Visiting Ward 31’s 500 Dawes Road: The WORST building in Toronto!

December 12, 2013


500 Dawes Road, the social slum in Janet Davis’ ward is still full of cockroaches, inadequate heating, faulty appliances, defective toilets, mice, bedbugs and garbage piled sky high. The scurrying roaches are so numerous when the lights are turned in the apartment block it appears as if the floor is moving. After years of numerous visits from city standards, health, fire officials, and promises by Janet Davis to do something, nothing has changed. The owner, a woman the tenants seem to know only by several fake names such as Mrs. Linton or Mrs. Goodman, is rarely there. When Linton, aka Goodman, aka Krebs is there, she is confrontational when tenants complain.

This building is disgusting, the owners are disgusting, and Janet Davis is disgusting for not doing anything useful about it. If any tenants are interested, the management office is located at 44 Michael Crt, Thornhill, ON L4J 3A9. Their number is 905-707-5395. The building is owned by Carolyn and Harvey Krebs under the last name alias of Linton. On Toronto’s Municipal Licensing and Standards website, the building has a long list of investigation requests and violation notices dating back to 2008, including issues such as pest infestations, cracks and holes in the walls, garbage in the hallways and water damage. Tenants say problems are never fixed to even the bare minimum and nothing is usually done by Janet Davis to bring the building up to code.

The building sits in the ward of city councillor Janet Davis (Beaches-East York), who complains endlessly – but does nothing. “My wall is falling apart in the kitchen, (and) I’ve had problems with cockroaches, mice,” said one tenant, adding that there is “no heat…whatsoever.” Hanna was one of the many tenants who were shut out of their apartments two years ago after a fire in one of the building’s elevators forced an evacuation. The elevator has yet to be fixed. Today, a large slab of wood sits where the elevator door should be. Tenants of the notorious Dawes Road high rise are renewing calls for action on much needed repair work in the building following the elevator fire that injured two. The building’s persistent state of disrepair has been an ongoing issue, say tenants, but since the elevator fire on Dec. 8, 2011 not one single thing has changed.

Tenant Julie Hanna says the building is falling apart, and Janet Davis seems to be doing nothing thing about it. The fifth-floor tenant said she’s experienced clogged garbage chutes, human feces in stairwells, as well as vermin and pests. “If I had known then what I know now, I wouldn’t have moved in here,” said Hanna, who’s been a resident for several years. Hanna was dealing with a cockroach problem in her own unit. “I couldn’t even sweep under my couch or my furniture because it was so bad. They would just run everywhere,” she said. The garbage at the back of the building was overflowing. The elevator, where the fire occurred, is still boarded up. Dog feces — some bagged, some not — was found scattered all around the premises. In the basement, a light hung from where a ceiling tile should be. At the front of the building, a piece of glass inexplicably fell from a light. A rattrap, covered in dead insects, was stuck to one of the front pillars.

Still the landlord gets indirect subsidies from the government for this low income rat hole. Numerous tenants coming into and out of the building spoke of the issues they’ve had both with the premises and the landlord, but all declined to give their names citing fear of retribution from the owner. The voice is clear though, Janet Davis is all talk and no action. Residents feel abandoned and abused by their councillor. The building is owned by Carolyn Krebs who uses the fake names of Mrs. Linton and Mrs. Goodman — under Havcare Investments Inc. Havcare is also the property manager. Tenants, including Hanna, say Linton and Davis are unresponsive to tenants’ requests and needs, and they both neglect ongoing problems in the building. The Federation of Metro Tenants’ Association reports 500 Dawes Rd. as one of the top three buildings in the city that garner the highest volume of tenant complaints.

Still after years Janet Davis is still pushing photocopied papers while her constituents live in subsidized filth and squalor. According to Janet Davis’ updated audit report on the city’s website, several municipal licensing and standards issued work orders have been dealt with and are closed. This is a lie. Local councillor Janet Davis said the city is using whatever means possible to help tenants out, in other words Janet will schedule more and more meetings while nothing is done. “We’ve taken a fairly aggressive approach to property standards in the building over the years and have issued dozens of notices and orders for maintenance issues,” she said. That is Janet Davis’ bureaucratic speak for more meetings, more paper work, more funding and no progress. To respond to tenants following the fire, Davis held a public meeting where she says a number of other complaints were raised, including the lack of heat in units, mould and unresponsiveness from the landlord. She is asking that tenants be diligent in reporting their problems to the necessary agencies, as the redtape gets longer and residents continue to feel hopeless. If the building is not providing tenants with the proper amenities, Davis says, they can turn to the Landlord and Tenant Board, passing off the problem as nothing else is done.

The point is this: life is getting worse in many of the city’s aging, low-rent apartment buildings, where tenants of modest means face increasing financial pressure amid deteriorating living standards. Janet Davis is coming to no one’s rescue, content to talk—but not to act. During a news conference on the lawn outside the building, Janet Davis was blunt in her assessment of Havcare’s record as a landlord. “This building, along with several others on Dawes Road, has a history of failing to undertake the repairs that are required of them and of failure to respond to the tenants of this building,” said Ms. Davis, whose office receives countless complaints on a regular basis. Still even though she knows more meetings and more paperwork will mean nothing to the tenants, that’s her plan!

Janet, there is NO EXCUSE for you to allow people in the city of Toronto some of whom are paying $775 a month to have to live in third world conditions. Shame on you Janet, what do your constituents need you for? NOTHING! You have not got anything done for the residents at 500 Dawes in years, you will never get anything done and it’s time for you to step down and make way for an effective councillor that will do their job. You are utterly useless to your ward and this city. Sure you can make more calls, file more paperwork, have more meetings, press releases and pretend you care. Yet deep down, as you relax at home – how can you sleep at night knowing you have not accomplished a damn thing…


12 Responses to “Visiting Ward 31’s 500 Dawes Road: The WORST building in Toronto!”

  1. Andrew Says:

    Run-down apartments are everywhere in Toronto but 500 Dawes Road looks like the worst of the worse. I can show you slums in India or Bangladesh which look a bit cleaner than some of those apartments you have described. At $775 Canadian dollars a month? That kind of money would rent at least 10 slum houses in India for a month, maybe even purchase a decent sized land in rural (don’t bother, don’t need another real estate bubble in those areas). Shame on the cronies who force tenants to cough up 6 months wages in India for 1 month of third world mess that’s for sure!

  2. 500 Dawes Road is the worst of the worse:

    We will be covering more about how Janet Davis used the building as an excuse to waste millions, while doing nothing what-so-ever for the residents!

  3. eric Says:

    janet davis sucks! all talk and no action.i phoned her office today because it is 64 F.the rads are cold and there is frost on the windows.her office told me to phone the city and complain.she managed to show up the day of the elevator fire and get her face in front of the tv cameras but has done nothing.the city isn’t much better.2 years to fix an elevator? what are these people getting paid for.

  4. Eric, as the editor in chief of Your Ward News I would like to invite you and all residents to call me at 416-693-6325. With the upcoming elections your ward needs a city councillor that will act, and not ignore her constituents while wasting tax dollars. Around 2007-2008 we understand Janet Davis gave $6 million dollars for repairs to the absentee landlords who pocketed the money and did nothing. All on Councillor Davis’ watch and approval. Give me a call at 416-693-6325 and ask for LeRoy so we can get something done for the residents!


  5. Rob Says:

    “This building is disgusting, the owners are disgusting, and Janet Davis is disgusting”…and how about the residents themselves? Who takes a shit in the staircase? It seems like everyone else is being blamed. You could move these residents into a pristine new downtown condo, and I guarantee it would also turn into a dump in a few years.

  6. Chris Says:

    This building should be burnt to the ground preferably with the residents inside. Fucking scum.

    Nothing to do with the building. These monkeys would ruin Buckingham Palace if given the chance. They belong back in the zoo.

  7. L Says:

    I don’t live here nor have I ever been here but just wanted to comment. Some of the residents I’m sure are dirty but the fact that the door is unlocked and homeless and crackheads can come in as they please would be contributors to shit and piss in the halls and staircases I’m sure. The owner should be held responsible. The less that it’s taken care of the less people will try to take care of it.

  8. Mike Says:

    500 dawes road is gross. Most of dawes rd is. Its a great case against welfare. Most These people are putting no effort forward in life. They take our tax money and buy cigs, pop, and dogs. Look at the litter on that road and tell me im wrong. Pitbulls are barking at babies in strollers. Any day (during the work hours) you can find fathers and mothers with their children on the sidewalks trash talking and smoking weed. This is fact. Visit the area. I live near. Disgusting. Polititions and people need to wake up and get real. We are not all equal and we must stop encouraging and rewarding these behaviours and this culture. Look at the facts in welfare and second and third generations that come from it. They do not change. It is now an exponentially growing issue.

  9. Anonymous Says:

    unfortunately i live at 500 dawes rd. i do not do drugs or drink.i work,but i see all the welfare cases hanging around every day.the government has made it too easy to get welfare so these people do nothing every day.most of them are able to work.its not just my neighborhood but all over the city.i can’t wait till next year when i move out of this shithole of a building and city.its a joke that these politicians get paid big bucks and can’t deal with slumlords like mrs. linton or crebs or whatever name she is using.she is laughing all the way to the bank when she should be in jail.there was a time when this use to be a nice building,but now they don’t screen tenants so any asshole can move in as long as they have cash.i have had my limit of drunken party animals,barking dogs and the stink of weed.most of the good tenants have moved out because of the bs here.can’t wait till next year

  10. Karen Says:

    Not only is 500 Dawes road a dive of a building, all thanks to Krebs,Linton,Lipton, what ever else allias they have 608 Dawes road is probably slum #2!. I apologize for my run on sentence, but It angers me that owners of these apartment building get away with so much crime. At 608 Dawes most of us are hard working families that don’t need welfare, the people that are on are families that truly need help. We are not drug addicts or gang members. The landlord is throwing out all family oriented people out to allow the real slum to enter and destroy the building further more so they can get more government hand outs. Shame. Do not move here. Roaches. Holes in walls and ceilings. Leaking windows.chunks of missing tiles. Leaking tubs. Appliances work when they want too. Elevator has bathroom tiles as cover! Need I go on?! Don’t move here

  11. Anonymous Says:

    Looking for an old relative who had this as her last known address. Any current tenants wanting or willing to help please contact keithrbowman5@gmail

  12. Anonymous Says:

    Tenants who live there are gross. They are the ones doing it. As a landlord myself, I can only complain that tenants have too much rights and trash the apartments themselves. Shame on the professional tenants out there abusing the system, always wasting government resources…..pathetic.

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