The back alleys, the secret passages, the shortcuts and unofficial chill spots; this is the reputation of Toronto’s unclaimed Laneways. Some of the most important veins connecting the city in ways that we had not even realized reduced to an afterthought in the construction processes that took place throughout the city. But this is what the Laneway Project has aimed to change.
We have many such untapped opportunity which often overlooked, one of which was selected to be reclaimed and redefined to become a vibrant part of our community. On August 12th, 2014, the North York Community Council approved Councillor Colle’s motion to rename the laneway located south of Eglinton Ave West and extending easterly from Oakwood Avenue to “Reggae Lane” behind some of the stores that have existed along Eglinton for years..
The community has great expectations for this laneway as it suitably named to represent the culture of the area and the promise of what’s to come. Upon the success of the revitalization, the BIA looked to regain the business owners, landlords’ confidence and support by improving the area for the residence and shoppers. This began a new value program to upkeep the look and image of individual stores and the surrounding area. The goal was to create a greater pride toward the York-Eglinton BIA.
Though not apparent at first, the reclaiming of this laneway does share many similarities with the meaning of its name. Reggae is a form of music that usually tells a story and often a conscious message of change, the need for peace, the importance of happiness among all. The recognition of this lane offers opportunities for businesses to expand (progress) for residents to have a safer and more attractive street to walk along (peace) and for people to feel good about the fact their neighbourhood is progressing and valued (happiness).
Reggae Lane is not just a wasted, back alley roadway; it is a lifeline, a symbol of hope a promise of progress and a chance for people and business to connect through more than just geography.
Stay tuned for information on future updates: http://www.reggaelaneproject.com/
If you’re interested in being involved in future Reggae Lane development please contact us!