Drone flythrough of Toronto's magnificently renovated reference library


Wow Cory,
I thought I was the only one nerd enough to skip-off for weeks in grade nine to go to the Toronto Public Library! I wonder how many of us there were/are?
Definitely a better place to learn than a dull high school; now with 3d printers too!


Sheesh, that’s an amazing and beautiful public library! Certainly puts most U.S. public libraries that I’ve been in to shame. Bravo, Toronto.

Oh man, that’s a lovely building! Beautiful renovation!

Yes, it’s neat, but as a quad pilot, I can say that this is an incredibly irresponsible thing to do. Flying anywhere where you can potentially damage property or cause bodily harm is seriously frowned upon within the hobby. These DJI Phantoms are great in that they can be flown out-of-the-box, but it also means that anyone with a wallet can put an aircraft in the sky. That’s a thrilling paradigm, but quads can, and do, fail all the time, plunging to the ground like a brick with spinning ginsu knives. A simple Google search for “quadcopter injury” reveals a wide range of potential hazards (Google image search if you have a strong stomach).

Related (and technically because this pilot was flying inside, the aircraft was not using “airspace”): It’s also really important that the skies remain free and open to hobbyists. The FAA just recently announced a new “interpretation” of its regulation, effectively banning this hobby. Three separate lawsuits against the FAA were initiated as a result, and most hobbyists are flying anyway. The situation is tenuous and it’s clear that the FAA will use any incident as an illustration to support its emerging opinion that civilians should not be flying “drones”. I don’t want to live in a world where the airspace belongs solely to the government and air carriers. Do you?

Be careful and use some common sense.

While I take your point about caution with quads w.r.t the law, I don’t think the FAA has jurisdiction over Canadian libraries.


The library so cool, movies keep using its interior as the building of the future.

No, neither does Transport Canada since it was flown inside, but my point is, use common sense. You can be sure that both agencies are observing civilian use of “drones” and will use stories that negatively portray UAS use to justify more stringent regulation.

I wrote all my high school essays, researched my art projects and generally spent most of my teenage afternoons here. I remember the enormous card catalogues and the hand-typed cards that took up so much space. Those cool new carrels and desks are a much better use of the space. Now I live in San Diego but I miss the TRL, thanks for the video! I also used to haunt the old Reference Library on College and St. George (I would later work for Harry Campbell, its chief librarian in the 1970s), and the ROM library too on weekends, with its murals of dinosaurs by G.A. Reid (oh yes, also the McLaughlin Planetarium one-room library full of science and astronomy books).

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I went to Jesse Ketchum PS from grade 4 to 8, and the Reference Library is within walking distance of that school, so naturally I spent a lot of time there. I’m glad to see they didn’t completely obliterate the awesome 70s decor of the place.

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