ONTARIO IN THE SIXTIES
PETER C. NEWMAN
MORE PEOPLE: eight million by 1969
MORE MONEY: half Canada’s spending power
MORE FUN: two-boat families, four-week vacations
MORE TROUBLE: overcrowding, overpricing, overworked resources
MORE POWER: most of what the nation buys, hears, reads and thinks will come from Ontario—whether the rest of the country likes it or not
NO PROVINCE PLACES as few limitations on its citizens as Ontario. You can cultivate rice stalks there in the subtropical summer — or hunt polar bear in the subarctic winter. You can strike gold, capitalize on Shakespeare, make a million in real estate, and earn a dusty living in the contemplation of the Ming dynasty’s monochromatic porcelain.
Naturally enough, the outrageous size and variety of Ontario’s wealth rouses a mixture of distrust and envy from Canadians outside the province. But the one in three Canadians who live there display an allegiance to it that often amounts to benevolent indifference. They just don’t care.
But Ontario does have its own identity and shape, though both are changing fast. Since World War II, the province’s population has jumped from four to six million, transforming its most populous part from a parochial estate to a
CONTINUED ON NEXT SIX PAGES
Where Canada is going
With this look ahead at the next ten years in Ontario, Maclean’s begins a new kind of report on the regions of Canada: we will try to draw a picture of life in this country, not as we’re living it now, hut as we’ll be living it by the end of the most promising— and problematic—decade in our history.
Ontario in the ’60s
bursting encampment. Among their other activities, Ontarians turn out more goods than did all of prewar Canada.
Now, as a new decade begins, Canadians in the other nine provinces are wondering whether in the next ten years Ontario will impose its influence even more directly over their jobs, and its tastes over their leisure. The answers affect all Canadians, wherever they live. How much faster will Ontario grow? Will its people be earning more money? How many and what kind of people will Ontario have by 1970? Will they have more time and better facilities for relaxation?
As Ontario enters the Sixties, it has a history shaped by many factors, nearly all of them favorable. An ancient lake known to geologists as Iroquois shrank to become Lake Ontario and left layers of fertile silt in the Niagara Peninsula. The hummocky inlay of the Canadian Shield gave Ontario the silver of Cobalt, the gold of Timmins, and the nickel of Sudbury. Sir Adam Beck’s foresight provided the province with cheap electric power; tariff laws helped to award it custody of half of Canada’s secondary-manufacturing plant.
Beyond these and many other gifts of history and geography, there exist other Ontarios, not so quickly visible. Farm families living in Ontario’s eastern townships have some of the lowest cash incomes in Canada — and all but starve through the winter. Thirty thousand houses in Ontario stand abandoned — the ugly remains of vanished dreams. Less than ten percent of the province’s area is settled at all. Another ten percent remains so wild that it is classed by the provincial government as “hinterland,” and entry is discouraged to avoid the cost of search parties for lost sportsmen and inexperienced adventurers.
Despite these blights and barrens, the majority of the many experts I interviewed for this assessment of Ontario’s future agree that unless foreseeable trends are drastically altered by war or depression, the province will, during the next ten years, develop much faster than the rest of Canada in almost every-
thing that makes a region and its citizens richer.
There will be nearly eight million people in Ontario by 1969, and while they will make up only one third of the country’s population they will control fully half of Canada’s purchasing power. Economists believe nearly half of all the factories that will be erected in Canada during the Sixties will rise inside a hundredmile crescent of land hugging the western shore of Lake Ontario, between Niagara Falls and Oshawa.
It’s a golden enclave that will become recognized as one of the world's great concentrations of industry, comparable to West Germany’s Ruhr, the Midlands of England, or the Detroit-Cleveland lakefront.
This burgeoning development, with Toronto as its anchor, will finally resolve the rivalry between Toronto and Montreal for undisputed title as Canada’s most influential community. Montreal will have half a million more people than Toronto, but the Ontario city will by the end of the decade have irrevocably eclipsed Montreal as a centre of business influence.
Probably the most serious threat to Ontario’s steady rise during the Sixties will be the high and increasing cost of doing business. Rocketing transportation costs have already forced some Toronto-based factories to decentralize. The Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company, for instance, is building its second tire plant at Medicine Hat, Alta. Power is also becoming more expensive.
Last year’s completion of the St. Lawrence Seaway harnessed nature’s last major hydro-electric source in the province; from now on, most new electrical power will have to come from more expensive thermal plants, powered either by coal or uranium.
