An online petition is calling on property owners to clean up the “rundown” storefronts in the Toronto Beaches neighbourhood.
Titled “BEACH PLEASE! Clean up Queen Street East,” the change.org petition has racked up over 500 signatures, with a goal of 1,000.
“Imagine being a business owner and having to pass a string of dilapidated storefronts every day,” the petition reads. “Imagine taking such pride in your business, only to have the space beside or across from you be completely rundown.”
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It adds that spaces that have been abandoned for a long time along Queen Street East “hurt” the neighbourhood and “make it harder” for businesses to succeed, especially during a pandemic.
“If property owners want to reap the benefits of property value in the beaches, then be good neighbours,” states the petition.
It then lists a number of addresses that appear to be abandoned storefronts on Queen Street:
1982 Queen Street East
1984 Queen Street East
2026, 2028, 2030, 2032, 2036, 2038 Queen Street East
2052 Queen Street East
In the petition’s comment section, people are calling on the city to do something about these abandoned spaces.
“I think the city should do even more. If a property sits vacant and derelict for more than 18 months it should be expropriated by the city and sold at auction with half the proceeds going to building affordable housing,” said one commenter.
“I’ve lived here for over 12 years and it is disappointing and frustrating to see some storefronts boarded up that entire time, if not longer,” said another. “Because they are not maintained, parts of this stretch of Queen are unsightly.”
It’s not clear who exactly started this petition, as it’s just under the name “Toronto Beaches.”
Daily Hive has reached out to Beaches-East York City Councillor Brad Bradford for comment.