NEWS

Saturday morning construction riles Queen West residents

09/20/2014 07:03 EDT | Updated 06/16/2017 01:03 EDT
How early is too early for heavy construction to kick off on a Saturday morning?

City of Toronto noise bylaws state that builders must wait until 9 a.m. on the weekends to get started on the digging and drilling in residential areas. But residents of a couple of trendy neighbourhoods west of downtown say companies working on local condo developments aren’t following the rules, and they say the early-morning clatter is harming their quality of life.

“It’s constant noise from early in the morning,” said Camilla Rocha, who lives near an under-construction condo tower at Queen Street West and Gladstone. “It’s drilling and just loud noises all the time. It’s every day of the week except for Sundays.”

When she moved into her apartment three years ago, Rocha said, she knew construction noise would be a factor. But she didn’t expect it would be this bad.

“Looking back now, if we knew it was going to be this loud all the time, I think we would have changed our mind.”

Residents say crews working on The Carnaby condo site have told them the city has granted a special permit to allow for construction before 9 a.m. on Saturdays.

However, no permit has been posted to notify neighbours of any exemption. And when CBC News attempted to call building officials for comment, the site manager hung up.

Rachel Horvath, who lives nearby at Queen Street West and Ossington Avenue, said early-morning construction is a “constant source of anger” in her neighbourhood, which has also seen an explosion of condo development in recent years.

She's complained to the city about the problem before, but said her pleas have led to temporary improvements at best.

Trinity-Spadina Coun. Mike Layton told CBC News that construction noise is a reality of life in a big city. However, he said builders need to play by the rules.

“We do get a lot of complaints about folks starting a little early, and perhaps folks ending a little late,” he said.

Residents who observe crews starting work too early should call the city at 311, he said.

“We also encourage residents to keep logs so that if the problem persists, then we have evidence of it and we can charges accordingly.”

To watch CBC journalist Shannon Martin's report on the frustration, watch the video at the top of the screen.

MORE:cbcNews