Posts Tagged ‘Sheppard Ave.’

Right now, the section of Sheppard Avenue East between Yonge and Leslie streets is a mix of old, middle aged and new – a hodge podge of sizes, styles and uses.   It’s neither ugly nor pretty.  It’s not sure if it’s city or  suburban.

below: The intersection of Bayview and Sheppard from the southwest.

main road with traffic, coming to an intersection, with a tall building in the background

You’ll probably never hear anyone say, “Hey, let’s go for a walk along Sheppard”.  So why was I there?   I’ve driven along this stretch many times but I have never walked it.  Have I been missing something?

below: A short distance west of Bayview is the modern brick St. Elizabeth of Hungary Roman Catholic Church, or ÁrpádHázi Szt. Erzsébet Római Katolikus Templom according to their sign.  Sunday mass is in Hungarian.   If you are driving past on Sheppard Ave, it’s easy to miss the simple steeple and cross that marks this building as a church.

steeple of St. Elizabeth of HUngary RC church, modern brick building with simple cross on the top

below: A large mosaic adorns one of the exterior walls.

mosaic on the exterior brick wall of St. Elizabeth of Hungary RC Church showing St. Elizabeth and two people kneeling beside her.

below: A small shrine is in front of the church.

small picture of Mary and baby Jesus in bright colours, on a small shrine in front of a church

below: The south entrance to Bayview subway station.  There are no escalators at this entrance  – instead, there is an elevator and a LOT of stairs.

south entrance to Bayview subway station with tall residential buildings behind and a construction site beside

below: The artwork at Bayview station is by Panya Clark Espinal, titled ‘From Here Right Now’.  Half an apple lies on the platform.

art on a subway platform, a line drawing of a very large apple that has been cut in half, on the wall and floor of the station

below: A salt or pepper shaker on the wall.  I’ve only shown two of the images in the series.  There are 24 in total and they are scattered throughout the  station.

art on a subway platform wall, a salt or pepper shaker in black on white tiles

below: There is a small park behind the south entrance to Bayview subway station, Kenaston Garden Parkette where I saw this tree in bud.   The first signs of spring are always wonderful to see.   Today it’s -12C outside so I hope the tree is okay.

pussy willow buds on a tree

below: This little park was designed by Wilk Associates Landscape Architecture and it incorporates a large number of rocks including a glacial boulder found on the site.   A bronze sculpture of a tree clinging to a rock  by Reinhard Reitzenstein is one of the features of the park.

small sculpture in a park of a sapling on a rock with its roots growing over the surface of the rock

below: If you stand in the park and look east,  you can’t miss the construction.

small sculpture in a park of a sapling on a rock with its roots growing over the surface of the rock - crane and construction site in the background

a convex mirror beside a black and yellow caution sign, condos are reflected in the mirror

the front and side of a large truck is in the foreground, right side, with a construction site beyond

Construction is everywhere on Sheppard Avenue.

below: All of the houses on Cusack Court are now gone.  Only the ‘No Exit’ sign remains.

a construction site where the houses on a a whole street have been demolished. The no exit sign for the street still remains., the site is behind a chainlink fence

a banner of the Canadian flag has fallen over and is lying on the ground behind a chainlink fence

below: The single family homes on the south side of Sheppard are slowly being demolished to make way for condo developments.  At the corner of Sheppard Ave East and Greenbriar  the proposed development of 184 residential units is the subject of an OMB prehearing on the 8 May 2017  (case number PL161113).

a boarded up house, split level, built in the 1950s, is in the foreground, condos and apartment buildings are behind it

below: Five houses are empty and waiting to be demolished to make way for two buildings, 11 and 6 storeys, mixed use (i.e. retail at street level) and incorporating a few townhouses.  In other words, the same old same old.

a boarded up house, split level, built in the 1950s, is in the foreground, condos and apartment buildings are behind it

below:  I said “same old same old” above because these types of buildings are popping up all over  many major roads that are outside the downtown core.  I suspect that Sheppard Avenue will be lined with structures like this one that’s already been built on the north side of Sheppard.

across the street is a 10 storey residential building, cars on the street, small trees in the foreground

Many people make the argument that there isn’t the density to support a subway along Sheppard.  I am of the opinion that if they’re not wrong now, they soon will be.   Development and public transit are dependent on each other, a symbiotic relationship if you will.   If you are affected by the construction along Eglinton for the new Crosstown line, you might agree that waiting for density only increases the problems and inconvenience (and cost?) of building new subway lines.   Also, have you seen photos of what the area around Davisville or Finch (and others) stations looked like when the subway opened there?   What is the required density?  Why do we want to funnel even more people towards the overcrowded Yonge line anyhow?   Is there an end to the questions we can ask?

