Posts Tagged ‘industry’

A few weeks ago I read a blog post about Agincourt history in Bob Georgiou’s Scenes from a City.   It reminded me that I had once tried to walk that area but I only got discouraged because of weather (grey, damp) and nostalgia.  Sheppard Avenue just east of Kennedy now has this large concrete underpass (Metrolinx/GO trains) which was a shocking change from my childhood memories.  My parents were living here with their parents when then met and my paternal grandparents remained in the neighbourhood until they passed.  One of my great-grandfathers lived on Agincourt Drive in a house that backed onto the railway tracks.

sheppard avenue east just east of kennedy road, with GO train bridge overpass, all concrete, with access road to Go station on the left

This time round, I waited for a sunny day before I tried walking here again.   For the most part, I walked Sheppard Avenue East between Kennedy and Brimley and the photos below are what I saw – what you see there these days.  If you are more interested in the history of the area, then you need to be reading Bob’s blog as mentioned above.

Let’s walk!

a man with a red backpack walks along the sidewalk in front of some small businesses, a condo building in the background

below: The area’s Asian character is very obvious.

Asian store front windows

below: Nutriever?

nutriever label in an ad in a store window, canada flag on the label too

below: West Highland Creek, north of Sheppard

waterway with concrete sides, graffiti on the walls, some water,

pink and white text graffiti on a canal wall

below: Are you in the market for a used truck?

looking across the street to a used truck lot, tall condos in the background

below: If not a truck, how about a car? I passed at least three used car lots.

honest used car sales at the corner of Reidmont and Sheppard

a grey apartment building in the background, a house as auto sales, cars parked in front, used car lot,

Top ten auto, used car sales, white trailer, yellow and black checkered flags

below: The old Agincourt GO station has been demolished and a new one is being built.

2 fences, one on either side of a pedestrian pathway through a construction area at Agincourt GO station

signs on construction fence at Agincourt GO station showing picture of new station

side of a house, orange construction fence, ELlis Don sign, metal railling

below: Bell Canada (It’s a white building)

white Bell Canada building in Scarborough with big round vents on the side

below: In a front yard on a nearby street….. I have many questions.

a small tree, some metal rungs, a bike tied up near top of tree, grey sculpture on the ground

below: Looking east just before Midland Avenue

intersection of Midland and Sheppard East, on Sheppard, looking east,

below: Part of the reason that Sheppard and Midland looks so empty is this vacant site on the southwest corner.  There was once a Lumber King Home Centre here, then it was a flea market and used car lot, but now it’s an empty building on an otherwise vacant 4.7 acres.   A plan for 80 townhouses and a park was filed back in 2015 and seems to have been winding its way through the development process ever since.

chainlink fence around an empty and abandoned store with yellow and white front, large vacant parking lot in front, a security sign is upside down on the fence

old weathered framing around a sign, now empty, in front of a vacant lot

chainlink fence with rusty mailboxes, a lot of garbage has blown up against the fence

below: A quick rest at the intersection where there are actually some people.   I miss interacting with the people that I see as I walk around… and I’m sure that you’ve noticed the lack of people in these blog posts.

corner of Midland and Sheppard East, a Midland bus is northbound, bus shelter with 2 people across the street

 Also, re the TTC – this is Sheppard Avenue, home of the Sheppard subway, or is it LRT now?  As I was researching development at 4181 Sheppard, I discovered that Metrolinx has been applying for easements along Sheppard in preparation for anything that might be built on that street.

two women getting on a Sheppard TTC bus at Midland

below: There is always something to remind us of life’s situation these days, such as this ad that was on a bus shelter.  I liked the hashtag at the end, #PracticeSafe6ix

poster in a bus shelter, Covid-19, how it isn't over yet, practice safe six

below: Knox United Church was built as a Free Presbyterian church in the 1840’s but became Knox United in 1925.   This was when the Presbyterians merged with the Methodists to form the United Church of Canada. (Although not all Presbyterian churches went along with the merger).

side of red brick church with cemetery between church and road, smell steeple, Knox United church

below: Agincourt Baptist Church

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below: There is a second overpass in the area.   The CPR tracks pass over Sheppard between Midland and Brimley, just west of Canadian Pacific’s Toronto Yard.

looking along Sheppard East from the railway underpass

below: On this overpass is a mural by elicser

mural by elicser on the concrete wall of a C P R overpass in Scarborough

part of an elicser mural, a woman with a red rose in her hair sits on a man's shoulders, a woman in a pink dress is also in the picture

below: Running parallel to the south side of the CPR line and Sheppard Avenue is a large industrial complex belonging to the International Group of Companies.

steel tanks, rail line, industrial area

industrial site with metal tanks, a storefront with Chinese signs in front and to one side

advertising signs along a fence, spa for 15 dollars, a Chinese furniture store, a pink poodle picture

signs along Sheppard Ave East
Chinese halal buffet restaurant with bright red sign,
a small skinny flower store on Sheppard

below: Toronto has 85 BIAs (Business Improvement Areas) including Sheppard East Village which includes Sheppard between Midland and Markham Road.

street signs and banners on utility poles, Sheppard East Village, Fulham Street, Brimley Road,

below: At Glen Watford and Shephard there is a large new Seniors residence planned.

sign advertising live music and dancing in front of a strip mall that is about to be redeveloped

below: In the meantime, there are empty stores.

Dragon centre, Chinese market, now closed and empty, empty parking lot and two small dead cedar trees

below: North Scarborough Memorial being renovated but the old gate remains.

old gate in front of North Scarborough Memorial centre, now renamed, indoor swimming pool

below: Agincourt Elementary School.  Built in 1915 as a Continuation School, (grades 9 and 10) but used as an elementary school since Agincourt Collegiate was built in 1930.

Agincourt Public school, two storey square brick building built in the early 1900s as a high school

large trees in front of a red brick school, Agincourt Collegiate

residential street in Agincourt, brick houses, Ross Avenue street sign

a house in a residential neighbourhood being renovated

below: (Snow)man down! You’d be tired too if you had to stand outside all winter!

below: Mystery ‘All Way Stop’ in the Walmart parking lot.

a stop sign is leaning against the back of a billboard so that no one can see it from the road

A sweet post.

This is what 37,000 tons of raw sugar looks like.
The Raw Sugar Shed at Redpath Sugar is 27m high,  155m long, and 43 m wide.  It’s a big space!

a man is leaning on a temporary metal barricade in front of a very large pile of raw sugar in a large warehouse.

Raw sugar is brought to the Redpath Sugar facility by ship.  When it is off-loaded from the ship it is brought into the warehouse by conveyor belts that run down the middle of the ceiling.

below: There isn’t a ship in the harbour at the moment so the green crane waits.

a little girl in the foreground, standing beside a squared opening in the harbour for ships to come in, beside the Redpath Sugar refinery building on the waterfront with its green cranes and greenish blue building

below:  You can see a holes in the foreground of the next photo.  This is one of many holes in the floor of the Raw Sugar Shed.  The raw sugar is pushed through these holes to another series of conveyor belts below.

a large yellow front end loaded is parked inside a warehouse. A large pile of raw sugar is in the background.

three warning signs on the outside of a door of the Redpath Sugar shed, a warehouse for storing raw sugar. One says "Beware of Heavy Equipment", the second says "Sound horn before entering" and the third says "Canadian Government Customs Bonded Warehouse no. 60"

below: Photo taken from the entrance to the Raw Sugar Shed, taken at Doors Open.  Raw sugar is taken by conveyor belt (upper far right) to the processing plant next door.

sugar processing area of Redpath Sugar refinery, some white tents and metal barricades for crowd control as it is Doors Open day.

close up of the white Redpath Sugar processing plant, grey metal covers on conveyor belt tunnels and vents

below: A lingering remnant, railway crossing signs from when a railway ran here.
A guard sits by the entrance to Redpath Sugar.

a wire fence with barbed wire across the top, behind the fence is round yellow railway crossing sign as well as a large blue metal pole and a small shrub. There is also an old warning sign for a railway that once ran past here.

The railway serviced the industries that were built along the Toronto waterfront,  The LBCO, Loblaws, the ‘Toronto Star’ newspaper, Molson Breweries, Dominion Malting and others, relied on the railways.   Completed in 1959, the Redpath refinery was the last industry built along the waterfront.  You can just see the railway tracks in the photo below, running between Queens Quay East and the Redpath building where they dead end.  Since the tracks only dead ended there in 1985, that helps date the picture.   Rail service ended in 2008.

aerial view of the East Wharf portion of the Toronto wateterfront, vintage photo from the 1970's or 1980's

photo credit: Originally from City of Toronto Archives but found online at Old Time Trains.

Today, Redpath Sugar is one of the last industries operating on the waterfront; The area around it is rapidly being redeveloped, including the space right next door that is aptly called Sugar Beach.

people sitting on white chairs under pale pink umbrellas at Sugar Beach. sand, water and blue sky, beside Lake Ontario

a man sits on a chair between a blue shipping containter and a building,

Both Adelaide St. East and Richmond St. East pass over King Street as they converge into Eastern Avenue.  Recently the concrete supports that help hold up these overpasses have been painted in bright, bold pictures.  The murals are entitled ‘Frozen Memories’ and they were designed and painted by street artist Shalak Attack with help from Bruno Smoky and Fiya Bruxa.

 All four pillars of the overpasses are in view.

Each pillar has a large face on the side that faces King Street and a picture that depicts something representative of Corktown on the other sides. 

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass, in  the foreground is the face of a man with the eyes on the upper horizontal portion of the support and his mouth on the lower part.

These murals are a part of the StreetARToronto Underpass Program or “StART UP.” 

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass,  a man passes by on the sidewalk while in the foreground is a support painted with street scenes.  Houses and streetcar tracks.

Enoch Turner established Toronto’s first free school in the Corktown area in 1848. 

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass, a young girl in a pink top sitting at a table and writing in a notebook.  The word love is written on one of the pages.

painting of the Enoch Turner school on one of the pillars supporting Adelaide St. East in Toronto.  Other Corktown houses are also painted here on the lower part of the pillar.

  Two of the main industries in Corktown were bricks and beer.   One pillar pays homage to the people who worked in these industries, including this bricklayer.

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass, a man portrayed in blue tones, wearing an old fashioned hard hat and holding a trowel.

Mural on concrete pillar of a blue brick layer surrounded by symbols of industry such as factories, gears, beer bottles, bricks.  There is a parking lot surrounding the concrete support so there are cars parked in front of the pillar.

This mural is a another tribute to the early days of Corktown.   Sailing ships, maps and compasses are for the immigrants that came here.   The first church built in Corktown was Little Trinity in 1843.   It’s stained glass window is shown here.

Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass, three supports are in the picture.  The one in the foreground has marine scenes - two sailing ships, a large turtle, and waves.  The two supports in the background are those with faces, one man and one woman.

other views

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Paintings on the large T shaped concrete supports of the overpass,  a large multicoloured woman's face is on the concrete support that is across the street.  A chain link ffence and yellow fire hydrant are in the foreground.