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Trinity-Spadina Byelection Candidates: Adam Vaughan of the Liberal Party

Our last of three candidate interviews ahead of Monday's federal byelection.

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Adam Vaughan (left) is the Liberal candidate in Monday’s Trinity-Spadina federal by-election. Photo taken from the Adam Vaughan twitter account.

Torontoist reached out to the major candidates in the upcoming Trinity-Spadina byelection to get their views on five important federal issues. On Friday, we sat down with Adam Vaughan of the Liberal Party of Canada—he’s the former two-term city councillor for Ward 20, Trinity-Spadina and a former journalist with the CBC and CityTV. Vaughan vacated his council seat last month to seek the federal seat.

Torontoist: There seem to be two questions major questions about oilsands production in Alberta: whether or not the oil should come to market at all and, if it should come to market, how it should get there. Your leader, Justin Trudeau, seems intent on getting that resource to the market. What plan do Justin Trudeau and your Liberal party favour for doing that?

Adam Vaughan: The oil is going to get to market—all parties have committed to that, save for the Greens. The concern in Trinity-Spadina is using the Dupont rail corridor. Rail is notoriously unreliable, and under the Harper government it has become dangerous. If you don’t find a way to ship oil other than using rail, you’re going to have to use a pipeline one way or another.

The challenge is very simple: you need willing hosts. You need to respect First Nations and aboriginal communities, and you need environmental enforcement while the project is being proposed and while it’s being operated. And you need a federal government prepared to take responsibility if accidents occur. In the absence of that, everybody is nervous, especially the Americans around Keystone, folks in British Columbia around Northern Gateway [pipeline proposal], especially folks in the Ottawa Valley and east of the oilsands when it comes to Canada East [pipeline proposal], which is supported by the New Democrats.

What I find odd is that Joe Cressy and the NDP will say in Toronto that they don’t support Canada East, but their leader Thomas Mulcair will walk out of the premiers’ offices in Regina and Saskatchewan and say he agrees in principle. It’s all well and good to say one thing here and one thing there, except that it’s the modern age now. I’ll let Joe Cressy clarify his statements—he’s already had to clarify his statements a couple of times in this campaign.

They’re running a candidate in Fort McMurray right now who works in the oil patch and has called it Mother Nature’s gift to Canada. The NDP is talking out of both sides of its mouth. The Liberals have been consistent on this. Pipelines are an alternative to rail if they’re done properly.

We don’t support Northern Gateway because it lands in an extraordinarily sensitive aquatic environment. But we also have concerns about Canada East, and lands where there is no oil refining capacity. Keystone has gone through a more rigorous environmental assessment. The Americans still don’t trust the Canadian government, as it is currently configured, to operate it properly.

But it’s time we have an adult conversation about this and admit that if you don’t use a pipeline, you’re going to have to put it on rail and drive it right through Trinity-Spadina, and that has huge consequences and worries for people who live along the rail corridor. That’s why I moved a motion at city council to reinforce the speed limits, and to support [Calgary] Mayor Nenshi’s bid to have all rail companies declare, ahead of shipment, what’s moving through dense urban areas and through all communities.

There’s virtually no difference between our policy and the NDP policy. The only difference is that we speak the same way in Saskatchewan and Alberta as we do in Ontario and Quebec.

Joe Cressy claims the Liberals support Line 9, the proposal to transport oil through a pipeline that runs along north Toronto. Do the Liberals support this proposal?

We have a significant number of concerns. We haven’t ruled it out, but it hasn’t been shown to have the technical capacity to do what’s being asked of it. It’s a very old pipeline—reversing the flow is easier said than done. Until there’s a full environmental scoping of the project, and until willing hosts are found…there are just so many technical concerns outstanding. The NDP claim to have ruled things out, but they’re actually taking the exact same position—it’s just splitting hairs at this point.

We just passed the two-year anniversary of no health care to claimants and refugees. According to a study done by SickKids hospital in Toronto, refugee children’s hospital admissions doubled after Ottawa cut the Interim Federal Health Program. What, if anything, needs to be done about this?

