Con­struc­tion may be fin­ished, but cages re­main

Toronto Star - - GREATER TORONTO - JACK LAKEY

What’s up with those wire con­trap­tions on Front St., that look bet­ter suited to a steel cage match for pro wrestlers than con­struc­tion?

Any­body who uses Union Sta­tion or reg­u­larly drives along Front St. is painfully aware of how dis­rup­tive that con­struc­tion on the his­tor­i­cal sta­tion and the area around it has been over the past few years.

It seems at last to be wind­ing down, with traf­fic lanes re­stored in both di­rec­tions and a sig­nif­i­cant re­duc­tion in the dust, noise and ma­chin­ery that made the lo­cale so mis­er­able.

But among the more cu­ri­ous leftovers are two steel cages squat­ting on the side­walk on the south side of Front St., east of Bay St., an area swarm­ing with tourists at this time of year.

George Mal­lia emailed to say “the work on Front St. be­tween York and Yonge Streets seems to be over and has been for quite some time now.

“So where are there two large metal wire cages on the side­walk?”

We went there and found the two cages in front of the Do­min­ion Pub­lic Build­ing on Front St., which the fed­eral gov­ern­ment re­cently sold to de­vel­op­ers for $275 mil­lion.

The one near the cor­ner of Front and Bay Sts. seems to serve no other pur­pose than as a bar­rier around a portable toi­let, which wasn’t pressed into ser­vice while we were there.

The other has an orange plas­tic cur­tain strung up around its pe­riph­ery, ap­par­ently to shield passersby from the very im­por­tant equip­ment and ac­tiv­i­ties within.

We peeked over the top and spot­ted apile of black garbage bags filled with some­thing or other next to a plas­tic cart, a metal frame and a grille for who knows what.

Now, we have no doubt that the con­tents of the bags re­quire a steel cage to safe­guard the pub­lic, and that the out­house must be pro­tected from wags who might be tempted to tip it over.

But at this stage of the game, surely there’s a bet­ter place. Sta­tus: Steve John­ston, who deals with me­dia for trans­porta­tion ser­vices, sent us a note say­ing they be­long to a con­trac­tor that is still work­ing for the TTC. While the on­go­ing tasks may not be vis­i­ble, John­ston said the con­trac­tor “will be mov­ing these cages up and down the street as they per­form the work.” What­ever it is, it must be top-se­cret. What’s bro­ken in your neigh­bour­hood? Wher­ever you are in Greater Toronto, we want to know. Send an email to jlakey@thes­tar.ca . Re­port prob­lems and fol­low us on Twit­ter @TOS­tarFixer.

JACK LAKEY/TORONTO STAR

Bar­ri­ers on Front St. ap­pear to pro­tect a portable toi­let and a garbage pile.

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