Posts Tagged ‘redevelopment’

below: Bathurst at Lawrence on a snowy November day. (looking east)

below: Standing in the same spot but turning slightly,  Lawrence West, north side, west of Bathurst

black and orange traffic construction cones in the snow on the right lane of Lawrence, Bathurst Plaza in the background

below: Southwest corner of Bathurst and Lawrence

southwest corner of Bathurst and Lawrence, midrose apartment building that curves around the corner, retail at street level, two older people with walkers crossing at the intersection

below: Seniors Safety Zone.  How effective can a sign like this be on a busy four lane road?  If you want cars to slow down why not just reduce the speed limit?  But yes, there are a lot of seniors living in the area.

a woman walking up snowy sidewalk on Bathurst, past a pole with a yellow Seniors Safety Zone sign

below: There are many apartment buildings from the 1960s and 1970s in the area. They are old enough that the trees have grown up around them.

large old poplar tree in front of a brown brick midrise apartment building

brown brick mid rise apartment building from the 19703, in winter with snow, trees with no leaves, Bathurst Street

below: There are signs of redevelopment

vacant snow covered lot in the foreground, black brick wall of apartment building in background,

below: Some are of an age that it is more convenient to tear them down – for better or worse.  Long gone are the days when curved arches like this were popular with builders.

metal construction fence around a large curved arch in a 1970s apartment building empty and waiting demolition

below: Many of the residences on Lawrence are four or six plexes but here too, there are signs of changes afoot. Here the proposed new building is 4 storeys high and has 10 apartments.

blue and white city development notice in front of a residential 4 plex, in the snow,

residence on Lawrence West, 6-plex, winter

chairs stacked in front of a building on Lawrence, in the snow, beside a chain link fence

below: Alley behind Lawrence Ave

alley behind Lawrence Ave West, south side, backs of 4 plexes residences, with balconies overlooking the alley

old white door, entry to multi residence building

a blue arm chair and a wood chair in the snow beside a snow covered pile of rubble, a yellow bin, in front of a small apartment building

fence in an alley, winter time, painted in teal, pink, and yellow

below: Last season’s left overs.

poster on wood utility pole advertising spring tire change, even though it is now winter

a utility pole that is also a TTC bus stop with a lot of clear tape wrapped around the pole with many torn TTC signs saying that this stop not in use

two young men sit in bus shelter, backs to camera, waiting for a bus, stores can be seen across the street, Bathurst Street

below: Celebration Presbyterian Church, built in 1951.

Celebration Presbyterian church on the corner of Coldstream and Bathurst, small brick building, red front door,large pine trees on either side of the front entrance, snow,

below: Looking north on Bathurst towards Lawrence Avenue

west side of bathurst street, looking north towards lawrence avenue,

below: Many languages – English, Russian, Hebrew, Spanish, French, and Tagalog

windows of an old medical building, empty, for lease sign on it, signs in window say we speak many languages, english, hebrew, russian, spanish, french, tagalog

New York Bagels, Haymishe Bakery, and Cocoy filipino restaurant on Bathurst street

faded, blue tinted, travel posters in hebrew in a store window

empty store window with hebrew lettering on it

a poplar tree with most of its leaves gone, just some yellow leaves remaining, snow, apartment buildings in the background

below: Dell Park Variety – just above the sidewalk to the right of the variety store is a mosaic mural, “Almonds and Wine”.  More photos of it are in the previous blog post.

curved building, Dell park variety store on the corner of Bathurst and Dell Park

torn poster on hydro pole that says we still believe in love for you, ad for a speed dating service, ripped, torn

old empty Shoppers Drug Mart on Bathurst with ghost sign

below: South on Bathurst approaching Glencairn.

lower corner of a brown brick apartment building with Bathurst St street scene in the background

below: Hoardings on the southwest corner of Bathurst and Glencairn. The artwork is “Ayurveda” by Kirk Sutherland.

sidewalk and hoardings on Glencairn at Bathurst, artwork by Kirk Sutherland

below: Old tilework, little tiles, on an exterior wall – remnants of an earlier age.

metal frame plant holder outside in snow, in front of a wall covered with small tiles in beige, brown, and blue

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.

Eastward from Bay with a diversion or two.

These photos were taken on two different walks and you will have no trouble figuring out which images belong to which day! The first walk was on a damp morning back in September; the second walk was on a pleasantly warm and sunny October afternoon.

below: Looking up Bay Street to Old City Hall and its clock tower.

looking up Bay street from Adelaide including old city hall tower

below: New public art  “Dreaming” by Jaume Plensa made of polyester resin and marble dust.  Brilliantly white.

large white head public art on Adelaide, side view

large white head public art on Adelaide

Hidden by scaffolding …   par for the course that no matter where you walk there will be construction.

construction on Adelaide, front of building covered with scaffolding

Even though there have been a lot of changes on Adelaide, there are some old details that have been preserved such as these mosaics that are temporarily behind scaffolding. They are above the entrance to the Bell Canada Building at 76 Adelaide West. Five panels, each twenty feet tall and five feet wide, of glass mosaic tile are embedded in the cement of the building. They were designed by York Wilson and installed in 1965 when the building was constructed. The theme of the piece is communication and each panel represents a different form of communication – writing, drawing, music, voice, and satellites.

mosaic tile decorations on exterior of building, behind scaffolding

At 100 Adelaide West is the remains of the Concourse Building. When the area was redeveloped recently, only the front and east facade of the original Art Deco 1928 building were preserved. The original entrance way on Adelaide remains; they feature mosaics created by Group of Seven member J.E.H. MacDonald and his son Thoreau.

art deco doorway - tile mosaics, carved stonework, and metal decorations on window and door,

