Metrolinx’s Presentation on its Initial Business Case for the Subway Extension

Below is the link to Metrolinx’s presentation on its Initial Business Case for the Yonge North Subway Extension. This presentation was shared at the March 22nd General Committee of Markham Council.


Open Letter to Premier Ford (March 29, 2021)

An open letter from RORA and neighbourhood residents was sent to Premier Ford on March 29, 2021. The letter is requesting a review and rejection of the subway extension plan that proposes to tunnel through the heart of our neighbourhood.

The current plan will devastate our Thornhill neighbourhood, essentially ruining it, forever. While we support the expansion of transit, we are confident there is a better solution.

Yonge North Subway Extension – RORA Objection Letter Submitted

On Thursday, Metrolinx released the Yonge North Subway extension plan. While all details are not yet available, we understand that this plan proposes to run the subway extension under our neighbourhood! As the subway travels north of Centre Street/Thornhill Summit Drive under Yonge Street, Metrolinx is proposing that it swing east close to Royal Orchard Blvd. and travel northeast, under homes in our neighbourhood (at depths between 15 – 30 metres) including Donalbain Crescent, Thorny Brae Drive, Banquo Road and Kirk Drive. In addition, no costing for a Royal Orchard station was included in the plan*. The attached objection letter, submitted to Markham City Council, describes our concerns.

Opportunity to Add Your Voice!
To express your concerns or support advocacy work:

1) Please sign the petition expressing your opposition to subway tunnelling under homes in Thornhill’s Royal Orchard neighbourhood.

2) Direct questions and comments to Metrolinx at: or 416-202-7000.

3) Livestream (from the City of Markham website) the March 22 General Committee of Markham Council at 9:00 a.m. to hear a presentation from Metrolinx on its Initial Business Case for the Yonge North Subway Extension.  If you would like to address the Committee, please notify the City Clerk in advance by email to Each deputant will be given up to five minutes to speak

4) We are seeking people to help lead RORA advocacy on a) the Yonge North Subway extension plan, and b) the condo development proposals in our neighbourhood. Please contact RORA by visiting our website ( or by email (, if you are interested!  Thank you.

* For more Metrolinx information on the Yonge North Subway Extension, please visit:

NOTICE: Suspected Toxic Substance in Royal Orchard Park

We have been informed by a few area residents that there were large piles of raw bacon covered in some kind of substance found in two areas along the ravine path of Royal Orchard Park. It is assumed that the substance could be rat poison and could be quite harmful to animals and young children.

We are urging pet owners and parents to be vigilant and ensure that pets and children don’t eat anything found on the ground.

The City of Markham, Councillor Keith Irish and police have been informed. Police presence has been observed in these areas over the last day or so. Anyone who observed any suspicious activity in the area is asked to contact police by dialing 1-866-876-5423 ext. 7200.

Coyotes in Thornhill

Councillor Keith Irish recently sent out an update concerning the coyote situation in Thornhill. Please see his correspondence below:

Further to media reports over the last several weeks, I want you to be aware of some recent incidents with coyotes in our Thornhill neighbourhood.

I am aware of encounters between people and their pets with coyotes in the greenspace south of Elgin Street where EJ Sand and Woodland Public Schools once stood. I’ve also heard of sightings in Honsberger Field, Pomona Mills Park and in the grassy area behind Baythorn Public School near Royal Orchard Park. I saw two coyotes myself late at night earlier this month where I live on Eliza Street.

City of Markham enforcement officers have confirmed the existence of one coyote family, soon to have offspring, in our community. Coyotes do roam a distance from their dens in order to find food, but only one family resides within a one-kilometre radius.

I acknowledge that this is concerning especially with so many of us out walking for exercise during the pandemic. However, I have been assured by the city’s Animal Services team that coyotes are often more frightened of us than we are of them.

City officers will continue to patrol these areas and educate residents on responsible pet ownership, keeping dogs on a leash, not leaving food or garbage outside, and not feeding wildlife of any kind. These are important measures to take in order to keep everyone safe.

There is an abundance of information available online and I provide some particularly helpful links below. However, in the event you encounter a coyote you should do the following:

  • Carry a whistle/noisemaker and an umbrella with you when walking and open it at them.
  • Be BIG and LOUD! Yell “Go away!” Wave your arms above your head, stomp feet, clap hands.
  • Slowly back away.
  • Maintain eye contact.
  • Don’t run.

For more information, please visit these helpful links below:

Starting Monday, York Region will allow residents 80+ to book vaccination appointments

Beginning Monday, March 1st, residents 80 years of age or older will be able to book an appointment for their COVID-19 vaccine in York Region.

Information will be posted on the link provided below. Residents are asked to remain patient as appointment availability is limited due to the current vaccine supply and also based on expected demand it may take some time to access the registration web page.

Please visit this link for registration information: COVID-19 Vaccinations Clinics

Residents 80+ years of age who are not able or comfortable booking an online appointment are encouraged to seek out a support person (caregiver, family member or friend) who can assist them in booking this appointment. Please do NOT call to book an appointment. All vaccination appointments, at this time, must be booked through this online registration portal.

York Region Public Health is working with local health-care partners to provide COVID-19 vaccines for this newly eligible priority group at these five locations:

  • Cornell Community Centre located in Markham
  • Cortellucci Vaughan Hospital in Vaughan
  • Ray Twinney Recreation Complex in Newmarket
  • Richmond Green in Richmond Hill
  • Georgina Ice Palace in Georgina starting Wednesday

Walk-in vaccinations are not available. Please do not visit a vaccination clinic hoping to get your vaccination or looking to make an appointment as you will be turned away.

In an effort to combat vaccine hesitancy in the community, the Physician Lead in Infection Prevention and Control at Mackenzie Health has put together a series of videos answering some common questions – view here.

Yonge North Subway Extension Community Update

Just over two weeks ago, the Royal Orchard Ratepayers’ Association (RORA) was made aware of an anonymous letter distributed to residents in the neighbourhood containing misinformation relating to the Yonge North Subway Extension. We know many residents in the neighbourhood would be opposed to the suggested plan outlined in the letter.

Since this anonymous letter was circulated, Metrolinx has provided an update to confirm that the letter contained misinformation and there are NO plans to build the subway extension above ground through existing neighbourhoods.

As always, RORA will continue to play a part in providing input around the Yonge North Subway Extension project. However, we encourage residents in the neighbourhood to join our residents’ association, and spread the word, as we will need a unified voice. We can work together to share verified details of the proposed developments affecting our neighbourhood.

Below is a copy of the Metrolinx update:

Seeking Security Camera Footage along John St./Henderson Ave./Elgin St.

We are sharing a request that came to us from Councillor Keith Irish.  If you happen to know anyone who may have security camera footage along the areas of John Street, Henderson Avenue or Elgin Street – please share this request with them.

Dear Resident,

Between 6:20 and 6:50 a.m. Tuesday, June 16 a dump truck emptied its load of construction debris in the middle of the road at the north end of Henderson Avenue and fled the scene.

I am appealing to area residents and specifically those on John Street, Henderson Avenue and Elgin Street to review any security camera footage they may have of a dump truck during this time and share it with Michael Killingsworth, the city’s Deputy City Clerk responsible for By-law Enforcement at:

The city’s Traffic team is reviewing Regional road traffic camera footage of Yonge Street and Bayview Avenue.

Not only is this behaviour abhorrent, brazen and illegal, it is costly. The cost to remove the material, dispose of it properly, clean the street and investigate was close to $5000.

Please share this message with anyone you know who lives on John Street, Henderson Avenue and Elgin Street who may be able to assist us.

I appreciate your support.

Be well,

Keith Irish
Councillor, Ward 1 Thornhill