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-   -   Downtown Toronto not a significant employment zone for 905ers (http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=189522)

miketoronto Mar 13, 2011 2:50 PM

Downtown Toronto not a significant employment zone for 905ers
 
I had to crunch some numbers for a school project, and here is one interesting stat.

As of 2001(that is the most up to date info the city has), only

109,930 residents of Halton, Peel, York, and Durham Regions(905ers) worked in downtown Toronto.

Less than 10% of the 905 region workers.

Toronto is approaching American style decentralization pretty fast and this will have interesting impacts on transit ridership, sprawl, and access to jobs.

Cambridgite Mar 13, 2011 3:42 PM

Just remember that the labour force includes people like teenagers/students working retail jobs (unless they live in/near the core, they probably won't even apply for jobs downtown), teachers teaching at suburban schools, and virtually all the industry is in the suburbs. 10% isn't that surprising.

If you were to isolate for office-based employment, or particularly the finance sector, I'm sure the percentage would be much higher.

WhipperSnapper Mar 13, 2011 4:12 PM

Another month; another miketoronto post. Please explain to me in your infinite wisdom why in a city as populated and as vast as Toronto should employment be more centralized on the edge of the lake? I just don't see the appeal as you apparently do of an hour long commute via some sort of express transit.

Now, what might be interesting is to discuss improving 905 land use bearing in mind that car culture will continue to persist as well as cheap and quick construction.

vid Mar 13, 2011 7:24 PM

I bet 62,649 of them are male, too. Obviously sexism is a big problem. We should have more government subsidies for women, and create initiatives to encourage commuters to use women more often.

niwell Mar 13, 2011 7:27 PM

This might have more to do with the fact it takes an hour (driving) to get from say, Oakville to downtown. Close to 1.5 hours on transit.

And of course doesn't account for those workers in location based industries. You know, service, manufacturing, institutional etc? There are reasons for things to be located in the 905 too. Maybe we should transplant the several thousand municipal/regional government workers in Halton downtown though, because CLEARLY they shouldn't have offices in the SUBURBS. I can get on board with that, it would certainly make my commute easier.

waterloowarrior Mar 13, 2011 8:45 PM

Your lamentations should be more focused on commercial office space. Some of the GTA's largest suburban employers like hospitals, schools, amusement parks, municipalities, factories, auto plants, transportation companies...basically any space-extensive or location-based industry won't be moving downtown anytime soon. Also not everyone wants to eat and shop downtown.

miketoronto Mar 14, 2011 4:14 AM

I am not saying I am worried about these stats. I just thought it was an interesting number and much lower than expected.

All you ever here about is packed GO Trains, and people needing access to the city. But really, a very very tiny amount of 905ers actually access the city on a daily basis. One has to wonder if all the new home ads which mention being close to the GO Train station even matters to 905 buyers, as so few go into the city on a daily basis?

We also hear endlessly from planners who are into the decentralization fad, that we need to continue decentralizing the GTA, because much too many people go into Toronto each day and it unbalances things. However this stat shows that not that many people actually are going into Toronto.

We have pretty much decentralized everything, and have what provincial planners want, jobs and residents all spread out. And what do we have to show for it? More traffic, pollution, and sprawl.

I wish I had this stat last semester when a planner in one of my classes was blaming traffic congestion in the GTA on not having enough jobs in the suburbs and people commuting.
I almost had to laugh when he said "Why does York Region have so much traffic, when they have an almost equal balance of jobs to residents".

So you can take this stat to be either good or bad.

My prediction is that the decentralization fad is going to be seen in 50 years to be just like public housing all in one spot is seen today. A bad idea and that planners took the idea way way way too far.

I know you guys think I am weird for standing up for downtown Toronto. However I don't really see why this is considered so out there.

People always go on about having to be like Europe. Well if Toronto was in Europe, our downtown would have over a million jobs in it, and be much more centralized than we are. And yes 905ers would be coming downtown to do their major shopping. Ohh and our GO Trains would also be carrying like 4 million people a day.

miketoronto Mar 14, 2011 4:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by niwell (Post 5198952)
This might have more to do with the fact it takes an hour (driving) to get from say, Oakville to downtown. Close to 1.5 hours on transit.

Actually 905ers have some of the best transit access to the core. Most can get downtown faster than people who live within Toronto and use the TTC.

Most of the 905 is within a 30-45 minute GO Train ride from downtown.

