Street Issues

 95 Prince Arthur Roadway Improvements

Almost every day at least one vehicle travels the wrong way along 95 Prince Arthur Avenue between Huron and St George Street. This is very dangerous and it is only a matter of time before someone gets seriously hurt – as was the situation at he intersection of Prince Arthur and St George before stop signs on St George were installed. I was instrumental in getting the 4-way stop set-up but not before a pedestrian was struck down sustaining head injuries.
Sometimes the wrong-way travel is at considerable speed increasing the danger. The street is mostly residential but there is also a medical practise northside. The road surface is in poor repair, exacerbated by recent work on the fire hydrant.

I would urge the City to redesign the Prince Arthur/St George intersection to block any westbound traffic, using curb extensions in a similar fashion to that employed at the Huron/Lowther intersection. It would be a good idea to place road bumps at the entrance to Prince Arthur Ave as well to prevent the speeding!

Progress to date:

Received from Toronto 311 Transportation Services Traffic Operations Unit October 14, 2023:

Your request for service has been generated and the City of Toronto will handle your request with the details and reference number provided below. 
Your Reference Number: 
Service Request Type: Lane Designation
Expected Service Delivery Date/Time:  2024-07-10, 7:12 p.m.
Estimated Resolution Timeframe: The Service Request will be resolved within 9 months.
Service Address: Prince Arthur Ave & St George St
Your request will be assessed within our initial response time, but a full investigation may take up to 9 months. 

August 29, 2023 from Vision Zero Projects Transportation Services

Speed hump traffic calming can be requested through your Council representative. The process is initiated by your City Council representative following a public meeting, or upon receipt of a petition signed by at least 25 percent of affected households, or by a survey conducted by the local Councillor.
Condo Building Air conditioner Noise Pollution

In 2013 I was successful in “persuading” a neighbor on St George Street to install a noise abatement package on their howling rooftop air-conditioner. However, the high pitch noise is still disturbing me, especially when assisted by winds from the north blowing south towards 95 Prince Arthur Avenue. One of the reasons is that the City noise ByLaw relies only on loudness in decibel units (Db) while pitch in hertz units (Hz) frequency is ignored. This seems true for the updated 2022 bylaw.

Low frequencies (low pitched) sound must be much more intense to sound equally as loud as higher frequency (high pitch) sounds. The pitch difference in male versus female voices illustrates the concept: Some studies have estimated the average pitch for a male speaker of English to be around 130 Hz, and for a female speaker of English to be around 220 Hz.

Despite the complexities limits could be set for both loudness and pitch. Indeed, loudness limits should have a pitch and distance “basis”. Pitch maybe somewhat subjective, but the old ByLaw had a sensible related noise measure for music[1] which I believe could be introduced for rooftop air conditioners. Although I am not a sound expert, it does seem to me that there is really no way around the fact that pitch in combination with loudness should be used to measure the practical disturbing effect of sound on our hearing.

I would urge the City to re-investigate introducing noise pollution measurement that takes both loudness and pitch into account. Continuous noise monitoring should be employed as wind direction is a factor. Human factor measurements are also valid: For example, if a persistent noise disturbs a number of people in 95 Prince Arthur Avenue, steps must be taken to abate that noise. 

Condo Building Leaf Blower Noise /Air Pollution and Health Hazard

The Editor started this website after the Condo MTCC 757 at 95 Prince Arthur Avenue in the Annex told me they will ignore my repeated leaf-blower complaint on blowing dirt at vehicles on the street and on the contrary claim full justification for their actions and even vow to continue. This Condo is managed by a property manager who proudly claim to well-manage several other Condos across Toronto – therefore presumably implementing their reckless policies elsewhere as well.

The complaints described on the Home Page focused on interference and direct contamination of vehicles and street. However, both noise and air pollution are major factors with leaf blowers. They can have an acute and chronic effect on the health of any person in the proximity of their use (including the blower operator). One blower creates more pollution per minute than cars and trucks, and stir up microscopic pollutants known to cause lung cancer, heart disease, and other respiratory illnesses. At 95 Prince Arthur Ave all of residents on the lower levels could be at risk as well as the blower operators (who do not wear masks). Recognizing the health concerns of poor indoor air the Editor has for more than five years utilized three HEPA filter air cleaners in our Condo suite, but it would be helpful if our own Condo MTCC 757 at 95 Prince Arthur Avenue would stop purposeful polluting activities right outside my patio and public street.

The noise is so unwelcome that more than 100 cities across the USA imposed complete or partial bans on leaf blowers. California recently signed a bill that will phase out gas-powered leaf blowers and other gas-powered lawn equipment. The Ottawa National Capital Commission was the first jurisdiction April 1, 2023 in Canada to fully ban the use of leaf blowers on its land. City of Toronto could easily ban leaf-blower use on our city-owned streets and sidewalks as well as its other owned lands.

Specifically on noise pollution: The Editor also deeply questions the right of our Condo Corporation to disturb the peace of the Annex neighborhood as well as its own residents with the high pitch howl of its blowers. The Editor is a long standing condo owner continues to urge our Condo 95 Prince Arthur Avenue to STOP!

Leaf Blower Dust is a Health Hazard in the urban environment – Contrary to what Toronto Medical Officer says:

Since launching this website September 3, 2023, I have been researching leaf blower health hazards in some depth. It is striking that so little research has been done on the dangers of blowing over dog-poop laden grass and other surfaces. Robust scientific research published in 2023 concluded that situations like ours provides “ample opportunity for human exposure to faecal pathogens in the indoor environment”. A leading researcher in an email to the editor April 3, 2024 states: “blowing and covering fecal material that would increase the health risks of exposure due to unintended/ unknown contact with contaminated material“.

A Toronto Health Inspector email October 16, 2023 states “Given this and the occasional/ seasonal nature of leaf blower use, pursuing a study on the blown dust and debris from the use of leaf blowers is not necessary to address a health risk to the general public, and would not be a meaningful use of resources. Hence, as the current use of leaf blowers is not considered a health hazard and considering the TPH has limited resources, to undertake a study or testing you request is not considered”. I have in response voiced my disagreement and pointed out that that no studies have actually been done to make such a claim for an urban situation were the blowing activity is over a dog-poop deposit location”.

In my assessment the Toronto Medical Officer’s “opinion” is plain wrong with respects to the health hazard in an urban environment, and indeed dangerous as it emboldens irresponsible Property Managers to spew the filth anywhere and everywhere, thus multiplying the danger.

Submit your Views on the new Noise Pollution ByLaws before October 15, 2023 The Editor is submitting his views outlined above to the City of Toronto and you can too by writing

Contact the Editor of “Real 95 Prince Arthur Avenue” –

Concepts: Real 95 Prince Arthur Avenue Dunhill Club, Condo MTCC 757, 95 Prince Arthur Ave, Toronto ON M5R 3P6 Annex Canada, AGM

[1]The old By-law stated “music should not be clearly audible at any residential receptor”, and “music should not be projected beyond the lot line of the property from which the noise emanates and into any street or public place”.