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City of Toronto dismantles homemade stairs at city park, mayor calls initial $65K estimate 'ridiculous'

Never has a small set of stairs provided so much entertainment.

In case you missed it earlier this week, the City of Toronto quoted a price of $65,000 to build a new set of stairs at Tom Riley Park.

<who>Photo Credit: Shannon McKarney</who>Adi Astl built these stairs for $550, but they were dismantled on Friday.

In response, a senior citizen, along with the help of a homeless man, built the stairs one day for the small price of $550.

On Friday, Toronto mayor John Tory made a statement about the stairs.

“The original cost estimate for the City of Toronto to build stairs in Tom Riley Park was absolutely ridiculous and out of whack with reality,” the mayor said. “I want to thank Mr. Astl for taking a stand on this issue. His homemade steps have sent a message that I know City staff have heard loud and clear.”

Tory continued on to say that the City needs to be looking for simple, cost-effective solutions to problems big and small.

Crews dismantled Astl’s stairs, which aren’t built well enough to handle years of public use, on Friday and according to Tory, a new set of stairs will be built within a matter of days.

“Anything the City builds has to be absolutely safe and has to be able to stand the test of time and these new stairs will do just that,” said Tory. “The new stairs will be safe, durable and reasonably priced.”

<who>Photo Credit: Shannon McKarney</who>There were plenty of issues with the stairs, including a lack of suitable foundation.

He also added that he’s unhappy these outrageous project cost estimates are even possible and will be working to identify what changes can happen to make sure this doesn’t continue.

As for Astl, a local radio station, Newstalk 1010, will be reimbursing him the $550 that he spent on building the initial set of stairs.

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