Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

Ads for the Pattison Onestop-NFB campaign for high-rise livability.

A series of easy solutions to some of Toronto's urban ugliness can be found in an unlikely place – the subway.

Pattison Onestop, which operates the video screens on the city's subway platforms, is showing several 30-second clips in connection with the National Film Board of Canada that depict ideas for making the no-man's land around Toronto's barren, low-income high-rises far more livable.

The clips are running on subway platforms throughout the TTC and show dilapidated sites in and around the high-rises along Kipling Avenue between Finch and Steeles avenues in northwest Toronto.

Story continues below advertisement

The clips artfully imagine, with animation, how an empty grass hill can be turned into a vibrant garden. Or how an alienating parking lot can become a farmer's market and a space for dancers. Or how an abandoned tennis court can be converted to a welcoming public thoroughfare.

The typical attitude among many is "to drive by a high-rise and you look the other way, because they are just so ugly, ubiquitous and they are all the same," said Katerina Cizek, a filmmaker who directs the Highrise project at the NFB, which involves multimedia works that examine the increasing density and declining state of low-income high-rise towers in Toronto and around the world.

The TTC clips and accompanying posters in the subway draw particularly from Highrise'sshort film One Millionth Tower. The film and accompanying online features (which can be seen at http://highrise.nfb.ca/onemillionthtower) match residents of the Kipling towers with architects and animators to dream very specific, very doable ways to make the area more attractive.

"For me, what I hope for Highrise as a whole and One Millionth Tower in particular is to take a second look at that high-rise, to take a second look at the possibility of the space and the possibility of imagination," Ms. Cizek said. Solutions can be as simple as taking down fences blocking access to these spaces.

Pattison Onestop isn't mandated by the TTC to run community and arts programming on its advertising screens. Yet the company said it does so throughout the year to connect more with the public. Other initiatives have included clips tied to the Contact photography festival, Nuit Blanche and the popular Toronto Urban Film Festival, which shows brief independent film clips and runs in September.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies