Consider these two very good excuses to come east!
Last weekend the sun poked it's rays out from behind the never-ending grey clouds of spring and we went for a walk along the Don River. The river path, bordered on one side by the Don Valley Parkway (highway) and train tracks, isn't the most accessible or noise-free green zone in Toronto but I feel like with some attention it could be a great space.
We walked all along the river from Riverdale Park East to the brickworks. It was a Sunday, so no market, but we had a great coffee and scone from Cafe Belong - which also serves brunch, lunch & dinner. The menu looked wonderful and everything they do is local, sustainable, and organic...
...And expensive! Apparently we must all pay a premium for local, sustainable, and organic food these days. You know what would be great? Places that charge insane amounts of money for shitty food, while charging very little for awesome food. That way people could eat great instead of eating shitty. Sound good, world of ecological food-makers? /end rant.
So, the brickworks were abandoned and through a joint venture were remediated and reopened as a sort of market / "community environment centre" with paths around the waterways & adapted industrial buildings that house all kinds of community activities. Design was completed by IDP (integrated design process) with a huge number of participating firms like DTAH (du Toit Allsopp Hillier), Claude Cormier, Diamond + Schmitt, ERA, etc.
Onto the fun stuff: Brownfield remediation, yo. Naturalized water systems are WHERE IT IS AT! Guys, I love this project so much, I want to become a duck and live here. Projects like this really give me hope that good work is possible!
Just for your review, was Sunday the most awesome day ever? Yes. Yes it was. We read the paper and drank coffee IN BED, with sunshine pouring in. Ate a hearty breakfast consisting of bacon & bacon; went for a long walk, enjoyed a creamy, full-bodied americano at cafe belong, discovered bacon-infused maple toffee (much of my happiness revolves around bacon and bacon-inspired products), walked in the sunshine at the brickworks, took a FREE SHUTTLE while listening to CBC radio to Broadview station, went to Loblaws and found msc salmon in tins; came home, ate said salmon on crackers, and then went climbing at Rock Oasis, which is just minutes from our place!
I can't even think of a better day! I just felt so fricken Canadian and happy and I guess deep down I am really happy to be here! DAMN! All that emotion just needed to pour out.