I don’t think there’s any party in the history of Canada that has stood more sympathetically, more creatively, and more progressively on the issue of immigration than the Liberal party. The Liberal brand is a humanitarian approach to refugee and immigration processes. Reversing the Conservative policies and the punitive damages that are being delivered not just to refugee communities, but to the health-care system, is a fundamental priority and a value of the Liberal party.

The Conservatives have played this awful game of stigmatizing and scapegoating refugees, and as a result we have people living in misery in camps overseas who should be safely here in Canada. And when we land people here, we go out of our way to make their lives miserable. Every study on this has shown that since the Conservatives came to power, the mental health of refugees, not just the physical health, has been plunged into serious decline.

It’s time to change that. We have to get back to being a country that is noted around the world for its progressive immigrant and refugee policies. The Liberal party is committed to doing just that by reversing many of the steps, if not all, that the Conservatives have taken.

We live in Canada’s largest city, and 80 per cent of Canadians now live in urban areas. What’s the most important thing Ottawa can do to support cities?

This is the most important question facing Toronto, Trinity-Spadina, and the country. The issue about energy consumption is not “are we going to bring oil to market?” The question is: “What happens when it gets to market?” The most complex and the most inefficient engine ever built in dealing with greenhouse-gas emissions is the city. When you have leaky water pipes, poorly built housing, inefficient transit, you generate greenhouse gas at an alarming rate.

The climate change that this generates comes and visits your city, and does even more damage to infrastructure that is underfunded. Building better cities is why I’m running. Building better housing, transit, and getting the water infrastructure right will change the way cities operate in relation to the generation of greenhouse gas. It is as much a quality-of-life and a social-justice issue as it is an environmental issue.

The fundamental issue confronting all of us, especially in cities, is whether or not we’re going to deal with climate change. The Liberal party helped negotiate Kyoto. The Liberal party has committed to a progressive and robust urban agenda, and they have recruited people like myself across the country to deliver on that project.

We have got to turn around how cities are dealt with for environmental reasons. The payoff is that when you drive those efficiencies into transit, water, housing, when you build a strong urban agenda which also includes social policy and day care and culture policy, you will respond to the needs and aspirations of 80 per cent of all Canadians.

I’m proud to have joined the party that first put in place a ministry of municipal affairs. I’m very proud to have joined a party that, under Paul Martin in the ’90s, immediately turned back to housing after the budget was balanced. When the NDP pulled the plug on the Martin government, there was $2.4 billion on the table for public housing over the next 10 years. If that money had been allowed to flow to Toronto’s capital backlog in TCHC, we’d be housing people now, and housing them properly.

The reason I’m running, as a city councillor with eight years’ experience, who has built and overseen the development of 12 different housing programs, is that I want to get to Ottawa and deliver on these promises with real-world experience. There are programs that are small in nature now, but could be big and bold in the future, if only we had a federal government and a political party in power that was more interested in programming than in policy announcements or punishing cities.

The problem with the NDP policy is that their promise is to have a policy. We don’t need a campaign to convince people to love public transit, we need a campaign to make it cheaper, more effective, and more sustainable. We have a strategy: one per cent of GDP will be dedicated to municipal infrastructure. It will not be delivered to cities in a way that ties their hands ideologically. They will be able to spend the money as they need to in different cities where they have different transit needs.

In 2011, Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party of Canada won a majority government with just under 40 per cent of the popular vote. Harper can control votes in the House of Commons, and has appointed 58 senators after promising he would not appoint any. Yet 60 per cent of Canadians rejected him in the election that saw him gain majority rule. Is it time for electoral reform in Canada and, if so, does your party favour any replacement for the current system?

Electoral reform masks the real deficit in this country, which is a democratic one. When you make governing only about elections, you fail to capitalize on the most important part of policy, and that’s the work you do between elections. The Liberal government is committed through the transparency acts that Justin Trudeau has already introduced to make government more accountable, more transparent, and more tied to constituency. That link to constituency is critically important.

One of the problems with the general thrust of proportional representation is that individual ridings have individual needs that, if only represented through proportional representation, would get lost in the mix. The Liberal party is very concerned about fracturing the relationship between a constituency and a member of parliament.

That being said, the Liberals have already started to reform the Senate by cutting party ties to make senators stand as individuals. We have to sit down with the provinces and the public and figure out where electoral reform might make the government stronger. We haven’t ruled anything out, but we’re not immediately jumping towards proportional representation because we value how individual constituencies get their voices heard.

Democratic reform is a central piece of the Liberal party platform, but we’re not going to tell the public what they want and then try to sell it to them. We also have rejected out of hand promising a coalition government before an election. We don’t think that we should preclude the decision of voters. We will be working on an issue-by-issue basis, as we have historically, and we’ll be working with everyone in government.

The Harper government scrapped the mandatory long-form census in 2010. The head of Statistics Canada resigned in protest of the government’s decision. Many statisticians and bureaucrats say the survey that has replaced the census is inadequate for understanding the circumstances and needs of Canadians. Can we continue to govern without a long-form census, or should we bring it back?

Information is critically important to putting together the evidence to make good policy decisions. Parties that rely on ideology—that have the answer to the question first and understand the question later—run us into trouble. The long-form is a critical piece of infrastructure for government that must be returned to us as part of the tool box for making effective policy decisions.

The other side of it is that the long-form census has woefully undercounted people who live in high-rise buildings. The City of Toronto has gone to court to try and get them to recount urban areas. Many federal programs are doled out on a per-capita basis, and if you are deliberately or accidentally overlooking people who live in high-rise buildings, large urban centres in Toronto and ridings like Trinity-Spadina don’t get their fair share.

We have to use the long-form census as evidence to drive our programs forward, and I support bringing it back. But this isn’t the first attack the Tories have launched against the civil service, against science, against evidence. When you have ideology—and they’re not the only party with ideology—you tend to put ideas on the back burner because you already have the answer for the question before anyone has asked it.

This interview was edited for length and clarity.

Comments

  • McKingford

    Adam Vaughan was a great councillor, but as we see him disappear into Liberal Party talking points and policies, it’s an important reminder that individual MPs are far less important than their parties.

    The reality of proportional representation is that we would never again have a majority party in parliament, which would force parties to work more cooperatively in coalition form. We need never see another conservative government again. So it tells you all you need to know about Liberal priorities that they oppose proportional representation: they would rather alternate majority governments with the Conservatives than enact a much fairer system but which would cause them to have to cooperate with other parties (and cost them any chance at their own majority ever again).

    • Andrew

      I completely agree. I love Adam Vaughan, but I can’t support the way Justin Trudeau is running the Liberal party.

    • OgtheDim

      Just to be clear – that grassroots candidate was Christine Innes? She who is married to the guy who keeps running there but losing? The guy who threatened party members if they didn’t support Innes? The couple who think Trinity Spadina is a personal fiefdom?

      Hey, I’m all for open noms, but when the candidate is getting there through thuggery…it ain’t open.

      • McKingford

        Look, I’m obviously not a Liberal, but that’s entirely after-the-fact justification that appears to be without any basis – Trudeau was defending his star candidate. I don’t care one way or the other about Christine Innes (I’m sure there are better candidates), but either you are a party committed to open nominations (and live with the consequences, one being you don’t always nominate the best candidate) or you aren’t.

        Put another way, the only real “democratic reform” Trudeau committed to was open nominations, which he immediately resiled from at the very first opportunity.

  • ah123abc

    How is Adam Vaughan a great councillor? In his years here, I’ve seen him pick strange populist fights (artificial turf), approve 99% of condo development projects, ignore requests to alleviate problems associated with such rapid growth, do nothing about gridlock or TTC capacity issues even when Andy Byford makes a suggestion about parking on King St, yet he is always ready to get in front of the camera ready with a Rob Ford zinger. Maybe if he spent less time trying to think of smartass things to say about the stupid mayor and cozying with developers, he’d actually be doing his job. If this is how he is, he is not getting my vote as my MP.

    • OgtheDim

      Any councillor that tries to take on the BIA’s along King street over street parking will lose the next election.

