Toronto residents celebrate the arrival of summer temperatures this week

May 21, 2024 | GTA/Local News, News

The Harbourfront area looks completely different from two weeks ago when the remnants of winter still overshadowed any signs of summer. This past Victoria Day weekend Toronto residents took to the lakeside neighbourhood to enjoy an ice cream or boat ride.

Liz Ho-Young, mother of two, creatively used coffee cups as sand buckets for her two kids.

“This heat is welcome,” Ho-Young said.

“It makes me a lot happier. Everything is better and easier, brighter, you don’t have to put so many layers of clothes on the kids to go outside. It lifts your mood.”

In just one week, temperatures have increased suddenly, jumping from highs between 16 and 18 C to highs that have reached 28 C.

Warm sunshine conditions are expected to stick around at least until next weekend with highs well above 20 C, according to Environment Canada, with average temperatures in May being 19.9 C.

“I just want to be outside as much as possible, I want to get tanned and to make a lot of plans,” Ho-Young said.

Kristina Brand and her 18-month-old baby enjoyed the sun this weekend at Harbourfront.

“This weather is awesome,” said Brand. “I want to hang out outside all day and I want to tan. I’m looking to enjoy the activities here in Harbourfront, whatever they put on.”

However, not everybody is a fan of the heat.

Ryan Chand, who has been in Toronto for one year after leaving Nepal, looked eagerly for shade during his work break.

Chand said he is having a hard time getting used to the heat.

“I always have a bottle of water,” said Chand. “So much sun makes me feel dizzy. This is too much heat. This city is really cold or really sunny. There’s no midpoint.”

Experts say that the heat creates risks including sunburn, heat stroke and dehydration.

A longtime Torontonian like Brand said a very useful tip to endure high temperatures is not spending too much time outdoors in peak hours of heat.

“When you get hot days, go hang out outside in the morning or the evening instead of the middle of the day,” she said.

Ho-Young said she knows good places to be outside in peak hours.

“I know a couple of well-shaded parks to sit when it gets very hot,” she said. “Toronto is also a well-prepared city for the summer.”

The City of Toronto said in a statement to CBC News last year that it recognizes the need for additional cooling services, but cites financial pressures.

Most recently the Ontario government held a three day heat preparedness simulation at the beginning of the month.

Temperatures are still expected to dip below 10 C at nigh according to The Weather Network reports.