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St Lawrence Market

Andy_in_Toronto

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Some photo of today on Wellington St. How will those restaurants survive this mess?
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daniel_kryz

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Toronto Hydro said that they had not approved the placement of the streetlights!
Did they not approve of the location of the streetlights, or the actual streetlight design? Because of we're going to end up with cobras or acorn lamps, I am going to lose my mind!
 

DSC

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Did they not approve of the location of the streetlights, or the actual streetlight design? Because of we're going to end up with cobras or acorn lamps, I am going to lose my mind!
Location, there will be tall and short Victorians - paid for with s37 money and the BIA. Toronto Hydro really needs to be 'exposed' for the obstructionist anti-urban design thugs that they are!
 

daniel_kryz

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Location, there will be tall and short Victorians - paid for with s37 money and the BIA. Toronto Hydro really needs to be 'exposed' for the obstructionist anti-urban design thugs that they are!
I really hope so. Ik it's speculation, but they have been fighting back against attractive lighting projects. I strongly feel that they have to be reined in, and I hope KWT (or anyone who answers) will agree when I call her tomorrow. Sadly, I already know of one progressive councillor, Mike Layton, who disagreed with me when I emailed him last year, stating that "a City full of varying lighting standards would be expensive and difficult to maintain".
 

DSC

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I really hope so. Ik it's speculation, but they have been fighting back against attractive lighting projects. I strongly feel that they have to be reined in, and I hope KWT (or anyone who answers) will agree when I call her tomorrow. Sadly, I already know of one progressive councillor, Mike Layton, who disagreed with me when I emailed him last year, stating that "a City full of varying lighting standards would be expensive and difficult to maintain".
For about 7 years I have been on a 'streetlighting group' with other St Lawrence reps from Wards 10 and 13 - it has made VERY little progress in many years, though both Councillors Cressy and Wong-Tam and their staff are very supportive. (It is organised by the Councillors.)
To be fair to Toronto Hydro Street Lighting (THSL), Councillor Layton is right, there are FAR too many different styles of both streetlight pole and luminaire in the City - the City's Streetscape Manual lists 21 'standard styles", 36 "special" styles and a further 36 that belong to BIAs but are maintained by THSL. Nobody is suggesting we need that many and everyone agrees there needs to be more standardisation but it has been a VERY uphill battle to get THSL to agree to anything except tall cobras and tall acorns (and at our last meeting, pre-covid, they told us that acorns no longer meet standards and we would be seeing only cobras!
 

daniel_kryz

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For about 7 years I have been on a 'streetlighting group' with other St Lawrence reps from Wards 10 and 13 - it has made VERY little progress in many years, though both Councillors Cressy and Wong-Tam and their staff are very supportive. (It is organised by the Councillors.)
To be fair to Toronto Hydro Street Lighting (THSL), Councillor Layton is right, there are FAR too many different styles of both streetlight pole and luminaire in the City - the City's Streetscape Manual lists 21 'standard styles", 36 "special" styles and a further 36 that belong to BIAs but are maintained by THSL. Nobody is suggesting we need that many and everyone agrees there needs to be more standardisation but it has been a VERY uphill battle to get THSL to agree to anything except tall cobras and tall acorns (and at our last meeting, pre-covid, they told us that acorns no longer meet standards and we would be seeing only cobras!
Wow! So why don't Cressy and Wong Tam just introduce a motion at Council to redesign the Streetscape Manual and make Toronto Hydro comply? Btw, I think it'd be great if we used an updated version of the acorns for all areas not covered by special lighting, one that uses a similar shape as a nod to the city's history with these lights along with more elegant materiality. One of my favourite projects is Los Angeles' full-on replacement of its standard streetlights.
 

