Tag Archives: close proximity
by Laryssa Stolarskyj – New Dreamhomes & Condominiums Magazine
Thereâ€™s something matchless about the city core that makes it a prime location to live. Downtown Toronto, loosely defined as the area from Lake Ontario to Bloor Street and Spadina Avenue to Sherbourne Street, is an urbaniteâ€™s dream. Having access to any modern convenience, virtually on your doorstep, is a luxury that only bustling city centres can offer.
Toronto is distinctive in that its downtown isnâ€™t just a business and commercial centre, but is also home to numerous residents. Many are lured by being in close proximity to work and having a base from which they can access the rest of the city, so itâ€™s not surprising that the majority of its inhabitants are working age (25-64) with more non-family than family households.
The mixed-use planning concept incorporates a high concentration of restaurants, bars, clubs, concert and sporting venues, arts facilities, libraries, schools, and shops, all of which are accessible by foot, bike, or public transit. The juxtaposition of historic and new avant-garde buildingsâ€”the Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD) or the new Crystal addition to the Royal Ontario Museum, for exampleâ€”is compelling and debate-worthy. Toronto is also recognized as being the third-largest theatre centre in the English-speaking world, has more than 50 dance companies, six opera companies, and five professional sports teams, and, of course, still upholds its reputation as Hollywood North.
Downtown is fittingly abuzz with activities, festivals, and parades in all seasons. Many of the sights that attract out-of-town visitors are a stoneâ€™s throw away, such as the Harbourfront Centre, Chinatown (Chinese is the most spoken language after English in this area), Queen Street West, and the world-famous CN Tower. If you need a time out from all the bustle, an afternoon getaway to peaceful Toronto Islands is a swift ferry ride away.
The options for traversing downtown are plentiful. The TTC operates select 24-hour streetcar and bus routes in addition to its regular subway service. Cycling is a practical alternative, especially in the warm weather, and you can plan your route with free cycling maps, join the Bicycle User Group, and even request bike posts and rings for your neighbourhood. Or if you support pedestrian power over pedal power, the PATH system offers 27 kilometres of underground walkwayâ€”the largest underground retail venue in the worldâ€”that connects shopping, entertainment, services, and transit.
With an abundance of new condo developments that span the entire downtown core, each with their own offerings of amenities, itâ€™s easy to get swept up in the bustle of activities. Consult the list of resources below to make the most of living in the city.
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Adam Nayman – Metro Toronto
It has been said that in real estate, the three most important words are “location, location location.” It’s thus safe to assume that the decision to put TIFF Bell Lightbox at the corner of King and John streets was not made lightly.
Speaking to a group of journalists gathered on the building’s sixth-story rooftop recently, the Lightbox’s artistic director, Noah Cowan, points out that the $196-million facility — which opens its doors on Sunday with a Toronto International Film Festival screening of Bruce McDonald’s new rock drama Trigger — sits in close proximity to many of the city’s most happening spots.
“This is the downtown hub,” he says, gesturing westward on King towards the club district and then south in the direction of the CN Tower. “We’re right where the action is.”
Of course, the most important action at Lightbox is going to be onscreen, and the premises are nicely tricked-out for those purposes. In addition to the multimedia gallery spaces on the first floor, the Lightbox houses five state-of-the-art cinemas, the largest of which is equipped for 70-mm projection.
Cowan admits that the large-scale screening possibilities are tantalizing, but he’s more interested in discussing how a couple of the smaller cinemas on the third level — which has been dubbed the “learning floor” — will be utilized. One plan is to use the facilities to host events held by the city’s various cinema studies programs.
“There’s never been this kind of shared space in Toronto, where students from different faculties can get together and just exchange ideas,” says Cowan, “and we think that’s really exciting.”
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Tony Wong – Yourhome.ca
Forget about the fake lake. What if you can’t close on the sale of your property because your bank was shut down for the G20 Toronto summit?
While media attention might be on the uproar over the $1.9 million man-made lake and pavilion being built for the media at the meeting of world leaders, real estate and legal professionals are worried over a potential “disaster” in the making.
The last Friday in June is traditionally the busiest for house closings from buyers who have purchased in the spring market that saw record sales this year. If downtown banks close during that week thousands of closings could be affected creating major market turmoil, say industry professionals.
“It was already going to be brutal without the summit because we’ve been so busy. The timing couldn’t be worse,” says Andrew Zsolt, president of Coldwell Banker Terrequity Realty Brokerage.
Zsolt, who has 14 offices in the Greater Toronto Area, said he expects his agents to close about 500 sales at the end of this month alone.
“We usually tell buyers to try not to close in the last week of June because it’s so busy. It’s right after school and before full cottage season so they’re all in a rush. It could be a bit of a disaster,” says Zsolt.
On Tuesday the Law Society of Upper Canada issued an advisory to lawyers saying that they should make arrangements in case retail branches downtown are shuttered for security reasons.
“If you are a lawyer with a transaction that is pending, make sure you make alternative arrangements,” said Roy Thomas, spokesperson for the Law Society.
So far the policy has been in flux as banks monitor how they will be affected by the security perimeter.
“Recognizing the fact that employee and customer access will likely be impacted by summit related activity, we will be closing some branches in close proximity to the security zone,” says Ralph Marranca, spokesperson for Bank of Montreal. Marranca said no specific details on branch closings were available as yet, but some branches had been proactively reaching out to customers to advise them of any alternate arrangements.
Bank of Nova Scotia spokesperson Joe Konecny meanwhile says some branches in the downtown core would be open on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday before the summit, but would be closed on Thursday and Friday.
“We are committed to taking all reasonable steps to provide for the continuity of business,” says Konecny. “We will adjust our business continuity plans as necessary.”
The Royal Bank of Canada, Canada’s largest bank said no closings were planned at the moment.
“There are continuity plans in place in case we have to make adjustments,” said spokesperson Don Blair.
Bob Aaron, a real estate lawyer and Toronto Star columnist, says he has written to his bank in frustration trying to figure out how the closings would have an impact on his business.
“My bank tells me I’m on my own to make arrangements for alternate banking on June 24 and June 25. That’s hardly the appropriate level of customer service,” Aaron complained to the TD Bank in a letter sent Tuesday.
Mohammed Nakhood, a spokesperson for the bank says TD was “evaluating potential bank closings” but had not made a final decision as yet. As for alternate arrangements, Nakhood says it would be “speculative” to guess what they would be at this point.
Aaron says that’s not acceptable, since lawyers would be left scrambling at the last minute to figure out how to close deals.
“There could be financial penalties and lawsuits because we have failed to close,” he says.
The summit of the top world leaders will take place in Toronto June 26 and 27, but a security zone will be in place before then. Some office towers surrounding the Metro Convention Centre will have severely restricted access as a result, with a security bill in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
Meanwhile realtor Zsolt says his wife, who works for TD Bank has been told to stay away from the office and work from home.
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