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Downtown Yonge

44 North

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Samuel R. Delany definitely isn't anyone's choice of lighthearted reading - even for adults. Proceed with extreme caution.



The low income areas to the East is undergoing pretty rapid trasition, and I suspect it will accelerate when Seaton House gets downsized and redeveloped. As to the issues at Y+D - I wonder how much of it is discharge from St. Mike's.

lol at discharge. Feel you chose your words carefully.

With regards to Y+D, do wonder if it is seedier, or if it just seems that way. OK maybe there's more seedier *people*, but let's think about the ratios of undesirable to normal. As bad as some might see it, I think it's still a lot better. For no other reason than the numbers of normal people have largely outnumbered the seedier people relative to past years/decades. It's still a wild place, and depending of how you want to play with stats maybe *seedier*. But no question it's jam packed with tourists, locals, students, shoppers more than ever before. Which come to think of it may help the seedier stand out more. That guy with an extension cord for a belt is no longer a Yonge Street denizen, but one of them seedy folk.

Regardless will be loving the miniatures.
 

AlvinofDiaspar

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lol at discharge. Feel you chose your words carefully.

With regards to Y+D, do wonder if it is seedier, or if it just seems that way. OK maybe there's more seedier *people*, but let's think about the ratios of undesirable to normal. As bad as some might see it, I think it's still a lot better. For no other reason than the numbers of normal people have largely outnumbered the seedier people relative to past years/decades. It's still a wild place, and depending of how you want to play with stats maybe *seedier*. But no question it's jam packed with tourists, locals, students, shoppers more than ever before. Which come to think of it may help the seedier stand out more. That guy with an extension cord for a belt is no longer a Yonge Street denizen, but one of them seedy folk.

Regardless will be loving the miniatures.

Actually I do mean what I say - we know about the hospital-streets revolving door issue given how we separate health (read medical) and social care.

AoD
 
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Bayer

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I have to reiterate that the homeless and mentally ill might make us uncomfortable (I certainly have had my share of awkward/scary interactions), but they are citizens and they have the right to use our public spaces. As for Yonge-Dundas, it is basically a barren space often devoid of street furniture when it is not periodically privatized. Not a successful public square at all.
 

leftfieldto

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What Bayer said. "Those People" are as much a part of the city as you or I. And given that they're homeless, i.e. nowhere to live, they must exist somewhere. If you don't like it, vote for a government that will provide the necessary housing for these people, as well as adequate support services. If not, go back to your "safe places' and stop denigrating our homeless.
 

interchange42

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Some of you guys are making it sound like YDSquare is akin to Queen & Sherbourne. That's an area that's got it bad—YDSquare is nothing comparatively, I never ever think twice about walking through it, have never had an issue, and 10 Dundas East is thronged by your average joes all day. The intersection of Yonge and Dundas has more pedestrian traffic than any other one in the city, and there's no reason that anyone should be concerned. It boggles my mind that some of you seem to think the area might deter people from visiting an attraction within the building.

42
 

AlvinofDiaspar

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Some of you guys are making it sound like YDSquare is akin to Queen & Sherbourne. That's an area that's got it bad—YDSquare is nothing comparatively, I never ever think twice about walking through it, have never had an issue, and 10 Dundas East is thronged by your average joes all day. The intersection of Yonge and Dundas has more pedestrian traffic than any other one in the city, and there's no reason that anyone should be concerned. It boggles my mind that some of you seem to think the area might deter people from visiting an attraction within the building.

42

I do think that the scale of the issue has grown over the past few years at YDS and along the Yonge corridor south of Bloor. That's not a reason to turn it into a narrative about how it is the fault of the safe injection site (and by extension, that is shouldn't exist) - but it is important to remain cognizant of these changes. I would also NOT be complacent about the impact of bad reviews and press vis-a-vis tourism either.

Let's be blunt - YDS and envrion as it is is unappealing in so many ways - the streetscape is a mess, infrastructure haphazard and insufficient, the feeling of safety (if not the actual practice of it) is often wanting. Intrusive (if not offensive) amplified speech is not dealt with. The whole area is NOT Toronto's best foot forward.

(As a casual case in point towards the level of indifference and downright neglect - there is a pair of runners hanging from the power cables on the north side of the street, right by the ex-Forever 21 store since Raptors won the NBA championship. No one has been exacerbated enough to remove it for more than 3 months. In what is supposed to be a prime tourist area.)

