Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Artificial Turf Coming to Dieppe Park?

IMG_0005 v2~ By Ed Horner.     May 5, 2015

Dieppe Park walks a fine line between being a community park  (used mainly by local residents) and being a sports park (used heavily by organized soccer and baseball teams from in and around the GTA, that pay to use the facility).  For the 26 years that I’ve lived within walking distance of Dieppe, the park has handled this tension fairly well.  Having lived on Greenwood with my backyard right on the park, I can say that with some confidence.*

Last night, I was at a public consultation meeting hosted by Councillor Mary Fragedakis in the Council Chambers of the East York Civic Centre at 850 Coxwell Ave.  The purpose of this meeting was to;

  • Present the draft design concept for the redevelopment of the soccer field at Dieppe Park
  • Receive comment/input from the public on the proposed design
  • Discuss next steps

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Dieppe Park Field House and Facility Improvements

Dear Councilor Fragedakis;

On behalf of Friends of Dieppe Park, I just wanted to add a few things or make minor changes on the written comments I left at the artificial ice rink (A.I.R.) presentation on Thursday evening. There’s a lot of stuff here and a few of them may require a little more discussion, but it’s a start. Continue reading

Upgrade to A.I.R. and facilities in the works for Dieppe Park

The Artificial Ice Rink (AIR) and related facilities at Dieppe Park have fallen on hard times.  Built in 1974, the facility is now close to 40 years old and it’s showing.  The City, lead by the spirited Ward 29 Councilor Mary Fragedakis was out last night at the old facility, charts and drawings in hand, so offer us a new vision of what the AIR could be.  Continue reading

Notes from FODP meeting May 23, 2012

Final notes from the meeting of Friends of Dieppe Park this past Wednesday, May 23rd.

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Pressure on urban parks grow

As condos rise, pressure on urban parks grow


Globe and Mail Update
Published Friday, May. 11, 2012 6:03PM EDT
Last updated Saturday, May. 12, 2012 1:09AM EDT

Section of the High Line, NYC

Robert Hammond will be a fitting keynote speaker at Toronto’s second annual Parks Summit at the Evergreen Brickworks on Saturday. The New Yorker started the grassroots effort to have an old elevated freight railway in Manhattan turned into a linear park. The High Line is now a 2.3-kilometre long public greenspace above a dense street grid.

In a less literal way, elevating Toronto’s parks is the goal of the summit, and the mission behind the host organization Parks People.

Organizer Dave Harvey started Parks People last year because he saw both a need and desire for Torontonians to become more engaged with their local parks.

He says as Toronto’s population grows – and increasingly calls condos and apartments home – the need for local green spaces instead of backyards grows with it.

David Harvey of Park People

Toronto’s parks director Richard Ubbens confirms that parks surrounding the “city-centre” areas where growth has been directed to in Scarborough, North York and Etobicoke are seeing increased use and greater pressure.

Beyond housing patterns, Mr. Harvey also thinks there is a cultural shift under way. “We used to be Toronto the Good, where there were all these rules about what you couldn’t do in a park,” he says. He thinks immigration and a national realization that Canada is no longer a rural country is changing that. “We are waking up to the fact that ‘Cities are where we live.’ We are embracing an urban culture and realizing that parks can be for soccer, yes, but also places for communities to enjoy and create food and art, things we never did before.”

Central to this new use of parks, says Mr. Harvey, is the proliferation of park user groups who he says are picking up some of the slack in park maintenance and operation that dates back to amalgamation.

Mr. Harvey says there are currently 50 local parks groups like the pioneering Friends of Dufferin Grove Park. He says almost half of those have sprouted in the past two years.

To keep that momentum going, last week Parks People released their Parks Friends Group Guidebook, a 22-page booklet about how people can start their own group to oversee upkeep and encourage events and activities in their local parks.

Doug Bennet will be on a summit panel about local engagement. The 52-year-old publisher lives near Sorauren Park, east of Roncesvalles Avenue, and helped found the Wabash Building Society. He says the group was lobbying to have an old linseed oil factory adjacent to the park turned into a community centre. They incorporated as a non-profit in 2006.

“Eventually we got angry with the slow pace and we said, we’ll do it ourselves,” says Mr. Bennet.

He admits that was naive (the community centre has hovered steadily in the five- to 10-year capital budget projections), but points proudly to successes like opening the Field House, a two-storey, vacant office building beside the park. Once open, the Field House’s washrooms meant the park no longer needed oft-tipped Porta-Potties. The meeting rooms inside are now rented out for community events of all kinds.

The group next set sights on an empty city-owned lot (the former site of the factory’s flax seed silos). The goal is to turn it into a Town Square that connects to the park and becomes home to a baker’s oven and farmer’s market and serves as a meeting place and venue for the park’s many festivals.

He says his group is currently raising half of the $600,000 cost of the project and has been assured it will be included in Toronto’s capital plan for 2013-2014.

He thinks a congregation of like-minded park people at a parks summit can only help other groups get up and running and start making differences at their own parks.

“We were making it up as we went along,” he says. “To be able to co-ordinate and network with other people doing the same thing, essentially trying to figure out how city hall works, will be helpful. Each group won’t have to reinvent the wheel.”

Special to The Globe and Mail

The history and future of Boulevard trees

Posted by Amanda Gomm/ May 09, 2012 at

Street trees
Last fall I had the pleasure of seeing Peter Simon speak about boulevard trees at the annual OUFC (Ontario Urban Forestry Council) Conference. He grabbed my attention right away with a historic introduction to how and where street trees first came to be and then moved to our very own city, back when horse and buggy were still the main source of wheeled-transportation. I fell in love with the topic. Continue reading

Orchard Event – Ben Nobleman Park Community Orchard

Orchard Event – Ben Nobleman Park Community Orchard.

Growing food in parks is gaining traction.  You might want to check out the Ben Nobleman Orchard website and see if this event is for you.