TTC Squanders Tax-Payer Dollars on Non-Transportation Related Online Store

The Toronto Transit Commission or TTC has seen more than its share of controversy with employees sleeping on the job, to alarming rates of pedestrian injuries. During it all, TTC wages have continued to skyrocket as the TTC has cried about operating budget deficits. Taking a closer look, it appears that the TTC’s troubles have less to do with funding and more to do with, at best, poor use of funds and perhaps, even inappropriate use of funds.

The TTC Mandate

According to TTC’s website,, the TTC’s Mandate is to serve “the people of Toronto by ensuring your transit system is reliable, safe, and prepared for the future.”

Budget Deficit

In September of 2016, the TTC was projecting a $172 million operating deficit, citing reduced ridership as a factor.

Use of Funds

In November of 2016, it was reported that TTC was opening an online store to sell TTC branded merchandise. No, really, I’m serious…check out This brilliant initiative (I’d like to know who’s brain child it was), required several people to work on the project (project manager, website architect, website programmer, graphic artist, procurer, online marketing co-ordinating, webmaster, etc.) all, no doubt paid at full salary and probably as unionized employees.

Squandering of Tax Dollars

This is a strong example of the political and bureaucratic squandering of tax-payer dollars. The TTC does not have the mandate to open merchandise stores, online or otherwise.  Yet, it has taken much energy, time and money to open an online store. It has done this, during a time that it continues to increase the already high employee wages, deals with poor service, is facing a serious operating deficit and dropping ridership.

Who Is Responsible?

Just who signed off on the TTC online store initiative? Who was hired to run the project, and what is that person’s relationship to the person that signed off on the project (or anyone at the TTC)?

At a time that John Tory and Kathleen Wynne are busy wasting billions of tax-payer dollars and racing towards record breaking deficit’s, we the taxpayers need to start holding those responsible accountable. Share your observations of waste of tax-payer dollars.

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Six Building Lots Available in Markham at 7784-90 Ninth Line

Building Lots: 7784-90 Ninth Line

Building Lots in Prime Markham High Demand Location! Attention: Builders & Investors! 6 Building Lots, Approved For Custom Built Luxury Homes of up to 5000 Sq.Ft. plus.

Markham Ontario Building Lots

Building Lots in Markham

Close to Box Grove By-Pass. Multi Million Dollar Homes in the area. Services available on the street. Seller will provide existing drawings, plans, approvals and survey. Buyer to pay for development charges, services and HST. Two roads frontage, 7784 – 7790 Ninth Line, 6750-14th Ave. Buyer to conduct own Due Diligence and potential for other uses, subject to approval. Approximate 375 foot frontage on Ninth Line. Please do not attempt to open or enter existing buildings. 7790 Ninth Line Heritage Home to be re-located as per official plans and drawings. Only showing vacant land.

Please do not walk over the property without appointment. Use caution, showing only land. Buyer to pay for development charges, services and other costs. HST Applicable. Buyer to conduct own due diligence. Vendor take-back possible for portion of purchase price. 


The above information is deemed reliable, but is not guaranteed. Buyer to confirm all information. Search facilities other than by a consumer seeking to purchase or lease real estate, is prohibited. *Not intended to solicit individuals under contract with a brokerage*

For further information contact Baldo Minaudo (Broker, Real Estate Homeward Brokerage Inc., 1858 Queen St. East, Toronto 416-698-2090) directly at 416-564-0245. Baldo Minaudo  has an urban planning degree from the University of Toronto downtown campus, an M.B.A. from the Schulich School of Business at York University and extensive experience in property management, financial analysis and corporate banking. If you are looking to sell, buy or invest in Ontario real estate Baldo is prepared to take care of you from start to purchase and ongoing management.

Information on Box Grove and a nearby listing

Real Estate Homeward Brokerage’s head office is located in the Toronto Beach; one of Toronto’s most prestigious and sought out neighbourhoods. Surrounded by individuals who value community, lifestyle and the outdoors, the office has developed a reputation for quality and full-service.

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Woman Stranded on Crane in Toronto’s Gay Village Has Become Today’s Mystery

Sometime in the middle of the night of April 26, 2017 a woman appeared atop of a crane box high above a parkette in Toronto’s Gay Village Neighbourhood.

