Will Leaside be split up?

Now what?Leaside is in danger of being split apart by ward boundary changes.

In August the Toronto Ward Boundary Review, set up by City Council in 2014, came out with its first report outlining five options for redrawing Toronto’s ward boundaries in time for the next municipal election in 2018.

The proposed options vary from as few as 38 “large” wards of about 75,000 people each to as many as 58 “small” wards of about 50,000 people each, but all five options would see Leaside split up.

How does each proposal effect Leaside?  The following is an outline only. For the detailed boundary maps associated with each proposal visit www.drawthelines.ca.

Under Options 1, 2, 3 and 5 Leaside would be split in two along Eglinton.

Option 1:  North Leaside stays with Thorncliffe Park, Flemingdon Park and Wynford-Concorde (as currently) while South Leaside joins Old East York across the Leaside Bridge as far east as Coxwell.

Option 2: North Leaside joins neighbourhoods to the north as far as the 401, west to Avenue Rd. and east as far as Don Mills, while South Leaside goes west all the way to Yonge St. joining Davisville, Moore Park and the north half of Rosedale.

Option 3: North Leaside again joins neighbourhoods to the north as far as the 401 while South Leaside remains with Thorncliffe Park, Flemingdon Park and Wynford-Concorde (as currently).

Option 4: North Leaside and most of South Leaside together join areas to the north and east, while Bennington Heights would be hived off and join areas to the south down to Bloor and west to Christie.

Option 5: North Leaside joins areas to the north and east, while South Leaside remains with Thorncliffe, Flemingdon and Wynford-Concorde, and gets areas to the west as far as Yonge.

Councillor Jon Burnside knows redrawing the ward boundaries is necessary but, he says, “I will vigorously oppose any proposal that includes carving up Leaside. Having two councillors represent different parts of Leaside makes no sense at all. It shows a basic lack of understanding of what makes Leaside special, which is the sense of community.

“We have survived two amalgamations and I will fight hard to ensure we survive ward boundary changes too.”

Consultations are planned for this fall to gather public feedback on the proposals. A final report is expected to go to City Council in May.