I drove the back streets to Yorkdale yesterday. It’s not something that I normally do; in fact I can’t remember the last time I drove those streets. But I’m glad I did because I found another mural painted on an underpass. Four sections of concrete wall, four words in bright colours – Love, Home, Limitless, Heights.
Home – just to the right of the word ‘home’ was a large heart that unfortunately I missed when I took the next photo. There was also a sign describing the story behind the mural.
This community mural was painted by youth from the neighbourhood, Rocco Ursino, Salim Yislam, Michelle Collin, Jaden Beckford, Tamika Smart, and Hassan Mohamed under the mentorship of Sean Martindale and Joshua Barndt. Apparently it was inspired by a popular local expression “Love or Love” and tries to convey compassion, hopefulness and determination. Needed sentiments as this neighbourhood undergoes major changes and revitalization.
This 2012 project was produced by Art Starts in partnership with Toronto Community Housing and office of councillor Josh Colle. Funding was provided by StreetARToronto and TCH.
The mural is on Ranee Avenue as it passes under the Allen Expressway. It is also right by the south entrance to Yorkdale subway station.
When I parked my car I saw this telephone pole – Shoot for the stars. Great advice!
And because one thing always leads to another, I was parked on Flemington Road beside this – the remains of Zachary Court.
The street is fenced off and the houses are empty. Some of the windows are missing but most are boarded up. This must be the neighbourhood redevelopment referred to in the description of the mural, or at least part of it.
There was another telephone pole with a happy picture painted on it but looking a little worn.
There are two development proposal signs posted on Ranee Avenue that pertain to this area. One of them is for a seven unit, three storey townhouse development on Ranee Avenue itself. The other is for the demolition and replacement of 233 social housing units as well as the construction of 824 market value units serviced by a new public street. The latter development involves a number of streets besides Zachary Court on both sides of the Allen Expressway (Zachary Court backs onto the west side of the Allen).