With my vacation over, and back in Toronto, it’s about time to finish posting maps of the poll-by-poll results of the 2014 Toronto municipal election. In this post, I take a quick look at Wards 33 and 34, Don Valley East.
Ward 33, in North York’s northeastern corner, is represented by centre-left veteran councillor Shelley Carroll. Ward 33 lies between Finch Avenue and Highway 401; Fairview Mall and Don Mills Station on the Sheppard subway line are close to its geographic centre. Ward 34 is represented by conservative Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong, a municipal politician first elected in 1994 to North York City Council. Doug Ford came in first place in Ward 33, while John Tory came first in Ward 34. In both wards, Olivia Chow came in a distant third.
In Ward 33, Doug Ford won a plurality of the votes (39.4%), but by a very small margin; only 226 votes separated Ford and John Tory (who took 38.1% of the vote) in that ward. As in nearly all suburban wards, Olivia Chow came in a distant third race, netting only 19.3% of the vote there. Tory came first in most polls on the west side of the ward, closer to Yonge Street (Tory came in a comfortable first place in neighbouring Ward 24), while Ford did better in polls to the east, closer to Victoria Park Avenue and Scarborough. Condos, such as polls 008, 036, 038, and 042, picked Tory, while rental highrises went for Ford, as did single-family housing tracts east of Highway 404. Ford’s support for extending the Sheppard Subway (a money pit in this author’s opinion) was likely one factor that explains the geographic split.
Shelley Carroll, a talented centre-left councillor and Mayor David Miller’s budget chief, was easily re-elected with 60.5% of the vote, winning all but one poll. Her nearest competitor, Divya Nayak, took 21.9% of the vote, and won only one poll, 036, a high-rise rental tower on the Don Mills “Peanut.”
Ward 34 is located south of Highway 401 and takes in the eastern half of Don Mills, as well as Parkwoods Village (near York Mills/Victoria Park) and Victoria Village (the area located south of Lawrence Avenue, east of the Don Valley Parkway). John Tory came in first place here, netting 43% of the mayoral vote, and 17 of the 39 election day polls, as well as the advance vote. Doug Ford actually came in first place in more polls, but many of these were located in high-rise buildings with smaller populations. Olivia Chow took only 18% of the vote in Ward 34. Doug Ford’s support was strongest in the southeastern corner of the ward, near O’Connor Avenue, in a relatively low-income neighbourhood.
Though I supported challenger Mary Hynes’ bid for council, I was not at all surprised to see Denzil Minnan-Wong re-elected with 64.4% of the vote, winning in all but one poll. (Poll 026 selected third-place candidate Douglas Owen.) Despite Minnan-Wong’s support for the Ford agenda during the 2010-2014 term, he threw his support behind John Tory in 2014, and was rewarded by being selected as Tory’s lead deputy mayor and with several important committee appointments.
I can’t say that I care much for Minnan-Wong. As chair of the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee, he’s opposed important cycling and pedestrian initiatives. Until Rob Ford’s crack scandals became known, Minnan-Wong was one of Ford’s closest council allies. (He then became the face of council’s revolt; stripping Rob Ford of most of his powers and transferring them to Ford’s deputy, Norm Kelly. I’ve described him as the type of person who knows the cost of everything and the value of nothing, particularly after his criticism of Waterfront Toronto’s great work in building a waterfront that’s inviting and attractive. But I acknowledge that he’s one of Toronto city council’s smartest and most effective members, so it’s no surprise that he was given a prominent role in fellow Conservative John Tory’s administration.