Bee ho­tels hit West Queen West

It’s hard to get a room un­less you’re just buzzing around

Metro Canada (Toronto) - - NEWS - May War­ren Metro | Toronto

A new West Queen West ho­tel is gen­er­at­ing some buzz with ex­clu­sive list­ings for busy bees look­ing for a place to rest their wings.

The neigh­bour­hood’s Busi­ness Im­prove­ment As­so­ci­a­tion has con­structed six “bee ho­tels” along a stretch of Queen Street from Bathurst Street to Glad­stone Av­enue to help the in­sects find a place to nest dur­ing the sum­mer.

“They do look like a bird house,” said BIA ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Rob Sysak, adding they’re perched about eight feet off the ground on poles made from re­claimed wood.

“You can see peo­ple walk­ing and all of a sud­den take a dou­ble take.”

The ho­tels will serve “soli­tary bees” that don’t have hives in the city, Sysak said.

The BIA is try­ing to con­trib- ute to Toronto’s new des­ig­na­tion as a “Bee City,” Sysak said, adding 70 planters to turn two kilo­me­tres of West Queen West into a “pol­li­na­tor’s par­adise.”

An­drew Roy, head gar­dener at Restora­tive Land­scapes, the com­pany hired to de­sign and in­stall the bee ho­tels, hopes peo­ple will be inspired to make things more hos­pitable in their own back­yards.

“It’s what you can do in your own gar­den, cre­at­ing habi­tat, whether by build­ing your own bee ho­tel or by gar­den­ing messy,” he said.

“When we man­i­cure ev­ery­thing, then there’s no habi­tat.”

Toronto of­fi­cially be­came Canada’s first bee city in early 2016, with coun­cil ap­proval and a suc­cess­ful ap­pli­ca­tion to non-profit Bee City Canada. The ti­tle sig­ni­fies a com­mit­ment to pro­tect ur­ban pol­li­na­tors, which have been in sharp de­cline across Canada.

Lo­cal busi­nesses have stepped up to help, in­clud­ing Hill­crest Mall in Rich­mond Hill where man­age­ment re­cently in­stalled hives on the roof.

“Hope­fully we can be one of the first bee BIAs,” said Sysak with a laugh.

Eduardo lima/metro eduardo lima/metro torstar news ser­vice

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.