AoD
 
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AlvinofDiaspar

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Actually the Mcdonalds at Yonge and Grosvenor (a block north of college) is a popular hangout for the homeless. It is at the point where they have to hire security overnight because of loitering, drug use and the safety of their staff.

I believe they did the same for the flagship McD's at Yonge just north of Dundas as well. In this instance it is unreasonable to expect the private sector to deal with issues that the public sector should be addressing and have failed utterly to do so.

AoD
 
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Northern Light

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A few thoughts here:

1) Some of you must be younger than I picture, LOL............because anyone who thinks Yonge near Dundas is seedy today, surely wasn't walking there in the '80s................it's downright Disney now, by comparison.

2) I'm entirely with @interchange42 in saying I feel safe walking through this space at pretty much any hour of the day; that's not to say it's risk-free, but no space is...........

I will grant, that I'm a middle-aged man, who grew up in Toronto, and who doesn't scare all that easy (jumped out of a perfectly good airplane at 10,000ft......with a parachute........LOL) .... So I do understand that for women; those who are more frail or those who are simply not used to a grittier landscape, this area may well seem intimidating at times.

3) If the goal is a completely sanitized landscape, the proverbial Disney theme park at any time day or night; I'm not convinced that is a reasonable or achievable goal. That does not mean as @AlvinofDiaspar pointed out that the current state might not be somewhat problematic to some tourists (and locals), some of the time.

4) The concern about those who are mentally ill, suffering from addiction and/or homeless ought not to be about unsightliness or sketchiness. It ought to be how we as a society have failed to afford these folks the help they need.

I'm not actually a big fan of harm-reduction sites; that said, I don't support their closure at this time either. I think we need to address both 'root causes'; making it so that fewer people face these challenges in the future; and we need to make sure treatment programs are in place, such that anyone who wants help can get it on the same day they ask, and not be placed on a waiting list.

Once we have the above in place, and once we shift personal possession and use of assorted substances from the criminal law to public health/civil law; then we can reconsider whether harm-reduction sites are the best way to provide assistance, and/or hopefully, find that there's substantially less demand for them, and that the problem is moot.

But that day is not upon us, nor is there an immediate prospect of same.

5). Finally on the broader question of aesthetics in the area.........the streetscape renewal for Yonge IS coming and will enhance the appearance of this area substantially. It won't fix 10 Dundas, sigh.....but one thing at at time.
 
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Richard White

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There's still an evangelist, an Islamic counterpart of said evangelist, and a Falun Gong practitioner at Yonge-Dundas Square. It is interesting how they get along with each other, despite having different beliefs.

Sarko is still the best.

Beeeeeeeeeeeeeelllliiiiiiieeeeevvvvvvvveeeeeee in the lord Jesus Christ.
 

AlvinofDiaspar

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There's still an evangelist, an Islamic counterpart of said evangelist, and a Falun Gong practitioner at Yonge-Dundas Square. It is interesting how they get along with each other, despite having different beliefs.

Yeah and did their part turning the corner into a audio hellscape for everyone else. Sounds about right.

AoD
 

Jasmine18

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As a young woman, I do not feel Yonge and Dundas is safe at night time.

I did not feel this at Times Square which was patrolled by police 24/7.

I am not shaming the street people, but imo at night time Yonge and Dundas become very sketchy and unsafe to a lot of people.

Now to some of you, this is just the flavours of city life, but I do think such an important area should not make people feel that way at night :)
 

Northern Light

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As a young woman, I do not feel Yonge and Dundas is safe at night time.

I did not feel this at Times Square which was patrolled by police 24/7.

I am not shaming the street people, but imo at night time Yonge and Dundas become very sketchy and unsafe to a lot of people.

Now to some of you, this is just the flavours of city life, but I do think such an important area should not make people feel that way at night :)

So, I'm not unsympathetic to your concern.

A sincere question then, what in your mind would make you feel safe/safer at that location? If everything stayed the same, but there were, 2, or 4 police officers highly visible would that be fine?

Or are you wanting to see certain people not be there anymore? If the latter, how would you imagine that being achieved? (people could be arrested, in theory, for open drug use, or public intoxication or ticketed for loitering)........but as a public square is really meant for loitering, there is a harm reduction site there, and public intoxication charges are typically reserved to those actively causing trouble...........

Is there something else? Lighting, Sightlines?, Design?

I would suggest to you the area denizens of Times Square are no more or less savoury than those at YDS. Is it merely the extra cops? The open sightlines?
 

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