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Shabby Toronto

Mystic Point

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Walking through Queen's Park in the summer, one is struck at the generally shabby atmosphere. Park benches are dilapidated as are the run down picnic tables. The South West fountain is in disrepair, only some of the water jets working. The grass has eroded badly around the base of the statue of King George and his mighty steed.

Walking down Yonge Street is to walk through a hideous never-ending strip mall of sorts. It's shabby beyond belief.

Has there ever been any discussion about the general Shabbiness of Toronto?

When you return here after being some other place ( Miami, NYC, Chicago, Paris of course, ) it's appears to one giant overwhelming eyesore.

Does no one care?
 
Some here get excited about tall buildings, but some of us get more excited about sidewalk pavings and planters! I think we're in the minority though.
 
Mystic: King Eddy, actually. A nameless U of T student once painted his balls pink. The mighty steed, that is.
 
No money, no pride, a brain-dead hipster intelligentsia that views the shabby and decrepit as "having character" and celebrates the mediocre, fears and sneers at excellence, restraint and discipine, and encourages sloth, indifference and contempt of the public realm in the form of squalor ("grit", as in we're not Coburg etc.), vandalism ("street art") and endless, mindless spam-like postering ("reclaiming public space"), and there you are. Shabby is as shabby does. We get what we deserve, really.
 
My multiple different visitors from Europe all commented on Toronto's general run-down and shabby feel, and voiced surprise that a wealthy city in a wealthy country would be in such a state. Sort of getting sick of having to explain Toronto's "hidden charm", instruct people to "give it a chance" and so on...
 
it matters Yonge street is very shady but the main streets like the Financial sector, Queen Street West and Bloor Street are really well kept up.

However imo Downtown was more shadier 5 years ago then today.

I still remember the video on cp24 of going down Queen street west in1984. Abandoned factories everywhere...

Miami, NYC, Chicago, Paris

Really I am sick and tried of people going to beaches of Miami and midtown Manhattan and then saying those place are so clean and nice... NY is a very messy place mostly and really I have not seen anything close to the level of grit there. However, its a good place.

Its like if you stayed in Yorkvile and Queen West your whole trip here...
 
Has there ever been any discussion about the general Shabbiness of Toronto?

When you return here after being some other place ( Miami, NYC, Chicago, Paris of course, ) it's appears to one giant overwhelming eyesore.

Does no one care?

Okay. Does anyone find themselves so bored stiff by the "unshabby" parts of Miami/NYC/Chicago/Paris, that the slightest evidence of so-called shabbiness comes across as exhilarating?

Maybe the trouble with you, Mystic Point, is that your experience of Miami/NYC/Chicago/Paris varies little beyond a hack tourist itinerary. (And maybe with justification; as their "shabby" can be a lot scarier and a lot more no-go than ours.)
 
No money, no pride, a brain-dead hipster intelligentsia that views the shabby and decrepit as "having character" and celebrates the mediocre, fears and sneers at excellence, restraint and discipine, and encourages sloth, indifference and contempt of the public realm in the form of squalor ("grit", as in we're not Coburg etc.), vandalism ("street art") and endless, mindless spam-like postering ("reclaiming public space"), and there you are. Shabby is as shabby does. We get what we deserve, really.

Do you actually speak like that?
 
Maybe the trouble with you, Mystic Point, is that your experience of Miami/NYC/Chicago/Paris varies little beyond a hack tourist itinerary. (And maybe with justification; as their "shabby" can be a lot scarier and a lot more no-go than ours.)

And, judging from posts like this, no wonder...
 
it matters Yonge street is very shady but the main streets like the Financial sector, Queen Street West and Bloor Street are really well kept up.

However imo Downtown was more shadier 5 years ago then today.

I still remember the video on cp24 of going down Queen street west in1984. Abandoned factories everywhere...



Really I am sick and tried of people going to beaches of Miami and midtown Manhattan and then saying those place are so clean and nice... NY is a very messy place mostly and really I have not seen anything close to the level of grit there. However, its a good place.

Its like if you stayed in Yorkvile and Queen West your whole trip here...

Have you been to New York recently? It's way more well kept than Toronto is.
 
I think it is an undeniable fact that some parts of Toronto do look shabby and unkept.
Number one in the list are all those overhead power lines (not including TCC streetcars wires, of course), and all those unsightly wood poles with transformers and all. I do not recall any major city in the developed world that display such a complete disregard to the aesthetic of its urban environment.
I mean, look at our sidewalks, a mishmash of concrete, asphalt patches, chewing gum stains, spit, etc.
Along streets such as Queen St. everything along the sidewalks is covered in illegal advertisement, there's lots of graffiti and the overall look is just appalling! Vibrant and dynamic, yes, but it looks terrible and visitors from great urban environments do notice! It is really and embarrassment that is hard to justify to European visitors who come from cities that are much, much older and look much, much better.
It is a sad situation.....
 
I was at Starbucks the other day and this German guy was talking to his wife (in German). They were saying that Queen St. West looks like the 70's in Germany (can't remember what city they were from).

Turns out he's here on business. The company he works for is providing the hybrid TTC buses.

So all the hydro overhead wires make us look like a European city in the 70's. That can't be a compliment.
 
Yes, we aren't what we were when the streets were spotless. Having power lines in the open near the downtown core is a blight just like surface parking lots.

That said, this grit gives Toronto a genuine and vibrant feel, as opposed to LA or Miami where everything is manufactured and plastic.
 
It's not just an issue of grit, but of ugliness and grit in long and unbroken sweeps. The city streets could look much better. Grit does not have to be our identifying factor.

Regardless of the sour quality of fiendishlibrarian's post, there is more than a bit of truth to it.
 
When you return here after being some other place ( Miami, NYC, Chicago, Paris of course, ) it's appears to one giant overwhelming eyesore.

Does no one care?

If I was spending that much time in Miami, NYC, Chicago, and Paris instead of Toronto, I certainly wouldn't care.
 

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