That could mean an end to the expansion in Ontario of such heavy power-users as pulp-and-paper. Abitibi Power and Paper Company, the province’s largest pulp and paper producer, recently completed a twenty-onemillion-dollar building-products mill in Michigan, because it decided that a similar plant in Ontario would have cost much more to build and operate. “We wouldn’t spend a five-cent piece on a new plant in Ontario today,” says Douglas Ambridge, the Abitibi president. Ambridge foresees severe problems for Ontario’s high-cost export goods in this decade’s ruthlessly competitive world markets. “I sometimes sit in my office on University Avenue,” he muses, “and I look out at all the new buildings going up. And I think: ‘If we let our exports go, this city will become a ghost town.’ ”
Opposing this viewpoint with an enthusiasm unbridled by qualifications is John David Fienberg. The son of a Toronto tailor, Fienberg began in business with a summer-resort hot-dog stand in 1934. He has since turned his Consolidated Building Corporation into a multimillion-dollar firm of housebuilders, and his teakwood-lined office in mid-town Toronto is the size of a tennis court. “During the Sixties,” Fienberg insists with the assurance of a man who can decree such things, “Toronto will begin to rival New York in importance as a North American business centre.
No one can even imagine what’s about to take place in Ontario. We’ve got the greatest future of the whole
world here.” CONTINUED OVERLEAF
Needed: 18 new dentists every lOO days. Here, harried teachers
at U of Toronto's big new dental college try to turn them out
Ontario in the ’60s
PEOPLE: 20 new arrivals every hour
In the uncertain year 1944, Ontario government officials predicted that the province’s population of four million would grow to four and a half million by 1965. The forecast was exceeded fifteen years early, and the influx of a million immigrants plus Ontario’s high postwar birthrate have pushed the present count past six million.
During the Sixties, Ontario’s population will grow to nearly eight million, at the net rate of twenty new arrivals (by birth or immigration) every hour. That's enough to support an extra grocery store every two days, or enough every fortnight for a new supermarket. To maintain no more than current living standards, Ontario residents will need, every hundred days during the Sixties, eighteen new dentists, thirty-two new lawyers, fifty new doctors, one hundred and thirty new nurses and seven hundred new teachers.
Who they’ll be, where they’ll come from
On a moonless November night in 1948, an eminent Czechoslovak lawyer named Zdenko Hradsky forced his eight-month-old son Peter to clench his mouth over a silver spoon so that he couldn't cry out. Then with his wife and daughter he carried the baby on a hazardous nine-hour crossing of the mined and heavily guarded Czech-Austrian border. The family's only baggage was a set of extra diapers.
The Hradskys arrived in Canada a few months later, and, like the majority of their fellow immigrants, chose to settle in Toronto where they had friends. Mrs. Hradsky. who had also been a lawyer in Czechoslovakia, joined the night shift in a Toronto candy factory; her husband, unable to qualify for law in a language he could barely understand, at forty-seven became a carpenter's helper in a Toronto lumberyard. He quit a few months later to become a department-store stock clerk. Now he is one of Toronto's more successful aluminum-storm-window salesmen. The Hradskys to-
day own a beautifully furnished bungalow in Don Mills, a popular Toronto suburb. They drive their own car.
Mrs. Hradsky, who has been a shop clerk, a social worker, and a librarian, recently became a full-time housewife.
The Hradskys, like most of the immigrant parents who have come to Ontario since the war, barely acknowledge their own accomplishment in managing to prosper in a strange and often frustrating environment.
But they are obsessed with the success they wish for their children during the Sixties. Hradsky says, “Nadine, my daughter, was head girl at Parkdale Collegiate.
She’s now in first-year medicine at the University of Toronto — and in her last exams stood eighth in a class of 150. She plans to become a pediatrician.”
Peter Hradsky, now twelve, grew up speaking English and has never learned Czech. He plays on a neighborhood hockey team and wants to become an engineer.
“When people ask me if I feel a hundred percent Canadian,” says Mrs. Hradsky, “I tell them that I take what I see is better in Canada and accept it. Things which 1 see are not quite as good, I criticize and don’t accept.”
The Hradskys’ story is fairly typical of the million immigrants who have arrived in Ontario since the war. Many have not become as well integrated, others have done spectacularly well in business. Collectively they have transformed the character of the province.
On Toronto’s Spadina Avenue, where the influx of newcomers is most concentrated, a delicatessen caused a mild sensation recently when, beneath a row of notices announcing that business is transacted in Polish,
Czech, German and several other European tongues, it posted a crudely lettered sign which boasted: “We understand English.”
During the Sixties, government officials expect that at least sixty thousand Europeans a year will settle in Ontario. They will be joined by an estimated hundred thousand Canadians from other provinces. Most of these domestic “immigrants” will be French-Canadians, moving into the northern and southeastern sections of the province.
