By Emma Prestwich
The closure of Gould St. has created a new community hub on campus that many say is positive, but it has also cut off access to service vehicles, forcing service personnel to get creative.
Chris Regalado, a delivery driver with Food and Ancillary Services, said that the closure is “unbelievable” and “slows everything down.” He said that he used to use the alleyway behind the Victoria building, but now parks down by Victoria and Dundas because of renovations to the Image Arts building, which has coincided with the closure.
“It was a good idea to have a small corner to get together,” he said of the new student space, “but they’ve neglected one thing for the benefit of the other.”
Ian Peters was at Ryerson Thursday to check out how the closure will affect the path fire trucks will take in case of an emergency on campus.
The captain of Toronto Fire Department Aerial #325 said that Ryerson security would move planters or other roadblocks if a vehicle needed to get through, but that the first truck will have to come down Church St. instead.
“Obviously, it would be easier to get through if [Gould] was open,” he said. “I don’t know what’s going to happen.”
Hot-dog vendor Kevin Ababi said that he is now forced to park on Church and lug his cart up onto the pathway that runs between the Podium building and Kerr Hall, which is a foot higher than the sidewalk. He said he’s worried about the winter, when snow and slippery surfaces may affect access.
“But they’ve already decided to [close], so what can we do?”
Abdullah Dar was going to be ticketed Thursday for parking in front of the Student Campus Centre until he told the officer he was moving supplies for an RSU fundraiser.
The third-year accounting student said that he supports the closure, but that parking is a “hassle.”
Others say that that the closure won’t really affect drivers.
“People just don’t expect to drive on it,” said Baruch Zone, a professor of architecture science, who said he usually walks to campus from Queen and Dovercourt.
Gould isn’t built to be a hightraffic street, said Nick Milhovic, a Toronto resident who was on campus Thursday for the Toronto International Film Festival. He said that he didn’t think the lack of parking on Gould would affect those flocking to Ryerson for TIFF.
“From a business perspective, even if this was a mecca for parking, there are a million other places around here,” he said.