Posts Tagged ‘houses’

a person walks on a sidewalk on a foggy day, large trees and a park on the right, lots of traffic and red rear lights on the left

The temperatures this January have been warmer than usual but that means more grey skies and dreary weather days.  I spent one of those grey afternoons in the fog on a stretch of Bayview Avenue near York Mills Road.  It seemed like an appropriate time to see how many abandoned houses I could find.

 

remains of a concrete wall, about 3 feet high, with number 2769 on it, with vacant lot surrounded by chainlink fence in the background

Once upon a time, and not that long ago, Bayview Avenue in this part of the city was lined with large houses on big lots, often hidden behind trees.  Slowly, each house is being replaced with 4 to 6 townhouses in line with a revised city plan.   Toronto has many housing issues including a shortage of family homes.

a branch has fallen off a tree and landed on the yard of an abandoned house, leaves and some snow on the lawn as well

below: Five years ago I posted a photo of this house in a post about empty Bayview houses.  It was empty at the time too.

wire construction fence in front of a driveway with snow on it, a house about to be demolished, red brick, two storey, large house

below: This house appeared in the same 2017 post.  At that time it still had a red front door.

wood barricade across a snow covered driveway in front of a bungalow ready for demolition

abandoned and empty bungalow with low white fence in front of it, driveway blocked, snow, fog,

below: Development is rarely a quick process and things can often get convoluted – the sign on this property is for one of the newest plans – it was filed in 2022.  There are websites advertising the 4 townhouses at 2621 Bayview for sale preconstruction.  There is also a website that claims that 2621 Bayview is included in a block, 2617-21 Bayview that is/was for sale for $14,800,000.  (MLS number C5438385).

blue and white development notice for Behar planning and design co to redevelopment a section of land on Bayview Ave the involves demolishing a few houses, including large bungalow house behind a large trees still there, sign in the front yards.

below: This is 2019 Bayview, included in the 2017-21 block.     At 14.8 million just for the land to get 11 units…..  Toronto may have a shortage of units but it also has a shortage of affordable housing.   What price is affordable these days?  A quick search of properties for sale on Bayview shows that a vacant lot is priced above $4,000,000 (1/2 an acre) and that a newly built townhouse with 3000+ square feet  is above $2,000,000.

blue and white development notice for Behar planning and design co to redevelopment a section of land on Bayview Ave that involves demolishing a few houses, including two storey beige house still there, sign in the front yards.

below: Another house that has sat empty.

old white fence and broken gate post at 2595, house in the background

below: With an application filed in 2017. Five years. Is the process that slow? The city wants this intensification to happen and there doesn’t seem to be a lack of potential developers circling like vultures.   Does a  backlog of files that are 5, 6, or more years in the making suggest a flaw in the system somewhere?

blue and white development notice sign for wilket park developments to demolish house and rebuild townhouses on the lot

a bungalow behind trees, some snow, empty house waiting to be demolished

below: Preparations for a new access road/driveway have begun where 2673 and 2675 Bayview once stood.

chainlink fence in front of a vacant lot covered by a bit of now, black and yellow no trespassing sign posted on fence, some orange and black cones behind the fence, foggy day

vacant lot on bayview ave surrounded by metal fence

large house waiting to be demolished, behind fence

front entrance of house with old vines covering walls and part of windows

Going east to Scarborough again….   You can find Highland Creek village at the east end of Old Kingston Road while the West Hill neighbourhood is at the other end of Old Kingston Road.  This short stretch of road winds down to the Highland Creek and then back up the hill on the other side.  It was bypassed when a new wider and higher bridge was built over the river.

scarborough blue and white street sign for old kingston road, highland creek

Although this area was one of the first parts of the city that was settled, there are still lots of signs of the rural nature of the area.

split cedar rail fence between autumn leaf covered sidewalk and trees

There are plenty of signs of changes too…. but there are no glass and steel highrise condos being built out here (in Highland Creek) where the developments are just as likely to be single family homes.

development imagining of housing in large picture beside a new development, large single family homes with large trees, with real trees and grass surrounding the picture

There is a mural on the side of one of the stores, it also happens to be beside the cemetery. This is Mural 8 in the Heritage Trail by Mural Routes. “Community Spirit in Early Highland Creek, Winter 1867” the building of the Wesleyan Methodist Church.   It was painted in the summer of 1994 by John Hood, Alexandra Hood, and Zeb Salmaniw.  For more information, see a previous blog post from 2017 Heritage Trail, mural 8

The tombstone in front of the mural is for Nelson Hawkins and his wife Susan Cornell who were married in 1877. Nelson was a farmer and he and Susan raised 6 children in the area (not all lived to adulthood).

part of a mural routes mural on the side of a building, beside a cemetery. some old tombstones, autumn scenery,

old small tombstone in a cemetery with a wall behind it, mural on wall of a woman sitting by grave stones in a cemetery

Also in the cemetery is a plaque to commemorate the life of Cpl. Michael William Simpson (1948-1974) who died in Syria while on a UN peacekeeping mission – all nine Canadians on UN Flight 51 died that day.

blue plaque in Highand Creek cemetery for cpl Michael William Simpson

below: Deer by the creek in “Creekside” designed by Emily Harrison and painted by a group of youth and local volunteers in 2014.

