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05/28/2010

Details of G20 fence announced

Fences will start going up on June 7 around the inside security perimeter ringing the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in downtown Toronto as the first concrete signs of the G20 summit start to fall into place.

The fences will be similar to the chain-link barriers used during the Indy car race in July, said Toronto Police Superintendent Tom Russell at a press conference Friday morning. No razor wire will be used. Police will be able to use tear gas, he said, and while the piercing LRAD sirens will be primarily for communication, he would not rule out other uses.

The security bill for the G20 summit of world leaders on June 26 and 27 and the G8 summit that precedes it in Huntsville adds up to $1.1 billion, including $933 million for policing.

Work on the fence will continue 24 hours a day until it is finished, said Russell, who is in charge of the police G20 task force. People should be able to "move freely" around the area until the evening of Friday, June 25, he said.

The outer security perimeter, where residents and workers with access cards will have expedited access to, runs up Windsor St., east on Wellington, south on Bay, west on Front (omitting Union Station), south on York, west on Bremner Blvd., south on Lower Simcoe, west on Lake Shore Blvd. then runs north and encircles the CN tower, with a break south of train tracks (omitting the Rogers Centre). It then starts up again on Blue Jays Way and Front St., then runs east to Windsor and then north to Wellington.There will be a separate fence wrapping the Westin Harbour Castle on Queen's Quay.

The summit traffic zone, which will not be fenced in, stretches from King St. to Yonge St. to Queen's Quay to Spadina Ave., he said. The 400-series highways, the Gardiner Expressway, the QEW and Lake Shore Blvd. will not be closed during the summit although Hwy. 427 and the Gardiner will be shut down periodically to accommodate motorcades, he said.

"People will notice a significant difference in terms of uniformed officers in the downtown core" during the summit, Russell said. The ferry system to Toronto Islands, the TTC and Union Station will be open and operating, he said. Some streetcar lines will have service limited and the Front St. access to Union Station will be sealed, but the 504 streetcar on King St. will continue to run. Portions of the underground pedestrian way beneath the downtown core will be closed from the evening of the 25th until the morning of the 28th.

The York, Bay and Yonge exits to the Gardiner will be closed on the 25th and 26th, said Russell. The westbound ramp to the Gardiner will be closed on the 27th. On Queen St., Yonge St., Lake Shore Blvd. and Spadina, cars violating parking rules will be tagged or towed, he said. Police will be at the protest site at Queen's Park. Russell said G20 security are working with summit officials to establish a streaming service to pipe demonstrators' voices into summit headquarters will be in place.

For more information, visit the Integrated Security Unit's website here.

How do these security perimeters and traffic restrictions affect you? Email us: jyang@thestar.ca or jmclean@thestar.ca

Comments

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Sounds like fun!

hmm.. 933 million bill for policing. Total 1 billion. Why do we need this circus?

Pretty expensive for a 1 1/2 day of works, the gov did the same thing in Montebello, a big fence then take it down, IF the G20 want to be so secure they should rent Alcatraz, the fences are allready there, and rent would be cheap, lots of rooms available. Just a thought.

So, those who live or work in the area can obtain security passes, can they?

Where???

How???

And how much of our personal information will we have to give up in order to get these passes?

I can't find any information on this, so how the hell am I supposed to get my security pass?

Just one more example of why forcing Toronto to host the G20 in the central downtown core is the biggest possible F-You the Harper government could give us.

Great, lets put a fence around the central business district ... sounds rational.

Why couldn't this have been held somewhere more remote exactly?

will via trains be running during this period? they run right through the middle of the security zone.

Why really go through all the fuss of announcing these meetings? Why can't they just meet at a hotel and tell everyone after the fact? It would save a lot of security money, clean up money and hooliganism.

Is there a cost breakdown somewhere? I can't comprehend this $1.1 billion price tag.

It'll be on the weekend - stop complaining - it doesn't affect most of us working in the downtown core

K so as per the G20.gc.ca site, the theme of this summit is “Recovery and New Beginnings". "The G20 Toronto Summit will focus on recovery from the global economic and financial crisis and the implementation of commitments from previous G20 summits, while laying the foundation for sustainable and balanced growth."


