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City of Toronto Public Golf Courses under attack by Toronto Environmental Alliance

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  • City of Toronto Public Golf Courses under attack by Toronto Environmental Alliance

    A group called the Toronto Environmental Alliance are trying to set the groundwork to eventually repurpose Toronto's Golf courses for a variety of non golf uses (farmland, public housing, open parkland). Those interested in this may want to 1) go to their web site at https://www.torontoenvironment.org/contact to see what they are suggesting and 2) for those Toronto residents contact your local councillor and Mayor Tory to state your views.

  • #2
    Here is the page I believe OP was referring to:
    https://www.torontoenvironment.org/act_parklands
    It's not the wand. It's the wizard.

    Comment


    • #3
      Let me guess, Jennifer Keesmaat is behind this.

      Comment


      • #4
        This issue is already being discussed here https://www.torontogolfnuts.com/foru...-housing/page5

        The City Licensing Committee has already recommended the contractor leases be extended for a period of time at the Toronto Munis.
        http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgen...m=2020.GL15.14

        It is those recommendations that will be before Council on the 30th.

        The TEA notice is misleading when it says..."While Council voted in 2018 to evaluate the future options for golf courses on parklands, no public consultations have been held." This is wrong on two counts. There was public consultation, not very effective in my view, but consultation was undertaken. The other aspect is that the terms of reference did not provide for a review of optional land uses to something other than golf. It was a review to look at operational efficiencies of existing facilities.

        Efforts to broaden the 2018 terms of reference to study the Toronto Munies to include possible reconsideration of other land uses was defeated when the study was commissioned. Therefore Council is not in a position to rule on any such proposal when the recommendations go before them. Any attempt to introduce a proposed amendment to do so would be ruled out of order.

        This initiative by TEA, as far as the upcoming Council meeting is concerned, is dead in the water. But we may hear some splashing about as it sinks.
        Last edited by Fore Warned; Sep 25, 2020, 12:17 PM. Reason: A bit more detail.

        Fortunately there are no rules limiting the number of golf balls you can carry during a match!

        Comment


        • #5
          "community gardening and farming...and Indigenous-led land and water stewardship".

          Yup. No special-interests in either of those initiatives....
          Sage of the GTA...

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Fore Warned View Post
            This issue is already being discussed here https://www.torontogolfnuts.com/foru...-housing/page5

            The City Licensing Committee has already recommended the contractor leases be extended for a period of time at the Toronto Munis.
            http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgen...m=2020.GL15.14

            Efforts to broaden the 2018 terms of reference to study the Toronto Munies to include possible reconsideration of other land uses was defeated when the study was commissioned. Therefore Council is not in a position to rule on any such proposal when the recommendations go before them. Any attempt to introduce a proposed amendment to do so would be ruled out of order.

            This initiative by TEA, as far as the upcoming Council meeting is concerned, is dead in the water. But we may hear some splashing about as it sinks.
            I hear some splashing about.......

            From the Toronto Star...

            Activists urge rethink of golf courses
            City council to decide whether or not to extend licences for the facilities
            • Toronto Star
            • 30 Sep 2020
            • KARON LIU CULTURE REPORTER
            ​​RICK MA
            As the pandemic continues and people head to parks for exercise and fresh air, advocates want to see golf courses repurposed into things like parks or food production to better serve residents.

            Toronto not having enough accessible green space has been a hot-button issue throughout the pandemic, as cooped-up residents have been heading to their nearest park in droves to stretch their legs and get fresh air.

            The issue has drawn attention to the concern that residents in racialized and low-income neighbourhoods are less likely to have easy access to any green space. So environmental and food-advocacy groups are calling for the city to ask the public whether it should keep its golf courses, or instead create a new parks or urban farms to better serve residents.

            On Sept. 30, city council will decide whether to extend the operating licences for five of the city’s seven courses: Dentonia Park, Don Valley, Humber Valley, Scarlett Woods and the Tam O’Shanter for two years with a further optional year into 2023.

