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City council passes billion dollar hybrid option for Gardiner Expressway

CityNews | posted Friday, Apr 1st, 2016

City Council has given the green light to several transportation projects on Thursday, including approving the billion dollar Gardiner Expressway hybrid option.

By a vote of 36-5, council decided to go with hybrid option #3. This design pushes the portion of the Gardiner that runs east of Jarvis Street further north compared to the other two options, opening up more waterfront land for development.

This is the most expensive of the three options, with a projected cost of $569-million to build but when you include long-term costs, the price tag could top $1.052-billion.

City council also rubber-stamped a multi-billion dollar transit vision that includes the Scarborough subway extension, a downtown relief line and LRTs along Eglinton and the waterfront.

There’s still no decision on how to pay for it all.

Pedestrian killed, second injured, in separate incidents

CityNews | posted Friday, Apr 1st, 2016

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A 56-year-old woman is dead after a hit-and-run crash in the east end on Thursday night.

The victim was struck near Markham Road and Nashdene Road, just south of McNicholl Avenue, around 10 p.m.

The driver did stop before taking off, police say, so the driver likely knew they hit someone.

Police say the woman was crossing Markham when she was hit by a dark-coloured Mercedes. There was debris left behind at the scene, and the Mercedes will have damage to the front end, including the grill.

There’s no word yet on a licence plate, but police have security camera video from the area. The video will likely be released later on Thursday.

Meanwhile, a man is in hospital after he was pinned under the wheel of a TTC bus.

It happened near Oakwood Avenue and Vaughan Road, also around 10 p.m. on Thursday night.

Toronto police say the man in his 60s may have been running for the bus when he was somehow trapped underneath it. He is expected to recover.

A man is in hospital after he was struck near Oakwood and Vaughan on March 31, 2016. CITYNEWS.
A man is in hospital after he was struck near Oakwood and Vaughan on March 31, 2016. CITYNEWS.

Gender-specific summer camps have Richmond Hill parents fuming

Betty Wondimu | posted Friday, Apr 1st, 2016

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Extreme sports for boys, dainty mani-pedis for girls… those are the concepts for two gender-specific summer camps offered in Richmond Hill.

Angry parents are urging the town’s community services department to revise the concepts behind ‘Boyz Rule Camps’ and ‘Girlz Rock Camp,’ ironically classified under the town’s ‘general’ camp options.

Boys get to indulge in roller-blading, biking, skateboarding and ultimate frisbee, while their female counterparts stay inside and learn how to cook, bake and get manicures and pedicures.

All in the spirit of “girl-friendly fun.”

Since CityNews brought the issue to light, the town has made minor alterations to the names of the programs making them more gender-neutral. The names will be changed to ‘Extreme Sports’ and ‘Kidz Rock.’

But the damage was done and reaction to what many considered gender-stereotypes flooded social media:

The pressure was enough to produce a statement from the town of Richmond Hill on Wednesday, and another announcing the name change on Thursday.

To be fair, the town also offers a variety of other mixed-gender camp options, most of which are streamed by special interest like science or music and dance. Richmond Hill’s communications director Meeta Gandhi said these two programs have been in place for years and are quite popular.

“We don’t run a program if it doesn’t have the registration. The program has been in place since 2008 and they’ve been well enjoyed by all participants,” Gandhi said.

The details for two summer camp options offered by the town of Richmond Hill. RICHMONDHILL.CA.

Mystery kidnapping near Yonge and Bloor

CityNews | posted Friday, Apr 1st, 2016

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Toronto police are investigating what appears to be a kidnapping in downtown Toronto.

A security guard spotted a man banging on the door of a building on Balmuto Drive, near Yonge and Bloor streets, around 3:30 a.m. on Friday.

Before the man could enter, two masked men came up and threw the men into the back of the van.

The driver then headed east on Bloor.

At this point, it’s not clear whether this is an April Fool’s joke or not.

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