland at in the city’s east end at Rouge Beach, Marie Curtis Park East.
This doesn’t necessarily mean the beaches are polluted. In fact all four island beaches normally flap a Blue Flag, which is an international rating with 27 strict criteria. Continue reading

Sunnyside swimmable despite strike

Latest city water testing shows its safe for swim

By Kris Scheuer

The city was not doing daily water testing at the 11 designated swim spots during the strike. It has now resumed testing for E.coli levels, but twice a week only, at five beaches and Sunnyside is one of them. The city started a $1 million pilot project to install a “curtain” to make a section of this popular west end beach more swimmable. Pollution from the Humber River has made this beach one of the most polluted.
On July 4, the city’s most up-to-date posting of June 29 states it is safe for swimming. Check for updates on the city site.
Back on June 18, before the city strike began, I did a story for the Town Crier on local councillor Bill Saundercook jumping in the lake at Sunnyside with his wedding suit on. See the story here.

Woodbine water tests resume during strike

City conducts E.coli tests at five beaches
By Kris Scheuer
(July 22 update here)

Good news for beach dwellers in Toronto. The city has implemented modified water testing at five designated swim spots.
The city will test water for E.coli levels twice a week at the following beaches: Sunnyside, Cherry, Woodbine, Kew-Balmy and Bluffer’s Park.
This level of testing meets the protocol requirements for the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care, according to the city’s website.
Twice weekly, the site is updated so people can see where it’s safe for swimming.
Another six beaches  Rouge, Marie Curtis Park East, Hanlan’s Point, Gibraltar Point, Centre Island, and Ward’s Island have gotten no water testing at all since the strike began June 22. Here it is swim at your own risk, states the city, but there are lifeguards for safety reasons.
When I checked July 4, the latest city update was posted on June 30 and reflected E.coli levels for June 29.
For results see below.
Red means unsafe to swim, green safe to swim and yellow means no city water testing so swim at your own risk.
If you click on any of the beaches below, it will open a map of that swimming spot.

Not tested 1. Marie Curtis Park East Beach Don not swim 7. Cherry Beach
Swim 2. Sunnyside Beach Swim 8. Woodbine Beaches
Not tested 3. Hanlan’s Point Beach Swim 9. Kew – Balmy Beach
Not tested 4. Gibraltar Point Beach Swim 10. Bluffer’s Park Beach
Not tested 5. Centre Island Beach Not tested 11. Rouge Beach
Not tested 6. Ward’s Island Beach


Would you swim at Sunnyside Beach?

Councillor Bill Saundercook dives in at Sunnyside Beach
Will a pilot project to clean up the water tempt you to swim?
By Kris Scheuer

Councillor Bill Saundercook swims at Sunnyside with his wedding suit on in mid-June. Photo by Francis Crescia/Town Crier.

Following through on a promise made to me, Parkdale-High Park councillor Bill Saundercook took a dive into Lake Ontario off Sunnyside Beach.
As for his choice of swimming attire, the ward 13 rep decided to wear the same suit he wore at his wedding almost 30 years ago.
He dove in June 18 to promote the fact the city’s spending $1 million on a pilot project to make a section of the beach more swimmable and ward off pollution from the Humber River.

(Written June 18/09 BEFORE the city strike that started June 22, which suspended daily beach water testing. This story was originally posted June 29 at http://www.mytowncrier.ca)

City to sell its beachfront homes

Million Dollar Views in Toronto


Government to unload 5 Hubbard Blvd, which fronts onto Kew Balmy Beach. Photo by Kris Scheuer/Town Crier.

By Kris Scheuer
For those who always dreamed of owning a cottage on the lake, the opportunity may be closer than you imagined.
The city plans to sell a handful of Kew Beach waterfront homes that are too costly to repair. The properties at 3, 5, 7 and 9 Hubbard Blvd. are owned by Toronto Community Housing and are on prime real estate facing Lake Ontario and Kew-Balmy Beach.
“TCH conducted a comprehensive review of our housing stock,” says community housing spokesperson Kyle Rooks. “The goal was to see the best way to invest scarce resources to ensure quality housing is given to our tenants.”
The Real Estate Asset Investment Strategy was completed in December and recommended selling 45 homes and three buildings with 326 apartments. Before that proceeds, an implementation plan will go to the housing board in July and then needs city council approval.

Continue reading