Welcome to Harbord Village

Four Residents' Associations Condemn Smear Campaign

The School Trustee election in Ward 10 in downtown Toronto has been overtaken by a hate campaign directed toward a Muslim woman candidate.

Three school board candidate meetings have been disrupted by charges of radical extremism, screamed and threatening accusations aimed at sowing suspicions of a Muslim candidate’s fitness to serve as a school Trustee. Police were in attendance at the final meeting and removed one of the disruptive audience members from the hall.

In the last week before the election, not satisfied with a doorstep whisper campaign, those behind this effort distributed three flyers door-to-door, set up multiple websites and  are now sending robocalls with an escalating list of charges designed to destroy a young woman’s reputation.

Who are the authors of these hate pieces? They are anonymous.  No one knows who is raising the questions. No individuals have stepped forward to take responsibility. We challenge them. Uncover your faces...

Click here to read our entire statement on this matter (and contact information for the four residents' associations).

Harbord Village Residents’ Association • Huron-Sussex Residents’ Organization
Palmerston Area Residents’ Association  • Grange Residents’ Association

Toronto's Municipal Election is Monday, October 27 —

20 Councillor & Trustee Candidates in Trinity Spadina have signed a letter opposing the Central Tech dome proposal

An OPEN LETTER TO ELECTORS opposing the Central Tech dome proposal has been signed by 20 Councillor and Trustee Candidates in Trinity Spadina (Municipal Wards 19 and 20, and TDSB Ward 10).These are the candidates who have signed the letter (in alphabetical order):

Tony Aires; Ybia Anderson; Richard Klagsbrun; Ausma Malik; and Michael Sims.

Daryl Christoff; Terri Chu; Joe Cressy; Graham Hollings; Anshul Kapoor; Albert Koehl; Tonny Louie; Sam Novak; Kat Shermack; Sarah Thomson; Susan Tsai; and Nick Wright.

Scott Bowman; Mike Layton; and George Sawision.

You can see the 20 Candidates' OPEN LETTER TO ELECTORS here.

HVRA and board member Wendy Smith win HERITAGE TORONTO awards!

HVRA winners at Heritage Toronto Awards October 21, 2014

Above: Representing HVRA at the Heritage Toronto Award Ceremony October 21, 2014 (left to right) —
Eleanor Levine, Oral History Project coordinator Nicole Schulman, Margaret Procter, HVRA Chair Tim Grant, and Wendy Smith.
(Photo courtesy Heritage Toronto.)

Heritage Toronto citation honouring HVRA's heritage campaigns over the past decade

"Founded in the 1960s, the Harbord Village Residents' Association is dedicated to building local community.

"From 2005 to 2009, the HVRA secured two Heritage Conservation District plans in its area.

"In 2012, it shifted its attention to include the area's cultural heritage. Laneways were recently renamed after local residents from Harbord Village's past, and the Harbord Village History working group has conducted oral history interviews about daily life with 100 of the area's oldest, long-time residents. The interviews were recorded, transcribed and indexed by theme, and published online. In the fall of 2013, the Association partnered with a group of Museum Studies students and Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre to present a physical exhibit which in turn generated more memories and comments. Future projects may include collecting photographs from long-time residents and conducting interviews in other languages.

"The Jury commended the Harbord Village Residents' Association for bringing their area’s heritage to life in fresh, accessible, and innovative ways. Rich research has been shared with a broad audience both in neighbourhood streetscapes and online."

HVRA was a big winner at the Heritage Toronto Annual Awards ceremony on October 21. We were honoured, first, with a COMMUNITY HERITAGE AWARD  (Toronto and East York Community Council Area), and later during the ceremony with the MEMBERS' CHOICE AWARD, which is an award voted by all Heritage Toronto members for their favourite of the eight 2014 Community Heritage nominees.

HVRA board member Wendy Smith was also honoured, receiving Heritage Toronto's AWARD OF EXCELLENCE (its highest award) in the Media category, for her Toronto Park Lot Project. The Heritage Toronto Jury applauded Wendy's project for its "scholarly attention to detail and its engaging presentation", and praised it as "an excellent tool for promoting a greater understanding of Toronto’s heritage." You can see Wendy's project here: http://parklotproject.com

The Heritage Toronto Awards Jury commended HVRA for bringing our area’s heritage "to life in fresh, accessible, and innovative ways". Each of the two Community Heritage awards to HVRA was accompanied by a cheque to HVRA for $500, which will be a very welcome support to our future heritage projects.

