Vision 2020 Toronto
Peoples’ Mayor HiMY SYeD
“Vision 2020 – Another Toronto IS Possible”
Twenty Year Urban Strategy embracing
Mobility, Sustainability, Identity
Where everyone feels and says,
” We Belong ”
” We Belong, Here ”
Vision 2020 – Another Toronto IS Possible – MOBILITY
- BIKE : Provide FREE Bike Rental to Toronto Convention Guests/Delegates. BIXI or Equivalent Public Bike Sharing – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ikYReqsSOKQ
- TOWER RENEWAL + TRINARY SYSTEM – This is complicated and simple all at once. ‘Simplexity’ is the appropriate term here. Curitiba Brasil’s “Trinary” mobility corridors cannot be cut and pasted onto the existing built form of Amalgamated Toronto. Yet, the inspiration of the “Trinary” system to solve Toronto’s Mobility nightmare is the solution. ALL the components of the Curitiba’s Trinary System are in already in place in Toronto. We are damn lucky as a city. Perhaps no other city in the world can duplicate and surpass the success of Curitiba than Toronto. And Here is Why: Tower Renewal. What Mayor Miller started as an environmental retrofit in Clusters of Apartment Towers has allowed us to realize a real-time mapping of density. The sudden sprouting of Condo Towers around town actually become a strength. When we build customized mobility corridors on a cluster by cluster basis, we will NOT end up with Curitiba’s “Trinary” 5 spoke-1 hub mobility system. We will end up with a few more key hubs with a few more spokes, some interconnecting to other hubs, and others need not. For anyone already with a deep understanding of Curitiba’s Trinary System and Tower Renewal, their faces have lit up and astonishment appeared in their eyes as they listen to my vision for how we do this. It is the first best solution. It is also the lowest cost solution with the greatest class-poverty-barrier breaking results. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YqvzNeUdjn8 / http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWKN7uTgU7M / http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-n7qdRdsysA / http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gE9p2A_i0I
Vision 2020 – Another Toronto IS Possible – MOBILITY – BikeCity
- 2012 – Declare it “The Year of Cycling”: A year long emphasis of identifying our city as cyclist-friendly, celebrating all things related to Biking. Much more, but it still just speaks for itself – 2012 will be Toronto’s Year of Cycling. The “Athlete Laureate” will be very busy during this year.
- See, Hear and Learn more here – http://HiMYSYeD.com/BikeCity
Vision 2020 – Another Toronto IS Possible – SUSTAINABILITY / THRIVABILITY
- “There is no Ideal System…The Ideal System is Integration” — Jamie Lerner, Former Mayor of Curitiba in his criticism of ‘Master Planned Cities” (he told this to me personally and of course he says this everywhere and is quoted thusly). Toronto’s Urban Strategy ‘must become the ever vigilant work of negotiators in a melee and the product of intense, customized design by a group of new institutions. We must expand our approach towards the city from the perspective of an ecologist (in addition to what we often do now, which is only from an economist worldview).
- Mayor’s Proclamation – ” 311 Day” – March 11, 2011 will be 3 / 11 / 11 . We will Proclaim it ” 311 Day”. It will celebrate and officially ‘Open’ a number of City Intellectual Assets from Copyright to include a parallel Creative Commons License. We will also publically demonstrate our long term direction towards “Open 311” Protocol. See here for more info : http://open311.org/pledge/ “311 Day” is of course inspired by our existing http://Toronto.ca/311
- An Aggressive Interpretation of The New City of Toronto Act in Our Favour. – We must look at what we got, and fight for what we must have as a City. This is the Job of the Mayor vis a vis other levels of Government. It is healthy and dynamic for Democracy and for defending our Municipal Rights
- 9+ Environmental Priorities – In addition to the Toronto Environmental Alliance’s 6 Environmental Priorities, we will add three and a half more: The SaTuRN District, Emma Terra – Earth Court, Community Green Linx – Union to Airport above ground subway line, and a “Universal Declaration of Environment Rights” to take place in Toronto within the next term of Council.
- “The SaTuRN District” – Designated and Create “Sustainable architectural Technology urban Research Neighbourhood.” Inspired by our existing “MaRS Discovery District” but for Sustainability combined with the exisiting City Council Framework for declaring a Heritage Neighbourhood like Cabbagetown or Sussex Village. SaTuRN will be approximately from Queen and Spadina, Along West Queen West, to the Wind Turbine in West Exhibition Place.
Vision 2020 – Another Toronto IS Possible – IDENTITY – We are becoming a post-Toronto Toronto
- Athlete Laureate – Inspired by the existing ‘Poet Laureate’ position. The Athlete Laureate will inspire participation, healthy lifestyles, gamesmanship, champion our city’s ever evolving sportscape to include Cricket, Kabadi, Capoeira without negating our common understood sports heritage of Lacross, Hockey, Baseball. The Athlete Laureate will enhance our City’s Identity as we approach the PanAm Games in 2015, and will inspire a generation of school children as they grow up and become the next generation of Torontonians.
- Keys to the City – In the past, Tradition has it, that an honourary “Key” to the City was given as a Municipal Honour. The symbolic key would allow the recipient to open any door in the City. Akin to an Honourary Degree bestowed by Colleges and Universities upon whoever they deem for such an honour. I want to have a ‘different’ key for each year of my mayorship.
- In my 2012 Year of Cycling, I want that “Key” to become a Bicycle. I have it on my keychain. – http://HiMYSYeD.com/BikeCity / http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1wPhzrcJA0 / http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Akk8eglQnrA
- In the 2013 – Year of the Hydraulophone, A musical note, The Year of Music and so on. Again, this is an example of and “Integrated” forward looking Urban Strategy. It IS the little things taken all together that create Vision 2020. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ialUzEjK_E
- Toronto City of Labyrinths Project – Complete my guerilla project, begun in 2002, of creating Labyrinths within walking distance of all Torontonians. Place painted Labyrinths within wading pools, parks, empty public spaces, unused places which become public secular/sacred spots for people to reflect, meditate, renew. see http://CityOfLabyrinths.TYO.ca for background on my project. We can have 200+ labyrinths around the City. it will bring in Tourism. It will become part of Toronto’s subtle Identity, because with dozens of labyrinths around town already, it already is becoming thus.
- Scarborough NuitRouge – Imagine NuitBanche, not downtown-ish, rather a single zone all night arts fair in Scarborough, around the Scarborough Civic Centre, or Kennedy, or Wexford along Lawrence. “Rouge” is taken from the “Rouge River” which is a symbol of Scarborough. This will be a biennial event. Allowing time to get it done right, and not lose its efficacy. It will be distinct in its curation process being Scarborough Focused via The Scarborough Arts Council.
- NuitYork – Imagine an All Night arts event along “Tehranto / North Koreatown”, Yonge Street between Sheppard and Steeles. NuitYork will help re-identify North York as the City with Heart with Arts at the Heart of this part of our Amalgamated City of Toronto.
- Artists are NOT Social Workers – Toronto Artists have to spend much of their time writing reports to justify how they spend their new grant money and to assess the economic impact of their art through complex perfomative calculations, or they do the work that fired social workers had been doing in community centres and schools. School curricula have eliminated most elective and cultural courses at the same time community centres have lost their grants, Toronto Artists are now expected to do community art work with ‘Their’ operative grants. The City’s grant policy states that this money is, “…a strategic tool used to achieve the City’s social, economic and cultural goals” (City of Toronto 2007).
- Toronto as The Islamic Financial Capital of North America – With the collapse of The U.S. Economy beginning in October 2008, much Money has sought to remain in North America without remaining with the economic uncertaintly in the United States. Dubai, an Islamic Banking and Financial Centre has had a real estate bubble pop. There are thousands of ex-pat US and Brits looking for a city to bring their Skills, connections, and money to. They are looking for ethical, transparent, accountable public infrastructure projects to invest in. Toronto is that City. Islamic Banking and Finance avoids Usury and the pitfals associated with it. It is a Trillion Dollar Financial Industry. The moment is now to become the Islamic Financial Capital of The Americas. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9jBxBf2byY
- Create a “Toronto Urban Forum” – Modelled upon the existing United Nations’ World Urban Forum – http://unhabitat.org/wuf . Toronto will hold one in alternating years to the UN’s WUF. Toronto will FINALLY send an official Delegation to the next World Urban Forum in 2012 with the Mayor, NGOs, Youth, Women, Councillors, Business Leaders, a complete delegation to share who we becoming are as a Strategic City. And to bring back to Toronto all that we can from The WUF. Every other major leading city in the World does this. It about time, Overdue time, we — Toronto — finally catches up. – http://spacingtoronto.ca/2006/06/22/world-urban-forum-day-one/
- “We Toronto” – The Toronto Games – In Amsterdam, after a high profile murder which shocked the City into some introspection and tension. They decided an overall integrated direction to allow people to thrive not just in sports but in cooking, meeting neighbours, breaking down communication and class barriers. All to re-invent how to remove the root causes of youth violence and violence in general. After the Jane Creba Murder and Summer of The Gun, Toronto came up with The Priority Neighbourhoods designation. Amsterdam did not. They made their entire City one big priority. Their People, all their people became first. We can craft a Made in Toronto equivalent. “The Toronto Games” will be what here what “The Amsterdam Games” are there.
The Following are single line items which simply give a title to each component within Vision 2020. Each of the Following points, and there are more than what you see here, above and below, will be expanded upon.
- An Aggressive Interpretation of the New City of Toronto Act in favour of Torontonians – RTFM FTW. If we read the manual, so to speak, we will find out we as a City Council and full Order of Government can actually exercise more decision making without the veto of any other level of government upon our affairs.
- Community GreenLinx – GreenLinx is a grass roots community driven project that addresses the glaring divide between Liberty Village, Fort York and King St. It creates a new public space that can flow to community areas by building a roof over the tracks, and the noise abatement would enhance the area immediately.
Bridges over railway tracks are still just a temporary reprieve from a divided community. We can create a vibrant hub with playgrounds, festivals etc. This would provide a much better solution than bridges over noisy railway tracks.
Future considerations include using the existing tracks to make an above ground subway system running from Union Station to the airport. We can electrify it with a “third rail” and install stations along key transit areas. The TTC’s current fleet of subway cars are being replaced. Instead of throwing them away, they can be used on the Greenlinx above ground subway line. This would be an effective way to bring tourists from the airport and also create a cost effective solution by using existing resources. – http://www.Torontopedia.ca/Community_Green_Linx
- Ward Councils – Co-Councillors, Neighbourhood Councillors
- Earth Court – Emma Terra
- Food Booth for Youth
- Ambassador Taxi Cabs – Normalize Medallions
- G20 – Public Inquiry – http://toronto.mediacoop.ca/video/interview-himy-syed/4279
- The Right to The City – Mobility, Housing, Power, Water, Opportunity, Education
- Baby Berries
- Direct Flights to Strategic Cities – Chicago, Barcelona, Curitiba
- New Deal for Neighbourhoods
- Twin Neighbourhoods
- Toronto Dollar as Financial Municipal Mechanism – http://TorontoDollar.com/
- Culture of Civic Engagement – http://spacingtoronto.ca/2006/06/29/the-wealth-of-cities/
- Culture of Sustainability – http://spacingtoronto.ca/2006/06/23/sustainable-city-or-sustainable-illusion/
- Skymeter – Grush Hour – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1lf7air-Wvk
- Wikinomics – Motorcycle City – in Toronto for Bikes
- Giant Wall – Pedestrian Near-By Maps – St George, Bay, Yonge
- Census – My Statement – Regent Park
- Amalgamating Fire+EMS=BAD
- Dundas Square – Ease up on public use – Funtain Installation
- Bumper Sticker – My other car is a bicycle
- 7 Assets – http://spacingtoronto.ca/2006/06/29/the-wealth-of-cities/
- Living Human Treasures – Annual Recognition, at any time, like a proclamation
- TTC Tourist Bus – Curitiba
- More TTC Apprentices – Escalators
- Multi-Lingual “Sherpas” – Student Jobs
- LED Lighted Bike Lanes
- ACORN Street Signs – Bring Them Back – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tl6aRSb8FH4
- 3 Deputy Mayors – At Least One Woman – Rotate sitting of City Council
- A City of DaVincis and Ibn Batuttas
- Spare The Air Days
- TIBERIUS – Toronto InterBank elimination of Riba Interest Usury rate – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejvIej_ux78
- The TSE – The Toronto School of Economics – Focused on Alternative Ethical Finance
- Rooftop Wind Turbines – Strand Energy Windjammer – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyjdHziDQRw
- Interest-Free Home Financing – TCHC units
- Critters – We are not the Only ones who live in this city: FLAP, Raccoons, etc
- Toronto Island – Repair The Hedge Maze
- Convert one golf course into an Urban Teaching Farm
- “World Park” – Designed by Jaime Lerner FOR Toronto
- Backyard Chickens
- “Optimise” – Raise/Lower Parking Meter rates to solve “Circling”
- TTC – Transit Citizen
- Accessibility – The Accessible City as a design priority during over 20 years.
- The Unincumbents – Meet them
- Lower the voting age to 14 – Toronto Student City Council
- Christmas LED lighting Contest
- Portable Libraries using Shipping Containers
- Specialized Libraries –
- Create Annual Toronto E-BOOK Prize in addition to existing Toronto Book Award.
- Refresh Painting of The Martin Goodman Trail along the Waterfront
- Safe-TDot – Rotating on demand Rotating LED Light that hails Taxi-Cabs from the push of a button in Lobbies of Apartments, Condominiums, Office Towers.
- Park Improvement Areas – Like BIAs but for the Neighbourhood Residents. Included in My New Deal for Neighbourhoods.
- An Annual Song Contest in Toronto – Based upon the annual Eurovision song contest in Europe.
- TOPAC/TPAC – Toronto Public Affairs Channel – Create a municipal C-SPAN or CPAC channel for Toronto Residents.
- Universal Declaration of Environment Rights – Inspired by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the 20th Century, this is a moral imperative of our 21st Century.
- Strengthen Toronto’s Zoo System into just that – An overall “Zoo System”.
- Label Major Street intersections by Numbers that are easily spotted by speeding drivers – Like Jerusalem.
- Hire MORE Heritage Personnel in to City Staff Department – We need many many more people to catch up on all this important work.
- Toronto needs to re-store in Bridge Engineers – We need an engineering and Bridge apprentice program
- Free WiFi at ALL Public Meetings and Public Consultations
- Re-instate the Tourism Toronto Hotel Fee – It previously yielded $3 Million dollars but didn’t yield much in results. Let’s earmark the funds and do it right this second time.
- Do here in Toronto what Bill Bratton did in New York City by way of internal Municipal Horse Trading within City Departments without altering any department budgets. Office Politics are respected. Everyone benefits.
- Enhance “Executive Dashboard” – Toronto Police need additional Information Technology to enhance Community Policing. This tool can become an agent of mutual understanding.
- Caravan Pavilions – Renew, Re-invent, Return them to Toronto’s Annual Cultural Festival Calendar. If Carasauga and Carabram were inspired by it. We can re-inspire ourselves and the City we are becoming
- Tri-borough Spelling Bee – Bring in back. This time City-wide. It will be awesome. Young People will look forward to this. Their Parents will be proud. School student bodies will become excited. “Nerds” in the hallways can be rock stars, again.
- Capitalize on Licensing of Toronto Logos/Intellectual Property via recent increase in Toronto-based Television shows: Being Erica, Flashpoint, Intelligence.
- Missing Plaque Project – Let’s put them in. Done. – http://missingplaque.tao.ca/about.html
- Toronto Portrait Museum
- MORE Public Memory Projects – We are a city of Amnesia. We forget our history too easily
- TTC – Standardize Spare Parts and equipment across modes where it makes engineering and cost accounting sense. We ask the TTC crews directly what they think. They know the answers already. Let’s help them do their jobs better, and get out of their way as they do it.
- Software Algorithm – To re-calculate number of parking spots in any given municipally owned or private parking lot. Simply by repainting lines, we will increase the actual bottom line number of parking spots in high density areas of the city where we need them. Elsewhere, not so much. But downtown, heck yes, huge difference.
- ENVAC – Subterranean Vacuum System Sucks Garbage Out of Sight. Envac systems are in use in thirty countries around the world, and in many major cities, such as Barcelona, London, and Stockholm. Montreal is set to implement an Envac system in 2012.
- Close Greenwood Subway Station – Closing this TTC Subway Station will bring several key benefits: It is within walking distance of both Donlands Station and Coxwell Station; the single Greenwood bus no. 31 can be redirected to Donlands Station; time savings of several minutes for subway riders on the Bloor-Danforth Subway line.
- Close Ellesmere RT Station – This is the least used stop on the Scarborough Rapid Transit Line. It does not connect directly with any surface route. It is within walking distance of Midland RT Station and the Midland Bus. Closing it will save money, time, personel costs.
- V-Shaped instructional reminder – Markings on subway platforms where subway car doors stop: Who’s off first, who is on second.
- Bring a Retired Space Shuttle to Toronto – Building upon our scientific heritage of contributing The Canadarm to the U.S. Space Program, bringing one of the real-life retired Space Shuttles to the Ontario Science Centre will inspire a new generation of Torontonians.
- Hong Kong Style Night Market – Let’s normalize it and enhance the identity of Toronto.
- Name All Lane Ways with proper Street Names – Beginning with ‘Lois Lane’ in honour of Superman Creator and Torontonian, Joe Shuster.
- T.O.Tems – Toronto does have a number of Totem Poles. Taking cultural appropriation in consideration and involving sensitivity with local artists, T.O.Tems can enhance Toronto’s artistic, parks and public space identity.
- T.O.Shuks & The T.O.Trail – Inspired by the ancient trail in Canada’s Far North, we can place Inukshuk-like ‘T.O.Shuks’ across Toronto’s trails, paths, points of interest, and public spaces. Taken altogether, walking from one T.O.Shuk to another will allow self-discovery of our city in what will become The T.O.Trail.
- Toronto as The 24 Hour City – Lately New York has become the City that Likes To Sleep. Toronto however is becoming a City that takes Power Naps. Enhancing our 24-hour-ness is quickly becoming part of our City’s Identity.
- Toronto City Council – Governance Innovation
- “Strategy Toronto” – Create this new In/Unstitution to co-ordinate all long term decision making by the Corporation of The City.
- Foreign Policy – Toronto, being a city with global peoples’ with daily connections to all cities and parts of the World, needs its own Municipal Foreign Policy. When any disaster, when any happiness, happens elsewhere in the World, Toronto and Torontonians are involved and affected. We already have an ‘Informal’ one, think GlobalMedic. Let’s take advantage of our strength and chart our own course. The C40 group is but one example of the formal benefits of an intentional Municipal Foreign Policy.
- Guerilla Diplomacy – Diplomacy itself needs to be re-invented with a municipal consideration. international policy and global relations among Cities. Diplomacy, re-imagined and linked integrally to development and security, can keep Toronto in the heart of
- “99% Local” Menu Items in Toronto Restaurants – The Local Food Movement and people doing their best to eat locally grown food aka Locavores will appreciate having at least one permanent menu item in restaurants that is either ‘99% Percent Local’ or ‘Mostly Local’. Toronto has found a balance with Vegan, Vegetarian, Halal and Fair Trade options, why not with ‘Local’ as well?
- Landlord Rating System – Similar to Toronto’s Restaurant rating system with Pass, Fail, Conditional Pass. This can assist Tenants, more than half the City’s population, in choosing where to live and who deserves their rent or lease payments.
- TIF Tax Increment Financing – Market Based response to GTA/905 suburban area subsidies and incentives that are draining Toronto of our industries and jobs.
- Mortgage Crisis Hotline – Establish a Foreclosure Prevention Program: Engage religious leaders and community organizations to urge families in seeking help. The aim is to prevent foreclosures/power-of-sales, reclaim foreclosed buildings, save businesses and jobs, and allow Torontonians to weather the coming economic storm.
- New TTC Subway Map showing Rivers – The London Underground Tube Map correctly includes The Thames River. The Next Official TTC Subway map must include both The Humber and Don rivers. Call it The Subways and Riverways Map.
