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Archive for May, 2015

038Last weekend was the annual Doors Open event in Toronto. Rather than making a list and heading out to a number of spots I just incorporated a visit to City Hall into my walk.

I love the Metropolis relief sculpture; people are always getting their photos taken in front of it. I don’t know the people in this photo and they don’t know each other but I liked how the young woman’s hat mimmicks the circular centre of the sculpture and how the man has rested his hand on the nails.

I started my visit wandering around the rooftop podium. I was delighted by the greenspace! The revitalisation project up on the podium and at ground level make it so inviting.

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007More typically Doors Open oriented, I sat in the council chamber for a while and watched old docs and images and checked out the Hall of Memory and time capsule. Nathan Phillips Square is a popular spot, whether it be a formal event or just hanging around.

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053Once used for religious and political gatherings, public floggings and hangings, the square is another story of change and transformation. Situated behind the old Adelaide Street Courthouse, the square is a heritage site that was being used as a parking lot. The revitalized square was designed by Janet Rosenberg & Studio, CS&P Architects, and Susan Schell and built in 1997. It’s a lovely square with heritage plants and water features and I’m looking forward to seeing the garden in bloom.

The most famous hangings, and the last performed here, were on 12 April 1838: Samuel Lount and Peter Matthews, for their participation in the 1837 Rebellion.

I pulled this quote from the Lost Toronto blog, which references a plaque on Alan Brown’s website but the link is broken. I’m guessing it’s this plaque, located on a building near the square.

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Monument to Construction Workers

Monument to Construction Workers

This beautiful park sits on a half acre of land in downtown Toronto’s financial district. What a wonderful oasis for nearby workers and those of us who live downtown! There is an indoor garden as well but it’s only open on weekdays.

Cloud Gardens is a result of a partnership between the City of Toronto, Trizec Properties and Markborough Properties. Baird/Sampson Architects, Milus Bollenbourghe Topps Watchorn Landscape Architects, and artist Margaret Priest won the design competition in 1990. The awesome Monument to Construction Workers, built in 1993, is a tribute to the men and women whose labour has built and rebuilt the city.

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013I live a couple blocks away from this beautiful historic cathedral. The architecture, art and garden feel welcoming and the organist’s music was lovely.

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003crHigh Park is home to a large collection of Sakura cherry trees, which bloom for about a week to 10 days, depending on the weather.  This year’s peak bloom is May 7th-9th so I headed over to the park this morning to take in the blooms. Many others were also participating in the Japanese tradition of Sakura Hanami – cherry blossom viewing.

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015crThe first Somei-Yoshino Sakura trees, a gift to the people of Toronto on behalf of the citizens of Tokyo, were planted in 1959. A grove of cherry trees were planted in 1984, a gift from Yoriki and Midori Iwasaki. In 2001, 34 Yoshino ‘Akebono’ and Kwanzan ‘Fugenzo’ Sakura trees were donated to the park through the Consulate General of Japan in Toronto’s Sakura Project. And, in 2006, another16 Yoshino Sakura trees were planted near the original 1959 planting site.

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