vehicles parked in front of a large mural of a forest scene with deer, a creek,

The Scarborough Historical Society website tells the story of William Knowles who purchased land in Highland Creek in October 1802 and moved his family from New Jersey. …  “Knowles was a blacksmith and built the Township’s first smithy, making the nails for the first frame barn in Scarborough and planting one of the first orchards. His son, Daniel, kept the first store in Highland Creek, was a Commissioner for the straightening of Kingston Road in 1837 and was a prominent member of the Scarborough, Markham and Pickering Wharf Company which did an excellent business in shipping grain, timber and cord wood from Port Union to Oswego, New York and other Lake Ontario ports.”

below: Shadows on the door of St. Josephs Church.   This Roman Catholic church first served the influx of Irish immigrants who started arriving at the time of potato famine in 1847.  It was the first RC community in Scarborough.

shadow of a large tree on the wall of a church, pattern of crosses in the brickwork, steps up to the door

front of St. Josephs Roman Catholic church, including steeple

The early history of these communities is dominated by families with roots in England, Scotland, and Ireland but like the rest of Toronto, it has become much more multicultural.

below: On a quiet corner in Highland Creek, Baitul Afiyat Mosque

Mosque in Highland Creek village

below: And another mosque under construction in West Hill

behind a black wrought iron gate, construction of a new mosque

below: A short walk through St. Margarets (Anglican) cemetery reveals a more multi-cultural side of the neighbourhood.   This is just a small sample of the diversity of surnames found there.

monument stones in St. Margarets cemetery in winter, two with veerasingham surname, a zimmerman, and a de nobrega

monument stones in St. Margarets cemetery in winter with surnames quail, thoss, and nikolic

a row of old cars and trucks parked beside a road
two old red trucks

below: Another Highland Creek mural.

part of a mural, a couple walking their dog beside a creek, with trees

mural in Highland Creek, painted grey brick wall, the front of a vintage red truck has come through the wall, pile of bricks beside, a young boy in blue cap and brown overalls sits with his dog in another hole in the wall

part of a mural, a parent raccoon and a young one peer out from a hole in a stone wall

part of a mural, a young girl in blue top and blue shorts, arms upraised, like she is asking to be picked up

below: Centennial Community Scarborough consists of the southeast corner of Scarborough and includes both Port Union and Highland Creek Village neighbourhoods.

stop sign at all way stop with a toronto road sign for Ivan Road, with top part that says Centennial Community

below: This is the intersection of Kingston Road with Military Trail and Morrish Road, looking southwest towards a wide bridge over the Highland Creek.  There is an entrance to Colonel Danforth Park on the other side of Kingston Road (off the left side of the photo) but getting there is very difficult.  In the background, right side of photo, are hoardings.   Construction has begun on two 8 storey buildings, Highland Commons.

intersection of Kingston Rd., Military Trail, and Morrish Rd, large wide roads, one sign, low traffic levels, sidewalks, no people

Military Trail is a remnant of Scarborough’s first “highway built in Scarborough in 1799 by American Colonel Asa Danforth Jr.  It was a highway to connect the new town of York (i.e. Toronto) to Kingston.  The story is that the finished road was considered substandard and Danforth didn’t get fully paid.   Or maybe it was a backlash against American entrepreneurs trying to make a quick profit in Upper Canada.  Whatever the truth was, Danforth returned to the USA shortly after.

Kingston Road became Hwy 2 and was the main route to Kingston until the 401 was completed in the 1960s.

below: High And Plaza.   Strip malls or strip plazas are still plentiful.  There is talk of an Eglinton East LRT and many TTC express buses serve the area but cars still rule.

sign in a strip mall in Highland Creek, listing and advertising the businesses there such as CIBC, Scarborough Bitcoin, a pharmacy, By the Lake Dental, The Kilt Pub,

below: Proposal for a 9 storey building with 143 residential units plus retail at street level.  City infill on major routes…. and no Greenbelt is affected.
blue and white development notice in front of a strip mall on Lawrence Ave East in West Hill

below: Sign in the window: “This store is operated by Sovereign People on Sovereign Land.  We are exercising our constitutional and inherent rights.”

iroquois cannabis store in a strip mall plaza in west hill

below: Wine and yoga! Note the poster in the window about Metrolinx LRT plans on Ellesmere (just to the north).

looking in the window of In the Spirit a yoga studio and wine lounge with the motto wellness meets wicked in joyful harmony
exterior, strip mall, outside Creek Coffee Company on a sunny day

below: Morningside Ave with its red bus lanes. Looking north towards Ellesmere

Morningside Ave., looking north, from north of Lawrence to Centennial College, and U of T Scarborough. The red lanes are for buses.

below: Another stretch of Morningside, closer to Kingston Road.  Certainly not designed with pedestrians in mind. It’s scene like this that give credence to Scarborough’s nickname Scarberia.

morningside avenue, north from kingston road, some apartment buildings and trees, 4 lanes of traffic

below: Looking northeast at Galloway Road and Lawrence

2 rows of townhouses at Galloway road and lawrence in West Hill, intersection of two major streets, lots of lanes of traffic

below: Melville Presbyterian Church on Old Kingston Road.  It was built in 1852.