- Lighthouses of Knowledge – In some areas with delicate social fabrics, a library is the most positive meeting point a community can have. These Lighthouses will be free educational centres which will include libraries, Internet access, and other cultural resources. These community libraries will work with the TDSB, TCDSB, and private schools, have a collection of approximately 5,000 books, and be cultural reference and leisure for the community, and are designed to diversify the opportunities of access to knowledge, expanding the area of formal education.
- Citizenship Streets – Two-storied pedestrian malls, located beside heavily-used TTC Transit intersections, offering clusters of city services from job training to day care, gyms to small claims courts.
- Car Garages – Introduce new indicator: “How many tires have been recycled?’
- Need to Jumpstart Toronto’s economy – Assist the poorest of the poor, and clean up our city.
- Trimming grass with sheep – In combination with an overall zoo system, urban farming, and backyard chickens, having sheep trim grass in our parks and public spaces is an ecologically sound way to cut the grass.
- Blitz Urbanism – Creativity means certain risks. It’s important to start, then make changes. The ideal can easily be the enemy of the possible. Toronto needs design and re-design solutions that are simple, fast, fun and cheap.
- Kaleidoscope – Harbourfront in the 1980s had free weekend arts, crafts, and creativity program space from 11:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. for young people. Toronto has lost something when this program became fee-based. It ultimately died. Toronto needs Kaleidoscope again, for the next generation.
- Admit ONLY Non-Polluting industries into The City – For both economic well-being and our physical health. The City can do this via sustainable procurement rules.
- Run Regular Accessible Daytime Bus Service along Bloor-Danforth Subway Route – Yonge Street already has the 97 Bus. This will save us from having to retrofit every station with elevators. It will immediately make the route — not the mode — accessible for people with such needs. The Subway routinely has serious delays, resulting in panic-borrowing of surface vehicles from other routes to act as Emergency Shuttle Buses. ‘Emergencies’ lately is TTC-Speak for routine. We can run buses every 12-15 minutes. When subway delays happen, these buses are already in place.
- Bicycles must become the new status symbol – Many of the world’s cities have their iconic symbols. Toronto has The CN Tower, The Stadium formerly and still known as SkyDome. The Bicycle can become a renewed icon for Toronto. The Bicycle symbol must be earned and cannot be simply reduced to a marketing gimmick to trick tourists and residents into something we are not. Mobility, Sustainability, Identity. The Bicycle Symbol embraces all three.
- Garbage that is not garbage program – We must enhance our environment days to many more times a year and in many more accessible places for residents’ convenience. We must expand our mode of garbage pick-up from the giant garbage trucks we employ now, down to the van and mini-van size to reach those hard to reach and often neglected spots in the city. We can create employment, increasing overall and focused property value increases, and of course a healthier environment.
- Urban Planning – Planning must be for the Metropolitan Region and not just the Municipality. We are shortchanging ourselves on both.
- Youth Programs – We are losing our young people aged 12-15 to gangs and other negative activities because we have programs for the very young and those approaching age of majority. Toronto has abandoned many programs for youth aged 12-15. We must correct that before we lose this opportunity in investing in the Next Generation.
- The Spontaneity of Free Human Exchange – Encourage this most important element.
- Misery Level vs Poverty Level – Admit we have a municipal poverty level, cite it using its proper name, The Misery Level. Money cannot buy a great city, but a great city must have money.
- Playbill Plaques – Reproduction of Theatre Playbills, and similar Theatre memories around town.
- Midnight Basketball – Other cities began this program to provide youth an alternative to negative influences overnight. Toronto can borrow from this inspiration and adapt to Today. We can have Midnight Recording Studios in Jane-Finch which teach life-long career skills instead of just success in learning only how to dribble a ball, Night Cricket, in addition to Midnight Basketball. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASN-g9jZ6DE
- Antique Alley – Rename the Stretch of Queen Street West in parkdale from Roncesvalles to Lansdowne ‘Antique Alley’. The area is home to a concentration of Antique shops in one of the oldest heritage areas within the City. This will acknowledge the area’s importance to the annual Oldies festival held on the street. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3evzncI0UTE
- Infrastructure – Garrison Creek, Sink Holes, Water, Electricity Supply into Toronto. We as a city are still looking through these rebuilds via a 20th Century Lens. It is understandable. We can do better and redesign the preventative maintenance from a 21st Century technology and engineering understanding.
- “Toronto” as Product Placement – Hollywood North was proud that we could fill in as any city background for almost any outdoor filming. The past decade has witnessed a steady increase in Film and Television production saying Toronto IS Toronto. Boosting our City as Product Placement will be an ongoing campaign. It will help global awareness, tourism, international trade, and local broadcast and media production facilities business.
- Chief Information Officer – Non-Toronto Information Technology, we can improve how we sell our City’s I.T. to global firms. The City’s CIO can be the catalyst in this vital sector.
- Toronto as a Global Head Office City – Intentional Design of Toronto as a Global Head Office City will allow an economy of scale in infrastructure, a non-hollowing out of our downtown core, and many many local jobs to support such a clustering.
- Manufacturing. Commerce. Finance – Amalgamation paused the natural evolution of these three as a Citysystem. We must hit the unpause button so to speak. All three need to be integrated into Vision 2020.
