auto dealer parking on school site

It’s appropriate to have schools within residential areas, so kids can attend school close to home. School lands are zoned institutional. There are good reasons for the city’s zoning rules, which do not allow commercial activity, such as a large-scale auto dealership activity on land zoned institutional. In 2016, TDSB demolished their school at 20 Regent St (on the north-west corner of Parliament/Shuter). This vacant property, zoned institutional, is now controlled by TCDSB. TCDSB is a sophisticated property owner and is doubtless aware of all Toronto zoning restrictions that affects land use.

Previously a small parking lot for school staff was situated on the south-west corner of the property, with access from Shuter. By 2018, this parking area had been expanded, covered in gravel, and used by an auto dealership for storing cars. In mid-Nov 2023, that gravel parking lot was greatly expanded; it now covers 2/3 of the property, and contains 100+ cars. Many are Audi, Mercedes, BMV; some vehicles are brand new: no licence plates, car windows still covered with protective white film plastic.


Use of land zoned institutional for commercial purposes (parking for large auto dealerships) is illegal, and is detrimental to the surrounding residential area; it’s immediately adjacent to new housing that has been constructed as part of the Regent Park, a residential area that the city is working hard to revitalize. Traffic entering/exiting this auto storage lot adds traffic to Shuter St, and conflicts with the separated bike lane.

This illegal use has persisted for 5 years. Let’s see if the city enforces its zoning laws.

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