Speculation is running wild as Torontonians try to understand how this woman mysteriously appaeared atop this crane and why she was there.

Taxpayers across the city are wondering who is going to foot the bill that at a minimum will be thousands of dollars, but with the disruption in the area, can be as much as tens, or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

It is a scene reminiscent from ‘Leave it to Beaver’, when Beaver gets stuck in the cup sign above the building and has to be rescued. However, it is possible that this mystery person may be arrested and/or charged.


The woman has been ‘rescued’. It took hours, but rescue workers were able to figure out how to best bring the stranded woman back to ground. A seasoned rescuer secured a harness around the woman and tied her to his front torsal. It took a few minutes for the lowering.

The mysterious woman stranded atop a Toronto Crane

Once on the ground, the woman was surrounded with paramedics, firefighters and fully uniformed police officers. It looked like she was handcuffed and taken away to the ambulance. She will likely be charged with ‘public mischief’ at the very least.

There is still no information about how and why she appeared on this crane overnight. Resident’s across the city are wondering who this woman is.  Do you know who she is?

It is important to figure out how she did it because of the risk, liability and insurance concerns to the crane owners and operators.

There is also concern that with the large number of mammoth cranes in Toronto (more than any other city in North America), that they may be used by terrorists. Just what security measures are being taken to protect these cranes from unauthorized access?

Stay tuned for details as we update this post.

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Toronto’s Eastern Shoreline: Million Dollar Views Attracting Builders

…Baldo Minaudo, MBA, Broker, Real Estate Homeward, 416-564-0245

As a Toronto real estate broker active in the Toronto East and downtown areas, it is my opinion that Toronto’s Eastern shoreline will become increasingly appealing to homebuyers, builders and investors. In this article I share my observations, thoughts and reasoning behind my opinion. As well, I will include some sought after property characteristics to look for when buying a home or investment property in this area.

With Toronto real estate prices continuing to impress the market, two neighbourhoods are attracting attention among builders and investors. With the prices of detached homes East of downtown Toronto continuing to skyrocket, many first-time home buyers are looking eastward towards in the Birchcliffe-Cliffside and Cliffcrest communities, which meet at Midland Avenue with Cliffcrest to the east and Birchcliffe-Cliffside to the west.

Birchcliffe-Cliffside Boundary Map

Birchcliffe-Cliffside Boundary Map

Cliffcrest community boundary map

Cliffcrest community boundary map

Attracted by the atmosphere created by the long-time residents, accessibility to the downtown core, abundant shopping, variety of restaurants, breathtaking views of the lake and proximity to the famous cliffs of Scarborough Bluffers Park, the community is now on the radar of would-be first-time home buyers. Properties with a view of the lake are a sought after treasure, especially builders looking to make a higher return on building houses for those willing to pay a premium for a million-dollar view. Perhaps that is why they call it a million-dollar view (converted to the current value of the collar).

This is the view of Lake Ontario is from the bottom of Midland Avenue, where Fishleigh Drive ends. Fishleigh Drive is a fairly short street running along Lake SONY DSCOntario. Homes on the south side of the street have direct view of the lake from the cliffside. Currently, there are several houses being built on the street and builders are looking for more of those scarce lots, often buying older houses to rebuild with larger, more expensive and impressive houses.

Homes at the bottom of Midland Avenue are also benefiting by this scarcity because of their partial and/or seasonal view of the lake. For those that have properties with a view, it could mean a windfall as they look to downsize. The premium these properties diminishes the farther north they are from the Lake. However, as builders put up much more expensive homes, everyone in the neighbourhood will benefit to a degree.

An example of an older house with a seasonal view of Lake Ontario, presently for sale is located at 27 Midland Avenue. This property with a frontage of 50 feet and a depth of 125 feet has a sloping lot and beautiful views. A bungalow with attached garage, it has 3 bedrooms on the main floor and one in the basement. The MLS # is E3440502 and you can call me to view it (Baldo Minaudo, Broker 416-564-0245).

For those that are long-term residents of the community, some of which have been there for decades, these new builds reflect the discovery of their secret haven. Yet, Birchcilffe-Cliffside and eastern Cliffcrest began as summer cottage communities.

