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NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH: South Core

South Core, one of Toronto’s fastest-growing neighbourhoods

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South Core, one of Toronto’s fastest-growing neighbourhoods

By Gale Beeby

Harbourfront and Fort York – the area known as the South Core – is one of downtown Toronto’s fastest-growing neighbourhoods. It reaches south of the railway tracks to Lake Ontario, and from Yonge Street to Bathurst Street. Perhaps it all started when Concord Adex started developing CityPlace, or when Menkes built the Telus office tower, but the area has blossomed. Move a little farther west, from Bathurst Street to Strachan Avenue, and you’ll find the pocket known as Fort York.

Housing Options

Most of the major players have a piece of the action here. Add in the condo corridor along Harbourfront and the ongoing development of the Fort York neighbourhood, there are units for every taste and budget.

Leisure Pursuits

With both the Rogers Centre and the Air Canada Centre located in the South Core, it’s a sports fans’ wonderland with baseball, basketball, hockey and football – along with the musical treats those venues host – all within walking distance. Toronto’s newest attraction, Ripley’s Aquarium, has become a huge draw, as is the CN Tower.

Parks & Rec

The Harbourfront area is home to a number of marinas, boat charter companies and the Empire Sandy, Toronto’s best-known sailing ship. The Harbourfront Centre holds a number of events throughout the year and has an outdoor winter skating rink. The Harbourfront Canoe & Kayak Centre holds classes for every level, including the newest craze, stand-up paddleboarding.

Canoe Landing Park, 20 acres of parkland developed by Concord Adex in CityPlace, is host to a number of events, including summer movie nights and the Terry Fox Miracle Mile run. The park gets its name from a large red canoe – big enough for people to stand in and see over the Gardiner to Lake Ontario – designed by Douglas Coupland.

Access to the Martin Goodman Trail, which is the Toronto portion of the 730-kilometre Waterfront Trail around Lake Ontario, can be made at a number of points in the area. For those who enjoy sailing, the Royal Canadian Yacht Club, the Island Yacht Club and the Toronto Island sailing club are located just across the harbour on the Toronto islands.

The Fort York National Historic Site – built in 1793 and the location where the Battle of York came to an end during the War of 1812 – was the home of a military garrison until the 1930s.

The Music Garden is one of the best-kept secrets in Toronto. Located at the foot of Spadina Avenue, the park offers live music in the summers and has an incredible garden. Just west, at the foot of Bathurst Street, you’ll find Ireland Park, which was opened in 2007 as a memorial to the more than 38,000 Irish immigrants who took refuge from the famine in Toronto in 1847.

Retail Therapy

There are grocery stores in the South Core and Maple Leaf Square, where there is also a LCBO, is connected to the city’s transit and the PATH System, a 27-kilometre underground network of shopping, services and dining outlets. Loblaws is in the process of converting its former warehouse at Bathurst Street and Lake Shore Boulevard West into a new retail centre, including a Joe Fresh and an LCBO.

Easy Access

Maple Leaf Square is connected to Union Station – with TTC and GO Transit connections – through a variety of inter-connected walkways and the PATH System. For those who live along Harbourfront or in the Fort York district, the LRT line along Queens Quay makes access to Union Station a breeze. CityPlace residents can connect to Union Station by the Spadina streetcar or an easy stroll along Front Street. And for those who need to travel farther afield, Toronto Billy Bishop Airport gives residents access to Porter and Air Canada flights to Ottawa, Montreal, Halifax, New York, Boston and Chicago, to name a few destinations.

BY THE NUMBERS

WALK SCORES

South Core: 95
Fort York: 89

Toronto motto: Diversity: Our Strength

Toronto.ca


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Local Focus: Toronto

Local Focus: Toronto

Latest News


Local Focus: Toronto

by Gale Beeby

Considered one of the most multicultural cities in the world, Toronto is a wonderful collection of neighbourhoods

HOUSING OPTIONS

In 1998, the six municipalities that comprised Metropolitan Toronto (East York, Etobicoke, North York, Scarborough, York and the former city of Toronto) and the regional municipality of Metro Toronto were amalgamated into the City of Toronto. This has resulted in creation of a “megacity” with a population of about 2.81 million, and growing. More than 100,000 people move into the GTA every year, most of them settling in the City of Toronto proper.

Historic homes, like the quaint Victorian houses in Cabbagetown and the coveted cottages in the Beach, are just some of the city’s hallmarks. But the skyline is now dominated by the sleek highrise condos in the city’s core. Single-family homes dominate in the former suburbs, where you will also find a large array of new condos and townhouses.

Click here for a list of new homes for sale in Toronto.

LEISURE PURSUITS

Living in Toronto is an open door into a vast array of cultural, theatrical, musical and sporting events. The city is home to the National Ballet of Canada (along with another 50 or so dance companies), the Canadian Opera Company, Opera Atelier, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra.

Aga Khan Museum
Aga Khan Museum

The Art Gallery of Ontario has a large collection of work by the Group of Seven, while the Royal Ontario Museum has a collection of world culture and natural history. The Gardiner Museum is the only museum in Canada devoted to ceramics and the collection contains more than 2,900 pieces from Asia, the Americas and Europe. Other museums include the Bata Shoe Museum, the Textile Museum of Canada, Museum of Inuit Art, Spadina House and the Aga Khan Museum.

If sports are more your thing, there are plenty of choices. Hockey? The Maple Leafs play out of the Air Canada Centre, as do the NBA’s Raptors. The Blue Jays call the Rogers Centre Home and Toronto FC play at BMO Field. A visit to the Hockey Hall of Fame should be mandatory for any hockey fan.

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is an annual event celebrating the film industry and attracts many movie stars and a-list players. Caribana takes place in the summer and is primarily based on the Trinidad and Tobago Carnival. Caribana now attracts over one million people, making it the second largest Caribbean festival in the world.

Other points of interest include the Toronto Zoo, the Ontario Science Centre, Black Creek Pioneer Village, Harbourfront, The Don Valley Brick Works, Fort York, the Distillery District, Ripley’s Aquarium, the CN Tower and the Canadian National Exhibition.

PARKS & REC

Golf anyone? How about some tennis? Or lawn bowling? Or horse racing? Toronto has it all, including sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, kayaking, water-skiing and boating in the summer, cross-country and downhill skiing, ice skating, ice canoeing and snowshoeing in the winter.

A visit to the Scarborough Bluffs is a wonderful way to spend a summer afternoon, as is a visit to Etobicoke’s waterfront, where there is a large marina and parkland. High Park is always a great place for a summer stroll or winter hike.

Toronto is called The City of Neighbourhoods, and each community has great parks, community centres, activity centres and libraries.

RETAIL THERAPY

Great shopping districts help define neighbourhoods, and there is none better than the St. Lawrence Market, considered one of the finest food markets in the world. Kensington Market is also a great spot to find unique food and interesting arts and crafts.

The Toronto Eaton Centre is the city’s largest mall, with 235 retail and service providers.

Trips to Chinatown, Little Italy, Little Portugal, Little India and Greektown offer other wonderful treats for the senses.

Etobioke’s Sherway Gardens and Yorkdale Mall in North York also offer a roster of A-list stores and products, as does the Scarborough Town Centre.

EASY ACCESS

The TTC moves over 1.6 million people throughout the city every day on its subway cars, buses, streetcars and LRT lines. The subway can get you from the west end to the east end of the city in less than an hour. GO Transit is Ontario’s only inter-regional transit system, linking Toronto with the surrounding regions of the GTA. Highways include several four and sixlane routes (at points, Highway 401 is 16 lanes wide), including Highways 401, 403, 404, 407, 427, the DVP and the QEW.

BY THE NUMBERS

Population: 2.81 million

Average Walk Scores

  • Downtown Toronto: 97
  • East York: 78
  • Etobicoke: 75
  • North York: 72
  • Scarborough: 68
  • York: 88

Motto: Diversity Our Strength

Toronto.ca


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