Saulter Street Stairway Gallery Showcasing Wendy Lu’s Artwork

The Transformation of Portraits, Landscapes & Technologies

January 12 to February 24, 2019

9 am to 9 pm, Monday through Sunday, free to enter

Looking for a free thing to do inside on a chilly winter day? Check out the Saulter Street Stairway Gallery’s new exhibit featuring artist Wendy Lu. Wendy Lu is a Hard of Hearing, Taiwan born, Toronto-based multimedia artist and designer who graduated with Specialized Honours from York University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Visual Arts. Wendy lost her hearing as an infant and has undergone brain surgery and three cochlear implant surgeries since then. Wendy’s visualizations attempt to depict analogues of perceptual difference, including drop-outs, disconnects and scrambling artifacts, based on her lived experience aurally negotiating and interpolating in communication with others.

Saulter Street Stairway Gallery

The colourful exhibit includes a range of acrylic and coloured pencil artwork that is done on both canvas and paper. The artwork is a visual thought experiment that works to explore and creatively expand on a range of references and concepts. Wendy’s art evokes a sense of reverence in viewers/participants toward our interactions and adaptations of technological structures within our collective society.

Dove, Hope and Peace – Wendy Lu

Group Portrait – Wendy Lu

Wendy Lu’s artwork will be on display at the Saulter Street Stairwell Gallery from January 12th to February 24th. The gallery is free to enter and can be accessed through the second and third floor of the Ralph Thornton Community Centre. If you are interested in learning more about the Saulter Street Stairway Gallery’s upcoming shows and about the space be sure to check out the Ralph Thornton Centre website.  If you are interested in purchasing any of the artwork feel free to contact the Riverside BIA or the Ralph Thornton Centre for more information.




Learning about Toronto’s History just got easier!

Heritage Toronto has gone digital and we couldn’t be happier. Heritage Toronto has partnered up with Driftscape to create an easy way to access and discover nearby Heritage Toronto plaques from their fingertips. The Driftscape app allows users to discover and learn about Toronto’s Heritage Plaques remotely from their devices.

Riverside Driftscape

The Driftscape app is free to download and works on both Android and iPhone devices. Driftscape has multiple content partners, including Toronto Public Library, Toronto Arts Foundation, Park People and many more. As the photo shows above, each content partner has is identified by their logo and lets you know what interesting information is available near you.

Driftscape launched in November of 2017 and is a Toronto based start-up. The app will provide you with a notification when you approach something interesting, whether that be with arts, history or culture.

Riverside Driftscape fig2

Driftscape holds up to 270 of Toronto Heritage plaques on the app, allowing for anyone nearby to discover the plaques and view media right from their device. The photo above shows that near Riverside BIA there are four Toronto Heritage Plaques including the Conboy Carriage Company. You can then click on the Toronto Heritage Logo and it will provide all of the information on the plaque, along with a photo of the plaque itself. Just as the Toronto Baseball Grounds (Sunlight Park) photo shows.

Heritage Toronto has four different types of plaques, the Century Home Plaque, Heritage Property Plaque, Commemorative Plaque and The Legacy Plaque. All plaques will be featured on the Driftscape App along with information and media on the place.

Heritage Toronto explains that Driftscape is just the first step towards their digital rejuvenation.

So next time you go for a walk around Riverside be sure to download the app and explore all of Riverside’s Heritage Plaques.


BIA Commercial Façade Improvement Program 2019

Riverside Commercial Façade Improvement Program 2019

Did you know the City of Toronto provides funding for the improvement and beautification of commercial and industrial buildings for BIA members?

In an effort to improve the appearance, functionality, safety, and competitiveness of local businesses, the City of Toronto offers BIA members minimum funding of $2,500 and maximum of $12,500 to put towards upgrades for their businesses. What’s better? 50% of the cost of renovation is covered, meaning upgrades which may have previously been unfeasible are now more attainable. To make it even easier on businesses, Riverside BIA maintains a list of contractors to help assist in your application – please contact for more information.

2019 brings new additions to the grant in the form of an additional $2,500 for accessibility upgrades in order for storefronts to be AODA compliant. Upgrades include widening of entryways, permanent ramps, and exterior accessibility devices which make our neighbourhoods more accessible for all – who can complain about that?!

IMPORTANT: The Grant is offered on a first come, first served basis and the money runs out before the deadline! So, be prepared to apply as soon as the 2019 grant is released!

Eligibility for the Commercial Façade Improvement Grant is based on several prerequisites such as property ownership, business location within a BIA, no outstanding taxes owed, and previous eligibility.

For further information on how to apply for the Commercial Façade Improvement Program and to read testimonials from businesses who have received the grant, see here.

Check here the official changes made by the City to the grant.

Announcing the Results of the 7th Riverside Antler Breakfast!

The 7th Annual Riverside Antler Breakfast was an amazing success!! Riverside’s annual fundraiser took place on Dec 14, 2018, at the Ralph Thornton Community Centre (765 Queen St E, 2nd Fl).

We are proud to announce that the 2018 effort raised more than $6,000 to support the year-round operation of the local Rivertowne Breakfast Program. And that is net value!! This year we even had Apple Pies donated to the community! In name of the Riverside Community, THANK YOU!

This amazing event is organized and presented annually thanks to an innovative partnership of local organizations including Toronto Food Tours, the Riverside BIA, the Ralph Thornton Community Centre,  and Rivertowne Safety 1st (who run the Rivertowne Breakfast Program).

BIG THANKS to the many generous 2018 sponsors and supporters:

  • Santa Level Sponsor: Jason Friesen from Outline Financial
  • Santa’s Helpers: Nell & Natasha’s Real Estate Homeward and BMO Queen/Saulter Branch & BMO Queen/Woodbine Branch.
  • Reindeer Sponsors:  Alexis Hur Consulting Ltd, Baird MacGregor Insurance, RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Brokerage, Oma Chiropractic, Quince Flowers, York Search Group, Joel Loblaw and Brickworks Ciderhouse.
  • Elf Sponsors: Dimensions Custom Framing & Gallery, The Broadview Hotel, Irish Design House, Dresden Vision, Caribbean Sunset and Hi-Lo.
  • Supporters: Saulter St Brewery, Eastbound, Ed’s Scoop and Tim Hortons (King and River)

Riverside BIA Member Survey

Take the Survey here, it’ll take only 5 minutes!

Riverside Member Survey

The Riverside Business Improvement Area (BIA) is looking for all members’ input to determine what is important to you. Your feedback is important to the BIA, so it can achieve its mandate “to promote and improve the Riverside areas as a business and shopping district”.

Please tell us how we can best accomplish this goal and service your needs, attract customers and enhance the viability of your business. It will only take 5 minutes, we swear!

Go to the survey!