Posts Tagged ‘school’

I walk past Davisville Junior Public School fairly often…. or should I say, I used to walk past it.

I didn’t think about it too much until I heard that it was going to be demolished – or was it going to be saved?  Maybe I should take some photos of it as apparently it has some architectural value, an early 1960’s Modernist building.   Then, back in November, a construction fence appeared around the property.   One of those metal wire temporary fences that you see all over the city.  So much for saving the building.

 

Photos from November:

west end of Daviville public school with it's coloured panels on the upper floor, basketball nets in front, pavement

side entrance of Davisville public school before it was demolished, modernist archtecture brick building,

back of part of Davisville public school through chainlink fence, before demolition

crooked chainlink fence posts at the corner of a schoolyard, with metal construction fence inside that, school in the background, large paved area in front of the school

The building was also home to the Metropolitan Toronto School for the Deaf as well as Spectrum Alternative School.

red roses stuck in a chainlink fence as a memorial tribute to the school that is being demolished, MTSD 1962 to 2018 where MTSD is Metropolitan Toronto School for the Deaf.

below: Notice on the fence, permit to remove 21 trees.   A new elementary school is being built on the site.  In the meantime (for 2 years), Davisville Junior Public is being relocated to Vaughan Road in what was previously the Vaughan Road Academy.  Originally, the plan was to build the new school on the property (there was a large playground) and then tear down the old (Globe & Mail Feb 2017)

city notice posted on fence, permit to remove 22 trees. Notice that 44 trees will be planted once the building on the site (new elementary school) has been demolished

below: I past by the site for the first time in a few months and discovered that most of the school is now demolished.  Only a small portion by the front entrance remains and I suspect that that won’t be around for much longer.

small part of a school remains, debris scattered on the snow, digger at work in the background, apartment building in the distance

broken fence, plywood fence, and the remains of a school that is being demolished

old front entrance of Davisville public school, lots of snow, broken walls as it is in the proces sof being demolished.

beige wall on top, rust coloured wall below, with orange splotches. Orange metal trash bin on ground, two window in upper part, both recessed. One with a bike and one with flower pots.

Let’s start with the intersection itself.   It’s where the 504 King car turns north to Broadview station and it’s where Jillys dominated the corner for many many years, more than 30 years in fact.    Does anyone admit to lamenting the loss of Jillys 2 years ago?  The building has stood on the corner for 124 years and was also home to the Broadview Hotel although I doubt it was the kind of hotel you’d book your mother into (well, at least not my mother!).   Believe it or not, this isn’t a condo development.

intersection, TTC street car turning left, a grey car near the intersection, a few pedestrians, a large building wrapped in black netting as the building is being cleaned and renovated.

below: Instead, the New Broadview Hotel, built by Streetcar Developments, will have 57 rooms, a rooftop bar and a ground floor restaurant.   It will look approximately like this (from Broadview):

drawing of the New Broadview Hotel being renovated to incorporate an 124 year old brick building, new glass portion at the top of the building.

There was a reason I chose this intersection, and it wasn’t Jillys.  I went looking for a new mural but I didn’t know exactly where it was.   While I was looking, I explored and took some pictures because that’s what I do.

It wasn’t this street art painting I saw in an alley,

text street art painted on a garage door

or this painting way up high beside a parking lot,

upper level of a store, backing onto a parking lot, painting on the exterior wall of rays eminating from a center circular source

or this woman in a lane.

streeet art picture of a woman in pink and purple

I passed by Debre Selam St. Michael Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church.  Such a long name!  All over Toronto there are churches, temples, mosques and other places of worship for a lot of different religions.  I am not sure how many there are but I’d love to find out.  This Orthodox religion was new to me so of course I had to look it up.  I learned that it was once part of the Coptic Orthodox Church which has existed since the 4th century.  It split off in 1959 but remains a member of the Oriental Orthodox family.  The church has 38 million members in Ethiopia.  This church on Broadview is not the only one in Toronto, there are at least 2 others.  I’m not sure how many people in Toronto are members of the church, or attend services here. (additional note:  It’s located beside the Royal Canadian Curling Club which I think is a great juxtaposition).

front of a white building, two storeys, with round top windows, two flags flying by the door. Sign says Debre Selam St. Michael Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church. Small cross above the entranceway

The Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes have their building just up Broadview from the Ethiopian church.  They aren’t a religion but I had no idea what they were.  When I think of “orders” of buffaloes I think of Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble and their Loyal Order of Water Buffalo.   Apparently the “Buffs” have been an organization since 1882, originating in London England.   According to Wikipedia, “Membership is open to all males over the age of 18 who are willing to declare that they are “true and loyal supporters of the British Crown and Constitution”. Discussion of politics or religion is strictly forbidden at gatherings, as is gambling.”  The building looks like it was once a school…. looking for ideas where to start looking for its history?  Oh, that word ‘antediluvian’ – it means ‘before the flood’ as in the flood in the Old Testament, that one with Noah’s Ark.

brown brick builgin, one storey with peak roof, small veranda in front, blur front door, Canadian flag out front, sign above door says Royal Antidiluvian Order of Buffaloes.

