Wed. Jul 6th, 2022

York Center riding map.

Eight provincial ridings are located either fully or partially in North York: Humber River-Black Creek, York Center, Willowdale, Don Valley North, Don Valley East, Don Valley West, Eglinton-Lawrence and York-South-Weston.

Three of those ridings – York Center, Don Valley East and Don Valley West – have no incumbents. And, here, we take a closer look at York Center riding.

The incumbent is running for election – just not for provincial politics. Roman Baber, who was sitting as an independent after being turfed by the provincial Progressive Conservative party for questioning pandemic lockdowns in January 2021, is currently a candidate in the 2022 Conservative Party of Canada leadership election.

THE RACE:

Nick Balaskas, Ontario party

Shelley Brown, Ontario Liberal party

Frank Chu, Ontario New Democratic party (NDP)

Mark Dewdney, None of the Above Direct Democracy party

Parviz Isgandarov, Ontario Moderate party

Michael Kerzner, Progressive Conservative party of Ontario

Alison Lowney, Green party of Ontario

Don Pincivero, New Blue party

THE ISSUES:

The riding has a higher order public transit project under construction: the Finch West LRT, which is expected to open next year. The light rail line will run between Keele Street, in the riding’s western border, to Humber College in north Etobicoke. As in other parts of Toronto, housing, employment and health are cornerstone issues for York Center electors.

We polled candidates on the top issues and four replied.

Progressive Conservative candidate Michael Kerzner said the top issues affecting York Center residents are the cost of living and the need for good paying jobs. “In addition, we have a young population who are looking for opportunities to break into the trades and apprenticeships and become leaders themselves in science and innovation,” he said in an email.

Liberal party candidate Shelley Brown said affordability is the primary issue he hears from local residents. “The cost of housing and or rent is soaring. No one should be forced to move far from their families and their roots, in order to find a home they can barely afford, ”he said in an email. “The cost of living, including essentials such as gas, food and transit, is becoming unmanageable for many.”

NDP candidate Frank Chu said the key issues affecting York Center are care for seniors, cheaper auto insurance, affordable groceries and improved health-care access.

New Blue candidate Don Pincivero said in an email that the issues affecting residents are “increasing taxes, irresponsible government spending, decaying infrastructure, increasing cost of living, lack of adequate housing, rising energy costs, the demise of the middle class, and lack of trust in political leaders. ”

BACKGROUND:

Although the area had been a Liberal stronghold, represented by Liberal MPP Monte Kwinter from 1985 until his retirement in 2018, Baber handily won the ride for the Progressive Conservatives in 2018 with 49.4 per cent of the vote. Federally, York Center has been represented by Liberal Ya’ara Saks since 2020.

RIDING AT A GLANCE:

• York Center is roughly bounded by Steeles Avenue to the north, Bathurst Street to the east, Hwy. 401 to the south, and Jane and Keele streets to the west.

• York Center is home to the neighborhoods of Westminster-Branson, Bathurst Manor, Wilson Heights, Downsview and part of York University Heights.

• The riding has 108,307 residents, according to the 2021 census, up 3.82 per cent from 2015.

• York Center is home to Toronto’s highest number of Filipino, Russian and Jewish residents. The provincial riding was created in 1999 when provincial riding took on the same borders as the federal ones.

RIDING PROFILES:

For profiles for all ridings in North York – and Ontario – link to our Metroland story at: thestar-qr.com/22022provincialridings.

Once there, scroll down and under the heading ‘Electoral district profiles’, you can choose from any of Ontario’s 124 ridings – including all of North York’s. You’ll find specific riding information such as who’s running in the race, the previous election result and demographics.

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