- LTT Land Transfer Tax – The New City of Toronto Act bestowed upon Toronto what many call ‘Dirty Taxes’ the Vehicle Registration Tax and the Land Transfer Tax. This has resulted in two competing market systems one for Toronto, and another one for the rest of the Province and especially the immediate neighbouring regions of Peel, York, and Durham. Vision 2020 will ask one of two things from the Province of Ontario during the 2011 Provincial Election: Either allow Peel, York and Durham to also levy their own LTT to match Toronto, OR allow Toronto to collect its own LTT and have Toronto Residents exempt from the Provincial LTT. It’s only fair. It will restore balance to an unnecessary competing market system.
- Community Investment Corporation – CIC Troubled Buildings Initiative
- Neighbourspace – A not-for-profit corporation to be created to convert the city’s large inventory of (abandoned) lots from near-worthless symbols of abandonement into new community parks, playgrounds, and gardens. Neighbourspace will acquire these properties from The City at a substantial discount and will work with community organizations to plan, develop, and maintain them under a contracted management agreement.
- Anchor Assets – Rebuild parks to stabilize neighbourhoods.
- Whole Citizen Experience – Ensure there is a seamless experience for Toronto residents without getting caught up in City Hall’s internal nonsense
- Union Square – Toronto has the corporate-consumer Dundas Square, the Civic Squares of Nathan Phillips Square, Mel Lastman Square, and Albert Campbell. Union Square would be located in the increasingly historic Garment District in Downtown Toronto. Union Square will honour the world of workers and can simply be an open space to walk or sit in.
- No more ‘planned mega-project dead zones’
- New National “Urban Park” – Historic District comprised of: St. Lawrence Market Complex, Flatiron Building, Berzcy Park, and immediate surrounding public space areas.
- The “Other P.P.P.” – Community Alternative to public-private partnerships.
- Parks Not Parking Lots – In some areas of Amalgamated Toronto, Parking Lots are the primary form of public space. We should instead have of Lots of Parks and less Parking Lots.
- YIMBY Festivals – Encourage an additional number of ‘Yes In My BackYard’ Festivals city-wide to allow elected officials to listen and meet with community groups they otherwise may not understand.
- Lost Rivers – Locate above ground Funtain Hydraulophones along the route of Toronto’s buried rivers.
- Planning but Not Urbanism – ‘Planning’ is development driven by and for redevelopment companies and local private developers. Urbanism identifies strategic issues only known to neighbours: People want a stable community life, and an affordable, accessible local economy. ‘Planning’ may compromise Urbanism by way of a more transient, higher-cost cultural district.
- The ability to Thrive – Sustainability is the ability to keep the Status Quo. Thrivability is the ability to empower and release the ‘Status Grow’.
- Ask Young People to help build The City they will grow up in.
- Pedestrian Walk of Fame – Locate it upon the Sidewalks of the Intersection at St George Street and Bloor Street West. Site of the Bata Shoe Museum.
- Traffic Flows – The Greenbelt and The TRCA have helped educate the public about our regional Watersheds. The City of Toronto has acknowledged the Watersheds by defining some parts of city ravines as part of the Greenbelt/Watershed. We can leverage this new understanding among the public into PedestrianSheds, VehicleSheds, DriverSheds.
- Parks as Ethnic Cultural Centres and Environmental Educational Facilities.
- Seasonal WiFi-sheds – Free WiFi in larger public parks
- Measurement of two new Indicators – Reduction of gasoline use per-capita. Goal is reduced annual miles driven per capita by car owners.
- GCIF – Encourage ALL Municipalities in GGH Greater Golden Horseshoe to sign onto the Free Global Cities Indicators Facility. Available free to all global cities yet based here in Toronto at U of T.
- Re-Budget the Ombudsman Office – This office of last resort for Toronto Residents with unresolved issues concerning the City of Toronto is short staffed and squeezing office space and its own budget to meet the demand. The Ombudsman office deserves a proper budget at least quadruple what it is now, hiring of necessary office support staff, and increased facilities to meet the needs of Torontonians.
- TAVIS – The Community Safety Plan which brought three levels of Government together after the Summer of The Gun and the 2005 Boxing Day Shootings, must continue to be re-inforced by The City of Toronto’s Neighbourhood Action Plan.
- Decriminalize The Monthly Critical Mass Group Bike Ride – This group bike ride on the last Friday of every month should remain safe and fun. It should not be a ticket-giving fest for minor infractions from the viewpoint of law enforcement.
- Heritage Streetcar Line – Toronto can dedicate a single Streetcar Route say the King Street Line or the College Street/Carlton Line to showcase Heritage Streetcars in Regular daily Service. San Francisco’s economic engine is Tourism among other things. The F-Line in San Francisco’s MUNI system is the world’s longest publicly-operated heritage streetcar line in daily service. It operates with more than 30 vintage Streetcars from around the world every day of the week from Fisherman’s Wharf to Castro.
- Gun Violence – Continue Mayor Miller’s Handgun Ban initiative with acknowledging the fact that guns are now being smuggled into Toronto by way of Canada’s vast northern border and no longer simply over border crossing from Detroit and New York State.
