Illustration by Min Gyo Chung

In this issue

Analysis by The Local

A John Tory Landslide, and New Faces on Council

With dismal voter turnout and a third term for Tory, the city’s election presented some expected results—and a few big surprises.


Candidate Tracker

The only place to find reported, fact-checked info about every Toronto election candidate for mayor, councillor, and school trustee—in every ward, all in one place. Making an informed decision has never been easier.

Investigation by Inori Roy

The Deadly Inequality of Toronto’s Vision Zero Rollout

An investigation by The Local using FOI requests, city-wide speeding data, and analysis of council minutes, reveals a system that makes wealthy downtown neighbourhoods safer while leaving lower-income inner-suburban communities to fend for themselves.

Investigation by Emma Buchanan

The Mysterious French School Trustee Candidates Who Don’t Speak French

When parents at the Viamonde school board became suspicious of the only two trustee candidates running in their ward, they investigated. Now one candidate says he’s ready to resign, as the controversy threatens the legitimacy of the entire election.

Analysis by Ali Raza

Ward Profile: An Uphill Battle in Etobicoke North—Ford Country

After 22 years of representation by the Ford family, Ward 1 has the chance to elect a new voice.

Analysis by Ashley Okwuosa

Councillor Michael Thompson Is Facing Sexual Assault Allegations… Now What?

With the councillor facing charges, five low-profile challengers in Ward 21 — Scarborough Centre are hoping to break through the inertia of incumbency.

Analysis by Daniel Rotsztain

Ward Profile: The Next Councillor of Ward 9 — Davenport Will Need to Bridge Divides

In a ward spanning the inner suburbs and the inner city, a new crop of candidates try to go beyond the right-left political narrative.

Feature by H.G. Watson

New Downtown Councillors Will Have a Tough Job from Day One—Managing Development

With an exploding population, constant building, and wards the size of small towns, the candidates who win Toronto’s downtown seats will inherit problems, and possibilities.

Perspective by Alison Motluk

Everything You Need to Know About School Trustees

We don’t elect people to oversee any other specific public service. But maybe we should?

Perspective by Adele Lukusa

Why Voting Will Never Be My First Priority

For people like me, voting often feels like an easy political act that changes little. My political engagement comes in other forms.

Feature by Inori Roy

Call the Police… Then Wait

The Toronto Police take three times longer than they should to get to the most urgent emergencies. Why a $1.1 billion force doesn’t come when you need them.

Analysis by Brennan Doherty

Ward Profile: In Ward 16 — Don Valley East, Who Speaks for the Renters?

The majority of residents in Don Valley East rent. But in a city dominated by the politics of property owners, who will represent them?

Analysis by Aparita Bhandari

Ward Profile: In a Tight Race in Willowdale, All Questions Lead to Housing

A controversial supportive housing project on Cummer Avenue has become a point of contention between the three lead candidates hoping to lead Ward 18.

Feature by Jason Herterich

Pulled Off Wheel-Trans and Forced onto the Subway

Cost-cutting measures will push thousands of paratransit users onto the TTC, with disabled and elderly riders forced into gruelling bus and subway trips.

Feature by Dhriti Gupta

The Gaping Holes in Our Election Accountability System

Who keeps Toronto’s elections honest? Just the motley collection of activists, weirdos, partisans, and nerds who use the compliance audit system.

Feature by Tai Huynh

How Toronto’s Councillors Became Nearly Unbeatable

The numbers don’t lie: this city’s incumbency advantage is the worst in North America.

Photo by Chloë Ellingson.

In this issue

Editor's Letter by The Local

We’re in a Climate Emergency—It’s Time We Started Acting Like It

There is still time to mitigate the harms of climate change and build resilient communities in this city. But we need to start now.

Feature by Inori Roy with photography by Christopher Katsarov Luna

As Toronto Temperatures Rise, Inequalities Widen

Climate change causes heat waves, but the city’s politics, policies, and design determine who suffers most.

Perspective by Gargi Elizabeth Chatterjee

The Weight of Childbirth During a Climate Crisis

I enrolled in midwifery school in search of hope and purpose. But what does it mean to bring new life into a world that's becoming less liveable?

Feature by Denise Balkissoon

A Brine Against Nature

Winter road salt finds its way into Toronto’s waterways all year long, harming wildlife, decreasing biodiversity, and damaging infrastructure.

Feature by Steph Wong Ken with photography by Christopher Katsarov Luna

The Line Between ‘Invasive’ and ‘Native’ Blurs

Not all invasive plant species are damaging to Toronto’s ecosystems. Treating them like they are could do more harm than good.

Feature by Emma McIntosh with photography by Carlos Osorio

How a Downtown Landfill Became an Accidental Bird Sanctuary

The Leslie Street Spit was a wasteland of rebar and construction materials. Now it’s an avian paradise and a crucial place for preserving biodiversity in the centre of Canada’s largest city.

Feature by Emma McIntosh

The Drive to Reduce Car Pollution Hits Gridlock

Pollution from major roads causes premature death and illness, disproportionately affecting the low-income people who live next to them. Solutions are available, but the political will is not.

Feature by Fatima Syed

The Great (Surprisingly Expensive) Outdoors

Introducing kids to nature is how you build the next generation of environmentalists. But how do you make outdoor education in Toronto affordable and accessible?

Feature by H.G. Watson with photography by Christopher Katsarov Luna

Carving Out a Brand New Island

With Villier’s Island, the city aims to combat climate change, create a new mouth to the Don River, and add needed housing. But constructing a climate positive neighbourhood from scratch is no small task.

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