The following letter was sent to Thorncliffe Park Property Managers by Councillor Jaye Robinson
September 22, 2021
To: Thorncliffe Park Property Managers
Cc: Dr. Eileen de Villa, Medical Officer of Health
Re: COVID-19 Protocols and Elevator Management Strategies in Thorncliffe Park
Dear Property Manager,
As the new school year gets underway and cases of COVID-19 continue to rise in Toronto, we must take all the necessary precautions to slow the spread and keep our communities safe. Throughout the pandemic, physical distancing measures have been critical to our overall strategy to protect public health. Today, I’m urging you to develop a comprehensive strategy to manage the flow of residents entering and exiting your buildings – in hallways, stairwells, common spaces, and elevators – to ensure the safety of Thorncliffe Park residents.
In particular, my office has received numerous phone calls and emails from residents concerned about COVID-19 spreading in busy elevators. As you know, there is a significant uptick in elevator demand during peak school hours. Given the dense populations residing in local high-rise apartment buildings, I wholeheartedly support the Thorncliffe Park community’s request for a plan to minimize crowding, ensure physical distancing, and manage the demand for elevators.
The following measures should be considered in your elevator management strategy, as recommended by Toronto Public Health:
• Restrictions on the number of passengers to manage crowding during peak hours;
• Improved communication with residents (e.g., maintaining Toronto Public Health signage);
• Processes for increased cleaning of frequently-touched surfaces (e.g., elevator buttons);
• Enforcement of Municipal By-Law 541-2020 regarding masks and face coverings;
• Priority for residents with physical or mobility impairments;
• Plans for elevator maintenance to ensure efficient transportation of residents and address any operational issues; and
• Maintenance of alternative circulation pathways (i.e., stairwells).
While the Province and local school boards are overseeing the back-to-school plan, property managers are responsible for ensuring safety within common spaces in their buildings. Stringent protocols must be in place – both inside and outside the classroom – to support our school community during the ongoing public health situation. Elevator crowding prevention plans in densely populated, high-rise apartment neighbourhoods are a critical component of these efforts.
Thank you for your attention to this matter.
Ward 15 – Don Valley West
City Hall, 100 Queen Street West 2nd Floor, Suite A12
Toronto, Ontario M5H 2N2