HVRA was represented at the awards ceremony by former HVRA board member Eleanor Levine and present board member Margaret Procter. Both were valuable members of HVRA's 2013 Oral History Project team, which recorded the memories of Harbord Village residents who lived in the neighbourhood before 1975. Eleanor, who accepted the two awards on our behalf, conducted most of the 100+ hour-long oral history interviews which can now be heard on the Harbord Village History website.

Congratulations to everyone involved in Harbord Village heritage and history projects over the years:

For work on the Harbord Village Heritage Conservation District Advisory Committee: Gus Sinclair, Sue Dexter, and Richard Longley.

Gus Sinclair, coordinator of our Laneway Naming Project, and jury members Bob Barnett, Margie Zeidler, Tim Grant, and Neil Wright.

Members of the Oral History Project team: Dr. Nicole Schulman, Eleanor Levine, Richard Gilbert, Wendy Smith, Margaret Procter, Dinny Biggs, Colin Furness, Mary Newberry, Margaret de Boer and Frances Robinson.

And to all 100 of our oral history project interviewees, thank you.

Congratulations EVERYONE, and well done!

Central Tech update —


Our online petition now has 600+ signatures. Don't forget to sign! SAVE THE CENTRAL TECH PLAYING FIELD —STOP THE DOME.

The TDSB has refused to release essential Central Tech documents requested under the FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT until 36 hours after a TDSB board meeting which could decide the fate of the Razor dome proposal. The delayed delivery date is October 31. See details on our F.O.I. webpage.

TDSB has lost another round in its fight to force an 8-storey commercial sports dome onto the Central Tech playing field.

September 30, 2014
The TDSB appeal to Divisional Court was turned down today by the three justices who heard the appeal.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014
The day after the loss at Divisional Court, TDSB lawyer Gordon Petch wrote the Ontario Municipal Board requesting a 10-day hearing as soon as possible. He also requested the assistance of a board mediator "on an emergency basis" in hopes of fast-tracking a settlement between the city, the communities and the school board that will clear the way for the dome.

For details on legal and planning developments, please see our new Central Tech Legal/Planning webpage.


HVRA will soon be launching a fund-raising appeal to pay for expert planning, legal, and other advice needed to properly represent ourselves at any such proceeding.

An OPEN LETTER TO ELECTORS opposing the Central Tech dome proposal has been signed by 20 Councillor and Trustee Candidates in Trinity Spadina (Municipal Wards 19 and 20, and TDSB Ward 10).


We have reorganized the Central Tech portion of the HVRA website into 15 pages to make it easier for you to find the information you're looking for. See HVRA's new Central Tech webpage here.

HVRA challenges the accuracy of unelected Ward 10 interim TDSB trustee Glassco's newsletter promoting the Central Tech dome proposal. For copies of the Trustee's Newsletter and OUR DETAILED RESPONSE, please see our Central Tech webpage.

HVRA continues to call for a City summit to establish the facts. We call for a halt to the TDSB's Central Tech dome offensive until the new Trustees and City Councillors take office after the fall election.

The City offers $ to rescue the field — why won't the TDSB talk?

pool photos More of a good thing...
The Central Technical School Community Saturday Afternoon Swim

What Public swim time in the Central Tech pool
When Every Saturday afternoon from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Where Central Tech Pool at Lennox and Lippincott Streets (southeast of Bathurst, door 16).

  • Recreational swim space as well as lane swimming available
  • Certified lifeguards on duty at all times
  • In order to continue funding the program, a $2 donation per person (adult and children) is appreciated at the door.

CTS SWIM is currently fund raising so that the Community Swim can continue into 2015. Please send them suggestions and leads for donations.

For more information regarding the community swim at Central Tech, please contact centraltechpool@gmail.com

Honest Ed's Development

Community survey finds green space, a civic plaza, and a community cultural centre the three top priorities of neighboring residents in the redevelopment of the Mirivish Village site


Westbank Projects Corp., a Vancouver development firm, has acquired the Honest Ed’s site in the block bounded by Lennox, Markham, Bathurst and Bloor. It has undertaken a series of public consultations and will be presenting plans to the City as early as later in the Fall.

