Purpose of meeting
The playground at Sweeney Park served as a neighborhood focal point providing decades of enjoyment to the Community in an otherwise very busy city.
The playground was deemed unsafe by TDSB in 2017, was fenced off; was a complete eye sore for over a year; and then was ripped out in the fall 2018. The playground is sorely missed.
Attendees: meeting attended by 40 members of the community & the following officials:
Councillor Denzil Minon Wong & two of his staff members
School Trustee Trixie Doyle
Victoria Village Principal Liga Miklasevics
Background and Summary
The recent demolished current playground at Sweeney Park was funded and built by TDSB circa 1985, the playground on both TDSB & City property via a City granted easement.
In 2017 the TDSB deemed the playground unsafe and fenced it off. The playground was completely removed around September 2018 by TDSB.
Local Councillor Denzil Minon Wong Commented:
Not funded by the City of Toronto
City granted easement to TDSB
Decisions regarding playground removal were made by the TDSB without input from the City
Possible sources for funding of playground include TDSB, developers when available and Capital Budget (assessed, planned and requisitioned years in advance).
Denzil Minon Wong re-committed to arranging a community meeting to discuss the future development and use of Sweeney Park. The meeting will take place in the New Year. City Planners will be in attendance.
Victoria Village Principal Liga Miklasevics Commented:
Liga was made aware that the old playground posed a safety issue and ultimately had to be removed (rust in poles, rust in walkways, years of water damage all causing it to be unsafe and unstable).
Daycare at school raised the issues of liability.
TDSB to erect much smaller playground on school property, but not fenced in and accessible to community.
Local TDSB School Trustee Trixie Doyle Commented:
Province does not allow specific funding for playground equipment so money must be taken from other areas in the budget.
Playgrounds are very expensive (hundreds of thousands of dollars) and parent/community fundraising would likely not be adequate.
Other Topics Raised at Meeting
Petition to have traffic lights at Victoria Park and Russica; Presented and organized by local resident Stella Kariannakis.
There has been a substantial increase in sightings of rats in the area, possibly due to the Eglington Crosstown LRT Transportation Project
Helicopter Landing pad at a private company located @ 1325 Lawrence ave. e: Denzil stated that approval ultimately fell under Federal Jurisdiction; The general consensus to date was that a proper consultation / assessment was not performed.