      The business owners there have the exact same attitude as “we in Scarborough deserve a subway”.

      If residents in the area got organized and demanded change to make King Street livable, this might change.

      • ah123abc

        It’s not to the businesses’ interest when people are stuck in streetcars for 20 mins just trying to get between Bay and Spadina while cars are jammed in. I’ve written to Vaughan about this. Even Andy Byford felt a suggestion had to be made about rush hour parking be suspended. Apparently, Vaughan’s solution is to do nothing, not even to do a collaborative consultation to see what solutions there are. Status quo is okay as long as he gets to approve more condos. I have friends who live on King and Spadina who are concerned with the upcoming condos popping up. Citizens can only do so much, and it is poor form to say unless residents rise up the representative has no role in it until then. He was elected to represent the Ward

        • OgtheDim

          Restauranteurs don’t care about people being stuck in streetcars.

          They want parking for their driving customers and to be able to drop off supplies.

          They don’t care two figs for people on the King car.

          And if they don’t get that parking, they scheme to get somebody else in council.

          That is the unfortunate reality – unless residents make enough of a stink that councillors will not feel the need to bow to the BIA’s.

          City politics is like this in every ward. You want to know why Mammo keeps getting elected? BIA’s and resident associations in the area all like him because he gets them stuff from city budgets. Community centres…giant flag poles….whatever it takes.

          Same thing happens on King West.

          If resident associations actually put up enough of a stink, King West would lose a lot of the parking allowed on it.

          Until they do, pols will listen to those who affect their elections chances more – the BIA’s.

          • ah123abc

            So you are saying Adam Vaughan only listens to business but not to the residents of the Ward. That’s pretty much what I am saying, too. Vaughan could have done more to reconcile the interests of residents and BIA. When people avoid the area, it’s no good for businesses. It is Vaughan’s job to unify competing interests and come up with a community-based solution. Having intense gridlock and leaving it to status quo as the area explodes in growth is no way to represent a Ward. But of course Vaughan didn’t do anything.

            Kristyn Wong-Tam would be a good example since she used to be involved in the BIA and was a business owner herself. Yet she didn’t forget to advocate for the interest of the community.

            It’s pretty poor form to say a councillor didn’t do anything about community interests because the residents didn’t raise enough of a stink compared to businesses that do. That alone makes Adam Vaughan a poor choice. Thank you for making my point.

          • OgtheDim

            Meh….I’m not for either candidate.

            My point was in rebuttal to your idea that Vaughan wouldn’t help out the King street issues.

            Real politik indicates that’s not doable.

            The same real politik that had KWT be one of the most disingenous and unconstructive of councillors about food trucks.

            KWT was pathetically ANTI-food truck in that discussion.

            Why?

            Because her local BIA’s would have worked against her in this election to get her out, based on that issue alone.

            But…hey…you live in your fantasy of pols being above worrying about getting elected again.

          • ah123abc

            And you can’t argue the issue on Adam Vaughan by staying on topic.

            Your rebuttal is exactly what I was saying: That Vaughan cares solely about his career and the interests of big corporations and developers while trying to portray himself as the councillor for the vote of people he supposedly represents. He has done nothing to earn that vote. Maybe he should give corporations a vote instead.

            And yes, business concerns are something to consider. But are you saying that this trumps everything else? I’m not saying democracy is perfect but even that is more cynical than I can muster. Why even have elections? Why not go back to the model of councils composing of affluent citizens who are self-anointed?

            And what’s this business about food trucks? I am talking about quality of living standards in this Ward. After I thanked you for making my point, you start wavering about candidates and drifting off to off-topic issues.

            I said this to you and I’ll say it again: Stop looking at interests of the Ward as business v. residents. We all live and co-exist in the same space. Gridlock, overcapacity, etc affects us all. Adam Vaughan was elected to deal with them. His job was to find common ground solutions. But he was too busy promoting himself to special interests to worry about “getting elected,” as you claim. Again, you proved my point that he is raising his profile by mugging for the camera and kowtowing to developers so he can one day elevate to running for MP.

            It’s certainly nice to know we are the same people he ignored that he now wants to vote for him for screwing us on the way up.

          • dsmithhfx

            Are you pro some other candidate, or just anti- Vaughan?

          • ah123abc

            When Vaughan was first elected, I thought he might be a good councillor. He had a strong profile and his journalistic background might be useful. But over his years here, I have discovered that is absolutely not the case. The only people he cared about are those that can raise his profile with populist causes and developers. And of course, Rob Ford was his perfect foil, always ready for the cameras with a smartass zinger about the stupid mayor. I’m not for any candidate. But I’m not voting Adam Vaughan because I’ve experienced his style of representation.

          • dsmithhfx

            Fair enough. I instinctively mistrust journos who become politicians. It feels like a betrayal. But you haven’t answered my question. Which other candidate, if any, do you support and will vote for? You are an eligible voter in Trinity-Spadina, right? You do intend to vote, right? Otherwise, you are just an odious little troll exercising a personal grudge.

          • ah123abc

            Since you just made an argument that I’m evil, you automatically lose any credibility to continue the debate. Go back to where you came from, Troll.

          • OgtheDim

            Umm…………I`m talking about how pols don`t do stuff because of power bases in their wards.

            That`s my chosen topic.

            I`m arguing that issue, only.

            You seem to want me to say `Vaughan is BAD BAD BAD“

            Internet debate don`t work like that.

          • ah123abc

            The troll comment was directed at dsmithhfx.

            My argument was that Adam Vaughan was too busy cozying up to developers by approving pretty much all development, mugging for the camera with a Rob Ford zinger, or picking niche populist causes to fight so he can get his name in the media. However, he has failed in his duties to manage the expansion in terms of handling quality of living issues related to unprecedented growth and development. He has ignored residents’ call for confronting gridlock and overcapacity; he has failed to represent constituents by finding common ground solutions that satisfy both business and resident needs.

            The fact that you keep insisting he is doing this to mollify the developers and business interests essentially confirms my point.

            As an aside, food trucks is not the topic. But since you mentioned it, KWT placed a limit of the number of permits for food trucks because she wanted to keep it to 125 for the first 12 months and to prevent big chain businesses from snapping the permits up against small owners. The city as a whole is still hopelessly behind on this issue and it seems to me rather anti-small business owners/entrepreneurship. But that isn’t what we are discussing.

            I think Vaughan is bad because I have lived under his time as a councillor in this Ward. I was hopeful when he was first elected. But I finally saw through his veneer of self-promotion and inaction in favour of “power bases.”

            Unfortunately, because of name recognition – no thanks due to his self-promoting ways, he stands a good chance of winning. My only hope is when the federal riding splits for the next election, I won’t be stuck with Adam Vaughan as my MP. This is three-for-three in terms of formerly CBC associated journalists turning out to be bad news in politics.

          • OgtheDim

            Food trucks are `the topic` if we are discussing what I`m discussing – pols who listen to special interests over the interests of the city.

          • ah123abc

            I am talking about quality of living issues related to managing growth and expansion.

            But since we are on this topic, thanks again for confirming my point that Adam Vaughan listens only to special interests than to those of his regular constituents, the schmucks he wants to vote for him in his ascendance to power.

    • dsmithhfx

      I think Vaughan was on the whole, a good councillor, but not a great one. He was a maverick and a showboater who routinely allowed himself to become embroiled in puerile and degrading council spectacles.

      It will be interesting to see how he would fare under federal party discipline if elected.

      • ah123abc

        He’s not Rob Ford bad. But that isn’t saying much. I, for one, am not willing to give him that chance as an MP. He hasn’t done well enough to deserve a promotion.

        • dsmithhfx

          I don’t live in the riding. I think he’d probably make a good MP.

          • ah123abc

            Based on what? A hunch? Intuition? Rolling the dice? Picking a name out of a hat?

          • dsmithhfx

            None of the above.

          • ah123abc

            So essentially you based your opinion on nothing. That is basically ignorance.

          • dsmithhfx

            Wrong.

          • ah123abc

            You don’t live in the riding and you can only guess he’d be a good MP based on undisclosed reasons. The ignorance here is you think that even makes an argument.

          • dsmithhfx

            That you can even think of disagreeing with me proves you are either stupid, insane or uninformed. Or evil. Yeah, you must be evil!

          • ah123abc

            Troll.

          • dsmithhfx

            Have a mirror.

          • ah123abc

            Troll.

          • dsmithhfx
    • Steveinto

      Adam Vaughn has done well with the entertainment district, It and its
      surrounding districts was once, not long ago, an area that comprised of 2/3
      parking lots,unused and derelict industrial buildings and warehouse,
      with great swaths of unused railroad land adjacent to it. The city rezoned the area to allow residential along with commercial.. The result was a large boon in construction, there is lot off space to fill. He has worked with his constituents and the developers to try and get the best mix and projects. It is a pleasant mix of old and new, little has been lost in the
      rebuilding of this area of Toronto. destined, and on its way, to be a an
      important tourist destination generating revenue for the city. That makes him a good Councillor.

      • ah123abc

        So you are proving my point that he only cares to greenlight pretty much any commercial project and development that comes along. Well, the other part of his job is to ensure this growth and expansion does not come at the expense of quality of living. He is the councillor to the people, not the corporations and developers. I am not saying development is bad. I am saying he, as the councillor to the Ward, needs to balance out the interests of both sides and ensure amid the unrelenting growth, there should also be a vision for urban planning, consideration for capacity increase in services and public transit, resolutions for problems that arise stemming from such density, etc. Adam Vaughan, on the other hand, is too busy injecting himself into the artificial turf issue at UofT or mugging for the camera with some Rob Ford smartass remark to do his job to the fullest.

      • ah123abc

        He certainly did and a lot more. The trouble is he appears to be indiscriminately letting developers run amok without dealing with issues that come with density and capacity. It’s easy to greenlighting and rezone for commercial purpose and profitability. It’s quite another to plan and balance interests while putting some reins on unbridled development. Growth and expansion is good, but the true test comes down to managing it properly. That is where Adam Vaughan fails.

  • Guest

    Adam Vaughan sat there and lied bald faced to Toronto Community Housing residents to gain their support for revitalization (a good thing) while downplaying the impact this will have on their current neighbourhood once it was all finished. Vaughan promised residents he would be there from beginning to end to ensure that residents wouldn’t be taken for a ride, and then walked away when a better opportunity came up.
    Vaughan points to his important work during his time as City Councilor on public housing in his resume, but has not made ONE reference nor ONE single appearance at any TCH property since this by-election started.

    • OgtheDim

      Do you have a GPS on him to prove that last point?

      (As for the espresso machine, given people come into his office, what do you want him to give them – a couple of loonies for a coke out of a machine?)

      Look, he’s got serious issues to deal with getting past the tendency to do the quick remark.

      Maybe that would be the better tactic then saying he abandoned based on……?

      • 1derer

        I agree. I’ve always found complaints against things like espresso machines to be strange. Somehow CEOs are justified in getting millions of dollars in pay to ‘attract top candidates’ “because capitalism” and yet the people who run our societies are supposed to live like monks? There is a balance between excessive spending and austerity that accomplishes nothing but the deterioration of our country’s political fecundity.

        I don’t support largesse (see: the Nova Scotia MLA spending scandal), but having an espresso machine seems like one of those things that is conducive to a high functioning work environment where one hopes to hold high level meetings with the aforementioned CEOs.

        The United Kingdom has been famously stingy with its infrastructure, and that hasn’t eliminated waste, rather it’s created a system where largesse is given to Prime Ministers by corporations exploiting ethical loopholes. See: The last three UK prime ministers have, for example, all found themselves tempted into meetings held on Rupert Murdoch’s yacht.

        • eternaloptimist1971

          OKay, I accept that the espresso machine reference was poorly used.

