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Brick and cobblestone streets in Toronto

Forgotten

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Those brick edges are decades old. The city hasn't installed three rows of bricks by the curb for probably 20 years now; one row has been the standard since then. They hold up well. Granite blocks last longer and look better, though.
Are we talking about the same thing? I'm talking about the rows of bricks embedded in the sidewalk not the ones in the road surface.

As seen here:
Front between Frederick and Sherbourne

 

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Are we talking about the same thing? I'm talking about the rows of bricks embedded in the sidewalk not the ones in the road surface.
Take a look at the Streetscape Manual, it shows which streets get these brick borders to the sidewalks. It is the standard in St Lawrence to use the red bricks (tiles) but the number of rows depends on the width of the sidewalk. There is some flexibility and, in fact, on Front Street between George and Frederick the north sidewalk will be ALL Brick because of the trees. The brick will be laid (in the next few days) on a permeable surface so water can reach the tree roots. See Manual at http://www.toronto.ca/planning/urbdesign/streetscape/index.htm
 

egotrippin

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It's about time the Front reconstruction got underway. Front from Parliament to Jarvis has to be one of the worst stretches of paving in the entire city, both the sidewalks and road surface. There are a lot of bad stretches in Toronto, so that's saying a lot.
 

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It's about time the Front reconstruction got underway. Front from Parliament to Jarvis has to be one of the worst stretches of paving in the entire city, both the sidewalks and road surface. There are a lot of bad stretches in Toronto, so that's saying a lot.
They started about 5 weeks ago so your wish is granted. The new sidewalks and street light posts are just about done on the north side and they will be starting the south side next Monday or Tuesday.
 

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It's about time the Front reconstruction got underway.
It's been underway for something like 2 years. They've spent a small fortune digging up the sewers and watermains in previous years, and now that they've finished digging up the road, they can finally rebuild the road.

I wish they were going to reduce the road width, and increase the sidewalk width. There always seems to be more pedestrians along there than cars. That won't be happening though.
 

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It's been underway for something like 2 years. They've spent a small fortune digging up the sewers and watermains in previous years, and now that they've finished digging up the road, they can finally rebuild the road.

I wish they were going to reduce the road width, and increase the sidewalk width. There always seems to be more pedestrians along there than cars. That won't be happening though.
More could have been done but the sidewalk on the north side between Jarvis & George HAS been widened and there are pedestrian bump-outs at the street corners on George, Frederick, Princess and Berkeley. When these are finished they will have sitting areas and plants.
 

egotrippin

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It's been underway for something like 2 years. They've spent a small fortune digging up the sewers and watermains in previous years, and now that they've finished digging up the road, they can finally rebuild the road.

I wish they were going to reduce the road width, and increase the sidewalk width. There always seems to be more pedestrians along there than cars. That won't be happening though.
Wow, has it really been that long since I've been down there? Haha. I lived in the area for 4 years (moved away 2011) and it was truly heinous, I haven't been down in the area for so long though in seeing these pictures I just assumed it started recently. Time flies.
 

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Lower Sherbourne is being fixed up and today they are stripping off the asphalt. It reveals that most of the street was brick and the old streetcar rails that led to the TTC yard that was on the west side are being uncovered (and cut up for removal.)
 

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The old streetcar tracks were visible through the asphalt over the weekend, so it doesn't surprise me.
The streetcar tracks were visible above the asphalt for years so nobody was surprised to see them but it was not so clear - at least to me - that there was brick most of the way from Front to The Esplanade.
 

AlbertHWagstaff

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The streetcar tracks were visible above the asphalt for years so nobody was surprised to see them but it was not so clear - at least to me - that there was brick most of the way from Front to The Esplanade.
A friend of mine with an interest in transit history in that area seems to think that those rails date from about 1927 when the TTC rebuilt the track to accommodate the Lake Simcoe freight express cars as the building on Sherbourne was used as the freight terminal until the Lake Simcoe line shut down in 1930. Most of the bricks appear to be in pretty good condition after being covered for more than 50 years.
 

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It would be a nice policy to brick all of the 'lower' streets in old town and the Esplanade, as a heritage project. Dreaming I know.
 

W. K. Lis

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Brick and cobblestone streets also slow down traffic to a more manageable speed. It is the automobile lobby that forces cities to cover over the brick and cobblestones for faster speeds. The city should be considering going back to the rough surfaces where they want to slow the traffic speeds, like school zones.
 

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