213/215 Parliament Street
Attractive three-storey building with large picture windows Close to park and social services 17-by-100-foot lot Assessed value: $152,000 (estimated) Distinguishing feature: empty double lot next door provides lots of extra space to set up tents Squat selling point: already housing two tenants History: part of Regent Park-area affordable housing plans before neighbours got in the way.
10/12 Hagerman Street
Palatial three-storey former warehouse behind City Hall Huge 40-by-150-foot lot on some of the priciest real estate in the city Assessed value: $1.3 million Distinguishing feature: large, inviting front doors so lots of people can get in Squat selling point: close to amenities History: vacant for years and presumably of little use to the city.
Gorgeous three-and-a-half-storey Georgian-style brick building on huge lot near quiet, upscale Cabbagetown street Plenty of room Like new Distinguishing feature: ad on west side selling new homes in the neighbourhood for $250,000 a pop Squat selling point: death of a homeless man in this building's doorway a few years ago a reminder how badly this space is needed History: still owned by the RCMP -- all the more reason for city to appropriate and turn into affrodable housing.
31 Tracy Street
Charming two-storey semi-detached house in diverse Shuter and Sackville Green neighbourhood Sturdy roof Cozy 17-by-47.5-foot lot Assessed value: $141,000 Distinguishing feature: funky paint job Squat selling point: wood fence out front to keep the cops out Brief history: considered economically unviable for redevelopment.
22 Wascana Avenue
Two-storey semi-detached home a stone's throw from scenic Don Valley Good condition 15-by-66-foot lot Assessed value: $184,000 Distinguishing feature: electricity Squat selling point: free drapes History: among a handful of sites passed up by city recently for affordable housing.
5/7 Foster Place
Snazzy two-storey brick structure tucked away on tiny street, steps from TTC Ideal for lofts Expansion potential on empty lot next door Distinguishing feature: free parking Squat selling point: street not signed and address doesn't show up on city computer rolls, so no one will ever know you're there History: appropriated as part of city redevelopment plans that went nowhere.These city-owned buildings sit empty because bureaucrats figure they're not worth converting into affordable housing. But with a little bit of fixing up, these babies could be turned into cozy nests for some homeless people. Why doesn't the city just open the doors?City doesn't know squat