Strangers Bearing Gifts

October 18th, 2007

Last night, Mitch Goldhar, known for his Smart Centre developments, held a meeting at the Morse St. School regarding the tearing down of the Toronto Film Studio and the development of the replacement – a Walmart.

It was a lavish affair, but my mother warned me of strangers bearing gifts.

Indeed, plenty of food and his pretty people adorned the reception area.

But since the meeting was in the east end, Smart Centre thought it prudent to hire 6 pay duty police officers.

Protecting development models was obviously a concern.

What is important to note is how close this development will match the models.

Bucks for Pucks

October 17th, 2007

People are applauding Mastercard for donating $160,000.00 to keep the rinks open over Christmas. Come on who’s kidding who? It’s all P.R.

Yes, I agree that it is an historical embarrassment to the city that hosts the Hockey Hall of Fame and is commonly referred to as the mecca of Canada’s game.

Miller’s dastardly reaction to strike at the heart of community is but another example of his “only child syndrome” character defect. He does not have a clue about the passion Canadians have for the game of hockey. After all, his roots are from the U.K. and at Harvard he preferred rugby.

Its all about priorities. All Miller had to do was tell the city’s transportation department to hold off on buying 3 of the 20 vans that are currently out for tender. But oh no! He dare not offend the City’s union! Seriously, how hard would it have been to go and say, “Listen run the best three trucks for another year. I need that money to keep the rinks open”.

Moreover, the one unfortunate aspect of our game is the cost. Hockey is an expensive sport. Many families simply can no longer afford it.

Mastercard’s donation would have been better served by donating the money to the needy children that are financially unable to play hockey. Such would have been provided a great Christmas present to some 320 kids.

Forcible Decline – Trailer Two

October 9th, 2007

Now available on You Tube.

Enter “forcible decline – trailer two” on the search bar.

Or Click Here to view the video.

Go to ‘Forcible Decline: Trailer Two

The irrefutable evidence is condemning.

See some of the players eat their own hypocritical words.

It’s a classic case of “bait and switch”.

What blows my mind is why members of the mainstream press are not jumping all over this story of municipal corruption.

The grass roots are growing.

Eventually they will have no choice but to start reporting.

City and SmartCentres Conspire to Confound Leslieville Neighbors

October 5th, 2007

Give the local residents of Leslieville some credit – they came out in strong numbers at the OMB pre-hearing yesterday, and even dressed someone up as a SmartCentres penguin to hand out “no big box” flyers. Overall, an excellent example of stalwart neighbourhood spirit in the face of corporate greed. Too bad their faith in their City now appears misplaced…

To the astonishment of all present, the City did not provide the OMB with their all-important “issues list” for the TFS/SmartCentres rezoning application, even though the Board had previously ordered all parties to do so at this very hearing and even though the City had several weeks to prepare for this hearing.

The City’s lame excuse of not yet knowing the “framework” of the application doesn’t hold water…how did less-sophisticated stakeholders and landowners of the surrounding lands like Loblaws and Canada Post come up with issues while the City could not? Do these organizations have entire planning departments that rival the City’s? The answer is no.

The result of this highly suspicious dropping of the ball by our City is now an additionally-scheduled pre-hearing on October 30th, and you can bet the attendance numbers of the neighbours will be lower…people need to work, too.

What a shame that the fighting spirit of this neighbourhood is being dissipated by its own City, and by its own Councilor who opened the door for TFS to rezone three years ago…

How long, I wonder, before this same Councilor utters the trademark NDP “we tried” excuse, much in the same way Adam Vaughn did earlier this week as Home Depot positioned itself perfectly to get approval to build on Queen Street West?

Thanks to the City’s move yesterday, that day is now looking more likely…

Leon’s in the Roundhouse, Home Depot on Queen West, Wal Mart in Leslieville…in the end, Miller and his cronies will indeed have left a lasting mark on our City…

please note this article was donated to the site….

Ohh Ohh

October 1st, 2007

It has been publicly reported late last week that Corus is restructuring.

Last week they closed their Vancouver office.

That’s a total of 4 offices now. Edmonton, the UK and LA have already closed.

Makes me wonder. Does Jeff Steiner have a solid guarantee on the lease and the square footage? What penalties are within the lease should either party not close?

I know if I was bankrolling this venture I would be nervous.

