Posts Tagged ‘ramps’

Monday’s walk was a meandering route downtown, once again going where my feet and eyes take me.  No particular plan in mind and no set destination…   just trying to explore where I haven’t been recently.   No theme jumped out and tapped me on the shoulder but a few “stories” emerged.

below: There is now a 3D sign between the CN Tower and the Aquarium that says Canada 150.

a young boy is leaping from the D of the 3D Canada 150 sign in front of the CN Tower, and is leaping onto the top of the A. His hands are on the top of the A, one foot is one the side of the A and the other foot is near the top of the D

below:  …and another 3D sign by the CN Tower (you can see part of the back of the Canada 150 sign through the tree). I wonder how many there are in this city now?   Another bit of information (trivia?) – this area is called Bobbie Rosenfeld Park and has been since 1991. Fanny (“Bobbie”) Rosenfeld was a Canadian athlete who won two track medals  in the 1928 Olympics.   She also played softball and hockey in the 1920s and 30s.  When arthritis force her to stop playing she turned to sports journalism, working for the ‘Globe and Mail’ until her retirement in 1955.

3D sign for the CN tower with tourists taking pictures in front of it. Canada 150 3D sign in the background as well as some people sitting around on benches

One of the routes from the CN Tower into the downtown core of the city is via the Skywalk, a glass enclosed elevated walkway over the railway tracks.  The next few photos were taken as I walked that route.

below: A Toronto species of woodpecker in its native habitat – a forest of glass and steel. This artwork was completed in 1997 and is the creation of Dai Skuse and Kim Kozzi who together are known as Fastwurms.

large sculpture of a woodpecker on a pole in the foreground, many glass skyscrapers condos in the background

below: The above photo was taken from a quiet little terrace that I accessed from the Skywalk. Now you can see just how big the woodpecker is!  The ‘tree trunk’ pole is 30m high.  What you can’t see is the second woodpecker who is on the other side of the pole and slightly farther down it.

a concrete terrace, with benches and planters with purple flowers, lots of condos in the background, one person standing there

below:  The glass of the Skywalk creates some interesting reflections and shadows.  The glass was fairly clean the other day when I walked through it.  I have seen it when it’s been quite dirty and it’s not a pretty sight.

reflections of a woman walking on the Skywalk between Union Station and the convention center, with views of the street below and buildings beyond also in the frame
reflected in the red glass of the entrance to the CN tower are two women walking

below: Union Station, looking east from the Skywalk.   The new roof over the station platforms is taking shape.  Someday soon I’m going to have to take a look at the insides of the station; I can’t wait for all the renovations to be completed.

union station as seen from the west, from the skywalk, with open air tracks as well as the covered platforms. New roof over the platforms, tall buildings in the background

below: Part of the south “wall” along the railway tracks.

buildings reflected in another glass building right beside the trains tracks south of Union Station

below: Looking east from lower Simcoe along the south edge of the Gardiner Expressway.   The podium of the new condo under construction at 10 York Street is quite the wedge!

construction of a tall condo beside the gardiner expressway. The bottom of the condo is a wedge shape to maximize the space available

below: I played a bit on google maps street view and this is what I found for the above scene (taken Nov 2016).  If you compare the photos (above & below), it’s obvious that one of the ramps for the Gardiner Expressway has been demolished.   The eastbound exit to Yonge/York/Bay was removed a couple of months ago.  If you are a regular user of the Gardiner, I’m sure you have already experienced the consequences of this!

screenshot of google maps street view of Lower Simoce stret just south of the Lakeshore, one of the offramps for the Gardiner, a new condo under construction

below: Standing on the same spot, but turning around 180 degrees – looking west from Lower Simcoe.  An old ramp in the foreground…. and what looks like new construction in the background.  Those are new bents (the structures that hold up the road).

under one of the Gardiner Expressway ramps, with new bents being built for a new ramp in the background.

below: To get a closer look at what was happening here, I ventured around to the other side .  This is the view from closer to Rees Street. There is car on the old ramp so it must still be open (onramps still functional, just the offramp was removed).

two "cherry pickers" parked in front of new bents being constructed for a new ramp for the Gardiner Expressway

below: The trees are growing at Canada Square (Harbourfront), but so are the condos.  Yes, this new building is the same one with the wedge shaped lower floors.

