Saturday! Saturday! Saturday! Guess what today is? Saturday! Forget the rain, forget the cold, and revel in all the Saturday glory, complete with Saturday-inspired news: St. Joseph's College nearly blown-up by long-time janitor; Mayor Ford tries to build an army for the war on the Land Transfer Tax; Riverdale Farm's fate to be decided soon; and updates about malls, subways, and cars. A little something for everyone.
As if this week’s news wasn’t explosive enough, it ended with reports that the St. Joseph’s College head custodian has been charged with attempted murder after police allege he tried to blow up the Catholic girls’ school. An investigation confirmed that a gas line that had been severed early Thursday morning in the basement of the school on Wellesley Street near Bay Street. The custodian, who’d worked at the school for the past 15 years, allegedly tried to help kitchen staff light the stove after cutting the line. Obviously there must be some way to blame the oft-vilified kilts here. The skirts, a bit too high for his taste, must have made him do it. Or something. We’ll let you know when we figure it out.
Despite estimates that the Land Transfer Tax will bring in $336 million this year, Mayor Rob Ford wants it gone. At a Toronto Real Estate Board luncheon, Mayor Ford told attendees he can’t phase out the tax unless he can cut City spending, something he needs a majority of councillors to support, so he asked members of the real estate industry to “get in councillors’ faces.” Certainly we can’t blame them if they do jump on board the lobby train—it does seem like the real estate industry needs to take a stand against the suffering caused by this tax.
The citizens’ group working to save Riverdale Farm has spent months drafting its rescue plan, which they will present to Mayor Rob Ford’s executive committee on June 12. Recommendations will include the suggestion that the site stay in City hands, funded through both public funds and private donations but without an entrance fee. Perhaps the real estate board can get in on this lobbying action as well?
If outdoor public space is just a little too quaint for you, here’s some news that might be more your speed. Toronto-area shopping malls are undergoing a major makeover. That’s right, we’re talking an all out quest to make what was once dingy, fast food-filled dark pockets of a mall into a total (fast) foodie destination. We couldn’t make this stuff up. Today, Yorkdale is unveiling its newly renovated, $35-million dining area, complete with reusable tableware and butlers, set to rival downtown’s crown jewel, the Eaton Centre.
While full subway service has resumed to Union Station, the station itself isn’t yet back to normal (with all those sharks, movie stars, and cannon balls, what did you expect?). According to CP24, escalators and elevators at Union Station are still down, and the loudspeakers, meant to provide updates, are airing static. Smug motorists, you’ve not won this round so quickly. The war on the car continues this weekend as rolling and full road closures will occur.