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Wow! So why don't Cressy and Wong Tam just introduce a motion at Council to redesign the Streetscape Manual and make Toronto Hydro comply? Btw, I think it'd be great if we used an updated version of the acorns for all areas not covered by special lighting, one that uses a similar shape as a nod to the city's history with these lights along with more elegant materiality. One of my favourite projects is Los Angeles' full-on replacement of its standard streetlights.
The problem is (apart from $$$) that when David Miller was Mayor, the City sold the streetlights to Toronto Hydro and it turned out that THSL paid for a pile of outdated and broken junk (they are not happy a decade later.) In addition, Toronto has two sections (distributing hydro to homes and businesses and street lighting.) The distribution part is regulated and $$ earned there cannot be used for street lighting. Streetlighting is paid for by 'the customer" - yes the City - and, of course, the City does not want to pay for 'fancy stuff' or pay to upgrade the basic equipment. (LED lights anyone?) If the City paid THSL more to do more it would all be solved but until 'we' put our money where our mouths are the Streetscape Manual is not worth the paper it's written on. (That said, it is clearly unrealistic to expect anyone to keep spares and inventory for about 100 variations of street lights.)
 

daniel_kryz

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The problem is (apart from $$$) that when David Miller was Mayor, the City sold the streetlights to Toronto Hydro and it turned out that THSL paid for a pile of outdated and broken junk (they are not happy a decade later.) In addition, Toronto has two sections (distributing hydro to homes and businesses and street lighting.) The distribution part is regulated and $$ earned there cannot be used for street lighting. Streetlighting is paid for by 'the customer" - yes the City - and, of course, the City does not want to pay for 'fancy stuff' or pay to upgrade the basic equipment. (LED lights anyone?) If the City paid THSL more to do more it would all be solved but until 'we' put our money where our mouths are the Streetscape Manual is not worth the paper it's written on. (That said, it is clearly unrealistic to expect anyone to keep spares and inventory for about 100 variations of street lights.)
Kinda weird that David Miller, a progressive although not very beneficial mayor, would do such a thing. And I thought it was Hydro's fault for not caring about aesthetics! I'm wondering... why can't the city just start paying for whatever streetlights it desires, instead of making great plans with no money behind them? There are many councillors who care about the public realm, so why haven't THEY introduced a motion to give Toronto Hydro the money required for nice streetlights? European cities clearly care enough about this to make custom orders. I doubt it would make much of a dent in our budget.

But just to express my views, I don't think the Streetscape Manual is followed by divisions or even maintained enough to be a credible source of information. Just look at the city's plans (OP, sec plans, public realm plans, urban design guidelines) and then look at the Streetscape Manual. Usually, the manual is falling behind and offers no technical guidance to achieving the city's approved plans. To add to that, city divisions often don't follow the manual (ex TTC's replacement of Spadina's signature streetcar poles & station railings with utilitarian poles & barriers) and then there are BIAs & other entities who produce their own Streetscape Manuals without any consideration for how they integrate with the rest of the city. And on another note, much of the manual's standards are outdated, at least in terms of aesthetics, such as the bollards & fences or the Financial District's abhorrent (yes I'm very passionate) streetlights. We used to have a defacto city-wide pedestrian light, the Type II, but now it's usually ignored in new developments + city projects and we no longer have a city-wide standard for pedestrian lights! Overall, the Streetscape Manual is a complete mess that isn't updated, isn't comprehensive, isn't followed by Toronto Hydro, and is often ignored by the city's own departments.
 
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Northern Light

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Kinda weird that David Miller, a progressive although not very beneficial mayor, would do such a thing. And I thought it was Hydro's fault for not caring about aesthetics! I'm wondering... why can't the city just start paying for whatever streetlights it desires, instead of making great plans with no money behind them? There are many councillors who care about the public realm, so why haven't THEY introduced a motion to give Toronto Hydro the money required for nice streetlights? European cities clearly care enough about this to make custom orders. I doubt it would make much of a dent in our budget.