Melville Presbyterian Church on Old Kingston Road, red brick building with black and white steeple, on a hill, winter time, snow,

below: Very few traces of old West Hill remain.  The village got its own post office in 1879 (prior to that it was part of Highland Creek).

old two storey brick house on a hill surrounded by large trees, in the snow

below: West Hill suburbia.  There must be thousands of houses like these 1960s bungalows in Toronto and the GTA.  This street could be in Richmond Hill, Willowdale, or Rexdale.  West Hill must have had a major growth spurt in the 1960s and 1970s.

suburban street in winter, single car garages and 1970s bungalows, some trees, one car parked on the street, driveways,

tall horizontal murals on the sides of apartment buildings at Overture Blvd, on Lawrence

below:  On the southeast corner of Morningside and Lawrence is a mural painted in 2018 by BEHIND the Lines in collaboration with the Boys and Girls Club of East Scarborough.

mural at the corner of two walls, a person is peeling back a white curtain to reveal a planet and a phoenix with other things in the mural too, in front of an apartment building in Scarborough

mural in front of an apartment building at Morningside and Lawrence

below: Northwest corner of Morningside and Lawrence

intersection of Morningside and Lawrence, northwest corner, no frills grocery store, part of Morningsde commons retail

large deciduous tree with autumn gold and orange leaves towering over a fence with a street art throw up tag on it

below: garbage overflowing.  In the recent municipal elections there was a lot of talk about how something as simple as garbage collection was messed up in the city.  Although it is outsourced, it has always been problematic.  Bins get broken and never repaired.  Bins get filled and never emptied.  Now when I walk around I see how much of an issue this is.

overflowing city garbage container between sidewalk and street

below: Mayday SOS alert for a love emergency. Whoever scrawled this message probably had a more personal reason but I will use this image as my little prayer to the city. Do better. We can be more. The potential is there if we are willing to reach for it.

on a metal pole, a small painted white heart and three letters, S O and S.

This past Saturday’s walk started on a familiar corner, Bloor and Bathurst, but at a new place, Mallo Coffee.  I don’t always mention my coffee starts and stops but not all of them have wonderfully eccentric washrooms!  The wiggly strands of light were blue which gave the room an eerie blue glow.

part of washroom wall at Mallo Coffee shop, black and white paper with drawings, images, and words, with a blue neon (led?) light that curves around giving the room an eerie blue glow

Pre-COVID there was a proliferation of small independent coffee shops in the city.  It’s nice to see that many have survived and many new ones are opening up.  It’s not so nice to see the remains of those that didn’t make it.

covered windows of closed coffee shop, plywood in one pane, picture of pink and whtie coffee cup and chocolate chip muffin in another pane

From Bloor and Bathurst I walked generally east with a little south thrown in.  Is this The Annex? or Harbord Village?  Technically the quadrant to the southeast of Bloor and Bathurst is Harbord Village but I kept seeing street art referencing The Annex.

When you’ve been taking pictures in a city for more than 10 years, you end up walking the same streets and alleys.  Sometimes you find yourself with identical pictures.   Other times things have changed and there’s a new story to present.  For this blog post there is a bit of both.  Some of the murals that I saw in the lanes behind Bloor were new to me but there were many that I have blogged before.  Rather than show all of the previous murals, I have linked to older posts.

below: Part of “Meet me at the Magnolias” by Leslie Phelan

large mural on the side of store featuring magnolia flowers painted by Leslie Phelan

below: The back part of a larger Elicser Elliott mural on the side of Dirty Bird Chicken and Waffle restaurant on Bloor Street.  The full mural is featured in the blog post “feeling hungry?” from early in 2017.

part of an elicser elliott mural on dirty bird chicken and waffle, man in brown eating a very large sandwich on a plate, a smaller man with a drink in his hands

Bagpipe Lane runs behind the south side of Bloor for less than a block

below: A few simple designs

elicser elliott mural in background, 2 abstract minimalistic designs on a wall with air conditioners and other containers, one is red on pink and the other ooks like a green eye and eye lashes on orange paper

below:  Boris Badenov from the “Rocky and Bullwinkle Show” – who is he trying to blow up now?!

graffiti, black and white wheatpaste of Boris Badenov, cartoon character from Rocky and Bullwinkle show, about the throw a round black bomb, evil look on his face

Barbara Barrett Lane is the eastern continuation of Bagpipe Lane.   This is what you see when you first enter the lane from Borden Ave.

side of a two storey brick house with lower half covered in a mural with stylize street scene, houses, street, cars, green grass,

barbara barrett lane street scene mural

barbara barrett lane street scene mural

below: Nine years ago this was part of a mural that covered the back of buildings on Bloor Street.  You can see it, and other murals that were in Barbara Barrett Lane at the time, in a blog post from 2013.

part of an od mural, faded, headless man with brown vest, blue diamond motifs

There is a large mural by Elicser Elliott on Barbara Barrett Lane.  I have already posted quite a few pictures of it so rather than show more of the same, here is the link to the “elicser paints people” post.

