A city council vote this week will determine if ward 27, the Toronto Centre-Rosedale ward where Ryerson resides, gets new boundaries.
A proposed plan conducted by an independent group of consultants would split ward 27 into three pieces, creating a total of 47 wards instead of 44. The mayor’s executive committee voted in favour of the plan on Oct. 26.
While Ryerson is mainly intact in one area, future campus expansions could cause Ryerson to be part of other wards if the boundaries are voted through. This would mean that Ryerson could be meeting with two or three councillors instead of just one. While it would require extra collaboration with other city councillors and their staff, it’s something Ryerson could benefit from says Lachemi.
At the federal level, we are already represented by two MPs and he says this is an advantage.
“We are part of the city, Lachemi said. “Any change, we’ll adapt. That’s part of what we do at Ryerson.”
Maps courtesy of Toronto Ward Boundary Review
The change would allow for greater political representation for citizens according to the ward’s councillor, Kristyn Wong-Tam.
“When you have more political representation, you’re going to have more advocates fighting on your behalf – advocating for more resources, more infrastructure for the communities that they represent,” said Wong-Tam.
The proposed boundaries would help each ward have more equal populations. For example, Wong-Tam represents all 90,000 citizens of ward 27. The east York population has about 45,000 or half of ward 27. The inequality in population makes it harder for everyone in the ward to be represented.
“Every resident in ward 27 gets half a vote whereas every resident in Toronto east York… gets a full vote which seems quite systematically unfair,” said Wong-Tam.