Louis-Charles Lavallée recently retired from his position of Chief Technology Officer at the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO). He joined the RNAO in 2008 with the mandate of setting up a new department of Information Management and Technology and to in-source mission critical systems using open-source software where possible. He had previously occupied senior management positions both in the Ontario Public Service and in the Broader Public Sector.
He is passionate with making technology work for people and to contribute to digital equity.
He has been a member of the Board of Directors of the LAMP Community Health Centre since 2018. Prior to this appointment, he was a member of the Board of Directors of the Club canadien de Toronto from 2004 to 2016.
Louis-Charles Lavallée has an MBA from the University of British Columbia and is a Certified Management Consultant (CMC). He has been a resident of Long Branch for over 30 years, and commutes by bicycle year-round.
As part of his community involvement, he wrote the following email on the Lake Promenade Co-Tenancy Project.
From: Louis-Charles Lavallée <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: 10 juillet 2023 11:09
Cc: Eno.Udoh-Orok@toronto.ca; email@example.com; Bill Zufelt <firstname.lastname@example.org>; Gérard Lévesque <email@example.com>; Jody <firstname.lastname@example.org>; henri Lavallee <Henri@lcl.ca>
Subject: 220, 230, 240 Lake Promenade and 21, 31 Park Boulevard
#23 134668 WET 03 OZ
#23 134682 WET 03 SB
Dear Councillor Morley,
I would like to first congratulate you on your election as Councillor for Toronto Ward 3. Toronto faces great challenges as the city needs to determine how to evolve and adapt to remain a wonderful place to live for its residents and to continue to be the economic driving force of Canada. To my knowledge, there currently is no long-term strategic plan and no long term (50 years) vision of what the City should become to accommodate its growth while facing climate change. City planners often point to the “missing middle” referring to Toronto’s lack of mid-rise apartment buildings as a major housing deficiency.
Over the past few years, there have been many piecemeal development proposals brought forward in the neighbourhood that lacked cohesion and vision, and that were prepared in secrecy with no community involvement or consultation. The proposal for 220, 230 and 240 Lake Promenade / 21,
31 Park Boulevard appears to be such a project. I understand that densification is needed and I support responsible development, but I strongly oppose the development of 30 story towers in a low to mid-rise neighbourhood. A proposal for mid-rise buildings that respects current residents of the community would make much more sense for the site.
However, any increase in density does require that the city review and update the infrastructures in the area and in particular traffic management.
One of the major concerns raised by such a large-scale proposal is that it would significantly amplify existing traffic safety issues.
For example, Lake Promenade is a segment of the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail and of the Trans Canada Trail. These trails allow people to travel by foot and bicycle for short, medium and long distances. I personally used Lake Promenade and the Trans Canada Trail for commuting to work by bicycle for 15 years, and I exchanged many communications with your predecessor which resulted in gradual improvement of safety for users of the Trail. There are no sidewalks along significant portions of Lake Promenade and vehicular traffic is already not mixing well with the number of people on foot and bicycles. The volume of foot and cycle traffic often requires most of the width of the road, leaving little room for safe vehicular traffic. Vehicles have the reasonable option of using Lakeshore Boulevard, the users of the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail do not. Lake Promenade needs to become a pedestrian & cycle road, with vehicular traffic restricted to residents’ access only.
Any redevelopment of the 220, 230, 240 Lake Promenade Site and 21, 31 Park Boulevard should not have vehicular access to Lake Promenade.
The traffic on Thirty-Sixth Street (where I live) already needs better management. Because of its position in the bend of Lake Promenade, it is often used by Lake Promenade traffic to access Lakeshore Boulevard or James Street. A significant number of vehicles travel too fast for a residential street. A significant section has a sidewalk only on one side, requiring pedestrian to walk along the road or to cross the street between intersections. There are often children walking or cycling along and crossing the street to access neighbourhood schools, parks and playgrounds. Traffic calming devices and restrictions are needed to reduce through traffic and speed. One option would be to partition the street at James Street.
The issue of construction traffic also needs to be very well managed to ensure the safety of residents and visitors. There are schools in the neighbourhood, with kids going to school by foot and bicycle. The proposed timeframe of 12 years of construction traffic is a major concern. Typically, construction traffic does not mix well with other traffic, pedestrians, cyclists, etc.
In the short term, I am asking for your help to work with the developers to adapt the development proposal for 220, 230, 240 Lake Promenade and 21, 31 Park Boulevard to be more suitable for the area and at the same time help Toronto with the “missing middle”, and to address the issue of the hundreds of evictions. This collaborative work with the developers is important to achieve the best long-term results for the City and to reduce the possibility of a unilateral issuance of a Ministerial Zoning Order by the Ontario Government.
In closing, as a resident of the ward that you represent, I would like to ask you to work with newly elected Mayor Chow and the Toronto City Council to mandate the Toronto Chief Planner to develop a 50-year vision for Toronto’s development and a related 10-year Strategic Plan. The Chief Planner should be given the resources needed to engage help as needed from the best urban planners. The resulting plan would guide developers in preparing proposals that could be approved quickly, avoiding them costs and delays. Such a plan would also inform residents on what to expect for their communities and allow them to plan accordingly. In addition to saving considerable amounts of time and money, it would alleviate conflict and foster collaboration between stakeholders. Building the Toronto of tomorrow should not be a constant fight between stakeholders; it should be something we all work on together.
I would appreciate being kept informed about this project, and about the issues and suggestions contained in this email.
Thank you for your consideration.
63 Thirty-Sixth Street