- “One-Person-One-Vote” – We are turning back the clock to the ninetheenth Century when political rights were linked directly to property rights. Back then it could be said it was “One-House-One-Vote”. There are more tenants in this city today than property owners. We must remind ourselves it is indeed One-Person-One-Vote and provide municipal, human, and citizenship rights and services accordingly.
- Metropolitan Strategy – The City faces a triple challenge of economic prosperity, human security, and ecological sustainability in our Real Estate sector. Our Real Estate sector is the most exposed due to global downturns yet it is the most subsidized by local taxpayers. A metropolitan strategy is called for within our Vision 2020 Toronto Urban Strategy.
- Rentrification – A ‘Urbanism’ solution in keeping Housing Affordable while acknowledging the facts on the ground in ‘Planning’ cause Gentrification. A different option to solve one of Toronto’s repeating patterns of outpricing people from within their own neighbourhoods.
- Tax Relief – If you work where you live, within walking distance, your tax burden upon the City is greatly reduced and can be called sustainable. You should be rewarded by way of lower taxes or a lower rate of increase in your particular situation.
- Library Walls as Public Memory – Toronto has almost a hundred public libraries. Their outside walls facing sidewalks can become a canvas of public memory projects including plaques, archived larger sized neighbourhood photos, and recent neighbourhood news to keep locals current.
- Subway Stations as Permanent Area Curated Art Galleries – The TTC System as a whole has an inventory of public spaces which allow for an Art Gallery opportunity. Indeed we already have a number of annual examples. Let’s co-curate this with The Community living around such Subway Stations, Tourism Toronto, and nearby Art Galleries. The best example of such an opportunity is the long pedestrian tunnel connecting both platforms inside Spadina Station.
- RideCharge – Co-ordinate support for Taxi-Cab smartphone/BlackBerry payment options to improve our city’s mobility productivity. We must lessen the burden on our Cab drivers and help them earn more from Convention Attendees and Tourists. Ease of payment by non-residents is one such integrated option.
- Next Chair of the TTC – Appoint a City Councillor if possible but not necessarily a Councillor. Historically Councillors are able to balance their Ward duties with other Committee or Commission responsibilities. However some Councillors are best suited to focus on one job at a time. We will carefully make this decision after considering the make-up of the next 2010-2014 Toronto City Council. Looking outside of Council, similar to the Chair of the Police Services Board, is on the table. This is a significant decision.
- Suicide Prevention Barriers on Subway Platforms – They can be economically viable. – From Above: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsSLAofc6Dc / From Platform: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=igPB0QBaR9A
- Human Trafficking – Toronto was once the end point destination in The Underground Railroad. Named for the difficult route American Slaves took to reach Freedom in Canada and livelihood in York and The City of Toronto. Today, Toronto has become an end point in Human Trafficking. The businesses advertising in the backs of newspapers are built upon the backs of people. We as a City must acknowledge this fact, face this reality, and provide an honourable way out for people trapped in this.
- Food Chain Literacy – Improve the understanding that Farmers Feed Cities and Farmers’ Markets can feed neighbourhoods. Knowing where our food comes from and how restaurants, grocery and convenience store food shelves are stocked will improve our overall sustainability.
- #Hashtags – Everything need not be miscellaneous. All City of Toronto Press Releases, Media Advisories, Marketing, Advertising should include Online Tag words and/or #Hashtags to improve our City’s findability and positioning in cyberspace.
- “Neighbourhood Notion” – A TED or YIMBY like event to share neighbourhood knowledge only available in the hearts and minds of community activists and neighbourhood people. Often this knowledge is lost as it is never shared with the wider city nor is it ever document. All of us is smarter than one of us.
- Official Plan – It is up for review in 2011. Vision 2020 Tower Renewal + Trinary System can be parallel and not contradictory to what we already do.
- New Daytime Rush Hour Subway Loop Route – Rush Hour Platform Congestion on Yonge Station’s Southbound Platform in the morning hour can be relieved without much cost and a little innovative co-ordination. We can reroute a handful of well-announced Subway trains originating at Kipling Station and Kennedy Station between the hours of 7 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. The Kennedy originating trains will By-Pass Yonge Station altogether and stop at Bay Station before switching tracks and head southbound to Museum and Ultimately looping north to Finch Station. Likewise, the Kipling originating trains will switch tracks southbound to Musuem Station before looping north to Finch Station. Other Cities in the world do this route sharing on existing track lines. There are many advantages to doing it here in Toronto.
- WATER – We have ignored the large ecological question and social question of source protection for too long. We must oppose any potential privatization of our water supply and delivery system. The availability of cheap water has subsidized suburbanization and threatens the hydrosocial cycle itself.
- Social Cohesion – We must build bonds within neighbourhoods and communities before building bridges between neighbourhoods and communities remain broken. We have trying to address root cause by treating the symptoms of breakdown in social cohesion. Oops. Let’s realize this and move on.