The combined influence of this influx and the prevCONTINUED OVERLEAF
The baby boom will probably outstrip the construction boom; over-
crowding will affect everything from classrooms to curling rinks
Ontario in ths ’60s CONTINUED
alcntly Catholic immigration from Europe will mean that by the end of the decade there will be more Roman Catholics in Ontario than members of any other church. I he greatest concentration of Catholics is building up in foronto, and Matt Lawson, the city's planning director, predicts that if present trends continue, Toronto will become predominantly Catholic before 1980.
An equally startling forecast is made by Leslie Frost, the Lindsay lawyer who has been the province’s premier since 1949. “By the 1970s," he says, “there will be almost as many immigrants arriving in Ontario from the U. S. as there are now from Europe, because they'll realize that opportunities are much greater on this side of the border.”
$7,500 a year for an average family
Most Canadians are vaguely aware that you can get paid more for working in Ontario than for doing the same job elsewhere in Canada, but few realize the extent of the difference. A factory production-line worker now earns $83.15 a week in St. Catharines on the Niagara Peninsula, while the comparable job pays only $59.88 in Sherbrooke. Oue.; $52.17 in St. John's, Ntld.; $67.62 in Winnipeg; $71.85 in Calgary; and $80.14 in Vancouver.
This gulf will widen during the Sixties. The average Ontario family now has an annual income of nearly five thousand dollars, about twelve percent above the national average. By 1969, average family earnings in Ontario will have increased to $7.500 dollars a year — nearly twenty percent above the national average. (The 1969 figure does not take into account the probable decline of the dollar's buying power through inflation.)
“During the Sixties,” predicts Douglas Hamilton, secretary-treasurer of the Ontario Federation of Labor, “more and more people in this province are going to get paid for not working.” Hamilton and some other labor leaders plan to fight for the introduction of guaranteed-annual-wage plans designed to keep up the income of workers affected by increased automation. They forecast that Ontario will lead in the acceptance of the thirty-two or thirty-five-hour work week and that nearly everyone will have at least a month's annual vacation by 1969. With improved pension plans, many people will be able to retire at fifty if they want to.
Half the work force in white collars
By 1969, Ontario factories will have almost doubled their current output — but employment in manufacturing will likely decline. George Gathercole, Ontario's deputy minister of economics, predicts that the effects of automation will decrease industrial employment to such an extent that by the end of this decade, half of all Ontario workers will be employed in “service industries" — retailing, recreation, selling, personal services or government. In the next five years the number of Ontario government offices in Toronto alone will increase by almost forty percent.
A new and less prosaic source of employment will open up during the Sixties in a section of Ontario where no jobs exist, when a well-decorated war hero and a frustrated prospector realize their ambitions. One of these men is Charles Reynolds, who in a hundred days of fighting in France during World War I rose from sergeant to major, was mentioned three times in dispatches and won the Military Cross and Distinguished Service Order. He now heads the provincially-owned Ontario Northland Railway which has since 1932 operated a service into Moosonee, on James Bay — a derelict fur trappers’ outpost that Reynolds would like to transform into a busy harbor. The other man is Douglas Banks, a thick-set New Zealander who for twenty-five years has been tramping through the Canadian north, prospecting with only mild success (though he has prospered as a mining investor).
Within the next five or six years. Banks will almost certainly have a major mine operating, and Reynolds' railroad will bring its ore through Moosonee, converting the James Bay settlement into a city of fifteen thousand. The project is the one northern-resource development now in sight which will have a big economic impact on Ontario during the Sixties, although the mine
itself will be located either on the Belcher Islands CONTINUED ON PAGE 6O
Afloat: half a million boats. Ashore: soaring attendance at
sports spectacles. On the air: perhaps ten new TV stations
Continued from page 18
ONTARIO in the '60s
in Hudson Bay, part of the Northwest Territories, or on Great Whale River, Que. It’s estimated that Belchers' iron ore deposits, staked by Banks over four years beginning in 1952. are so immense they could feed all of North America’s blast furnaces for a decade. To bring the ore to market will cost nearly three hundred million dollars, including the construction of a major new' harbor at Moosonee. and extension of the railroad’s southern terminus seventy miles to Georgian Bay. for toll-free access to the steel mills of Hamilton. Cleveland and Pittsburgh. The new port of Moosonee will be surveyed next summer.
The extraction of iron ore. an insignificant portion of Ontario's prewar mineral production will, during the Sixties, provide income — directly or indirectly — for a quarter of a million Ontarians. New settlements will spring up around many of the nearly one hundred known but not yet exploited Ontario iron-ore deposits, including those at Nakina. Calabogie, Scholes. Onaman Lake. Chapleau. and Bruce Lake. Northwestern Ontario, which now has fewer inhabitants than
one per square mile, will increase its working force by one third by 1969— a growth that will include the erection of a steel plant at the Lakehead.
If the price of gold remains unchanged, there will be only half a dozen gold mines left in Ontario by the end of the Sixties, marking the death of an industry which has yielded riches worth nearly three billion dollars. The uranium settlement at Elliot Lake will remain dormant during most of the Sixties, but Bancroft, the province's other uranium centre, will be kept alive by lumbering.
The whole concept of farming will change. Late last year, some of the more conservative members of the Toronto Stock Exchange were startled to discover that the symbol “HF” added to their ticker tapes did not represent a new oil well, mine, or factory, but a company whose major asset is five thousand acres of black Ontario muck. The newly listed firm was Hardee Farms International Limited. Ontario’s first major factory farm. It is the creation of A. Bram Dees, of Bradford. Ont., a studious-looking farmer who came to Canada from Hol-
land in 1926. Dees has since integrated the production from his Ontario acreage with considerable holdings of cow-grazing and citrus country in Florida, and some vegetable-growing land in Quebec — an agricultural empire worth nearly fifteen million dollars. By mechanizing all aspects of his operations (there is a profit and loss statement drawn up for every cow) he hopes eventually to turn an annual net profit of six million dollars.
Dees’ imaginative venture heralds the basic transformation in Ontario agriculture during the Sixties. Farming will become so specialized that by 1969 it won’t pay a farmer to keep hens for his own egg supply. It will be cheaper to buy them from the nearest poultry factory.
Since 1945. three million acres of lowgrade Ontario farmland have been abandoned. and a thousand farm workers (including owners) have emigrated to the cities each month. Agriculture will probably remain Ontario’s second largest industry, but by 1969 only one fifth, instead of the present one quarter, of the province’s population will remain in the rural areas.
New sports, new shows — but two suicides a day
When one of his neighbors brought Arthur Leadbeater of Toronto into court recently for making an unreasonable amount of noise in his garage, Leadbeater explained that he had been working on his sailboat. “It’s a way of life,” he insisted. “Some people go down to the beer houses. I stay at home and build my boat.”
The enthusiastic spare-time sea dog was fined for breaking the city's antinoise ordinance, but Leadbeater’s stout plea will become increasingly applicable to the leisure-time activities of Ontario
residents during the Sixties. By 1969, at least one in five Ontario families will own some kind of boat, giving the province more than half a million pleasure craft —a flotilla that will provide one of the decade’s most popular leisure outlets. “There’ll be two-boat families, and people who have small boats now will trade up to fast power cruisers,” predicts Bob Kelly, manager of the Allied Boating Association in Toronto.
Outdoor vacationers will also be able to camp much more comfortably in eighty provincial parks being improved or
planned by the Ontario government, or shoot deer and ducks in special districts the province proposes to set aside for public hunting. One of the richest areas that will become more accessible to Ontario fishermen in the Sixties is the barely exploited north shore of Lake Superior, about to be opened up by the Trans-Canada Highway.
With the Ontario portion of this highway complete by 1965 and with the province traversed by a second superhighway completely free of stop lights, Ontarians will be more mobile than ever. Fred Cass, the provincial minister of highways, predicts that by 1969 Ontario's automobile drivers will be traveling thirty billion miles a year.
The speed limit on the major new highways will be moved up to seventy mph. International tourist traffic will be greatly increased through new bridges linking the province with the U. S. at Prescott, Queenston, Sault Ste. Marie, Pigeon River, Rainy River and Fort Frances. Motorists will be charged tolls to cross these arches, as well as the new skyway planned to eliminate the traffic bottleneck caused by the Welland Canal.
Spectator sports will continue to grow in Ontario during the Sixties, particularly if Toronto gets a major baseball team. Branch Rickey, president of the planned Continental League, confidently predicts there will be a world series game in Toronto before 1965. Participation sports will boom in the Sixties as working time in most Ontario plants and offices decreases by five to eight hours a week. Curling will probably grow fastest, because more and more golf clubs will remain open the year round by adding curling sheets. Curling could even become a respite for shop-weary housewives. The Don Mills Shopping Centre near Toronto is now building a twelvesheet rink, and other centres plan to follow.
Another addition to Ontario’s indoor entertainment facilities this year is the 3,200-seat O’Keefe Centre in Toronto, which expects to be selling a million theatre, opera, jazz and ballet tickets a year by 1965. The centre's most exciting shows will probably be the pre-Broadway tryouts of American productions, although long-term plans include tne staging of original Canadian musicals.