            “The issue is around how public assets are used to support communities. Green spaces need to serve the public good and this is the perfect opportunity to target populations that are disproportionally disadvantaged at this moment,” says Melana Roberts, chair of Food Secure Canada and a member of the Toronto Food Policy Council. “(The courses) are in dense populations with low-income neighbourhoods that have inadequate access to parks. Build a city for the people who live here and not for the privileged few.”
            Roberts says she’d like to see the city’s Indigenous communities have priority input as part of the city’s Indigenous placemaking strategy, in addition to consultations with residents on what to do with the land.

            “The only option is a deep public consultation,” says Heather Marshall of the Toronto Environmental Alliance. “There have been a lot of ideas that come up, some around food production, Indigenous peacemaking and making sure the land helps meet the city’s tree-planting and biodiversity goals. That might still include golf courses, but we just want a consultation and for people to have their say.”

            She adds that planting more trees and vegetation can help with flood prevention, and that this is also an opportunity to not go back to the “status quo” and address existing inequity for BIPOC and low-income residents. The organization is asking the public to email city council and the mayor requesting a public consultation on what to do with the land before council meets this week.

            Jessica Bell, MPP for University-Rosedale, addressed a letter to city council and the licensing committee asking for the licences not to be renewed.

            “In this pandemic, access to public space is in short supply and many of our city’s residents are struggling to make ends meet, and it is for these reasons why it is unfair to limit the use of city land to those who can afford to pay up to $75 on a game of golf. These golf courses are expensive to maintain and do not generate revenue for the city. The popularity of these city-run golf courses is in decline. We do not have a golf course shortage in our region as there are over 100 other golf courses in the GTA that are available for public use.”

            Cheyenne Sundance, a farmer and founder of the local Sundance Harvest urban farm, says the land should be accessible to all residents and not just those paying for golf. While she says the neighbourhoods should ultimately decide how the land should be used, she’d like to see some of it turned into urban farms and community gardens.
            “Urban agriculture is lifechanging, and you only need a small amount of space to feed so many families,” she says. “It not only grows food, it grows jobs and gives people the skills to build a career in agriculture.”

            Before COVID-19 struck Toronto, urban planners also suggested repurposing golf courses to build affordable housing, citing the city’s report that the number of rounds played at the city’s courses dropped by 15 per cent from 2007 to 2016.

            Fortunately there are no rules limiting the number of golf balls you can carry during a match!

            Comment


            • #7
              What the heck is "Indigenous peacemaking"?
              Sage of the GTA...

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Fore Warned View Post

                I hear some splashing about.......

                From the Toronto Star...

                Activists urge rethink of golf courses
                City council to decide whether or not to extend licences for the facilities
                • Toronto Star
                • 30 Sep 2020
                • KARON LIU CULTURE REPORTER
                ​​RICK MA
                As the pandemic continues and people head to parks for exercise and fresh air, advocates want to see golf courses repurposed into things like parks or food production to better serve residents.

                Toronto not having enough accessible green space has been a hot-button issue throughout the pandemic, as cooped-up residents have been heading to their nearest park in droves to stretch their legs and get fresh air.

                The issue has drawn attention to the concern that residents in racialized and low-income neighbourhoods are less likely to have easy access to any green space. So environmental and food-advocacy groups are calling for the city to ask the public whether it should keep its golf courses, or instead create a new parks or urban farms to better serve residents.

                On Sept. 30, city council will decide whether to extend the operating licences for five of the city’s seven courses: Dentonia Park, Don Valley, Humber Valley, Scarlett Woods and the Tam O’Shanter for two years with a further optional year into 2023.

                “The issue is around how public assets are used to support communities. Green spaces need to serve the public good and this is the perfect opportunity to target populations that are disproportionally disadvantaged at this moment,” says Melana Roberts, chair of Food Secure Canada and a member of the Toronto Food Policy Council. “(The courses) are in dense populations with low-income neighbourhoods that have inadequate access to parks. Build a city for the people who live here and not for the privileged few.”
                Roberts says she’d like to see the city’s Indigenous communities have priority input as part of the city’s Indigenous placemaking strategy, in addition to consultations with residents on what to do with the land.