- Area Code NPK Problem, Toronto Solution – Due to U.S. Telecom Industry Numbering mismanagement, North America is artificially exhausting its three digit telephone area code numbering system. Toronto already has two area codes, 416 and 647 with a third one about to be assigned. Each area code split or overlay unnecessarily costs the economy upwards of $100 Million. Toronto must encourage the Federal Regulator to accept the ITU’s recommendation and accept country code 100 for Canada. We can then assign area codes without concern to the U.S. NPK Problem.
- Roundtable on The Environment – Renew its mandate with a focus on figuring out how to move beyond ‘Sustainability’ to ‘Thrivability’ in the Lives of The People of Toronto.
- Earmaking Money – This is a paradigm shift in understanding both the capital and operating budget. An interpretation of our City’s legal power towards earmarking rather than diverting all tax dollars automatically to general revenues will give The City flexibility in achieving Needs within Vision 2020.
- Easier Permits – Neighbourhood, Street and Block Parties/Festivals oftentimes have financial challenges in meeting the permit and insurance costs to hold small public events. We must make it easier for people to celebrate their own community.
- Aboriginal / First Nations’ Liason – It is widely understood that Toronto as a city is the largest off-reserve reserve for our Founding Peoples’. The Mayor and City Council must have a productive relationship with this often marginalized community of communities.
- Francophone Liason – French is Canada’s Other official language. Canada’s largest city can do much better in being an ambassador of our City French heritage. The City of Toronto was originally founded by the French in 1793. We seem to forget that fact. Let’s correct that between now and 2012, the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812.
- Taxi-Cab ID and Fare Information in Braille – This is an accessibility and fairness issue that will enhance our identity as a city.
- Inclusive Housing – We must not repeat the errors that Vancouver did as they eliminated Inclusive Housing policies which stabilized their city’s housing affordability. We must introduce and provide incentives to retro-define dwellings to match our mix of incomes levels in the coming economic downturn.
- Age-Friendly Toronto – Meet the World Health Organization (WHO) requirements to become only the second city, after New York, to achieve membership in the WHO’s Global Network of Age Friendly Cities, recognizing efforts to foster an inclusive and accessible environment that promotes active aging.
- Video Game Commissioner – Create this new position akin the Toronto Film Commissioner. Video Games are a larger industry that Films. Toronto is a centre of Video Game design, sales, and marketing. The Video Game Commissioner will encourage this industry and seek to bring “Toronto” as product placement within the storylines of locally produced games.
- Winter Cycling – Toronto can become a winter cycling city. Some basic needs such as snow removal of bike lanes and winter bike parking can easily be met. It will change the experience of Winter for many Torontonians. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Akk8eglQnrA
- Reciprocity Shelves – Placement of Ikea like shelves at ends of Condominiums and apartment building floors to create a culture of leave-one-take-one. This will complement our recycling culture. It will bring about a bit of behavioural change leading to sustainability.
- Increase House Calls by Doctors to Seniors – There are at best only a handful of doctors who do geriatric house calls. An Age-Friendly City demands better. We must prioritize finding doctors to fill this urgent need.
- “T.O. Book of Maps” – An open source interpretation of all the data available to allow people to create their own maps of our city. Sharing this information will allow us to glean wisdom in becoming a better city of all the people.
- Integrated Mobility Open Payment – Create an option for integrated payment between TTC, Car Sharing, BIXI Causal, Taxi-Cab, and Parking.
- “MetroMiles” Debit or Credit Card – Create a Debit Card or Credit Card where a portion of each transaction goes towards one’s property taxes. Instead of spending points on rewards, use it to pay and lower your taxes.
- Advocate for a Federal Minister of Cities – Brasil has one. The White House has the HUD Secretary. Canada can do better.
- Cool Roofs – Allow property owners the choice to meet the green roof by-law requirements by using retrofitting reflective surface white roofs or silver roofs to mitigate our city’s urban heat-island effect.
- BIXI Toronto – We know Municipal Bike Sharing works. Forget the trial and let’s get it correct, design it right, from the beginning of the program’s launch. The Memberships will follow. We must install as much cycling infrastructure as necessary to ensure BIXI and other BikeSharing will enjoy a DNA level of success in this city.
- REVERSE-FLOW Car Lanes – During the Morning Rush Hour, simply with a number of orange pylons, a number 0f Traffic Personel to direct traffic and double sided intersection traffic lights, we can improve the incoming downtown traffic flows without a significant dollar investment in new roads. Lakeshore Boulevard along Sunnsyside can easily allow this solution to happen. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gKEnGQSPJQ0
- Car-Sharing to Reduce Size of Municipal Fleet – The City of Toronto can shrink its overall ownership in number of vehicles using car-sharing. We can reserve day-time use of 50-100 ZipCar and/or Autoshare vehicles for City of Toronto business. Evening and Weekend use of the same cars will be made available to the general public. This will save the City and taxpayers money, reduce local green house gas emissions, reduce the number of parking spots needed, and help the City lead by example in sustainability and mobility.
Peoples’ Mayor HiMY SYeD
“Vision 2020 – Another Toronto IS Possible”
Twenty Year Urban Strategy embracing
Mobility, Sustainability, Identity
Where everyone feels and says,
” We Belong “
” We Belong, Here ”
In the Voting Booth on Election Day,
Monday October 25, 2010
Vote FOR Vision 2020
[x] HiMY SYeD