Real Progress on Donwood Institute and Leaside Rink
Guest Column for Leaside-Rosedale Town Crier
I want to thank residents of Don Valley West, for re-electing me as Member of Provincial Parliament for Don Valley West. Representing our community at Queen’s Park is a privilege which I do not take for granted. I am humbled by your continued trust.
As your MPP it is my job to work on broad provincial issues like improving our education and healthcare systems, promoting environmental protection, fighting poverty, and ensuring sound management of the province’s finances.
Equally important, though, it is my job to work to promote the interests of our communities on more specific local issues.
As many of you know, I have been heavily involved in the work to protect the public institutional use of the Donwood Institute and to add a second ice rink at the Leaside Memorial Arena.
Over the past year, we have made real progress on both of those files, securing a commitment that the Donwood Institute will remain in use through 2012 and securing a provincial commitment to put forward the $750,000 cost of moving the Ontario Film Review Board which currently occupies the land on which the second ice rink would be built.
There is important work still to be done on both files. It is now time to take advantage of the five year window of opportunity between now and 2012 to find an alternate public institutional use for the Donwood Institute. And, while the provincial government has created the opportunity for the City of Toronto to purchase the land to the south of the Leaside Memorial Arena in order to build the new rink, that purchase must be finalized for the new rink to go forward.
In the months and years ahead, I look forward to working with residents, Councillor Parker, stakeholders, and provincial officials to achieve lasting solutions on these important issues.