Your Signature Matters! Sign the Petition to Support Paul’s Vision.

Market Street Original ViewPaul Oberman believed that neighbourhoods thrive when architectural heritage is preserved and re-purposed as a backdrop for healthy community interaction. This vision is taking hold in the St. Lawrence Market neighbourhood. Paul’s company, Woodcliffe Landmark Properties, is currently engaged in a redevelopment project on the west side of Market Street, across from the south market, that will become a key feature in the St. Lawrence neighbourhood. A mix of redevelopment and new construction, it will exemplify the concept of ‘adaptive re-use’ by repurposing historic structures and incorporating them into the fabric of 21st century Toronto.

Market Street ProposedTo fully realize Paul’s vision and create focus and purpose, the site redevelopment would best flourish part of a larger gathering space. Signing this petition will move us one step closer to creating a truly livable public space by making Market Street a pedestrian-only zone and lining its east side it with a bright and lively flower market. And what better way to honour the man whose vision has provided us with so many wonderful urban experiences than by renaming this wonderful destination ‘Oberman Way’.

Please sign the petition below and support this important initiative to honour Paul’s legacy and create an urban experience to last generations.

 “One should see this project as proving an anchor for the revitalization of the St. Lawrence neighbourhood and the rehabilitation of the Old Town that began more than three decades ago. The work left to be done is to establish it as one of the great historic precincts of North America. The Market Street renewal will be central to this effort.”

– The Honourable David Crombie

48 Responses to Petition

  1. catherine nasmith says:

    I am a huge fan of Paul Oberman, nonetheless I do not support the renaming of Market Street. Paul enhanced the Market area, but is not the first or will he be the last to do so. It does seem to me appropriate to name the Woodcliffe Development in the Market area after Paul. Given his extraordinary and singular contributions to the Summerhill area, where his business was and is based it seems to me that naming the fountain in front of Summerhill Station or the walkways there, or even the section of Yonge Street where he was so active in the BIA would be a better project.

  2. Dan Duford says:

    I just found this petition when I looked up Paul Oberman’s name partly due to renewed interest with the Flatiron building being sold. His loss was a great one to this city. Unfortunately there are few like him in Toronto in business or government.

  3. A. Rozumek says:

    Paul Oberman deserves to be remembered for his inspiring city building projects, for respecting and preserving our rich heritage while adding interesting new buildings and spaces. He lead by example, and I hope that other developers will follow in his footsteps. He should be remembered for his excellent contributions to Toronto’s built form. Anyone who has ever been saddened or angered by heritage neglect could look to him for a beacon of hope.

    Pedestrianization of Market Street would be great, but it should remain a clear part of Toronto’s grid of streets for historical purposes. In one of Toronto’s most historical districts, streets should definitely not be erased from the grid. So the roadway should be maintained, connected to the grid but beautifully paved with stone without a raised curb and with trees planted along the side. Streets signs with the name of the street should be installed. Of course, the flower market and the other businesses could spill out onto the roadway which would be closed to traffic. Pedestrians could walk down the centre. But I feel that the space should feel precisely like a pedestrianized street and not an ambiguous “mall” space. In the rendering above, trees are growing in the centuries-old space of the roadway and there is no delineation of this important legacy of a street in the paving.

  4. David C says:

    I love the idea of the pedestrianisation and think the flower market might work too but do not like the idea of changing a VERY historic street name. If the “Oberman way” designation was actually in addition to the street name I have no problem, Paul Oberman does deserve a commemoration.

    • Evan Oberman says:

      Having the name as a sub-name of Market Street is the plan (Similar to Johnny Lombardi Way is with sections of College St.). That is not well conveyed in the description above.

  5. Margaret Eiler says:

    What a magnificent idea… Lets hope that the vision as outlined will become a reality and result in the perfect tribute to this outstanding innovator.

  6. Danielle says:

    Paul Oberman’s spirit lives on in the many iconic places that he preserved and reinvented with such vision and passion, and which contribute so greatly to the city’s “soul”. Toronto owes Mr. Overman a debt of gratitude and a permanent place in it’s memory. My heartfelt condolences go out to his family, along with my admiration, respect and thanks for their continued advocacy of heritage.

