Removal of historic trees at Osgoode Hall delayed by injunction

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A court injunction has saved a group of historic trees at Osgood Hall until at least Friday.

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Metrolinx says it needs to cut down the trees at Osgoode Hall — located at Queen St. W. and University Ave. — as part of its plan to build the new Ontario subway line.

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“The interim injunction is in effect until midnight Feb. 10, 2023 unless extended by further order of the court,” tweeted the Law Society of Ontario.

The Law Society of Ontario is pleased with the outcome of the proceedings. We extend our thanks to the courts and community and look forward to next steps in the process.”

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Metrolinx had been observed removing some limbs from the trees on Saturday morning, leading to some protests in the area. Metrolinx agreed to temporarily halt the destruction of the trees.

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The Law Society of Ontario co-owns Osgoode Hall with the Ontario government.

In order to use space around Osgoode Hall for a subway station entrance, Metrolinx wants to clear trees which have at the location since 1867.

Metrolinx had said in a statement last week: “Building a new subway line through Canada’s largest city means unavoidable impacts to things like trees, buildings, and roads, and Metrolinx makes every effort to mitigate those impacts.

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This was not a decision Metrolinx made lightly, and it was only made after the agency explored multiple other options to ensure the site was the best option moving forward.”

Metrolinx followed up with another statement on Sunday, according to CBC, saying it had met with “the Law Society of Ontario 17 times prior to the start of work to avoid unnecessary delays that will cause significant financial consequences to taxpayers and commuters.

“We look forward to resolving this matter quickly, getting this new subway built and serving nearly 400,000 passengers every day.”

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