City of Toronto orders family to remove elaborate boat-treehouse that cost $30K


Note – CBC link ahead.

But Alpeza’s boat-treehouse has rankled at least one of his neighbours. A complaint was lodged, and the city gave him one week to dismantle it.

“For them just to make this decision, I wonder what would make people do this? What kind of evil turns good people into making these kinds of decisions?” said Alpeza.

“They want to destroy this now.”


Note – CBC link ahead.

  • Observer

    If I am not mistaken when I viewed this on CTV, I thought I spotted a heavy digital-lock safe at the floor in the back right corner in the view behind the main glass multi-windowed door.


  • DaninVan

    As a retired building contractor, I’m going to stick my neck out here and say that I agree with the City. Zoning regulations exist largely to prevent this kind of situation from cropping up in the first place. $30k?! Seriously? For a treehouse?
    If Somebody decided to keep chickens and a rooster on the deck of the house or apt. next to you, I’m guessing you’d be kind of choked…or at least after the rooster woke you at first light every morning.
    Whatever his protestations this guy knew full well that he was way over the top with this project. No sympathy from me.

    • I am torn about this, no question it can be construed as an eyesore by neighbors.

      • Exile1981

        The cbc article says that in 2014 the city told him he didn’t need a permit. Then after the complaint they changed their decision and claimed it did so he applied and was rejected.

    • I would agree, except we’re talking about Toronto. A city where “shared values” are construed in terms of the T.O. metrosexual — where people delight in spying on their neighbours and reporting on them, even if they put up a simple birdhouse. A sort of “haute couture” neo-Stasi community.

  • mauser 98

    tell city hall it is anti-global warming tree house
    Premier Death&Destruction will give them a big enviro-whack grant

  • passerby1969

    I agree with the city on this one. I pity his neighbours. However, his kids are 8 and 10. The treehouse will be irrelevant in 3 years.

    • Clausewitz

      Maybe not. I remember back in the 70’s a friend of mine had a professional made tree house. Great place to drink and toke.

  • simus1

    The ideal solution would be for all three sides to lose and at equally great expense.

  • Jaedo Drax

    So a “general contractor” submitted plans to the zoning department, and then went ahead with construction before the permits were issued, but is now whining to any press that will listen that the big bad city planning department is oppressing him over his tree house.

    This is a guy that is just asking to not work in the city of Toronto ever again.

  • Clink9

    “A ship is safe in harbor, but that’s not what ships are for”

  • Waffle

    One’s home is one’s castle, be it a funky treehouse or a rental in an apartment building. It is our last little vestige of privacy in an increasingly un-private world. If the neighbours complain abut what you’re doing on your little patch, well, they’re just “bad neighbours”, aren’t they?

    I happen to live in an apartment building. One of my neighbours smokes medical marijuana morning, noon and night. The smell permeates everything and can be smelled throughout the building. Some of my other neighbours have placed rolled-up towels underneath their doors in a (vain) attempt to keep out the odour. I recently heard that one of them gave notice as they can no longer bear the smell and apparently the landlord can do nothing about it. Here’s the kicker: the smoker lives in a bachelor (no balcony) which rents for a third less than the moving neighbour who lives in a 2-bedroom.

    Second story: I used to have a liberal friend (I can no longer stand the company of liberals) who lives on a lovely, quiet street in the Yonge/Eglinton area. Several years ago, her area went through a real-estate boom where people were buying and renovating houses most of which had been built in the pre-WWII era. A young professional couple bought the house next door to my former friend. The properties were identical and shared a driveway and a garage. The garage was in pretty bad shape and really was an eyesore. It goes without saying that there was little neighbourly feeling between the two parties because my “friend” had little intention of doing anything about the situation. I have no idea what happened (although i am dying to know).

    But back to the tree house. What kind of idiot builds a tree-house for children in DEAD tree? Don’t dead trees have to be removed?

    • Justin St.Denis

      I hear you. One should be able to do what kne wishes with/on one’so own property. But the glitch is the “natural born obnoxious bully” segment of the population who push everybody else’s tolerance. It is for this relatively tiny proportion of the population that we have bylaws.

      • Kathy Prendergast

        Having in my life lived next door to or across the hall or street from, at one time or another, drug dealers, binge drinkers, metalhead party animals, pimps, girlfriend-beaters, dog and child neglecters, garbage hoarders, property destroyers, and various and sundry other lovely “neighbours”, I have a hard time sympathizing with someone upset about having to look at an oversized treehouse.

    • That’s the crux — the tree-huggers at City Hall refuse to allow anybody to remove dead trees. They won’t even allow the removal dead branches — we saw the catastrophic consequences of that during the last ice storm.

      (btw welcome back waffle. I owe you some e-mail — server problems)

      • Waffle

        I didn’t know that. I guess they’re in cahoots with the ‘coon-lovers who won’t remove the little critters from “their” environment. I don’t understand the rationale about the trees, however.

    • Kathy Prendergast

      Most apartments in Vancouver are non-smoking nowadays, and that means non-smoking of anything. No exceptions are allowed for “medial marijuana” users. I would rather live on the street than in a building with smokers in it; if there’s any smoking of any kind going on in it I can smell it as soon as I walk in. When you’re looking for housing your nose will tell you if the rules are being enforced or not. There are ways to use marijuana that don’t involve smoking it, which is of course exceedingly unhealthy and the damage to the lungs cancels out any possible medicinal benefit. Most regular marijuana smokers are not using it for “medicinal” reasons anyway’ they are just potheads who are addicted to the stuff in the same way tobacco smokers are to nicotine.