Community Town Hall – May 13, 2024 - Councillor Parthi Kandavel - SJC and DGNA Report

Scarborough Junction Community and Danforth Gardens Neighbourhood Association Report

Attendees: Councillor Parthi Kandavel, Renrick Ashby – CP Community planning Scarborough District, Arjun Sahota – TTC Senior Community Liaison Officer, Ariella Barmash - Policy Advisor, Alexandra Kyriakos – Chief of Staff,Tamara Hermann – Stakeholder relations, Tasneem Tahrin – Administrator, Mae Anne Teves – Constituency Assistant, Lesley Sargla – Community Liaison/Events, Misha Perozak – SJC Executive, Monica Guitierez – SJC Executive, Sam Wong – SJC Executive, 50 Community Members Online and In-person.

After an opening statement by Councillor Kandavel the following items were discussed:

1. Status of 3431 St. Clair Ave. East Development (Beer Store), City Council Approval and bump out confirmation.


City Planner Renrick Ashby gave a brief explanation of the approval process for developments then confirmed that the 3431 St. Clair Ave. E. development (Beer Store) had been approved at both Scarborough Community Council and Toronto City Council. The bump out and curved driveway at the parking garage entrance for the development that were promised by city planners has yet to be confirmed in the final site plan. This is the first point in the DGNA 3 Point SOS (Save Our Streets) Plan to prevent traffic infiltration into the neighbourhood and at Danforth Gardens Public School. 

Action Step: Follow up required with city planners and councillor.

2. Timeline for traffic light at 3431 St. Clair Ave. E and Elfreda Blvd.

This is the second point in the DGNA SOS Plan and is critical to allow current residents and the new development residents to exit west on St. Clair from Elfreda in a safe and timely manner and prevent traffic infiltration.  SJC Executive reminded Councillor Kandavel that he made a promise during the campaign to implement the DGNA SOS Plan and we have that promise in writing.  Councillor Kandavel responded that according to city staff studies would have to be done.  SJC Executive responded that the studies had been done and found that a traffic light was not warranted based on projections of a company contracted by the developer and that did not take into account developments that have been proposed since the study and the safety and congestion impact at Danforth Gardens Public School. In addition, one of the studies quoted regarding traffic at Elfreda and St. Clair was from 1999; hardly relevant.  The councillor was informed by SJC Executive that a councillor can override warrant studies by getting the support of Scarborough Community Council councillors and then at Toronto City Councillor.  In the words of one city traffic supervisor “It happens all the time.”

Action Step: Follow up required with city councillor.

3. Timeline for No Left Turn sign for 3431 parking garage driveway.

This is the third pillar of the DGNA SOS Plan and would make it illegal for cars from the development parking lot to turn left on Elfreda and forcing them to exit on St. Clair.  This would have to be brought to Scarborough Council and City Council for approval.

Action Step: Follow up required with city councillor.

4. Review of 468 Danforth (Sun Valley Development) retail space, design and streetscape.


SJC Executive sought confirmation of the addition of an improved streetscape, additional retail space (from 470 m2 to 560m2) and re-orientation of the retail space so that it is on the outside of the building, at street level and facing the sidewalk. Community and city staff pressure resulted in the developer adjusting their original proposal.  Event with the addition of retail space the location is still going from 2500m2 of retail to 560m2 of retail. 

Action Step: Follow up required with city planners and councillor to confirm these changes are maintained.

5. Review of recent council approval for Scarborough Master Plan for Republic Development site at Kennedy Rd. and St. Clair Ave. which included less but taller buildings and 200,000 sq. ft. of retail.  At first glance there seem to be very few 2- and 3-bedroom units. 

Action Step: Item tabled for a separate meeting.  Follow up required with city councillor.

6. Status of Motion in Council from July 2022 Council Meeting for a Staff report on the West Scarborough Rail Trail.

The motion in council from July 2022 asking for a report is in limbo.  There has been no information whether the report was started or completed. 

Action Step: Councillor Kandavel to follow up with city staff on the status of the report. Follow up required with city councillor.

7. Status of OLT hearing for the site development at 685 Warden Ave regarding the developers proposal to use their park dedication to develop their section of the rail trail rather than city parks assertion to create a square park in the middle of the buildings. The community supports the rail trail option put forward by the developer.

 Action Step: Follow up required with city planners and councillor.

City staff and legal team are aware of the community’s desire to allow the developer’s plan to create the start of the West Scarborough Rail Trail as their park dedication. The city planner and city councillor shared that city parks is now on board with this assertion.  This development is currently at the Ontario Land Tribunal (OLT). 

Action Step: Follow up required with city councillor.

8. Planting native plants on the embankment on the south side of St. Clair, just east of Warden Subway Station and rail bridge as was done at the northeast corner of Warden and Ellesmere.

Councillor Kandavel and his staff have met with city staff and report that Green Toronto has been in contact with Urban Forestry to undertake an assessment for next year’s planting program.  Follow up required with city councillor.

9. Approval of crossing guard application for Newlands Ave. and Santamonica Blvd.

Completed with the assistance of Councillor Kandavel and staff.

 10. St. Clair Ravine Bridge Status

Councillor Kandavel and staff met with city and Toronto Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) staff earlier this year on the issue of the bridge being taken away for construction work.  We can now report that the bridge has been replaced!

Completed with the assistance of Councillor Kandavel and staff.

11. Food Desert in Scarborough Junction Community/Danforth Gardens/Birchmount Raleigh neighbourhoods.  Sun Valley and Taste Co.  closed.  2km east or west to nearest groceries which are No Frills and no direct bus to either.

 There was a discussion on the food desert in our neighbourhood with the closing of Sun Valley Grocery and Taste Co. There was a further discussion that the No Frills at Victoria Park and St. Clair is slated to close at some point as is the Metro at Eglinton Square and eventually the Walmart and the Adonis Grocery on Eglinton.  In addition we have lost a TD Bank at 673 Warden Ave. There are plans for Iqbal International Grocery to open at Birchmount Plaza in June. The importance of including sufficient retail in new developments and preserving current retail like Birchmount Plaza was raised. 

Action Step: Follow up with city councillor and monitoring of status of Birchmount Plaza required.  Strategies and tools to maintain complete walkable cities must be developed and support and voice of community must be fostered.

13. No direct bus on St. Clair.  Most destinations require turning into the subway and switching buses.  Families already struggling to get to work with long commutes must also endure long commutes for shopping and groceries and errands.

 A request was made to the TTC Rep present to have the TTC review a dedicated St. Clair Ave. bus to facilitate movement to grocery stores, Canadian Tire plus other stores and services. The TTC Rep shared that over 20,000 commuters use the St. Clair Ave. E. corridor per day and it is in the top 20 of busy corridors in North America.

Action Step: Follow up required with city councillor, TTC Rep and TTC.

14. Land Use NE and SE Corner of Warden and St. Clair

The community asked about the lands at the NE and SE corners of Warden and St. Clair.  The TTC rep informed our group that Create TO had jurisdiction over those lands and intends to develop them for residential use.  The land on the south side was taken from TTC property and the land on the NE corner may be city land.

Action Step: Follow up required with city councillor, TTC Rep, TTC and Create TO.  Get on the stakeholder list for Create TO as apparently community consultations had occurred but neither SJC or DGNA were informed.

 15. Warden Station Report – TTC Arjun Sahota

 2024 Annual Service Plan

o   Two route changes to be implemented later in 2024 – aiming to 
implement changes in September 2024:
§  Route 69: Today operates south on Warden Avenue, north on 
Road. Operates in a loop – does not “go anywhere”. Revision 
to the 69 beginning September 2024 will extend route to continue 
southbound on Warden, east on Kingston Road terminating at Birkdene 
Hills/Brooklawn Avenue. This connection offers a single seat ride via 
Kingston Road, access to pharmacies, grocery stores and places of employment in east 

§  Route 117: New Birchmount south route beginning at Warden
Station, operating westbound on Kingston Road to Bingham Loop. Increased 
access to grocery stores, pharmacies, shorter transfers to Victoria Park 
south bus, St. Clair Ave. E. connections and schools.

o   $120M investment for the community. Work started in 2022. 
o   Temporary bus terminal scheduled to be in-service later this year, 
permanent bus terminal by end of 2026.
o   12 bus bays all at-grade, no more stairs walking up and down. 3 
dedicated Wheel-Trans bays.
o   South commuter-lot will not be reinstated, customers will need to 
use north commuter-lot. Future of the north commuter-lot is uncertain 2027+ as 
Create TO has interest in the land. L
Looking Ahead:
-       2025 Annual Service Plan 
o   Community has an interest in connecting to retail. Strip 
malls/grocery stores are closing in the community and there is a lack of easy 
connection to these essential places.
o   Bus operating along St. Clair Ave. E. from Kennedy to Woodbine 
without terminus at a Station in-between. St. Clair has multiple grocery stores, 
but cannot be accessed by bus due to current routing.
o   Community bus expansion: The 2025 ASP will be reviewing community 
bus routes City-wide. TTC has committed to considering this proposal.
-       Warden Station
o   Warden Passenger Pick-up Drop-off (PPUDO) safety: currently there 
is no PPUDO, customers are using two northbound lanes on Warden to 
stop in the middle of traffic to drop-off/pick-up.  Temporary Pick 
up/Drop Off planned for September 2024
§  Referred to TPS. TTC has signage throughout Station advising 
customers to use north commuter-lot to pick-up/drop-off. 
4 minute walk to the Station.
o   Warden Station retail – grocery/corner store operators in the 
newly developed Warden Station (2026+). More vendors and bigger space planned.
o   Warden Station public art – public art engagement, and activating 
the corner at Warden Ave./St. Clair Ave. E.

Action Step: Follow up required with city councillor, TTC Rep and TTC and inclusion on stakeholder list for TTC

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