 

mural that says you are here Annex

David French Lane runs south from Barbara Barrett Lane.

below: Near the north end of David French Lane is this black and white garage.  It is now partially covered with ivy and vines but it too also been around since 2013.  At that time many of the garages were already covered with street art but they have all been re-painted (see 2013 blog post, ‘graffiti on garages’)

ivy and vines with leaves in green, yellow, and red, hangs over a garage with a door that is black with white line drawings all over it

below: This mural on David French is very similar to the “street scene” mural on Barbara Barrett shown above.  I wish there was a signature of some sort on them!

street scene mural on david french lane

In 2017 there was a laneway paint project, “You Are Here” on David French Lane.  Once again, you can see images of most of the garages in a previous blog post.

below: Dudeman’s skulls and old TTC bus were part of that project.  Route 77B was a combination of the 77 Spadina bus and the 510 Spadina streetcar; it runs from Spadina station (on Bloor) south to Queens Quay before looping and returning north.

mural by Dudeman covering the front of a garage in an alley, lots of differenc=t coloured skulls, a TTC bus, signs for Spadina

below: A dog with a spiked collar by Christina Mazzulla.

street art on garage door, large dogs with spiked collars, big teeth, open mouth, pink tongues, painted by C mazzulla

alley view, mural on a garage door, back of three storey house, back yard

below: A blue eyed, black haired person with a tiger and a bluebird, all at 263.

painted garages in David French Lane, the one in the middle has a person with long black hair and blue eyes beside a tiger head in profile and a blue bird taking flight

below: Emily May Rose’s now iconic raccoons.  They hang out all over the city!

emily may rose raccoon mural an a garage in David French Lane

a mural on the outside of a wood garage, red x in the middle with other tag, text elements

below: “Fat bottomed girls … You make the rocking world go ’round”  Name that tune!

alley view, garages with street art and graffiti including a pink bum, with backs of houses and trees seen above the garages

in the foreground, black and white faded and peeled painting, with mural across the lane in the background which has a marine theme, large whale and other aquatic animals

Farther east there is another lane but with no name (Toronto is full of nameless lanes!).

black graffiti on a white garage door, black stencil of man upper body, some blobs and the words they live

alley view, line of garages with utility poles

below: Glorious old textures

an old wood garage door in an alley with old tags, faded paint, moss on roof, newer wood gate beside,

painting on a garage of a topless man holding up something very heavy across his back and shoulders, sort of like greek god atlas.

below: This may or not be something called Tomo

on a wood fence, painted white, with black line drawing of a large plump cat like figure with two ears that stand up, small eyes, whiskers, and 3 hearts on his tummy, a small rabbit sits on its head. red word tomo with question mark beside it

… and back to Mallo.  Until next time!

interior of Mallo Coffee shop, woman behind bar, bar with orange, turquoise and blue tiles, a young woman witting at a table, red model airplane hanging from ceiling,

Just east of Old Weston Road, between St. Clair and Davenport, is Wadsworth Park. This park dates from 1934 when the city purchased the land from the Canadian National Railway.

below: The sign in Wadsworth Park gives a brief history of the park in five languages. It also provides a map of the 19 species of tree that grow here, species include London Plane, Tulip, Linden, Freeman Maple, Norway Maple, Bur Oak, Kentucky Coffee Tree, and many others.

sign in Wadsworth park describing the community and the tree species

below: Suri in grey tones while drinking, mural by Haenahhh.

mural on a garage door in an alley by haenahh of a woman sitting with a cup of coffee

below: Mediah blues on the right and a Que Rock mural on the left.

looking across a park in late December, two garages in an alley painted with murals, on the right is one in blues by mediah

below: A closer look at the mural by Que Rock – Mother Earth, loons, and pine trees.

mural by Que Rock, indigenous themes, loons on the water, mother earth,

below: Fantasy creatures playing in a mural by Kisong Koh

mural by Kisong Koh on the door of a garage in a laneway

below:  The alley behind Carleton Village school

below: Windows on the south wall of Carleton Village school.

windows with rectangles of textured glass and coloured glass, exterior wall of Carleton Village Junior and Senior public school, tree growing in front of it, winter

old rusty railing between garages in an alley

below: Mural by Kseniya Tsoy on a garage door.  On the extreme right is a small part of a mural of a purple dog by Bareket – my apologies for not including a better photo …. especially since I now know that she was responsible for organizing the mural paintings in this alley earlier this year.

bright and colourful mural in an alley of a woman

below: End of season remains of veggies (brussel sprouts?) in a patch of land between the alley and the park.

remains of brussel sprout plants in a laneway garden, some snow on the ground

row houses in Carleton Village

below: Beware of Portuguese dog!

on a dark brown fence a faded beware of dog sign in Portuguese

stop sign, altered with a sticker, to now say stop drinking cow's milk

More murals (and other things) in the area can be seen at the next blog post, South of Davenport.

Some of the murals in this post can also be seen in my worldwide street art blog, Carleton Village murals Toronto 2021

Toronto’s old industrial buildings are disappearing.   So when I saw the tall brick chimneys near St. Clair and the Danforth I had to stop and take a closer look.

brick chimney with CLM painted on it, beside other industrial buildings

CLM stands for Canadian Line Materials, also known as CLM industries.  It was a division of McGraw-Edison Ltd and they manufactured electrical equipment.   One of their contracts was with the Canadian Government to build air raid sirens.  CLM was sold in 1985 and no longer exists.

below: Back in behind, part of the parking lot has been given over to the Scarborough Community Garden.

Scarborough Community Garden, raised boxes for growing vegetables, lots of produce, in parking lot of industrial building, church across the street with solar panels in the shape of a cross

below: In the above photo you can see the solar panels on the roof of the Scarborough Church of God that is across the street from the old CLM buildings.  Construction of the church began in 1958 and it was dedicated in March 1960 as the Scarborough Junction United Church.  The blue sign indicates that this is also the home of the Scarborough Grace Harvest Church (Korean).

A frame brick building with brown roof, Scarborough Church of God. Solar panels on the roof in the shape of a cross

below: Side windows on the church

coloured and textured windows of a church

below: A reminder of how diverse Toronto is – Workers rights in many languages

poster on utility pole advertising workers action centre, and new employee rights, in many languages

below: “Known as best psychic and spiritual healer in Toronto”

poster advertising Indian psychic

below: Arsenio’s Kitchen has chicken and rice for $5.99

metal barrels beneath two signs. one advertising chicken and rice for 5 dollars and 99 cents. The other sign says space for lease in a strip mall plaza

below: Fuel stop – gas for the car and a roti for you

Gulf service station at Kennedy and St. Clair. Gas at 1.43 a litre, also butter chicken roti fast food with roti of the week sign

Just to the west, Kennedy Road crosses both St. Clair and Danforth and forms a small triangle.  Immediately south of the Danforth, Kennedy goes over the railway tracks.

below: The view east from Kennedy, looking towards Scarborough GO station.

railway tracks, looking east from Kennedy Road towards Scarborough GO station

below: The view west from the bridge

houses on Raleigh and Glasgow Avenuesview west from Kennedy Road bridge over railway tracks near Danforth,

below: A bit of country in the city.

backyard in Scarborough with a barn shaped shed and a small coop for chickens or pigeons

below: An elephant hiding in the bushes.  Any idea of what flag that might be? Trinidad and Tobago?

graffiti painting of an elephant head on a wood fence, behind some bushes, behind a brick house with a black and red flag

below: Anime-like on a bridge railing.

black and white drawing pasteup graffiti on a black metal railing of a bridge

below: Standing on the platform at Scarborough GO station and looking east.  Here the tracks split – the GO train line to Kennedy and Agincourt stations (and beyond) splits to the left and heads northward.  The other tracks are the main CNR line as well as eastward GO line to Eglinton GO station

looking east from Scarbourgh GO station, tracks,

As I walked, it soon became apparent that there were a lot of commercial buildings now sitting empty. It’s becoming a bit repetitive but once again I found myself in an area that is about to undergo some profound changes.

below: An empty building waiting for demolition.

blue and white city of toronto development notice on an empty auto parts store

Scarborough Junction redevelopment plans involve a 26 acre plot of land adjacent to Scarborough GO station – what has become known as the Scarborough Junction Masterplan.

below: Drawing of the Masterplan. It covers a large chunk of the triangle created by the CNR tracks, Kennedy Road to the west, and St. Clair to the north. It will create about 6620 residential units in 17 buildings with the tallest tower being 48 storeys high. The CLM building is on this site (blocks C & G?). (image source: Urban Toronto).

drawing of plan for Scarborough Junction Masterplan redevelopment at Kennedy and St. Clair, from Urban Toronto,

below: View from the Scarborough GO station.   At the moment, most of the land along the northwest side of the tracks is unused.

behind a broken chainlink fence is a parking lot of an abandoned business, overgrown,

white house, now a commecrial business on St. Clair Ave with a blue and white development notice in front

below: Outdoor seating arrangement

old car seat sitting outside of Sultan Auto Service, closed garage doors

cars parked in front of empty abandoned auto store, with blank black electric sign

exterior of Spee and Dee Auto Service with garage doors covered with photos of cars in the interior of the garage

three piles of old tires blocking the driveway entrance to a light industrial site

below: Truck for sale

a white pick up truck parked behind a black sign with an arrow pointing left

older brick house turned into a business, beside Carmen and Frank's Collision centre

graffiti on the side of a one storey brick building

white car parked in front of white building, Cordi Signs, one light blue door and no windows

below: On the southwest corner of Kennedy and St. Clair is a small plaza from the 1960s.

sign at the corner of Kennedy and St. Clair, stip mall plaza, sign is for Wimpys Diner, Greek Cuisine and East West Pest control

old Canadian flag in the back window of a pick up truck

below: Another empty building behind a fence – Some clothes in cases all that remains of what was once a thrift store (and probably something else before that). There is a weathered sign suggesting a condo development but I haven’t been able to find anything about it (or I missed something).

side of empty building with condo sales advert, also four display cases with clothes that are no longer held up properly

small plaza from the 1960s with Yaffa restaurant, now emppty, Roti Lady restaurant, and another empty store front. Chainlink fence around part of it

empty Yaffa Restaurant and old thrift shop. brick building with a sign that says Fresh coffee,

billboard by fenced in lot, for sale, gas station site available, Kennedy Road street sign

below: One corner that is in no danger of being redeveloped is the northwest corner of St. Clair and Kennedy. This is Pinehills Cemetery.

adornments by a tombstone in Pnehills cemetery, red flowers, a small metal bike old fashioned style, a cross, and a photo of a man, and a small white candle holder lantern

It’s heart warming to see that people care enough about those who have passed away that they find ways to celebrate that person in creative ways.  Insert jokes here about how we’ll all be dead before the Maple Leafs win a Stanley Cup.

objects left by a tombstone, Maple Leafs sign, and their bear mascot figurine about 8 inches high, pink flowers, and a small white cross with words on it

flat ground level memorial in a cemetery with three cigarettes and 2 small Canadian flags

Three streets, College, Dundas, and Lansdowne, form a small triangle in the west end. The following pictures were taken on a summer day a couple of weeks ago when I was walking in and around that triangle.

below: Mural – railway bridge. Just west of here, Dundas crosses a set of tracks – the same line the services Pearson airport and points beyond.

mural on the corner of a building

below: Eating Dominos in the doorway

street art painting of a blue dragon with mouth open wide, pink tongue and yellow teeth, dominos pizza box in mouth

below: Small part of a freaky display of dolls and similar toys along the wood rails surrounding a sidewalk patio

dolls attached to poles as part of decoration on outdoor patio

below: More dolls from the same place –  what does that do to one’s appetite?

old dolls attached to a wood 4 x 4 outside

below: Colourful umbrellas cover a makeshift patio on the street

man walking on sidewalk, away from the camera. patio on street beside sidewalk with many umbrellas over the tables, green, red, and yellow

below: New sidewalk on College Street with a large mural in the distance…..

sidewalk that is roped off with yellow caution tape because the concrete has just been repoured, College Street

below: Beanstalk mural on the side of the coin laundry on the northeast corner of College and St. Clarens.  Maybe that’s Jack at the bottom…   😀

northeast corner of College and St. Clarens, three storey beige brick building with coin laundry on ground floor, large beanstalk mural up the side of the building

below: Orange house, northwest corner of College and St. Clarens

below: …. and an orange car, an older Porsche convertible, in an alley around the corner.

backs of stores in a small alley where a blue Dodge Ram pickup truck is parked. Also parked is an orange car, an old porsche convertible. Graffiti on some of the buildings

below: Lost Time

poster on a wood utility pole with the headline Lost Time

below: Reflections, TTC streetcars and the pope

reflections of a TTC streetcar in a store window

below:  In a convenience store window – get your keys cut here, or buy a mask, but watch out for the five deadly terms used by a woman.  Fine? Go ahead!

signs in window of a convenience store. Keys cut here, covid items for sale - masks, hand sanitizer, also a poster of deadly things that women say

below: Faded signs in another store window

window of a convenience store, in the middle of a large mural on exterior of building, faded signs in the window

below: One of life’s little blue daisies watching you

graffiti sticker on a black brick wall, a little blue daisy

below: Is this dystopia?

stenciled red words on a sidewalk that say Is this dystopia?

below: College at Margueretta

College street near Lansdowne, brick buildings on north side of street

below: Canadian flags on old store windows

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below: A door with a frosty scene in duplicate.

below: Even birds might want to get mail!

a small white bird house is attached to the end of a black mailbox in a doorway

below: Happy mail

tagged mural, mural was an animal in blues on purple astro like background

below: Dundas Gas Bar

below: Outdoor displays

store, with items of clothing on display outside

below: An ad, blue and peeling

old poster peeling from an exterior wall, a blue advertisement for Cuevo alcohol

below: Vacant lot on Lansdowne between College and Dundas

small wood box mounted on chainlink fence around vacant lot , concrete wall behind it

billboard in vacant lot with chainlink fence around it

billboard in vacant lot with chainlink fence around it

below: Northeast corner of Dundas and Lansdowne – some architecture ages better than others.

And with that, I’ll leave you with a few pictures of some of the architecture in the area.

semi divided house, two storey

semi divided house with peaked roof, balconies on upper level

two blue houses, semis, one bright blue and greyish blue.

Just south of Bloor Street

below: Ghost sign that probably says Sweet Caporals, a former tobacco and cigarette brand

red brick wall with ghose sign for sweet caporals

below: Geoffrey the Giraffe takes a smoking break.

white wall back of store, truck loading zone with back of white truck and Geoffrey the Giraffe, Toys R Us symbol on the truck. Someone has graffiti black markered a smoking cigarette in his mouth

small tree beside parking lot with white wall behind

below: Remnants of another era – the final part of Zeller’s hangs on.

back entrance, open doors, of what used to be Zellers. Some of the letters of the name are still there, l e r s

below: Call mom

a wood utility pole with bottom part painted white. Written in pink letters, call mom. greenery around the pole

below: A crooked path

doors, back entrances to stores in mall, with crooked yellow railing and crooked patch in pavement

beige brick wall with beige metal door. sign on door says sprinkler room 7. rust marks on wall by overflow pipe

below: Happy face in green

a stump just above sidewalk level with a green happy face drawn on it

below: Maximum 20

back of Dufferin mall, laneway, single storey

one way sign pointing left on beige brick wall

below: A couple of the five short streets and alleys that come to a dead end behind the mall.

red house and a grey house on dead end street behind chainlink fence

an alley with garages on both sides, behind chainlink fence

below: Brockton stadium also backs onto the laneway behind the mall.

stairs to park and tall lights by the stadium, Brockton stadium

below: To the upper level of the stadium

concrete stairs from the back, to the upper level of stadium seating

graffiti on concrete walls, with yellow digger parked behind fence

two yellow half posts in a parking lot, one with happy face and one with crying eyes

top of photo is red brick wall, bottom of image is a weathered wood fence with words crack lizard written on it

crocheted concentric circles in a window with reflections of the houses across the street

Oakwood Village BIA is centered on Oakwood Avenue, south of Eglinton West.

Toronto street signs, Jesmond Ave with Oakwood village top,

below: “Celebrating Queer Black Lives (2021) by Curtia Wright.  This is also part of a STEPS project, I HeART Main Street, which features 26 murals on “Main Streets” in Ontario this year.

mural on the side of The Beer Store, in bright colours, two women with dreadlocks, eyes closed and about to kiss

below: We are all Canadians, and with a big heart too

hand written sign in window that says We live in Canada We are all Canadians, Toronto Ontario, Below sign is a heart made of crocheted circles in different colours

below: Sidewalk games
paintings on sidewalk, game with numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5, blue water a truck, and a hot air balloon

below: Sidewalk vowels
drawings and paintings on the sidewalk featuring vowels, A E I O and U

below: Shiny palm tree about 5 metres tall – an art installation from 2010 on the traffic island where Oakwood meets Vaughan Road.  It serves as homage to the neighbourhood’s Caribbean community.

Shiny metal sculpture of a palm tree

a house with a glassed in front porch and a Canadian flag flying outside the door, other stores and houses in the background

two small houses pus a couple of slightly larger houses on Oakwood, two have front porches with chairs on them, and well tended front lawns

a grey concrete flower pot that is supposed to look like Roman urn, with bright red flowers growing in it plus a blue and white polka dot child's plastic windmill

below: Rusty the Snowman!

an old rusted metal decoration on a chainlink gate.  laughing snowman, front steps and flowers in planters in the background

below: La Cubana, Supermercado Latina.

La Cubana supermercado Latino, grocery store, first storey painted in blue and white stripes like the Cuban flag,  Cuban flag hanging in the window

The side of La Cubana supermercado grocery store with pictures of food, also stored items under blue tarps, and a bell box painted with a yellow measuring tape and articles of clothing, a bonnet, a tie, a cap, and three pairs of shoes

A purple picture in the window of a door with a cardboard sign in middle that says Please do not put garbage in front of the store, reflections of stores across the street in the window as well

Awning cover on Edmundo Snack bar, with round Carlsberg beer advert above it, exterior

three storey white brick building with reddish mansard roof, lower floor is Asmareeno Grocery and Alert Pest Control

items for sale in displayed in store window that is still decorated for Christmas even though it is summer.  Bowls, tea pots, dishes

reflections in the window of Alfredos hair styling, closed, with a small Canadian flag in the window

below: Recently sold, Open Bible Baptist Church, just south of Eglinton.

old red brick church at 587 Oakwood, windows boarded up and cross removed from over front door

The New Jerusalem Spanish Church with a green hedge in front of it

below: Old gate in front of new (or being renovated) house

below: Where WTF = Wear The Facemask!

4 broken front door bell buzzers on a white peeling paint wall showing yellow paint below.  sticker on yellow with man from monopoly game saying covid? wtf*?  *wear the mask

below: Reggae Lane, just south of Eglinton. The mural in the background was painted by Adrian Hayles in 2015.  Better pictures of it are on a previous blog post about Reggae Lane

murals on reggae lane

graffiti, black spray paint on a light grey concrete wall, outline of a person holding up a sign above head that says Afroism, 2020

below: Waiting…..

below: Never Give Up!

door with a window at 506 Oakwood, with a picture of a bird with a frog in its beak and the words Never give up

a woman dresses in black t shirt and shorts and holding her bike is getting sir from an air pump at an ultramar service center

below: Looking north up Oakwood to Eglinton West. The construction of Oakwood station still has a long way to go! The previous blog post (‘Eglinton and Oakwood’) looked at this intersection/construction.

looking north on Oakwood to where it ends at Eglinton West, crane, construction of new oakwood subway station

below: Looking through a store window in the Distillery District towards the intersection Parliament & Mill.

Distillery District lighting store, looking through their windows, with reflections, a person walking past, horizontal lines, yellow and red desk lamps, an oval lamp hanging from the ceiling

below: Photography exhibit “Looks Like Us” hanging on the fence around David Crombie Park. The exhibit was produced and presented by Jamii in partnership with The Journal.

photograph of a protest in Istanbul Turkey taken by Serra Akcan, mounted on a chainlink fence beside a park

below:: Photo by Serra Akcan, Istanbul

below: Looking northeast at Parliament and Adelaide

new condo construction on the northeast corner of Parliament and Adelaide

below: Parliament and Queen Street East

northeast corner of Adelaide and Queen East

below: Queen Street East

new TTC streetcar travels westbound on Queen Street East past old brick storefronts, historic buildings, The Bullger Burger snad Steak, Convenience and Supermarket, 2 people waiting to get on streetcar,

below: Embedded in the sidewalk, a memorial to those who died in the fire at the Rupert Hotel.

Plaque in the sidewalk describing the Rupert Hotel fire of 1989 when a rooming house burned down, killing 8 people“Rupert Hotel Fire – On December 23rd 1989 a fire roared through the Rupert House Hotel, a licensed rooming house on this site.  Despite the heroic efforts of firefighters and several tenants, ten people died in the blaze, making it one of the worst fires in the history of Toronto.  The tragedy sparked action by municipal organizations to improve the conditions in rooming houses throughout Toronto.  This plaque was dedicated by the City and the Rupert Coalition in a special ceremony on May 18, 1993 in memory of the ten who died: Donna Marie Cann, Stanley Blake Dancy, Edward Finnigan, Vernon Stone, Vincent Joseph Clarke, David Donald Didow, John Thomas Flint, Ralph Orel Stone, Victor Paul Whyte. ” (more…)

below: Up beside the Don Valley Parkway and way off the beaten track this time.

up on a hill, level with a DVP overpass over York Mills Road, concrete barrier at side of parkway, signs for exit ramp to York Mills, also sign saying Lawrence Ave in 2 km,

But obviously some people with spray paint know about this little green corner of North York.

graffiti on a concrete wall beside the Don Valley Parkway just north of York Mills Road

below: More graffiti (text, throw ups) along the concrete barrier beside the southbound traffic

text graffiti on the concrete wall along west side of DVP, apartment building in the background,

below: A dead end on an abandoned road. This is part of the remains of an onramp for the southbound Don Valley Parkway from westbound York Mills Road.

text graffiti on a concrete wall, beside green space and the dead end of an abandoned onramp for the Don Valley Parkway, red brick apartment building, small trees,

below: This ramp was closed in 2005 and replaced with the present road configuration where all the on and off ramps are on the south side of York Mills.  Except for creating a mound of earth along the York Mils side, the site was left untouched.  Small trees are slowly taking over as nature gains the upper hand.

abandoned road starting to be overgrown with cracked asphalt, behind some houses, lots of trees with no leaves (early spring)

below: Still no parking

abandoned ramp to DVP,

Looking south along remains of an abandoned on ramp for the DVP at York Mills Road, later winter,

below:  Walking east on York Mills Road

A path crosses a large lawn in front of two apartment buildings

looking slightly uphill at a tree with a slight lean to the right in front of a tall yellowish grey apartment building

below: Any idea what this is? Something old and to do with water? At first I thought that it was sidewalk feature but now I suspect that someone ditched it here.

Small cylindrical metal object standing upright on the grass beside a sidewalk, rusty and old

below: Looking eastward on York Mills Road

Looking east along York Mills Road, just east of the Don Valley Parkway, some condo construction on the right, traffic, school bus, low rise apartments on the left

red and orange spray paint markings on a sidewalk by a construction site

below: Walking through Deerlick Park

View from a park towards a construction site with first few floors of a new condo built.  Taller apartment buildings in the background

fence around  a pile of dirt, construction site, with orange objects, apartment building in the background

below: Playground on Deerlick Trail

path leading to a playground

An orange kids bike lies on the grass outside a townhouse.  Patio chairs are stacked up by the house along with round table and folded umbrella

below: CN Tower and the downtown Toronto skyline in the distance

Looking beyond a fence and some houses to see the CN Tower and Toronto downtown skyline in the distance

Part of a mural, outdoors summer rural scene with house in the distance, a fox by a creek and a girl in the foreground in a flowered dress and her hair in two pigtails, surrounded by a field of long grass and flowers

below: Trilliums under the Don Valley Parkway. Part of a mural on both sides of the underpass at Brookbanks. It was painted by Sarah J. Collard with help from Manny and Sonja Wiebe.

end of a mural on walls of an underpass, under the DVP.  A field of white trilliums with tree trunks on the background.

Woman walking on sidewalk, walking past a mural by Start and City of Toronto, on DVP underpass concrete walls

part of a mural, a man cycling on a path, a sea gull lands behind him., path goes past field of flowers

3 valleys auto garage and full service gas station, a low one storey building with 4 bays for car repair

below: Church of Our Saviour with its large triangular stained glass window that was apparently designed by a local high school student.

Front view of Our Saviour Church, Anglican, with its A shaped roof line.  Large triangular stained glass window

Construction site in residential area, house is mostly demolished, just footprint remains, fence around site, orange digger, backs of houses in next street, a tall apartment building in the background

blue dump truck backed into a construction site where a house has been demolished

split level semi divided house with cars parked in the driveway, a large tree in front of the one on the right, apartment building behind

From Three Valleys I tried to find a way to get back north to York Mills Road via parks and green spaces but I couldn’t do it. The next blog post was the result of a subsequent walk when I started farther north and attempted to find a path south.

below: No Eiffel Tower here!

blue and white toronto street sign for Paris Court, on a wood utility pole

tile pattern beside a glass door