And that’s another reason for my walk here…. to make note of the construction that is occurring whether we agree with it or not and to document some of  the changes.

below:  Two low rise apartment buildings.

two three storey brick apartment buildings with balconie in the front, taken from across the street

below: Once upon a time there were a lot of these little houses along Sheppard (even more so on the west side of Yonge Street).  At least one of these is still used as a family home but most are now offices or businesses.

a few small brick houses on the south side of Sheppard Ave

below: The north entrance to Bessarion station

looking across the street to the small north entrance to Bessarion subway station, with a small two storey plaza beside it

below: Looking east from Bessarion.  You can see as far as the condos on Don Mills Road.

looking west from Bessarion subway station towards Leslie Street and beyond,

   There is a reason that you haven’t seen many people in these pictures and it’s not because I waited for people to get out of the way.   Sheppard Avenue is a “major arterial road” under Toronto’s road classification system and traffic movement is its major function.  20,000+ cars are expected to use it every day.

I don’t like to say it, but why would you be walking along Sheppard anyhow?

below: Bayview Village parking lot at the NE corner of Bayview and Sheppard.

parking lot of a mall, Bayview village with surrounding buildings in the background.

As you might know, scroll down to the next blog post to see some pictures of Bessarion station!

 

If you are driving or walking west on Sheppard Avenue, just past Midland Avenue, you will notice a new mural on one corner of a railway underpass.   This mural was recently painted by street artist Elicser.

a mural by elicser showing different people, on an underpass on Sheppard Ave East. An older couple, a woman in a pink head scarf, some students, some men and women.

part of a mural by street artist elicser, an older couple. The man has a white beard and is bald.

part of a mural by elicser, a woman in a pink head scarf, with a younger woman walking down a road behind her

part of a mural by elicser, students with backpacks walking, a boy with a Blue Jays baseball cap.

part of a mural by elicser, a group of 4 people, 2 men and 2 women. One of the women is on the shoulders of one of the men.

On the southeast corner of Don Mills and Sheppard (across Sheppard Ave East from Fairview Mall) some striped poles have sprouted.  Running southwest, at a 45 degree angle from the streets, are 4 tall striped poles with pointy tops; they look like tall skinny cylinders.  They are part of Douglas Coupland’s latest public art installation in the city, ‘Four Seasons’.

below:  Looking southeast, the four poles representing the four seasons rise up in the public space between buildings.  Autumn, of which you can only see a little, is in the foreground, and is followed by summer, spring, and in the distance, winter.

Four tall striped poles designed by Douglas Coupland as a public art installation.  The pole in the foreground, spring, can only be partially seen.  The winter pole is in the distance.

If you have seen the Douglas Coupland exhibit either at MOCCA or at the ROM, you will realize that bright coloured stripes seem to be part of his trademark.  The first time that I saw these poles I thought of Douglas Coupland and I wasn’t surprised to find that he in fact was the artist who designed them.

below:  Also part of the art installation are three poles that stand next to the new condo development along Don Mills Road.

Looking across the street (Don Mills Rd) at a new condo development.  Three tall striped poles are beside one of the buildings as part of an art installation.  The building closest to the poles is low rise (2 or 3 storeys) but the building behind is a much taller structure.

below: The ‘winter’ pole is mostly white stripes.
It is the farthest from the intersection of Don Mills and Sheppard.

Very tall striped cylindrical pole with mostly white stripes with a few greys and only one or two pale colours.   Looking up from the base of it towards the tip, two tall condos, one on either side, are in the photo too.

It was a damp grey day when I took the photo below.  The result is a grey photo of a grey intersection.  It is also an example of Toronto suburban planning, or the lack thereof.

Over looking a major city intersection, Don Mills Road and Sheppard Ave East.  Lots of traffic.  Some taller apartment buildings from the sixties and seventies are in the background.  One of the tall cyllindrical poles of Douglas Coupland's art installation is in the foreground.

A brightly coloured striped cylindrical shaped pole in front of a tall condo building.