What a way to start things off by spending $1.1B!

The people we call "World Leaders" are world class idiots if you ask me... I think the homeless guy at the corner of Bay and King this morning would better know how to spend everyones hard earned mnoney. Just saying!

So not only is going to cost the tax payer a cool billion hey but that's just walking around money for most, they're also going to shut down a majority of the bars hotels and tourist attractions in the area right at the start of summer and tourist season. How many millions extra is that going to cost businesses?? No wonder the world economy is in the condition its in because of decisons like this!

At least it's all being spent in-country. Could be regarded as an addition to the stimulus package.

As Bruce Cockburn aptly sang: 'and they call it democracy'

$1 billion in security costs and a fence around the leaders of the leading economic nations of the world to keep citizens and taxpayers out of the discussion: and they call it democracy?

Ah, the price of global leadership!

if we put that billion dollar fund towards the gardiner, dvp and 401/404/dvp interchange, imagine the congestion we wouldn't have to deal with...no more delays on at that interchange on saturdays and sundays...

What a complete waste of money. All they'll do is talk talk talk with no real solutions. This money could have been better spent. Harper, you're an idiot!! Why did you put it in Canada's largest city, disrupt business and lives, and cost Canadian tax payers a billion dollars! Why didn't you choose a more controlable site like PEI?

I am extremely cautious about slandering or libeling a self-important public/political figure in all my commentaries, but I have no qualms at all about agreeing with the G post at 05/28/2010 @ 12.36 PM's comment which stated that "Harper, you're an idiot!!" I only wish I could top that comment with something more appropriate....but nothing better comes to mind. How could it? It surely is the epitome of descriptive adverbs!

If 2000 cops make $2000 each to pull some overtime, we get to 4 million. Once we add special equipment and helicopter costs, etc, perhaps we can settle on 8 million. Then the fence, and who got that contract? Ok, we're inching in on 10 million.

So, pray tell, to what do we dedicate the further 923,000?

This is getting loopy. I think some real estate agents in Muskoka, etc. are going to be making some - spin-off - money. Someone, or someones, are making a killing on this 2 day gab-fest!!!

Canada is a huge country with many possible locations for something as large as the G20 with more available space when an excessive amount of security needed.

For those who think the 1 billion dollar price tag is excessive, there are also the hundreds of offices downtown that have either decided to shut down for the span of that entire week or deal with hours in lost productivity as workers struggle to get in and out of the security perimeter. There is so reason at all to have it downtown Toronto! It is a complete waste of money and time for everyone involved.

Next time it is Canada's turn to host the G20, it might make more sense to build a much larger resort near Algonquin for, say, $400 million and then reduce the overall spend on security. At the end of the summit, residents would then have a new place to stay to enjoy one of Ontario's natural beauties.

@Thai, We realize the actual summit is on the weekend. However in case you didn't read the article, the fences are going up on June 7th. So for those working or living in this area it's going to create a lot of problems until the G20 is over! Clearly you don't work or live in this area so you wouldn't understand.

Better idea. How much would it cost to fence the G20 and all their security apparatchiks out?

Imagine what $1.1B could do for our schools, health care, housing ... For all the money spent on keeping world leaders safe from the people (and who keeps us safe from them?) how will any of us be concretely better off?

It'll be on the weekend - stop complaining - it doesn't affect most of us working in the downtown core

---------------------------------------------------------
Despite it being on the weekend protests are expected to go throughout the week. Various companies are running shell offices outside of the city just to get away from the madness.

If you think it's going to be a regular day prepare to be boadsided.

@PR I'm not sure why you can't find any information on obtaining a security pass. Have you really bothered to look? There have been multiple articles about this subject in The Star, The Globe and The National Post. Information can also be found here: http://www.g8-g20isu.ca/g20/commun-eng.htm

If you work in this area, speak to your employer as they will have more information. If you live there, expect a knock on your door.

I hope your handle "PR" is the initials of your name and not representative of your profession, since you clearly need to work on your communication and research skills.

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