  7. Fernando Gutierrez says:

    I knew mr.Oberman by working in his house , during the time. I worked at the Oberman’s residence ,I saw mr.Oberman had a lot vision for the city of Toronto .In one occasion we went for a drive passing by his favor restaurant (well one of them ) and He asked me ,”what do you think is missing in this street ” I said needs character ..He said …”I know”
    He has vision for Toronto….I’m simple carpenter that had a pleasure to know how much Mr Oberman care for Toronto

  8. Vahan Kololian says:

    I was privileged to have known Paul. We lost a great friend and visionary. With this kind of work on the St Lawrence Market revitalization, and other such work, we have a chance to keep Paul’s vision for Toronto alive. Eve keep at it. We are here to support you! Vahan

  9. geoff says:

    please keep up the positive vision of a city catering to all of it’s inhabitants (not just the motorized and moneyed). I love the glass canopy for sidewalks that lead to the lake.

  10. David Hutchinson says:

    I did not know Paul Oberman personally but had heard of him and appreciated the work he had done with some of Toronto’s legacy buildings. It’s probably fair to say that he was a “city-builder” with the heart of a preservationist. I’m sure he could have chosen to build modern structures – that would likely have been an easier path – but Toronto has benefited from his focus on preserving some of these history-filled structures.

    To his family, I am sorry for your loss. I trust your efforts to make “Oberman Way” into a reality come true.

  11. Ilene Weiss says:

    I am a good friend of Betty Pernick’s and had the good fortune to visit with her and your beautiful and gracious family on Christmas morning (and brunch) two years ago.
    I am honored to be a signer on this petition in memory of Paul, your beloved husband, father, brother and friend. My best wishes on this wonderful endeavor. I look forward to visiting “Paul’s Place”.

  12. wwj says:

    I support commemorating Paul Oberman’s important contribution to the preservation and development of the Market Street area, but I believe that the heritage of the Market Street name should be safeguarded as well. Surely some way to incorporate/retain this name while honouring that of Paul Oberman can be determined (several possibilities have been suggested by other responders).

  13. Barbara Brunton says:

    Best of luck Jeff. Is there anything I could do to help facilitate the success of your petition? Did you send it to Steven? Could I send an email to my friends asking them to support this great project? There’s not much time but if it works, I could forward your petition those who say “yes”.


  14. ILAN MICH says:


  15. Sandy Rhind says:

    Toronto needs more people like Paul Oberman & Eve Lewis to showcase our beautiful city.

  16. Lucien Rene says:

    We need some streets to be a walkway between two arteries and this is a perfect area to do this. Living in this area of the city for the last 20 years, it would be nice to have an Oberman Way to just stroll and shop without cars.

  17. Tony Burson says:

    Having lived at 2 Markets Street and walked up and down that particular section of Market I firmly believe that this is a very viable redevelopment. I have one thing to add and that is, if we take into consideration winter in Toronto, might not a glass roof be an added useful feature? The sidewalk on the west side could be treacherous after a snow fall and even worse later when the snow became ice.

  18. Francis Pinto says:

    A fitting tribute to a man of vision that all Torontonians can enjoy!

  19. Erica says:

    Can’t imagine a more appropriate tribute to a man whose considerable talent and foresight preserved and enhanced some of our best architectural heritage and transformed it into anchors of lively community hustle-and-bustle as well as civic pride.

  20. Ceta Ramkhalawansingh says:

    A fitting tribute! We need to remember and honour our heroes.

  21. Renee says:

    I suggest they rename Market Street as Oberman Market Street. It would honour Heritage and Paul.

  22. Pete says:

    Market Street has historical affiliation and should be retained; although the renaming of a portion of Market Street may be acceptable. I suggest as an alternative the use of plaques at both ends of the pedestrian walkway to honour Paul’s contribution. In addition the area around Summerhill Station should be named Paul Oberman Square.

  23. Yyzgirl says:

    I’ve signed the petition, but I’d also like to see the square outside of the Summerhill LCBO be named Oberman Square! I’d be happy to work on it if someone familiar with the process could take the lead!

  24. Julie Dalton says:

    How wonderful to have a lasting legacy to Paul and his vision.

  25. William Thorsell says:

    Thank you for this. I learned about the crash in Costa Rica, and was enormously saddened. I wanted to work with Paul in the future, because his sense of the city was so smart. He loved modernity in the context of the past; and he loved the past in the context of the evolving city – of the future. And better – he had the spirit and will to get out there and be a significant actor in threading it all together through so much bureaucratic porridge. I learned much of all this and him in one simple dinner at your house last year.

    This is a wonderful initiative, entirely consistent with Paul’s sensibility – never reactionary – always layered. We will all back you on this.

  26. Allan Hardy says:

    Oberman Way would be a wonderful testament to Paul’s vision of Toronto.

  27. Paul was a true gentlemen with great vision. I will always admire the patience he demonstrated in waiting to get the “right” deal done rather than the quickest or most lucrative. I am proud to support the implementation of Paul’s vision and dream for Market Street.

  28. florence Strain says:

    Having lived in the PAL building; using Market Street every day of the 19+ years I have lived here, it will be a huge pleasure to have this lovely thorough-fare to walk in.
    Hat’s off to Mr. Paul Oberman and his wonderful vision.

  29. Jed Manocherian says:

    Paul Oberman showed the “Way”. He loved Toronto and devoted his time and talents to preserving, restoring, and repositioning numerous historic landmarks. Even more significant, he was a humanitarian and philanthropist who also gave generously of his time, talents and money in support of many charities and causes many of which were Toronto based. He started with nothing, built an empire, and always remained the kindest, humblest, benevolent and generous person whom I had to pleasure to know. But the point is that he was a great friend to Toronto. There is no more fitting tribute to Paul than to name his current project in his honor.

  30. sherri says:

    To a man who has given so much to the history of Toronto, it is only fitting that he be remembered in such a small but great way

  31. Margot Roesslein says:

    The Paul Oberman vision would enhance our interesting neighbourhood to the fullest!

  32. julia west says:

    Paul Oberman and his work around Toronto is an important part of what makes the City such a great place to live. Honouring the man and his work in this way is an important part of thanking and remembering Paul.

  33. Mignon says:

    As someone who lives adjacent to Market Street I cannot think of a better way of improving our city, and by naming it after Mr. Oberman a fitting tribute to someone who had vision and a true sense of community.

  34. Richard Wernham says:

    Paul was a truly got Torontonian. This is the perfect tribute for someone who spent much of his lifetime preserving and enhancing our architectural heritage .

  35. Craig White says:

    This tribute could hardly be more appropriate, and it would not be right for this city to pass up such a fitting opportunity to recognize this man’s significant contributions to the quality of life we all cherish here. Paul Oberman deserves to be a household name in Toronto, and there is no better way to address that duty than to carry out his vision here, and then to put his name on it.

  36. Adam Green says:

    Paul was an overwhelming force for good in our city. He sought to preserve what made places good while working to make them great and I can think of no more fitting tribute than to do more of the same in his honor.

  37. Bill Ulicki says:

    One only has to look at the Summer Hill Station and adjacent public realm to appreciate Paul’s vision and attention to detail, he was a game changer. Many developments in Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal are witness to Woodcliffe Landmark Properties ability to execute Paul’s Vision. The St. Lawrence Market project would be an incredible addition to our City and Paul’s legacy.

  38. Jennifer Bowman says:

    Paul’s vision was extraordinary and benefited the residents of Toronto enormously. It would be extremely fitting to name this pedestrian walkway after him. I would hope that the City of Toronto has the vision and courage to allow the creation of this pedestration walkway to further enhance this vibrant historic neighbourhood.

  39. Jaan Kittask says:

    A fitting tribute to someone who contributed so much to the city of Toronto.

  40. David Walsh says:

    Making Market Street a pedestrian only street will result in an attractive addition to this lively area, and naming it ‘Oberman Way’ is a great way to honour Paul’s vision.

  41. Torontolover says:

    The proposal and development are great additions to the City. The only concern I have is the renaming of all of Market Street. I fully support renaming the portion between Front and the Esplanade where the pedestrian area and flower market are proposed after a generous man who gave a lot to Toronto. But the portion of Market Street south of the Esplanade should be retained to reinforce heritage of area. In an era where all levels of Canadian government don’t value/protect heritage there is no guarantee the market will remain.

  42. Nora Jones says:

    This would be a well-deserved tribute to a man whose vision benefits us all.

  43. Rosalie says:

    To stroll through a portion of lovely Market Street, named for Paul Oberman would be such a fitting tribute to a great visionary. Through hard work and dedication to implement his ideas, he has enhanced our city of Toronto. Recognizing and establishing a special place in his honour, not only recognizes his contributions, but also sets the precedence for others to follow his lead.

  44. mickeyobe says:

    Just a thought, Eve.

    I know it will become a great drawing card – a people magnet.
    By naming it Paul Oberman Place, “Let’s meet at Paul’s Place.” could become the Toronto rallying call for friends to get together for a pleasant interlude.
    I think Paul would have liked that.


  45. Karen Letofsky says:

    There is no greater tribute to the legacy of a true civic visionary than to have his dream realized. How lucky for Toronto to have Paul Oberman create this vision for us and for us, then, to have the opportunity to operationalize it. We have been so fortunate to have him lead the way!

  46. The strategy to pedestrianize a portion of Market Street should be fully endorsed by the City. All the best planning principles are to create vibrant, walkable, livable communities within the City with memorable spaces and places which connect us to our neighbourhood and to each other. Paul’s vision must be implemented.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *