"'I said, ‘Before you leave, I'm going to need some cash,'' she recalled this week. 'I know if I want to get something done in the current administration, I'm going to have to get it done myself.'
On Wednesday, she unveiled the result of her efforts: a bold Yonge Street master plan created by urban planner Ken Greenberg and the architecture firm KPMB, which was paid for entirely by the private sector.
In a time when the city's mayor has made his distaste for spending public money abundantly clear, she has also demonstrated a new model for Toronto urban planning, one that takes City Hall almost entirely out of the equation. And she may be playing right into Rob Ford's hands."
Others are following her lead and trying to go beyond the public sector to raise money for public projects.