— for the latest, head over to the oca facebook group


— ‘waiting on ossington’, christian mcleod, 2010 (the scene represented is the northern wall of the former sully’s gym, where muhammad ali trained for the george chuvallo fight, and its adjacent vacant lot: now the site of the “109oz” building)

Been a while.

Sad when there’s a legacy website with no axn since 2017. Mostly the action is out IRL, doing things and making it happen. On the internets, there is rich chatter on the fb group, perpetually ongoing.

Lately we’ve been up to the following:

  • I’m doing a Jane’s Walk!!!! Super excited. Title: ‘Empire, war, meatpacking: Ossington’s psychogeography’. For the back story check out my On the Ossington Strip.
  • The Clocktower Project is moving forward!!! Old Fire Hall #9 at 16 Ossington, currently the Western Men’s Detox, with its ‘pilgrim hat’ as made famous by the great Julie Lasky, is the Ossington icon in waiting. OCA is partnering with the City, Hullmark, and the Ossington BIA to get that clock back up on there.
  • We believe in groups within groups within groups: this is how individuals project agency and connect in local and progressively more global structures. The OCA is a charter member of the West Side Community Council, an umbrella group stretching from University to Roncesvalles with a baker’s dozen members. The WSCC in turn is a member of Ontario Place for All, which is about promoting OnPlace to what its promise has always been. One thing we are contributing on this behalf is some constitutional jurisprudence, in the form of the Public Trust Doctrine, the idea that some times, governmental control over lands and resources is not *ownership* but *trusteeship*, where all of us are beneficiaries. This is a big deal in the US, and we are promoting this as a Canadian concept.
  • The BIA is awesome and has an awesome plan to beautify, rock out, and funk up the Ossington Streetscape. We love it and you will too. Now it needs to happen! OCA is putting its back behind this. Let’s make it happen!

See you on the second Thursday of the month!!!! (West Nbhd House, Oss/Dds, 7–8:30, followed by PUB NITE!!!!!!) — no worries about protocol or rules or whatever, we are here to empower you, so show up and get like empowered and stuff. Lates!!! 

The 13 July meeting elected a new OCA Board for the next couple years:

  • President: Jessica Wilson (Argyle St: previous VP)
  • VP: Rachel Horvath (Givins: previous Treasurer)
  • VP2: Jennifer Horvath (Givins: previous Corr Sec)
  • Treasurer: Lou Scott (Givins: previously, Director)
  • Corresponding Secretary: Benj Hellie (Argyle St: previous Rec Sec)
  • Director: Shawn Winsor (Givins: previous President)
  • Director: Karen Williams (WilliamsCraig Design: ‘Storefront Member’)
  • Director: Henry Rego (‘Friendly Member’)
  • Director: Karen Sampogna (Ossington Avenue)

Thanks heaps to the outgoing Board; and extra-special thanks to fresh faces Karen, Henry, and Karen!

President Wilson also struck a Steering Committee, which is poised to take on a newly dynamic role in the OCA:

  • Ilona Zaremba (Argyle St)
  • Rob Corkum (Argyle St)
  • Alison Bruce (Halton)
  • Leea Puntanen (Rolyat)
  • Bruce Van Dieten (Argyle St)
  • Meg Marshall (Ossington BIA)

Thanks heaps to the folks of Steering: in particular, big welcome to Meg, who has recently come aboard with our fantastic BIA: we are stoked about working with Meg and cementing our relationship with this fellow neighbourhood institution—big stuff is coming up the pike: more to come, very soon. (Also, special acknowledgement to Rob, who has returned after a much-needed break: Rob was the inaugural Treasurer, and oversaw the spending of like $70K! Hey Rob, where did it all go? —He can answer that!)

I spruced up the logo!



Two quick points:

  1. Regarding the West Queen West HCD: we won! The segment from Shaw to Dufferin will be included in the HCD.
  2. The slate for the July 13, 2017 Executive Board Election is:
  • President: Jessica Wilson
  • Vice President: Rachel Horvath
  • Second VP: Jennifer Horvath
  • Treasurer: Lou Scott
  • Recording Secretary: [vacant]
  • Corresponding Secretary: Benj Hellie
  • Director: Karen Williams
  • Director: Henry Rego
  • Director: Shawn Winsor
  • Director: Karen Sampogna


Toronto’s Official Plan says that our residential streets are supposed to remain physically stable, with new development *preserving the existing character*. But the City has recently changed residential street zoning so as to allow vertical duplexes—two side-by-side units on a single lot—in a way that is encouraging destabilizing overbuilding. Developers in our area are having a field day with the new permission, buying a single normal-size house, tearing it down, and building a “mega-house” containing two units, each the size of a large semi. The developer then condominiumizes the units and sells them separately for massive profit (1M-1.2M each). Concerns are: overbuilding/boxing in neighbours, failure to preserve street character, decreased affordability, increased property taxes. The OCA fought to get this meeting—the only one planned for this important change. Please attend and find out how we can prevent destabilizing back-door intensification of our residential streets.

Location: West Neighbourhood House (formerly St. Christopher House, 248 Ossington, corner of Ossington and Dundas)

Time: 6-8pm

Hosted by: Councillor Mike Layton and City Planning

Here’s a link to the Facebook event page.

Here’s the 2-page flyer for the event: vertical-splits-final