                “The only option is a deep public consultation,” says Heather Marshall of the Toronto Environmental Alliance. “There have been a lot of ideas that come up, some around food production, Indigenous peacemaking and making sure the land helps meet the city’s tree-planting and biodiversity goals. That might still include golf courses, but we just want a consultation and for people to have their say.”

                She adds that planting more trees and vegetation can help with flood prevention, and that this is also an opportunity to not go back to the “status quo” and address existing inequity for BIPOC and low-income residents. The organization is asking the public to email city council and the mayor requesting a public consultation on what to do with the land before council meets this week.

                Jessica Bell, MPP for University-Rosedale, addressed a letter to city council and the licensing committee asking for the licences not to be renewed.

                “In this pandemic, access to public space is in short supply and many of our city’s residents are struggling to make ends meet, and it is for these reasons why it is unfair to limit the use of city land to those who can afford to pay up to $75 on a game of golf. These golf courses are expensive to maintain and do not generate revenue for the city. The popularity of these city-run golf courses is in decline. We do not have a golf course shortage in our region as there are over 100 other golf courses in the GTA that are available for public use.”

                Cheyenne Sundance, a farmer and founder of the local Sundance Harvest urban farm, says the land should be accessible to all residents and not just those paying for golf. While she says the neighbourhoods should ultimately decide how the land should be used, she’d like to see some of it turned into urban farms and community gardens.
                “Urban agriculture is lifechanging, and you only need a small amount of space to feed so many families,” she says. “It not only grows food, it grows jobs and gives people the skills to build a career in agriculture.”

                Before COVID-19 struck Toronto, urban planners also suggested repurposing golf courses to build affordable housing, citing the city’s report that the number of rounds played at the city’s courses dropped by 15 per cent from 2007 to 2016.
                What a crock of BS. On the one hand, they say "$75 on a game of golf" and on the other hand they say "expensive to run and DO NOT GENERATE REVENUE FOR THE CITY". Isn't $75 per golfer x 100,000 rounds REVENUE?

                If the property which is grass, trees etc is turned into a park, there is ZERO revenue generated.

                There's are parklands all over the city near where all of these Golf Courses and I can assure you there is more than enough space for ppl to enjoy without adding more green space for them to spread out more.

                Urban farms? When I drive around, I see tons of space along hydro corridors all over the city that is not allocated to community farms. Why doesn't these advocates start there first?

                Sick and tired of how little thinking these ppl do.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Pre-Covid, the argument could be made that the City doesn't require seven courses, and could use some for other purposes - parkland, trails, etc.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    So if we go by Jessica's logic, if everyone can't afford to play hockey or pay for a lane swim we're going to re-purpose our city owned arenas and swimming pools. Ridiculous.

                    Not everyone can afford to do everything. Thats life. Doesn't mean that those who can afford it should be told they can't do it.
                    Last edited by newy; Sep 30, 2020, 11:36 AM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      It's all just a ploy to gain votes from uneducated people who think golf is a sport for the elite. They conveniently post the most expensive rack rate at Don Valley yet don't post the much cheaper twilight/junior/senior rates let alone that you can play at Dentonia for $21.50 twilight. We have zero shortage of parks and greenspace in the GTA and we have zero shortage of parks that are accessible to low income neighborhoods.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by newy View Post
                        Not everyone can afford to do everything. Thats life. Doesn't mean that those who can afford it should be told they can't do it.
                        There are some who have the attitude that "If I can't afford to do it or even if I don't want to do it, I don't agree with it therefore I don't want you doing it, either.. And, I will try to make you look selfish for even wanting to do it at all."
                        Sage of the GTA...

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          So how do we make our voices heard in support of the city courses? The problem is these special interests group survive by being vocal and crying to the media, or anyone that will listen. Do we need to start a city of Toronto Golfers Alliance? If so, I'm happy to get involved with graphic design and web design help.
                          It's not the wand. It's the wizard.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            What that article doesn't say is that the committee have already recommended the extension to happen for 2 years with an option for the 3rd year.

                            It's more or less a rubber stamp at City Council today.
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                            • #15
                              Everyone listened to a Malcolm Gladwell podcast, now they all woke.

                              Comment

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