But Ontario’s most stimulating theatrical entertainment will likely continue to be presented at the annual Shakespearean Festival in Stratford. Festival officials predict that during the Sixties more than one million visitors will pay seven million dollars for two-and-a-half-million tickets to various Stratford attractions. “In the next ten years we’ll feature all the leading stars of the English-language theatre, including Sir Laurence Olivier, Sir John Gielgud, Peter Ustinov, Rex Harrison, Marlon Brando and Anthony Quayle,” says Tom Patterson, the festival's founder and planning consultant. Patterson also expects that Stratford companies will become an unofficial arm of Canada’s External Affairs department, with sponsored world tours.
Home entertainment in Ontario during the Sixties, as elsewhere in Canada, will continue to come mostly from tiie family television set, but programing will be much more diversified than in the rest of the country. By 1969 there could be twenty-six television stations in the province. compared with sixteen now, transmitting specialized shows for almost every taste. One TV innovation already being pioneered in a Toronto suburb is pay television, a method of bringing first-run movies without commercials into the home through interference-free landlines. The viewer deposits up to a dollar per
film into a coin box attached on his set. “By 1970,” says Eugene Fitzgibbons, head of Trans-Canada Telemeter Limited, which operates the system, “we expect that at least a third of Ontario’s twomillion sets will be getting our service.”
Will the extra leisure and the greater variety of ways to utilize it make Ontario residents happier in the Sixties? Most medical authorities doubt it. They predict that the number of suicides in Ontario will double—to two a day. According to Bob Robinson, director of education for the Alcoholism Research Foundation of Ontario, there’ll be at least forty newly confirmed alcoholics in the province per week—a considerably higher rate than during the Fifties.
“The puny efforts of education against addiction to alcohol, drugs, tobacco and food aren't going to help in this decade. The entrenchment is too deep; we’re actually encouraged to indulge ourselves,” says Dr. R. Gordon Bell, one of Ontario's best known addiction experts. Bell does not expect any major breakthrough during the next ten years in the treatment of gluttons. “But,” he predicts, "at the end of the Sixties something new will probably come along that will create sufficient public interest to get people Lightened enough to seriously reconsider the threats of overindulgence.”
Half Ontario’s productive wealth in U. S. hands
Since the Ford Motor Company began to ferry parts across the Detroit River in 1904 to equip a tiny automobile shop in Windsor, American industrialists have cascaded more dollars into Ontario factories and resources than they have invested in any other region of the world. There are now more American-owned factories in Toronto than in any other city outside the U. S. A. Although the Americans own only three percent of the number of Ontario factories, the plants they own are big: they employ more than a third of the province’s industrial labor force, and produce half the value of Ontario factory shipments.
Economists predict that American capital will continue to pour into Ontario faster than into the rest of Canada during the Sixties, so that by 1969 well over half of the province’s productive wealth will be under U. S. control. “American investment in Ontario creates many problems, but we’H never put a capital wall around this province,” says Premier Leslie Frost. “The key lies in our ability to continue to govern ourselves, and I don't think this has been or will be threatened.”
new colleges—maybe degrees
via home TV
Education methods in Ontario at all levels of learning, fairly stable during the Fifties, will explode into many new and exciting directions in the Sixties.
Night-school students may be able to qualify for BA degrees by watching lec-
tures on their living-room TV sets. In high school. Russian will probably crowd out German and Spanish as a third language, but French will be taught three years earlier. The rigidity of grade boundaries may disappear, so that pupils move up according to their intellect and development from the Primary Division (grades one to three) into the Junior Division (grades four to six) and the Intermediate Division (grades seven to ten) until they reach the Senior Division (grades eleven to thirteen).
To replace the four thousand Ontario
elementary school teachers who now leave their profession every year, and to provide the new teachers needed for the school enrollment of the Sixties, the province will need to train 8.800 new teachers over the next ten years.
Ontario's eight existing universities will be unable to cope with the rush for higher learning expected in the Sixties, for the number of people between eighteen and twenty-one who are eligible for university will increase from last fall's 302,000 to half a million by '69. To accommodate the rush, new degree-
granting universities are already in various stages of being born at Port Arthur, Sudbury and Toronto, with others being considered for Guelph and North Bay. The largest of the new colleges will be York University, in Toronto, which opens next fall.
York expects an enrollment of six thousand by 1969. “We hope to pioneer in Canada the British university tutorial system." says Dr. Murray Ross. York's president. "We'll have each student meet with his tutor for a private academic session at least five times a year." -fc