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50 Most Influential 2012: a ranking of Toronto’s top tycoons, backroom operators and supersize egos

50 Most Influential

The people driving the agenda for the city are more likely to come from outside local government than inside. This was the year our premier, rendered virtually impotent by a minority legislature, up and quit without warning. And our mayor, who listens to no one and refuses to build consensus on council, has created a city hall power vacuum.

What follows is Toronto Life’s list of the real influence peddlers—the people who, either publicly or behind the scenes, have had the greatest impact on the city. We looked for people whose power was broad enough to be felt across different sectors, or else so palpable in their immediate field that it somehow changed things for the rest of us. We looked for people whose ability to alter public opinion, raise money, rally troops or simply get stuff done was both formidable and undeniable. The result is a carefully calculated and highly opinionated look at power in the city in 2012.

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The Informer

Real Estate

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GALLERY: See which Toronto buildings took home Pug Awards this year

This year’s Pug Awards, a kind of people’s choice awards for Toronto architecture, were handed out last night. After a month of online voting, the Centre for Green Cities at Evergreen Brick Works and 83 Redpath ended up with the prizes for the best new commercial and residential building, respectively. You may have missed your chance to pick the winners—and losers, since Pug identifies the bottom-ranked buildings in each category as well—but that doesn’t mean you can’t still have a look at all the prize-winning designs and let us know if you agree. 

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The Informer

Real Estate

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Single ladies are driving Toronto’s condo market 

All the single ladies now put your hands up are a force in the booming housing market—they’re even changing the ways condos get built. Moneyville reports single women represent about 20 per cent of all real estate purchases and over 30 per cent of condo purchases in the city. And it’s not just a Toronto thing, either: a recent RBC Homeownership poll suggests that among Canadians eager to buy in the next two years, 49 per cent are women and 35 per cent are men. (On a more morbid note, men tend to die younger, so ladies will probably be a big part of the downsizing market too). Companies like development kingpin Tridel have noticed the uptick, pointing out that women’s preferences are now shaping buildings: to cater to female buyers, developers have boosted security features and focused on things like designer kitchens, bathroom storage, lighting, and durable and low-maintenance finishes. Which we imagine men are into too. [Moneyville]

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