Public Bakeovens



Cooking with Fire in Public Parks



Some analysis of the link sent by PFR Policy & Project Advisor Katarina Currah, Feb.16, 2023:

“Open Air Burning” is a document from Toronto Fire, not PFR. Since it was sent by PFR, are the conditions for park campfires the same?

There are a number of apparent contradictions that may need fixing.

A. Referencing the Ontario Fire Code
1) Open-air burning shall not take place unless
(a) it has been approved, or
(b) the open-air burning consists of a small, confined fire that is
(i) used to cook food on a grill, barbecue or spit,
(ii) commensurate with the type and quantity of food being cooked, and
iii) supervised at all times.

Having the "or" there (my bold and highlighted) says that fires for making food do not need to be approved first. If that's not the case, the wording must be clarified.

Note: the bright red Fire Services Pamphlet says that open air fires are not permitted EXCEPT under three possible conditions, one of which is a permit; the second is a small food fire; the third refers to appliances. Are the three conditions alternatives? If not, the pamphlet contradicts the section of the fire code above.

B. Materials burned: The same red Fire Services pamphlet says that wood is not allowed; only propane or natural gas. One person in our Alliance reported that at an Artscape residents’ outdoor social area this rule was applied recently. Is the “no wood” rule meant to apply to a cooking fire? At the RV Burgess campfire, when it was approved last Thursday, there was no ruling against a wood fire. Why not?

C. Cost: From TF’s link: “Under Chapter 441, Open Air Burn Permits for private commercial events will be charged $266.17.” The only application form (linked to this document) says that it’s for a Business or Other Organization and that a fee of $ 266.17 is to be enclosed with the application.
On the city’s own site: “Undesignated Firepit Permit”: $115.86

D. Permits in partnership with Toronto Recreation
There seems to be no alternative designation for a community campfire run in partnership with Recreation. But that describes the Thorncliffe Park request. The day before the winter festival, city rec staff met with the Fire inspector, filled out the forms and – presumably – paid the fees. Where is that information?

Cultural fires and religious fires:

“A cultural fire is an open air burn conducted in connection with a specific cultural or religious practice, ceremony, or event.” Do only Indigenous fires qualify as cultural fires?

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Content last modified on February 20, 2023, at 03:27 AM EST