Plans Revealed For Junction
By Derek Pinder
“A forlorn industrial site” and “a site that’s been waiting for something to happen”; these were two descriptions of a part of Scarborough Junction where Republic Developments and Harlo Capital are aiming to create a new community.
Their vision is to transform an ugly 26-acre site into a transit-oriented community comprising housing, retail, employment, and parks. It will cover the area along St. Clair Avenue East from the Scarborough GO Station to Kennedy Road, and be bounded by the rail line to the south.
The plan was unveiled at an online open house on August th. These are early days in the development of the project and there was a good deal of architect-speak and dreaming. The concept is to build a complete community where cycling and walking will be the first choice of travel, supplemented by good TTC and GO transit connections. A retail square will be at the heart of the development and a curved main street will connect the various amenities. Christmas markets and food trucks are some of the ideas that are being floated around. Presently, their best guess is that we’re four years away from the start of construction, and plenty more public meetings will be held before then.
The Bluffs community is well used to dreams that come to naught. Who can forget the community courtyard at The Manderley or the enticing street level retail opportunities which now sit empty in most of the new condos on Kingston Road? Still, we’d rather see developers aiming high than aiming for mediocrity, and this huge development is the best opportunity for community improvement in the Bluffs that we’ve seen in a long time. As Matt Young, President of Republic Developments, said at the open house, Scarborough is past its time for a visionary project. If you would like to contribute your ideas, you can do so by completing the community survey at www.shapesj.ca.