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The View from Lawrence Heights
Lawrence Heights children (photo: Rodrigo Moreno)   
Main - Overview
For Better Or For Worse?
The Revitalization of Lawrence Heights
Metro Morning - Live from Lawrence Heights
Wednesday, March 28th

The soul of a community is its people. Will it survive when their neighbourhood is transformed?

Lawrence Heights Apartment Building
Andrew Cox is one of several photographers documenting changes in the neighbourhood
(CBC/Dwight Friesen)

We travelled to Lawrence Heights to find out what people are thinking about "revitalization". View a photogallery of the people we met and read the lyrical thoughts of some local rappers.

We also met a group of photographers who are documenting the neighbourhood before it changes. Watch a slideshow of how they got one of their images (turn on your speakers), and see how their photos tell the story of a neighbourhood.

Lawrence Heights

Spread out over 100 acres near Lawrence and Allen Road, the Toronto Community Housing project will be the next, after Regent Park, to be redeveloped. The buildings are 50 years old and need major repairs. The streets aren't connected to surrounding communities, and people feel isolated.

Known as "Jungle", Lawrence Heights is also a place - rightly or wrongly - that has acquired a reputation for being a place of poverty, home to drug deals and gun violence.

But that's just one side to the story.

Lawrence Heights is also a vibrant community, made up of a diverse group of people who moved here from all around the world: from the Maritimes and the Caribbean, from South America and, most recently, from Somalia, Ethiopia and other parts of Africa. There have been tensions and culture clashes. There have also been partnerships and lasting friendships, and a strong sense of community pride.

Thanks to everyone who showed up to tell us about the place they live and their hopes for the future.

99.1 FM
Neighbourhood Boundaries

Lawrence Heights (outlined in green)   

Lawrence Heights Community Health Centre
Pathways to Education for Lawrence Heights
R.E.A.C.H. (Real Employment to Achieve Community Health)
Toronto Community Housing
YELL (Youth Employment & Local Leadership)
(416) 544-1992

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