Jacob’s Ladder kids play/artwork almost complete in Berczy Park

16 Sep

IMG_0290After installation began last fall, the art structure/kids play structure planned for Berczy Park is now nearing completion!

This weekend, Toronto artist Luis Jacob, and Montreal-based web-maker/artisan Serge, conducted a first fitting of the web-like rope lattice that will connect the two giant bronze hands of the artwork.

The massive hands were placed in the park in October 2017, as part of the planned artwork. Called ‘Jacob’s Ladder,’ with a rope lattice suspended between the fingers, it recreates the whimsical  string game.  Once completed later this fall, the artwork will be perfect for climbing, swinging, playing, or a backdrop for a casual badminton game or a great ‘selfie’ photo moment.  Over the past 12 months, the bronze hands have become a popular photo spot for park visitors and tourists, in addition to the park’s new famous dog fountain.


Art inspired by the timeless kids’ string game!

Luis says the concept encompasses an image very familiar to children (the universal ‘string game’), with the hand sculptures designed to create human scale in our rapidly-developing neighbourhood. The string imagery also ties to Toronto art traditions in which rope and string art has been a popular theme over the years, notes Jacob.

Born in Lima, Peru, Jacob is a multimedia artist based in nearby Parkdale. His recent works include ‘Spirits of the Grotto,’ a large-scale metal mosaic panel in the Dufferin & Queen St underpass.

IMG_0287The Berczy Park public artwork was selected as part of the City  arts procurement process, organized by the Cultural Services and the Parks, Forestry and Recreation departments, with the goal of creating a kid-friendly, playful centre piece for the green space in the redesigned Berczy Park. The City oversaw a community judging panel – a committee of local residents and art experts – who selected Jacob’s work to bring to life his kid-friendly art concept.

Park visitors are sure to enjoy this artistic park feature, although smokers are advised that they must not smoke within 9-metres of the artwork, since it is a designated kids play area, and park users must comply with City of Toronto non-smoking regulations.IMG_0285


Dying cork tree to be removed, replaced

20 Aug

This amur cork tree exhibited a greatly-reduced leaf canopy during summer 2018.

Despite efforts to preserve a number of mature trees from the original Berczy Park, the Urban Forestry Division of Parks, Forestry & Recreation Dept.  advised us that one of these beloved shade trees is dying and must be felled during the dormant season (autumn/winter).

The amur cork (oak) tree found in the centre of the Berczy Park greenspace was assessed by a certified arborist in July 2018 and determined that it cannot be saved. This follows an assessment by LEAF NGO representatives in summer 2017 that found the mature tree to be in fair (vs good, fair, poor or dead) condition, with insect damage and dead branches. The 2018 arborist review indicates that stress, reduced root flair and soil compaction during the park renovation did harm the tree’s root network, despite best efforts by construction crews to minimize impact near the mature trees.

The good news is that The City will plant a replacement tree of the same species in the spring of 2019 and our Friends of Berczy Park Adopt-a-Tree volunteers will assume care and IMG_0140watering of the tree in the spring/summer of 2019, to complement year-round Parks and Forestry Dept inspections, care and maintenance. Anyone interested in joining our eager corps of Adopt-a-Tree volunteers should review our June 2017 blog post on our Adopt-a-Tree program for details on participation and then email us at berczypark@gmail.com.



Want to report over-flowing garbage bins in Berczy Park?

18 Aug

5r74m3sksiqi11gpumzey95exyydyhvo22dfjcwnyasWant to report overflowing waste/recycling bins in the park or around the City?

Call 3-11, tweet @311Toronto, or, even better, use the The City’s online service request form to do so quickly and efficiently. Or, if the link does not work, go to http://www.Toronto.ca and search for ‘Service requests for Waste Collection’.

Vote for Berczy as ‘best public space’

18 Aug

Berczy Park has been nominated as Toronto’s ‘best public space’ in the Now Magazine


Readers’ Choice Survey for 2018! Check out the nominees and vote online today!




Street closures near Berczy Park, Aug 10-11

28 Jul

The St. Lawrence Market Neighbourhood BIA is once again hosting the annual Feast of St. Lawrence this summer in Old Town Toronto on August 10 and 11. This community event includes road closures on each day.

Friday, August 10: They will be closing Front Street East from Scott Street to Church Street on Friday August 10thfrom 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. Church Street will still be open to vehicular traffic. The event on Front Street (6 p.m. -11 p.m.) is a ticketed 5 course dinner with wine pairings, featuring local fare from the top restaurants in the neighbourhood.  This event will be licensed so part of the street, as well as a section of sidewalk beside Berczy Park, will be gated off to the general public. The event will include decorations and a live Jazz band. The sidewalks on the south side of Front St. will remain open to accommodate pedestrian traffic.

Saturday, August 11: They will be closing Market Street from Front Street East to Wilton Street on Saturday, August 11thfrom 4:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. (The event runs from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.). Patio furniture will be added and St. Lawrence Market vendors will be set-up on the street.  There will be a music stage at Market and The Esplanade, buskers and children’s activities throughout the day on the street. The closed street will be fully licensed allowing attendees to purchase an alcoholic beverage from restaurants/vendors and walk along the street festival.  At 6 p.m. the intersection at the Esplanade will be re-opened but Market street from Front to The Esplanade will remain closed until the end of the event at 7pm. Paid duty police officers as well as security will be on-site to direct traffic and ensure safety.

For more information about this event please visit their website at www.feastofstlawrence.ca.

If you have any questions, please contact Al Smith or Pam Briz at 416-410-9242 or alsmith@stlawrencmarketbia.ca,pamelabriz@stlawrencemarketbia.ca.

Commercial filming in Berczy on Friday July 20th

17 Jul

An Untitled Films production crew prepares to shoot a commercial in Berczy Park.

FILMING NOTIFICATION: exterior scenes for a commercial

To the Residents & Businesses in the vicinity of Berczy Park:

We will be filming EXTERIOR scenes at

Berczy Park, 35 Wellington St. E.  on

July 20, 2018 between the hours of 6AM – 11AM.

35 Wellington St E.– Filming exterior on location

Our production vehicles and various pieces of film related equipment will be located on:

  • north side of Front btwn Yonge & Church St.


We will begin reserving the above areas with cones on July 19th at 6pm, with vehicles arriving July 20th at 6am, and departing July 20th by 11am.

Displaced permit parkers affected by our filming activities are kindly asked to park in their driveways (if available), surrounding streets, or nearby pay lots. On our filming day, please approach any crew member and ask to speak to BillDawefrom the Locations Department to have your parking receipt reimbursed. Or we will direct you to available parking pre-arranged by the production.

***All of our filming & related activities are undertaken under the authority & approval of the City of Toronto Film & Television Office. ANY INTERMITTANT TRAFFIC STOPPAGES/CONTROL will be conducted under the safe supervision of the Toronto Police Service.***

On behalf of the production, we thank you for supporting Ontario’s vibrant film industry. Questions? Please do not hesitate to call us at the production office, or the Film Office: filmtoronto@toronto.caor 416-338-FILM.

Street construction around Berczy Park/Wellington St.

2 Jul

Looking east along Wellington Street with Berczy Park to the right (south).

This summer, Toronto Hydro and the City of Toronto will begin the Powerline Plus construction project along Wellington Street between Yonge and Church Streets, adjacent to the northern border of Berczy Park. This project to upgrade the aging electrical system will occur in two phases and extend from summer 2018 to early 2019.

Phase one: Open-cut trenching along Wellington St in The City right-of-way between Yonge & Church St. to install new cable chambers in the sidewalks and roadways.  *This will include the removal of existing street trees along Wellington however the trees will be replaced in 2019 as part of Phase 2.

Phase two: Streetscape improvements will be constructed to enhance the pedestrian experience, including wider sidewalks, benches, heritage lighting, bike corrals, new tree pits and designated patio zones. See images below. The City will also add additional street trees along the south side of Wellington Street, bordering Berczy Park, to enhance the green canopy along the side of Berczy Park. You can contact the Old Town Market Neighbourhood Business Improvement Area (BIA) for additional information.


The project will add new streetscaping to the northern side of Wellington St, including wider sidewalks, designated patios, tree pits, and heritage lighting.


%d bloggers like this: