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Closures, rumours in Village

Closures, rumours in Village

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Reither's, Rainbow Café closures stoke worries of a slow patio season
After 23 years at its Church St location under Steamworks, Reither’s Fine Foods abruptly closed its doors March 19. But while other businesses on the strip are rumoured to be closing, their owners say that’s hogwash.

A persistent rumour has it that Zipperz bar and dance club is closing to make way for a condo project at the corner of Church and Carlton streets, but owner Harry Singh says that isn’t true.

“I have three years on my lease here, and I don’t plan to move at all,” he told Xtra.

Across the street from Reither’s, the Rainbow Village Café does appear to be permanently shuttered, although Xtra was unable to reach the café’s management or landlord as of press time.

In January, the café’s windows were papered over and a sign was placed on the door announcing that it was “Time for renewal! Time for renovation!”

The sign went on to tease customers: “What will it be? You will have to wait and see! It’s a mystery!”

The mystery appears to be, “If they’re renovating, why hasn’t anyone seen any workers around the site?”

While no one knows for sure what’s going on, rumours that the space will be taken over by Zelda’s, which gave up its prime patio space on Church St in 2009 and decamped to Yonge St, are, apparently, false.

A Zelda’s manager told Xtra the owners have no intention of leaving their space, which they own, on Yonge St.

David Wooten, manager of the Church St Business Improvement Area, says that the café’s owners told him recently that the renovations are going forward, despite the lack of evidence of any work happening.

“I’m hoping that whatever happens, happens soon so we can make use of the summer. We don’t want another summer of a vacant patio like we did with Zelda’s," he says.

Up the block, in Xtra’s former digs, a new Church St Medical Health Centre is set to take up shop. But rent payment problems led landlord Haim Klein to post a warning on the front door, which led some to believe the medical offices weren’t going forward. Klein says those issues have been sorted out and the offices will be under different management.

Xtra was not able to reach the clinic partners before press time.

A note posted to the door of Reither’s says owner Peter Reither “is retiring after years of dedication to the food industry
. . . Auf wiedersehen, and thank you.”

Comments

high rents mostly a myth
The myth of high rents, even heard them compared to Yorkville, just does not figure. The types of stores on Church could not afford high rents (437a Church is renting at $4000 a month $650 property taxers)Zelda's leaving because of high rents, add this up, a coffee shop and a burger joint can meet the rent yet a very busy restaurant serving booze couldn't? Church street is seeder then ever, the BIA is a failure. The nimby's do whatever they can to keep out any growth in the area. The retail sucks, it ranges from b and lower class retail. Yonge Street is reviving very fast, south of Carlton is about to take off. Jarvis street is growing, north of Isabella is well on its way. Church St will most likely drown, then the bad happens. If you want it to survive you have to embrace what is happening all around the area, get the good while you can
The BIA is not helping
@Ken: “I think most foreign tourists who come to Toronto for World Pride 2014 will wonder why Pride Toronto hyped the gay ghetto on Church Street so much.” I agree with Ken: “It really has declined dramatically in recent years.” Indeed they will have fun during the Parade. But after the Parade we want those tourists coming back, to rebuild the economy of the LGBT Village. If they do come back they will walk up and down the street once and get bored. What will bring back the foreign tourists and the local tourists? The BIA is not helping much by trying to tone down GAY.
Ken, Ken...
ah, I see what you did there...ah...naughty boy.
World Pride 2014
I think most foreign tourists who come to Toronto for World Pride 2014 will wonder why Pride Toronto hyped the gay ghetto on Church Street so much. It really has declined dramatically in recent years. Still, the foreign tourists can enjoy the Pride parade, the attractions and restaurants outside the ghetto, and whatever sex and drugs they can get in bathhouses, warehouse parties and hookups on Grindr.
FLY! going too
Makes you wonder if anything will be left by the time World Gay Pride comes to Toronto in 2014
The end of "gay" Church St
I am afraid the end of the "gay village" as we once knew it is over.The restaurants are dated, the food terrible and the service worse. The bars are passe and almost as bad and the cliental has changed for the worst.In effect the place is a collossal bore and every time I go there I wonder why. Too bad, it used to be a wonderful area.
The End Is Nigh! Prepare! Weep!
Uhhh, let's see...humungoid Loblaws (aka The Black Hole) moves into the 'hood; rents along Church Street are unspeakably high, driving retailers under; plans for condo developments are popping up all over the area. Property owners don't give a shit who stays or who leaves...they know the demographic is changing and are ready to sell to the highest bidder or change to accommodate the new future constituents of this once proud queer burg. Condos, coffee shops and retail chains here we come...and away I go!
Wow, Peter! Such paranoia!
Peter, impressive, but decontextualized information isn't very useful. I don't think there are too many gay bathhouses in Africa, but millions die every year from AIDS there. So apparently there are environments that are much more dangerous than the tubs. The key word is communicable, and it is your behaviour and that of others that is key and which can change. Fetishizing bathhouses as disease vectors doesnt' work as closures in the United States have shown.
Bathhouses are higher-risk, Part 2
Public health authorities have stated that communicable diseases of particular concern for transmission in bathhouses include: Amoebiasis, Antibiotic Resistant Organisms, Athlete’s Foot, Bed Bugs, C. difficile, Chlamydia, Foodborne illnesses, Giardiasis, Gonorrhoea, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), Impetigo, Legionnaires’ Disease, Lice, Meningitis, Molluscum Contagiosum, Norwalk Virus, Pink Eye (conjunctivitis), Scabies, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), Shigellosis, Staphylococcus aureus / MRSA, Streptococcus Infections (Group A Streptococci), Syphilis, and Tuberculosis (TB).
Bathhouses are higher-risk, Part 1
Bathhouses are a higher-risk environment for transmission of sexually-transmitted diseases and other diseases. According to information on the website of the Public Health Agency of Canada, (1) recently described correlates of HIV prevalence include regular attendance at bathhouses, (2) factors significantly and positively associated with delayed condom application (DCA) included bathhouse attendance, and (3) bathhouses are higher-risk environments for HIV. See: http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/aids-sida/publication/epi/2010/9-eng.php Furthermore, public health authorities have stated that (1) bathhouses present public health challenges as a result of the sexual nature of activities that occur on site and the potential for exposure to blood and body fluids, (2) outbreaks of infections spread by the fecal-oral route are of particular concern in bathhouses in addition to the transmission of sexually transmitted infections and other infections where close personal contact is a factor. The venues themselves are also of public health interest as facilities can include a number of public use areas such as spas, pools, steam rooms, saunas, and showers, (3) spas and swimming pools require daily attention to keep them safe for users. Spas are of particular concern because the high temperature of the water promotes the growth of organisms if not treated properly, and (4) bathhouses have been identified as sites where communicable disease outbreaks can occur given the nature of the physical environment and the sexual behaviors of patrons. There have been outbreaks of sexually transmitted and other infections linked to bathhouses in both Canada and the United States.

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