In response the Mirvish Village Task Group, led by the Palmerston Residents Association, with the participation of the Seaton Village, Annex, and Harbord Village residents' associations, has surveyed residents to determine community desires for whatever building development take place on this critical site. This will be one of the largest developments in our part of town.

Asked to rank the importance of the inclusion of various kinds of public amenities in the development, 276 respondants ranked GREEN SPACE first (215 very important, 48 somewhat important); a CIVIC PLAZA second (109/75); and a  COMMUNITY CULTURAL CENTRE third (111/89).

The survey also found that residents favoured a building height similar to that of the B-Street Condos across Bathurst Street, and wanted to see only small-size retail operations in the building.

A further public process will take place in the future.

You can see the study results here.

Heritage Directory15th Edition of the Harbord Village Directory for Conservators and Restorers of Heritage Properties is available.

Our 15th edition of the Harbord Village Directory for Conservators and Restorers of Heritage Properties was released on November 27, 2013.

Recipient of the 32nd Heritage Toronto,
Community Heritage Award and Members’ Choice Award, 2006.

The Harbord Village Directory for Conservators and Restorers of Heritage Properties is a 72-page booklet that answers this question with respect to every one of a building's street visible elements, from the chimney top to the garden fence(with roofs, windows, doors, porches, railings and paint colours in between).

Download your copy here.

Graffiti Committee Seeks Donations

In late February, 30 people representing police, school, Harbord BIA, residents, the councillor and his staff met to discuss what to do about the continuing graffiti tagging that is going on in our lanes. Since this past Summer, almost all graffiti tags on Sussex Mews and Harbord Street have been removed or painted over. Two of the most prolific "taggers" have been arrested.   Now HVRA’s Graffiti Committee would like to extend the programme to other Harbord Village lanes.  If you would like your laneway to be next and are willing to help, contact HVRA Chair Tim Grant at chair@harbordvillage.com.

Up to now, the cost of paints and graffiti removal chemicals has been borne by a handful of individuals.  HVRA is now seeking financial donations that will create a superfund to pay for paint, etc that will be used in the coming months on other laneways.  

If you can help, please mail cheques payable to "HVRA" to:
HVRA, 360A Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON M5S 1X1. 
Please mark "graffiti removal" on your cheque.

Why is this necessary? Many of those whose garages or houses have been tagged, are on fixed incomes.  The Graffiti Committee wants to make graffiti eradication painless for them, and will find the volunteers to do the work. But they need funds to make this work.

Harbord Village Pilot Project Gets Ahead of Emerald Ash Bore Killer

Cost to HVRA homeowners could be as little as $250 every 2 years

Harbord Village EAB Management Plan —
for more information, click here to visit our Treeing the Village web pages.

Cover of

Finally, some real hope in staving off the green beetle that is threatening one in ten trees in the City of Toronto and is further advanced on the University of Toronto campus than was thought. Some have been found in Harbord Village, but we need to act in the next four months to save half our trees.

“We need to be in a position to act by June,” said Prof. Sandy Smith, University of Toronto Forestry Department Entymologist. “Injections must be within June-August timeframe, or the trees will die.”

“This is way better than we thought,” said Tim Grant, Chair of HVRA, when we were given a quick preview of the plan. “We still have a chance to act.”

What is promising is that the cost of injecting affected trees is considerably less over time than cutting them down, because a major infestation is invariably fatal.
Read more here.

Get to know our Community Builder Award Winners.

Cyril Greenland and Jane Donald

Each year we recognize those who have made outstanding contributions in three categories: Community Builder, Front Yard Garden and Heritage Restoration.

Visit our Award Winners web page to see the amazing collection of individuals and homeowners who have made wonderful contributions to our neighbourhood. Harbord Village is a much better place for their efforts.


Find your tree!

Our Google Earth map will show you your street, your house, your tree — and the entire Harbord Village canopy.

Check it out on our Harbord Village Trees Inventory web page

Reading recommendation from the HV Tree Committee:
Here's a timely article about tree care from the Fine Gardening web site: What's Wrong with That Tree?

Google Earth