Thanks to all those who took the time to answer our survey. This has been a great learning process for us in learning how surveys work and how wording survey questions clearly is so important. We have lots to learn and hope to use this important tool in future to learn what area residents and area business operators think about our area.
1. What new businesses would you patronize in our neighbourhood?
We had a wide range of excellent suggestions and ideas for new businesses in the area. The top choices were an Art Gallery, Coffee Shop, Nursery/Florist, Antiques Store and Clothing Stores. Second choices included a Bakery,Gymn, Furniture Stores,Bath and Bed Outlet, Book and a Music Store. There is considerable interest in creating a better main shopping street in the area. Although the area may not attract a Yorkville or Queen West Art Gallery, a gallery/print/framing business may do very well judging from your responses. There were also several other suggestions and a strong desire to attract independent and one of a kind restaurants and retail to the area.
2. When you shop in the neighbourhood, what % of the time do you: Walk, Drive, Bike, Cab or TTC?
Most area residents walk to area shops if possible, though many drive, some bike and take cabs or the TTC.
3. Is parking for you or visitors ever an issue in the neighbourhood?
We had some reports of break ins and vandalism which likely goes unreported. Parking issues seem to be a block by block issue. Many reporting few problems while others had a great amount of difficulty in finding parking for guests. Some suggested that parking be moved to alternate sides of the street every other week and some questioned as to why certain main streets have metered parking on Sundays and others do not. There was also a tip on how to purchase a temporary parking permit on line. We will try to post the link shortly.
4. How do you get to work?
A third of respondents indicated that they walk to work the rest were evenly split between driving, public transit and cabs. There were many who were quite flexible who take all methods indicated in any given week depending on schedules etc. There also seem to be a growing number of area residents who work from home.
5. Your daily commute (One Way) is?
70% of respondents indicated that their commute is less that 1/2 hour, 27% less than an hour while 3% log in an hour or more a day. The lucky 70% likely included several area residents working from home who have a 10 second commute to their home office.
6. What type of new construction would you like to see in our area?
The top 5 answers were a Museum/Gallery Space,Infill Townhouses, Low to Mid SIzed Condos with Commercial Retail Space on street level, Entertainment Complex and a Medical Arts Building. What exactly an Entertainment Complex is will need further defining. It was also indicated that Hotels would be a favourable addition to the neighbourhood. Hotels come in all shapes and sizes as well from small Boutique Hotels like the Drake on Queen West to the larger chains. A small boutique hotel could be wonderful training ground for George Brown Hospitality students and indeed 22% of respondents indicated they would like to see a college or university presence in the area.
7. Would you consider moving to a different type of housing within the neighbourhood?
An overwhelming majority of respondents indicate that they were quite happy in their present home and would not consider moving elsewhere in the near future. Some residents did indicate that bad neighbours/problematic location would be a reason for them to move elsewhere. Most are not yet ready to think about moving to a smaller accessible home down the line. Thoughts of moving to a larger and possibly a Heritage Home seem to be on the minds of some first time homeowners looking to eventually climb up the property ladder. There does seem to be a wait and see attitude around whether the neighbourhood will improve and be a safe environment to age in place.
8. Large Development Projects should incur development fees which the city should earmark for
Area Parks and Greenspaces, Public Infrastructure,Neighbourhood Resident Associations, Business Improvement Associations, Public Art, Community Centers and Schools got high marks for potential funding. It was also suggested that these fees should pay for capital costs necessitated by there being additional people in the area which could necessitate building or expanding a school, widening sidewalks, adding parks etc.
9. Is there any area, street, laneway, intersection, building or development in the area that you avoid or feel is unsightly or makes you feel uncomfortable? If so please explain why.
Dundas and Sherbourne intersection topped the list with Dundas and Sherbourne Streets coming in 2nd and 3rd. Many people sited problems around area Hostels and Drop In Centers with erratic behaviour and drug and alcohol activity. The area around the Gerrard Street Beer Store, Allan Gardens south east corner, Oskononton Lane, Moss Park Apartment Grounds also figured highly in this survey question. Parts of Parliament Street made some feel uneasy and in particular the laneway running behind Parliament Street felt dirty and unsafe. The Hooker Stroll along Shuter Street and the area laneways was subject of many, many complaints.