I noticed some quirky things like this window.  Any guesses as to what it used to be?

window of a coffee shop where some of the letters have been removed. It now says Kids Bar. Shadows of the letters are on the blind that covers the inside of the window of the now closed shop

Dark Horse Expresso Bar

I walked through Joel Weeks park where I came face to face with a fox.

a small sculpture of a fox on top of a rock. The fox seems to be looking right into the camera

We exchanged glances for a moment or two but its interest was elsewhere ….
perhaps this rabbit?

sculpture of a fox on top of a rocl. Carved into the rock is a relief picture of a rabbit and some flowers

Also in the park, four little squirrels with a giant acorn!

a sculpture in a park of a giant acorn with the point pointing upwards, 4 small squirrels are at the bas of the acorn trying to hold it up

All it needs is a Scrat to come along and steal it!

cartoon character Scrat from the movie 'ice age' holding onto an acorn

Whoa, a little off track!

When I still couldn’t find the mural, I bought a cup of coffee and a bite to eat at Merchants of Green Coffee (no picture I’m afraid) and did the research I should have done previously.   Coffee finished, then mural found.

below: Riverside Pollinator Mural by Nick Sweetman.  (3 photos)

part of a mural, a large bee

a man is painting a mural, this part is a honeycomb with some bees on it. Dark blue background.

large mural, Riverside Pollinator mural, by Nick Sweetman, of a large bee, a clock, clock gears, a few small bees, a honeycomb and a flower and a very large tree

below: I also noticed this.  I know that that’s tomorrow but for those of you who are keen and read this blog soon after it was published, you may still have time to get there!   Free cake too!  It’s at 777 Queen Street East.

a poster is stuck into a sidewalk planter, advertising a launch of a mural on Saturday 10th September.

As I walked north towards Dundas Street, I found myself on the grounds of Queen Alexandra Senior Public School and Seed Alternative School.  Here is door 5.   An excellent example of unkempt 1950’s and 1960’s public building architecture.  I don’t mean to belittle the school and the people involved in making it work.  I just think that it’s a sad looking place; schools should be inviting.

blue double doors in a drab brown brick building, with brown metal inserts covering what was once a large window above the door. Two small windows remain.

One could probably do a photoessay on the condition of the building and what it says about Toronto’s attitudes to school construction and maintenance, and perhaps by extension, what it says about Toronto’s attitudes to public buildings in general.

three windows arrange horizontally in a brick wall. windows are not high

a box in front of a wall of a school has been painted with the word choose and two white hands.

While we’re on the subject of architecture, there is a mix of lots of types in this area of the city.  There are still lots of older houses, many of which have been renovated.

below: Side by side, old and new.  ‘Second Empire’ architecture featured mansard roofs and dormer windows, both of which are seen in these old rowhouses.  This style originated in France and arrived in Canada in the mid 1800’s where it seemed to remain popular for some time.

old brick rowhouses to the right, with a large tree in front, and new construction of row houses on the left.

below: This house is a variation on the Workers Cottage (or Gothic Cottage style).   A peaked roof over a central front door with one window on either side is the characteristic look of this style.   This one is interesting in that it is actually the end one in a row of three.

workers cottage, or gothic cottage, behind a large hedge

below: I could go on and on about architecture.  Instead, here’s one last picture of a jumble of styles (or non-styles!).  Take a look around at the buildings that you see.  Toronto doesn’t have much variation when it comes to the structure of the buildings, especially the older ones.  We do know how to make them look unique though!

two semi detached houses with mansard roofs, one with a purple front door and one with a black front door.

green second story door at top of metal exterior staircase, on a wall that is a different shade of green

green ivy leaves poke their way through the gaps in a blue weathered wooden fence

black and white sticker graffiti on the side of a Bell telephone box

This post is about community involvement and the murals that result.  They aren’t great art and they weren’t meant to be.  They are about the stories we tell about ourselves and our communities.  They brighten our public spaces and enrich our neighbourhoods.

The first is a series of murals painted by Gledhill Public School students. There are murals by the graduating classes of 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 in a lane near the school.

Part of a mural in an alley painted by students from Gledhill Public school, graduating class of 2008, black silhouettes under tree branches, hand prints too

Part of a mural in an alley painted by students from Gledhill Public school, graduating class of 2009, black silhouette of the Toronto skyline with big colourful footprints, some roughly drawn people too , an airplane flies overhead

Part of a mural in an alley painted by students from Gledhill Public school, graduating class of 2009, black silhouette of the Toronto skyline with big colourful footprints, some roughly drawn people too

Part of a mural in an alley painted by students from Gledhill Public school, graduating class of 2010. A blue semi-circle

Part of a mural in an alley painted by students from Gledhill Public school, graduating class of 2011. 2011 in large numbers across the bottom with grey silhouettes of people, brightly coloured squares with faces across the top

Part of a mural in an alley painted by students from Gledhill Public school, graduating class of 2011. 2011 in large numbers across the bottom with grey silhouettes of people, brightly coloured squares with faces across the top

Just to the east, Woodbine subway station is undergoing much needed renovations and expansion.  Some of the hoardings around the construction site have been covered with three murals.   They were painted by:  Haley G., Sasha K.S., Francis H., Melika W., Tristan C., Savannah P., Adrina P. and Anna-Lisa A as well as Jim Bravo and Andrenne Finnikin as part of the ‘City on the Move, Young Artists in Transit’ mural project.

Looking across a street to a construction site around which a fence has been erected. There are three murals painted on the hoardings.

The first mural is a juxtaposition of past and present, people playing beside the creek. The creek, trees, and birds are all the same.  There is now a city in the distance and clothing we wear has changed, but we still enjoy the outdoors like our ancestors did.

1910 to 2013, mural of past and present along the creek. Kids playing on either side, the past on the left, the present on the right, bird watching, standing in the grass,

Above ground, a fair, an amusement on a summer day.   Below ground, the subway is being built.

mural depicting people at a fair. A child is licking a giant round lollipop, a girl is holding a doll, a ferris wheel is in the background.

And last, woodpeckers in the trees as well as a poem by George Elliott Clarke who was the Poet Laureate of Toronto 2012-15.  It describes the murals and is transcribed below.

mural painted on TTC construction hoardings, trees and birch trees with no leaves on them, with a couple of woodpeckers

The poem on the last mural:

Seeing Beauty, at Woodbine
 
Citizens, let’s pasture ourselves in parks
And gardens, so skyscrapers mingle with trees,
And we recover Native faith, Settler
Hope, to savour birds’ trills and swoops, fording
Creek and times past, to touch us, where we stand.
 
Once was pleasure in a street fair – ice cream
And lollipop, but also in strolling
Or rolling down to work, shirt-sleeves rolled up,
Dawn light unfolding, That’s what’s visible.
(Underground, a steel vein branches, roots, and throbs.)
 
Torrential leaves stacked up towers, now fallen,
Last Fall, Birds tap into the standing logs
Winter planted.  Spring rain well refreshes
The city.  Now, young artists tap dreams –
Drafting Beauty – to which all say, “Bravo!”
 
by George Elliott Clarke

On a fence at Adam Beck Junior Public school in Scarborough is a wonderful “mural” composed of pictures painted by some of the students.  Kudos to all involved in the project!

a large number of colourful paintings by students at a junior public school.  Some are scenes of Toronto, others are of animals or plants or buildings.

A “Danger due to construction” sign, the CN Tower and a Toronto police car.
Ladybugs, flowers and trees.
On the very right is a picture that looks like a sunset or sunrise.  What you probably can’t read are the words written on the blue stripe.  They say, “the story of my life”.

Close up of the fence at a school.  About twenty paintings done by the students.

 Buses, soccer balls and a hat left on the fence.
Another CN Tower, an arena, and ice cream.
Stop bullying too.

close up of the left part of the fence with paintings by students at the school.

A Canadian flag and the Toronto Maple Leafs.

more of the collection of paintings by elementary school students that are hanging on a fence around the school.

Both Adelaide St. East and Richmond St. East pass over King Street as they converge into Eastern Avenue.  Recently the concrete supports that help hold up these overpasses have been painted in bright, bold pictures.  The murals are entitled ‘Frozen Memories’ and they were designed and painted by street artist Shalak Attack with help from Bruno Smoky and Fiya Bruxa.

 All four pillars of the overpasses are in view.

Each pillar has a large face on the side that faces King Street and a picture that depicts something representative of Corktown on the other sides. 

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass, in  the foreground is the face of a man with the eyes on the upper horizontal portion of the support and his mouth on the lower part.

These murals are a part of the StreetARToronto Underpass Program or “StART UP.” 

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass,  a man passes by on the sidewalk while in the foreground is a support painted with street scenes.  Houses and streetcar tracks.

Enoch Turner established Toronto’s first free school in the Corktown area in 1848. 

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass, a young girl in a pink top sitting at a table and writing in a notebook.  The word love is written on one of the pages.

painting of the Enoch Turner school on one of the pillars supporting Adelaide St. East in Toronto.  Other Corktown houses are also painted here on the lower part of the pillar.

  Two of the main industries in Corktown were bricks and beer.   One pillar pays homage to the people who worked in these industries, including this bricklayer.

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass, a man portrayed in blue tones, wearing an old fashioned hard hat and holding a trowel.

Mural on concrete pillar of a blue brick layer surrounded by symbols of industry such as factories, gears, beer bottles, bricks.  There is a parking lot surrounding the concrete support so there are cars parked in front of the pillar.

This mural is a another tribute to the early days of Corktown.   Sailing ships, maps and compasses are for the immigrants that came here.   The first church built in Corktown was Little Trinity in 1843.   It’s stained glass window is shown here.

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass, three supports are in the picture.  The one in the foreground has marine scenes - two sailing ships, a large turtle, and waves.  The two supports in the background are those with faces, one man and one woman.

other views

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Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass,  a large multicoloured woman's face is on the concrete support that is across the street.  A chain link ffence and yellow fire hydrant are in the foreground.