Yesterday, the City’s Legal Services provided me an update on the new interim stop-work injunction filed at the Ontario Divisional Court to prevent the further demolition of four buildings at Dominion Foundry Complex. This request follows the sudden demolition work that began at the provincially-owned Dominion Foundry site 12 days ago without honest answers from the Province on who is their select developer and what exactly is their development plan.
Last Friday afternoon, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing agreed to temporarily suspend demolition work until tomorrow, Wednesday January 27. This remains unsatisfactory as we maintain that all demolition work must be fully stopped, not just for 5 days, but until the Province begins meaningful engagement and consultation with the City and community.
Until this happens, City Legal Services will continue to cooperate with lawyers working on behalf of the SLNA to provide research and sworn affidavits in an effort to restrain further demolition work. Justice David L. Corbett held a case conference yesterday with the SLNA, City, Province and other interested parties ahead of a hearing tomorrow.
Our motion on Wednesday will argue that the Court should order a stay of the Province’s decision to demolish the buildings until an application that suggests the Ministry’s decision is an unlawful exercise of a statutory power can be heard. Legal Services is supporting the SLNA by working on a factum discussing relevant law and facts that should be considered. It is likely that this will result in further hearing dates in February.
At the January 19, at the Planning and Housing Committee meeting, I requested that Council direct the City Solicitor to help fight the demolition of the Dominion Foundry buildings and begun consulting with residents. Since then there has been new research and revealing subsequent communication between City Planning and the Province that have helped clarify the Province’s actions and focused the City’s legal strategy. I will be amending my motion as required when it goes before the City Council on February 2, with the goal of providing the City Solicitor the strongest direction possible to continue to fight the Provincial demolition efforts.
Thank you to the Mayor, community leaders and Toronto residents for their continued advocacy, to protect these buildings. Please visit www.respectlocalplanning.com to sign the community petition and to learn more about how to get involved with this campaign to #SaveTheFoundry.