And almost the entire GTA is within an hour of downtown by GO Train.
If the trains were electrified, than the commutes would be even faster.

Cambridgite Mar 14, 2011 5:59 AM

I wonder what the stats look like for Los Angeles.

If you think Toronto is decentralized...

niwell Mar 14, 2011 10:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by miketoronto (Post 5199568)

People always go on about having to be like Europe. Well if Toronto was in Europe, our downtown would have over a million jobs in it, and be much more centralized than we are. And yes 905ers would be coming downtown to do their major shopping. Ohh and our GO Trains would also be carrying like 4 million people a day.

That is one of the most bizarre and inaccurate statements ever made on this site. Really, just baffling.

vid Mar 14, 2011 12:53 PM

Are there even any European downtowns with a million jobs in them?

MolsonExport Mar 14, 2011 1:07 PM

Not having access to the raw statistics, I will have to guess that the concentration is probably much lower (than Toronto) in all North American cities except MAYBE for New York City. Definitely so for Vancouver and Montreal. Throughout history, and up until the present day, jobs have ALWAYS mostly been local, whether in the country, suburbs, or city. I doubt very highly that Central Paris/Central London have a million jobs (and yes, I have been to both on several occassions).

Gdoggy Mar 14, 2011 4:41 PM

how many 416'ers work in downtown Toronto ?

how does 110,000 905'ers working downtown compare to the total ?

how many 905'ers work in the rest of the 416 ?



:banana:

eternallyme Mar 14, 2011 6:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vid (Post 5199856)
Are there even any European downtowns with a million jobs in them?

I doubt it. The only cities in the world that MIGHT have 1 million downtown workers are New York, Tokyo and Hong Kong.

Doady Mar 14, 2011 10:25 PM

There are a lot of types of employment: government, retail, office, industrial...

It is economically not feasible for GTA retail and industrial to be concentrated in downtown Toronto, so that's a significant proportion of jobs right there. That just leaves government and office jobs.

And no, 905ers should be forced to go all the way to downtown Toronto to do their shopping. That's just inefficient and foolish (especially for transportation), even if it was economically feasible for all retailers to locate downtown.

Considering the structure of GO and its high ridership, I would say employment in GTA is plenty concentrated anyway.

Cambridgite Mar 14, 2011 10:46 PM

Mike, you're using the 10% figure to justify saying that an abnormally small % of the GTA labour force works downtown. How about you do a little research on North American cities of over 3 million people and come back to us once you figure out what the average of those percentages is. Maybe then, you'll feel differently about whether or not the sky is falling, but I somehow doubt it.

miketoronto Mar 14, 2011 11:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vid (Post 5199856)
Are there even any European downtowns with a million jobs in them?

You bet there are.

London has over a million jobs in Central London. And they are planning on adding hundreds of thousands more.

The Paris CBD has over one million jobs, and the figure is higher when you include other areas which comprise the extended CBD like La Defense, which actually is not that far from Central Paris.

miketoronto Mar 14, 2011 11:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by niwell (Post 5199825)
That is one of the most bizarre and inaccurate statements ever made on this site. Really, just baffling.

It is not really inaccurate. If Toronto was in Europe, our regional rail system would be much more frequent, and it of course would be carrying at least a couple million people a day, just like Paris' RER or London's suburban rail network, etc.

Secondly the other statements are true. Europeans even in the suburbs, rely on the central city to a much higher degree for major shopping(not to get milk, but for your major shopping like clothing and gifts, etc), and also for employment. That is just how it is.

Bari, Italy for example is not building a regional rail network centred on downtown Bari, because no one works there. They are building it, because they already have people working there who live in the surrounding region, and they are expecting even more.

So it really is not inaccurate. European CBD's are much more part of the daily lives of a larger amount of suburbanites than in North America. People still use the city to much higher degrees than here.

miketoronto Mar 15, 2011 12:07 AM

You know there is a whole group of us who believe in downtowns :)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1evjv...layer_embedded


Anyway it is no use debating with you guys, because you totally take my comments out of context and think I want 100% of everything downtown, etc. When that is not true.
I was just stating an interesting fact, and for a major city I thought the stat was pretty low.

But like I said no use debating with you guys over this issue, as we are going to not agree on the continued need to grow the downtown core.

niwell Mar 15, 2011 12:19 AM

If Toronto was in Europe it would be a veritable Shangri-la. A city fit for the Sun King himself. Mere celestials would tremble before it's gilded subways and high levels of downtown employment.


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