Okay. Maybe it's not that pathetic.
But I was expecting more than planters and a few makeshift patios in the Big Smoke's latest shot at world-class status.
Don't get me wrong. Celebrate Yonge, the month-long "pedestrianization" of the Gerrard-to-Queen stretch of Toronto's iconic main street, is a worthwhile effort.
Local councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam deserves credit for bringing businesses together. It's not an insignificant step forward for a town whose idea of celebrating public space on Car Free Day is to close one block of downtown to traffic for lunch hour.
And after the Empress Hotel fire that gutted a historic landmark had Yonge merchants wondering about the street's future, it's nice to see people lingering and not just passing through.
But if this is the new ideal when it comes to city-building, the so-called "high modernism" of "flexible streets" where everyone must be accommodated, including cars, I'll need more convincing. It's hard getting used to the idea of being close enough to traffic on those aforementioned patios to suck in their exhaust.
Strikes me as a tad half-assed not to have closed the whole area off to vehicular traffic. Delivery concerns of area businesses could easily have been addressed by leaving the east-west corridors between Queen and Gerrard open to cars and trucks.
It also doesn't make business sense. The more feet on the street, the more potential dinero for local merchants, or so goes one theory of economic geography.
This particular stretch of Yonge would seem a natural for a peeps-only zone, especially during the summer months. For starters, it's not heavily used by cars to get to and from downtown. Bay, University and Jarvis are far busier. Yonge-Dundas Square sits roughly in the middle. Gould, at the entrance to Ryerson's campus, is already a pedestrian zone.
But Wong-Tam says it was never the idea with Celebrate Yonge to create a pedestrian mall. A more modest goal was set: to "enhance the experience" of people on Yonge, to get folks "feeling the street" again, she says. And there would be no next year if local merchants couldn't take away something from this experience.
Still, not a bad starting point for a revitalized Yonge, which, let's face it, has lost some of its lustre.
The good news: Celebrate Yonge is still evolving as a concept. The folks who brought us the John Street redo have been dispatched to see what magic can be worked here.
Here's looking forward to a bigger and better celebration next year.