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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Street furniture to be shown Wednesday at City Hall

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UPDATE: The City has contacted us and told they plan to find a few more days between now and April 30th to display the models (april 30th is the executive committee meeting where the public can give some sort of input). Those dates are not confirmed yet.
The models will be displayed based on demand — so it is important for any of you concerned with the street furniture program to email to let the City know its important for residents of this city to view these models. Hopefully, the models will be made available at the other civic centres in North York, Etobicoke, Scarborough, East York and York.

We will obviously post dates for the other showings when the information becomes available to us.

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We’ve confirmed that the street furniture models will be on display for one day only this Wednesday at City Hall from 8:30am-8:30pm.
Jonathan Goldsbie of the Toronto Public Space Committee has all the details you need to know on how to give your feedback on a Torontoist post from a few days ago.

I’m still trying to digest the submissions, but the one piece of street furniture I know we should be wary of is the info pillar (pictured above and right). It will appear more and more on our sidewalks in the coming years *just* to push ads. The maps will be nice, but if the City really wanted to provide pedestrians with maps, they could easily attach maps to traffic signal boxes at intersections like they do in Victoria.

I’m interested what kind of reaction the models will receive.



  1. Good grief. This is how our city works? *Rumors* of 12 hours of viewing, a day beforehand?

  2. I think more attention should be paid to the security cameras built into the Info-Must-Go pillar designs, and the tie to Rogers for “content.”

  3. You’d think they didn’t want anyone to actually attend and see what kind of crap they want to approve!

  4. It should be noted that the InfoTOgo pillars can only be placed on the edges of parks and parkettes around the city due to council not wanting them to take up space on sidewalks. There are currently 24 in existance (as of last September they were searching for a spot for a 25th) and are a product of Toronto’s Tourism Department. What is interesting is that because they are located in parks but meant for tourists, all but the CN Tower and Nathan Phillips Square locations (where two exist) are rarely used (and by rarely used, I mean not used during the peak summer tourist season).

    Unless it is determined that these pillars can be placed on sidewalks, odds are there won’t be any more added as they struggled to find locations for them during the pilot project.

  5. James >> you’re correct in the current context, but the Info Pillars are part of the RFP and thus will be under the domain of the Planning and Transportation departments.

  6. From the press release:

    display boards of the street furniture models will be at the following civic centres: Etobicoke Civic Centre, 399 The West Mall; North York Civic Centre, 5100 Yonge Street; and Scarborough Civic Centre, 150 Borough Drive.

  7. Except for the very downtown, do people actually need these ? Its a google map world now. Seems more like an ad pretending to be a map.

  8. I found maps in downtown Montreal intensely useful. I’d go for them. Sometimes you don’t have the foresight to look something up or have access to the facilities.

  9. Matthew – you’re right, but I wonder if council will allow them to exist in high traffic tourist locations rather than parks that many Torontonians don’t even know about, nevermind tourists. If they do allow it then of course these could spring up all over as part of the RFP.

  10. An absolute disgrace that the models wont be available for more than a few hours. If they are to be fixed permanently to our streets -we shouldbe able to see them for about a month — they should be placed in each civic square with comment boxes – just as there was for the nathan Phillips Square Design.

  11. If memory serves me, there’s at least one “info” pillar already located on the sidewalk–directly in front of the TRL.

    I too can’t find a legitimate motive for installing these ad-boards. The maps aren’t properly contextual to their location, and quite frankly they’re rather crap. The ad-free Discovery Walk signs do a much, much better job at teaching history and providing neighbourhood-relevant info. Hell, making sure that each bus shelter has an up-to-date TTC route map would be a more effective step towards helping lost tourists and Torontonians.

    Also colour me disgusted at the lack of public input being sought on this whole street furniture debacle. The street sign faux-consultation (and resulting lies) were bad, but this takes it to an entirely new level.