      • eternaloptimist1971

        Check his twitter feed, press articles, etc… not one reference to Toronto Housing. I also have a daily Google Alert set up scanning for any mention of Toronto Community Housing so yeah…. I kind of do know what I’m talking about in the last point

  • eternaloptimist1971

    Adam Vaughan is a smooth talking opportunist who lied bald faced to Toronto Community Housing residents to gain their support for revitalization while unashamedly downplaying the impact this would would have on their communities. He told residents he would be here from beginning to the end, in order to ensure that they weren’t taken for granted, but instead jumped ship when a better opportunity came up. Since then he has not made made ONE reference or made ONE appearance at any TCH property, but has taken it for granted that he can use his “accomplishments” with TCH as a highlight on his political resume

  • NotAnHeir

    Adam is the only real option here and everyone knows it. The usual paid PMO Trudeau-bashers are irrationally, obsessively desperate and disingenuous. Adam is the best choice without doubt.

  • knesh

    Atkinson coop has been a disaster ever since the city decided to bulldoze more than 70% of Alexandra park to build a designated community for the poor. In most parts of the world they would call this a ghetto. Interestingly, neither Adam nor the TCHC see it this way. Nope, thousands of people living under the poverty line in one city block for over 40 years, is not a ghetto. In fact, more than 70% of Alexandra park are in public housing and/or living under the poverty line.

    Coincidentally, two of the most violent Toronto gangs operate out of Atkinson coop/Alexandra park for over 3 decades. Adam and the TCHC never thought this was a worry, so much so, they refused to make any criminal statistics related to Atkinson public. Yes I asked.

    So how did Adam get this revitalization project through the political process? Adam cuts a deal for Zero displacement, gives developers hundreds of millions of dollars worth of public land, somehow convinces the council to break city all the local city bylaws so the developer can build 15-20 story buildings and then tells the public it isn’t costing the taxpayer a dime!!…… oh wait, he got caught in that little lie – he later had it retracted. Sweet deal anyways! (I wonder what the poor sods who spend their life savings on these little “boxes in the sky” will think, looking down on the hundreds of public housing town homes.) Adam doesn’t seem to care. Adam seems to think that public housing functions outside of the economic realities the rest of us work under. So if you want a town house in the city, slow down, stop making so much money and apply for one of those million dollar TCHC town homes!!

    Another interesting fact. Zero displacement & the rest of these little details were promised before a public meeting was held. Yes, I know this because I was told it was non negociable well before any meetings. Soooo, let’s not call this consultation, let’s call it dictation. So much for a little thing we in the west call democracy. Adam didn’t think the surrounding community was worth it I suppose.

    The worst part of this deal is that it was mostly fuelled by political agendas. There are studies on high density social housing being conducted at the University of Toronto, Ryerson, the university of Chicago and Havard that has been quite critical of the impact of these mixed use projects but these have been completely ignored by Adam and the TCHC. Oh those intellects getting in the way of our monumental projects!!

    It’s rather obvious Adam would rather pump his own political ambitions than commit to understanding the complexity behind the issues he has been confronted with. I suppose this encapsulates Adam. He’s the Coles notes candidate. Lucky for him he has had Rob Ford to make him look good! (How is that banning guns from Toronto going Adam? Oh? Toronto doesn’t have borders?)

  • Allen G

    Is Adam Vaughn merely NDP Lite ?
    When he loses, now, or in the 2015 election will he run again in the city?
    Chow says that she will seek the nomination (NDP) in 2015 IF she loses in October.
    It was an NDP riding when I lived there, and was until Chow stepped down, why would it change ?
    Vote people.

  • HotDang

    He used to have his own opinions. Weird.

    • knesh

      And most of his opinions were regurgitated from his coles notes. Oh well, at least he can go lie in Ottawa and push his antiqued 60′s view of socialism. Thank you for destroying Alexandra park Adam!!!

  • AceMoDo4

    Well, that wasn’t biased or anything, LOL. I especially enjoyed the part about the CPC majority being with only 40% of the vote, whilehistorically the federal Liberals achieved the same outcome with the same majority, and just 2 weeks ago, the we were given a Liberal majority government in Ontario with only 37.6% of the vote.

    Pretty sad journalism.