But just to express my views, I don't think the Streetscape Manual is followed by divisions or even maintained enough to be a credible source of information. Just look at the city's plans (OP, sec plans, public realm plans, urban design guidelines) and then look at the Streetscape Manual. Usually, the manual is falling behind and offers no technical guidance to achieving the city's approved plans. To add to that, city divisions often don't follow the manual (ex TTC's replacement of Spadina's signature streetcar poles & station railings with utilitarian poles & barriers) and then there are BIAs & other entities who produce their own Streetscape Manuals without any consideration for how they integrate with the rest of the city. And on another note, much of the manual's standards are outdated, at least in terms of aesthetics, such as the bollards & fences or the Financial District's abhorrent (yes I'm very passionate) streetlights. We used to have a defacto city-wide pedestrian light, the Type II, but now it's usually ignored in new developments + city projects and we no longer have a city-wide standard for pedestrian lights! Overall, the Streetscape Manual is a complete mess that isn't updated, isn't comprehensive, isn't followed by Toronto Hydro, and is often ignored by the city's own departments.

I'm passionate about good urban design too; and have a particular fondness for good street light design.

I understand the desire to offer customization to BIAs etc........though as @DSC points out we simply have too much of that, including customizations for no apparent reason in certain areas.

Given my choice, I would largely reduce Toronto to

3 heritage styles of streetlights, full-height and pedestrian scale.

1 style based on the acorn fixture

1 modern style.

That's it

For customization, I would allow different colours (pre-determined selection) on paintable poles.

For acorn lights, which I think should have a non-painted pole, I would allow painted brackets and bases.

Examples follow:

Heritage styles:

1) St. Lawrence - Victorian

1623675243513.png


1623675317776.png


2) What I call eastern beaches Deco

1623675845747.png


This one could have a full-height version (I'm not aware of the City having any off hand); it could also be coloured black, burgundy, forest green etc.


3) Sunnyside Heritage (the lighting on the boardwalk on the Western Beaches)

1623676352942.png


Standard Acrorn Fixture. I think this should be modeled on the nicer ones on University Avenue.

1623676483888.png


Notice the decorative base element

1623676527564.png


These could be given different colours, matching w/the bracket, either in painted, or metallic (copper-coloured, oxidized copper, bronze etc)

****

I couldn't really find a good, streamlined LED one I liked; but I think it makes sense to have that for more contemporary communities.

That said.......none of this grey paint business on the poles.

Black by default; other colours if area businesses want them.
 
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Northern Light

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*cross-posted link to Shabby Public Realm thread *

I posted this in the above thread this morning.........but it seems a good fit here today:

 

Richard White

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I'm passionate about good urban design too; and have a particular fondness for good street light design.

I understand the desire to offer customization to BIAs etc........though as @DSC points out we simply have too much of that, including customizations for no apparent reason in certain areas.

Given my choice, I would largely reduce Toronto to

3 heritage styles of streets, full-height and pedestrian scale.

1 style based on the acorn fixture

1 modern style.

That's it

For customization, I would allow different colours (pre-determined selection) on paintable poles.

For acorn lights, which I think should have a non-painted pole, I would allow painted brackets and bases.

Examples follow:

Heritage styles:

1) St. Lawrence - Victorian

View attachment 327870

View attachment 327871

2) What I call eastern beaches Deco

View attachment 327872

This one could have a full-height version (I'm not aware of the City having any off hand); it could also be coloured black, burgundy, forest green etc.


3) Sunnyside Heritage (the lighting on the boardwalk on the Western Beaches)

View attachment 327873

Standard Acrorn Fixture. I think this should be modeled on the nicer ones on University Avenue.

View attachment 327874

Notice the decorative base element

View attachment 327875

These could be given different colours, matching w/the bracket, either in painted, or metallic (copper-coloured, oxidized copper, bronze etc)

****

I couldn't really find a good, streamlined LED one I liked; but I think it makes sense to have that for more contemporary communities.

That said.......none of this grey paint business on the poles.

Black by default; other colours if area businesses want them.

Honestly, 1 uniform design should be the norm rather than a hodgepodge of styles.

I still say we need full stadium lighting on the streets at night. I am thinking 150000 lumens per square metre.
 

Northern Light

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Honestly, 1 uniform design should be the norm rather than a hodgepodge of styles.

I still say we need full stadium lighting on the streets at night. I am thinking 150000 lumens per square metre.

What an awful thought.

You not only won't be able to see the stars; you won't be able to see 2 feet in front of you for the blinding light.

If that doesn't get you, the electricity bill would. LOL
 
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