view from Canada Place (Queens Quay West) with a clump of birch trees in the foreground and 3 highrise buildings in the background - two older ones and one in the middle that is under construction.
below: Also at Canada Square, there are three large photographs by Johan Hallberg-Campbell, a series called “Coastal”.   This one of them:

a large photograph of a run down building, northern, on the side of a concrete structure that is an entrance to the underground parking

below: More of Hallberg-Campbell’s work can be seen inside in the Artport Gallery (Harbourfront building) – here, many photographs with simple wood frames are mounted on a wall that is covered with large images.  “Coastal” is the product of the artist’s travels to coastal areas of Canada, from Newfoundland to northern Manitoba to British Columbia and many places in between.   Life on the edge, so to speak.  (Note: gallery show ends 18th June)

three colour photos in simple light wood frames mounted on a wall that is covered with large images

below: It’s not art but sometimes the line between public art and advertising campaigns is fuzzy.

a man walks on the sidewalk below a largef ad for Apple watches.  The photo is cropped so that the only part of the ad that shows is a hand on the handle bar of a bike.  A bright turquoise watch is on the person's wrist

Not all is shiny and new.   And that’s the way it should be.

metal grille, part of a barricade along the side of a parking structure, rusted,

parking structure on the top, old door and wall on the bottom. A wood picnic table in disrepair is in front of the door

street art painting of a blue fish on light blue background, stylized

Today I walked the southern part of the Lower Don River trail.  It’s not the most relaxing place to walk even though the path follows the river.  I have a habit of absentmindedly meandering and I didn’t want to meander right into a cyclist on the narrow shared path.   There was constant background noise from the cars and trucks on the nearby Don Valley Parkway but it was the GO trains that made the most noise as they rumbled right beside me.  Yes, you are correct, it’s not my favorite place to walk.  But I also knew that there was a reward near the end of the trail.

Near the ‘mouth of the Don River’ (in reality, where the Don River turns into the Keating Channel), there are some new murals on the bents supporting the ramps between the DVP and the Gardiner Expressway.  They are part of the Love Letter to the Great Lakes project.   A previous blog post, love letters in paint, concerned the murals from this project that were painted near Ossington and Queen West.

below: If you approach the area from the north, this is the first bent that you see.  All sides of it have been painted by Kirsten McCrea.  If you are driving south on the Don Valley Parkway and you exit to the Gardiner westbound, you drive right over this, and the next few, bents.  In case you haven’t guessed, a bent is that concrete support thingy holding up the road.

a bent supporting an offramp has been covered in a bright mural, grass and weeds grow in front, the river is behind, a small tree also in the picture

below: The other side of the McCrea mural is in the background, behind the bent that has been painted by PA System (Patrick Thompson and Alexa Hatanaka).  Amongst the swirly watery  shapes there is a face near the top.  Extra bit: The guy on the bike stopped to take a photo too.

A swirl of colours makes a mural of faces and hands and watery things, on a bent under the Don Valley Parkway

below: The other side of the PA System bent. A large fish fits perfectly in the upper portion while a hand reaches up from the vertical part.

A very large fish is painted across the top of a bent, and a hand is on the vertical part, with finger tips pointed upwards.

below: The work of MC Baldassari who is currently from Montreal.

concrete support, or bent, under a ramp has been painted with a mural based on a large dark blue triangle

below:  The other side of the above bent.  It looks like the woman has come through the pillar.

concrete support, or bent, under a ramp has been painted with a mural based on a woman's head coming through a large dark blue triangle

below: A woman with a mouse in her hand and a flower in her hair kneels beside the foxes,
a mural painted by EGR (Erica Balon).   In the background you can see a much taller bent that has been painted blue.   This bent is on a different ramp, the ramp that you would find yourself on if you were driving east on the Gardiner and then exiting to the DVP.  It has been painted by Jason Botkin and it includes the word Wonscotanach.  Apparently that was the First Nations name for the river before John Graves Simcoe came along in 1790 and decided to call it the Don River.

A mural on a bent in an underpass, a young woman is kneeling. She is holding a mouse in one hand. Two foxes stand beside her.

below: There are more animals on the other sides, along with a city lit up in the night in the background of the mural.   Raccoon, rabbit and a pink butterfly fluttering past.

2 bents covered with murals. In the foreground, the mural is dark blue, with a pink butterfly, a rabbit, a mouse and a raccoon.

woman holding a mouse in a mural on a bent in the foreground, with another bent in the background, a mural of water and topless red women walking or standing in the water

below: Rajni Perera‘s mural features red and yellow women walking or standing in the water.

part of a mural of water and topless red women either walking or standing in the water

below: Looking back

a cyclist rides past 4 bents under the Don Valley Parkway that have been painted with murals as part of the Love Letter to the Great Lakes project.

below: A collaborative effort by Jarus and Kwest beside the Don Valley trail, just north of the other murals.

large sea creature painted on a mural on a concrete wall.

below:  And one last photo before leaving the area… a quick note sprayed on a concrete support.

rough spray painted words 'Hi Love' on a concrete support on a railing by a river.