The historic St. Augustine Seminary has been training Roman Catholic priests since 1910 and can easily be seen with its dome overlooking south from Kingston road toward the lake. The seminary was the first Canadian seminary for English speaking clergy. St. Augustine’s Beaux Arts style architecture and striking dome is a dominant visual presence of a landmark on Kingston Road.

The area west of St. Augustine Seminary evolved as a summer cottage community with the first year-round residences built on Chine Drive (just east of Midland Avenue on the in the present day neighbourhood of Cliffcrest) in the 1920’s. It was these Arts and Crafts style homes that defined the neighbourhood’s character to this day. Most of the Cliffside houses were built from the 1920’s-1940’s with architectural styles that include Cape Cod, Craftsman style bungalows, Edwardian, Tudor and newer, contemporary homes. In the most recent years, the value of homes built closer to the lake have risen considerably, especially along Fishleigh Drive (south end of the neighbourhood) which has truly magnificent views of Lake Ontario.

A famous Canadian wonder, the Scarborough Bluffs are located within Bluffers Park (down along Undercliff Drive in the Cliffcrest neighbourhood just east of the Birchcliffe-Cliffside neighbourhood). This combined Marina, Park and Beach provides a wonderful scenic lakefront view the lake, the cliffs and the trails through the shrubbery.

The Cliffcrest community, as of 2011, had a population of 15,703 occupying 5,825 private dwellings, 59% of which are single-detached houses (compared to Toronto’s average of 26%). The average family income was $71,332 compared to Toronto’s $70,945. A significant 83% of the residents spoke English at home, 64% were born in Canada (compared to Toronto’s average of 49%), and the top 5 ethnic origins of residents are English, Irish, Scottish, Canadian and German (totalling 12,790) and accounting for over 81% of population. In 2011, visible minorities accounted for 36% of the community, compared to 49% for Toronto.

The Birchcliffe-Cliffside community, as of 2011, had a population of 21,856 occupying 9,185 private dwellings, 54% of which are single-detached houses (compared to Toronto’s average of 26%). The average family income was $73,364, compared to Toronto’s $70,945. A significant 90% of the residents spoke English at home, 73% were born in Canada (compared to Toronto’s average of 49%), and the top 5 ethnic origins are English, Irish, Canadian, Scottish and French. Visible minorities accounted for 21% of the community, compared to 49% for Toronto.

Note: Data has been sourced from the City of Toronto and the 2011 Census/National Household Survey.

5 Property Characteristics to Look for:

  1. View of the Lake: Even if it is only a seasonal view, for many being near the lake is like being in another world. Those that know this are willing to pay extra for being on or near the lake.
  2. Lot Shape: For many homeowners a rectangular lot is ideal as it is easier to landscape and maintain. For builders, a rectangular lot with a good width (frontage) is ideal as it often allows maximum use for building.
  3. Lot Slope: A sloping lot provides uniqueness and options from everything from landscaping for homeowners to home designs for builders that could include highly sought after walk-out basements.
  4. School Boundary: Parents with children will pay more for homes that fall within their preferred schools’ boundaries.
  5. Proximity to Natural Wonder: The Scarborough Bluffs are a well recognized natural wonder that attracts many foreign visitors and offers great outdoors, cliffs, trails, beach and wildlife. The Marina and Park have expanded over the decades.

Properties that have all of these are difficult to find and even more difficult to buy in a tight market. If you have a home with several or all of these characteristics then you’ll want a good idea of its worth in this market before you consider selling it.

If you would like more information on this or other neighbourhoods or are looking to buy a home or sell your house contact:

Baldo Minaudo, MBA
Broker, Real Estate Homeward Brokerage

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Birchcliffe-cliffside house rentals

Birchcliffe-cliffside house rentals

(or along the Danforth Subway line – within walking distance): A two bedroom house (or main-upper floor apartment in house) for a top notch tenant – great credit score, long-time employment, mature, clean, respectful, Canadian born and raised, single-female with friendly pet cat. Prefer the Birchcliffe-Cliffside neighbourhood (especially south of Kingston Road). May be willing to sign a two-year lease with intentions of staying for the long-term. Landlord to pay real estate commission of one month’s rent. Please contact Baldo Minaudo, Broker, Real Estate Homeward, 416-698-2090.