Tedco Misleads Press

September 28th, 2007

Yesterday’s press release has some factual mistakes regarding “Project Symphony”, aka The First Waterfront Place.

First, Aecon was retained a while ago to build this building.

Second, their winning bid was approximately $140 million.

Third, and more importantly what the press don’t know is TEDCO is trying to reduce the build cost to $110 million.

This $30 million dollar reduction is proving to be a planning nightmare. The sub-trades have already bid the project and many have been selected. They are now being asked to re-tender on the new design. By the way, the new design is not even finished.

Changing the design at this time is proof alone that this project is running into big trouble, even though there has not been one metre of cement poured yet. No one experienced in a project of this size would have these issues.

Jack Diamond is putting on a show like he is mad that TEDCO is butchering his grand design; the truth is his billable hours have just gone up.

Aside from this, TEDCO has guaranteed Corus an occupancy date of August 2009.

There is no way this project will come in on time. Furthermore the rushed workmanship will result in poor quality.

And yes I was informed today that the City is on the hook for the Corus lease payments in Liberty Village if they can not occupy the building in August 09.

As I said in an earlier post in May 07 Jeff Steiner got sucked in.

The Free Ride

September 27th, 2007

The Deputy Mayor Joe Pantalone is having a ball managing the C.N.E.

Along with his directorship at TEDCO, Pantalone is the chair of the EX.

When is someone going to look into the cheap rent that some special friends of Pantalone are receiving inside the Princess Gates?

I wouldn’t waste time looking into the free front row seats or the VIP treatment at the BMO field.

You Don’t Need A Crystal Ball

September 27th, 2007

Turtle Island Recycling is actually expanding the operations of their waste disposal facility that sits directly on the waterfront.

The auto scrap yard fire last week that darkened the Toronto sky line is nothing compared to the future environmental tragedy that will happen on the waterfront. Eventually, Turtle will have a fire at their facility.

It’s not ‘if’ – it’s ‘when’.

Last I heard Turtle was on a month to month tenancy. If so, why are they installing over a million dollars in new equipment? It is absolutely insane that they are allowed to operate a waste transfer station 16 feet from the water’s edge. For God’s sake, there is not even a containment wall. The drains predate any of the current requirements for pollution interceptors.

Hello anyone home at the TEDCO office? What about the Ministry of the Environment?

The Diamond family financially backs Turtle and has developed a cozy relationship with Jeff Steiner.

In a previous career, Steiner was involved in the merchant banking industry. Since the Diamond family is a major player in this industry (much like Sam Riseman) do you really think it’s a fluke that TEDCO has so many special provisions for these corporate vultures?

The C of A

September 27th, 2007

Four million to Six million.

That is the dollar value that it will cost to remove the contaminated soil from “Project Symphony” a.k.a. The First Waterfront Place.

This figure was determined recently when Priestly Demolition miraculously discovered the pillars underneath MT 28.

With all the money TEDCO has spent on environmental engineers, how could they not budget for this cost?

The M.O.E. were on the scene and gave TEDCO a choice to either remove all contaminated soil or apply for a “certificate of approval” and register the property as a contaminated site

TEDCO offered to use their “hocus pocus” remediation technique. This is the same charade that they are using on the Filmport where they have stored the contaminated material for 8 months by the Don Roadway, for everybody to drive by and breathe the polluted particles.

Furthermore, cleaning the old MT28 site will push the Corus occupancy date back. In all likelihood, the over hold provision of the Corus leases, in Liberty Village, will kick in. This generally represents three times the monthly rent. The question then becomes, will the City be on the hook for paying this tab?

So the cost to build now stands at approximately at $164 million and the overrun expenses are starting to climb.

I have to believe that the heart and soul of Corus is their creative staff. Having children I have a certain degree of experience viewing the Corus products. I can only assume that these individuals possess a high degree of moral fiber. Henceforth, I can’t see TEDCO getting away with building on this site without properly removing the contaminated soil.

There would be a mutiny at Corus if they had to occupy a registered contaminated site.

Maybe, for once, TEDCO will be forced to properly clean a site.

Behind the Black Ball

September 22nd, 2007

Sometimes the hole you dig is so big you find yourself constantly behind the black ball.

The harmonic convergence is upon Jeff Steiner.

Stay tuned on Monday, I need a second source to verify a real whopper of a story.