Art Deco stonework

art deco details carved in stone on exterior of building

The remains of a metal fence or railing.

old metal railing outside entrance of a building

below: Looking east, at Sheppard Street.

street scene

pressure cleaning, with water, outside a building downtown

below: It looks like a splash of paint – like someone threw a can of paint at the building.

exterior of Deloitte building at Adelaide and Yonge, glass exterior has new artwork that looks like a large splash of water

below: The octagonal entrance to 1 Adelaide East (at Yonge) with its stained glass roof is being renovated.

below: Distraction!  Film crew on King Street (looking down Victoria St).

street scene to film crew working

below: Film trucks line both sides of Toronto Street

film trucks parked on both sides of Toronto street

below: Toronto hieroglyphics

yellow hydrant on sidewalk, with pink lines spray painted beside it

below: A short, tidy alley off Adelaide near Victoria

short tidy alley between two older stone and brick buildings

below: Fountains and public art in Adelaide Courtyard.  Collectively, the work is “Synthetic Eden” and it was created by Stacey Spiegel back in 1991.   The fountain with the metal mesh covering it – the mesh is supposedly the head of Adam.

fountains and public art in Adelaide Courtyard

below: The snake lurks over the garden.  The entrance to Adelaide Courtyard is beyond the etched glass panels.

Adelaide Courtyard

below: St. James Cathedral from the corner of Church and Adelaide.

St James Cathedral seen from the intersection of Church and Adelaide

below: Slight diversion north on Church where there is now a large vacant lot at Lombard.  How many cranes?

Church and Lombard vacant lot

below: Church Street, north from Adelaide.  A vacant lot on one side, a partial development on the other.

street scene with TTC street car

people walking past the ontario heritage plaque for the York Mechanics Institute at the corner of Adelaide and Church, now a patio for Tim Hortons

“The Mechanics’ Institute movement began in Britain and soon spread to North America. Its aim was to teach workers the applied technology behind new methods of manufacture and craftsmanship introduced during the Industrial Revolution. The first Institute in Ontario was established at York (Toronto) in 1830. It sponsored lectures, held classes and operated a lending library. It moved from rented quarters into its own new building on this site in 1861. After passage of the Free Libraries Act in 1882, the Institute transferred its assets to the municipal government. Its book collections formed the foundation of the Toronto Public Library, which opened in the former Institute building in 1884.”

below: Circa 1900, the music room of the York Mechanics Institute as a newspaper reading room

old black and white picture of the interior of the York Mechanics Institute that became a public library, newspaper reading room

photo credit: Photographer unknown, image from digital archives of the Toronto Public Library.

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below: “Brickman” by Inges Idee stands outside a residential building at Jarvis and Adelaide.  He stands 10m tall and is actually made from precast concrete, not brick.

 

very tall brick sculpture of a man shape, called Brickman, outside a brick building

below: Looking northwest from the corner of Adelaide and Jarvis

looking northwest from the corner of Adelaide and Jarvis

looking through the glass windows of a gelato and coffee shop on a corner, two women walking past, chairs inside, sunny day, park across the street

below: Old Post Office.  This building was opened in 1832, before Toronto became a city.  According to Wikipedia “It is the oldest purpose-built post office in Canada that functioned as a department of the British Royal Mail and the only surviving example. After its initial use as a post office, it became part of a Roman Catholic boys’ school” until 1913.  It was used for various things (offices, cold storage, etc) until 1971 when it was closed up and left vacant.  When it was (re)discovered to be the old post office, it was designated as an Ontario Heritage Site as well as a National Historic Site.  Since 1982 it has been a museum as well as a functional post office.

Torontos first post office on adealide street, 3 storey brick building with Canadian flags flying on either side of the entrance

below: Future chefs, George Brown College

looking in the windows on the 2nd storey of George Brown College into the kitchen of the cooking school. students in chef outfits, white, with hats, standing around a class

below: Looking west from Frederick Street.  At this point we are in the old town of York, laid out by John Graves Simcoe in 1793.  At that time, Adelaide Street was called Duke Street, after the Duke of York.  Richmond Street, one block north was Duchess Street for his wife.  The Duke of York at that time was the second son of King George III, Prince Frederick.

Adelaide East, looking west towards downtown

below: Looking west from Sherbourne.  This was originally Caroline Street, named after  Caroline of Brunswick who was the wife of Prince George in 1793 (and later George IV).  When she became too unpopular, the street name was changed to Sherbourne, after the town in England with the same name but a different spelling, Sherborne.

people crossing Adelaide at Sherbourne, looking west on Adelaide towards downtown

I stopped to take a picture of an old car (remember when diesel cars were going to take over the world?) and I found an old shoe.  Keep walking and keep your eyes open because you never what you’re going to find along the way!

an old beige diesel mercedes parked on the side of a street, a single abandoned shoe on the pavement behind it

The middle of three new bridges built for the Port Lands redevelopment has just been opened to traffic.

looking north up cherry street through new yellow and white curvy bridge

The bridge may be open to traffic, but the area is still a construction zone!

Eventually Cherry Street will be realigned so that there is no jog in it at Lakeshore.    At this point in time, the south part of the realignment is closer to completion.  This is where the new bridge is.

Commissioners Street has been extended westward to join the new segment of Cherry Street.

 below: This is the east intersection of Commissioners and Cherry (looking east).  Yes, it’s a mess!  There are traffic signals even though only two of the four approaches are open.  If you are traveling south on Cherry, you have to turn right onto Commissioners.

cherry street and commissioners street intersection, canary diner restaurant, construction, port lands redevelopment

below: Same intersection, looking west.

intersection of Cherry and Commissioners street, construction, police watching over, trucks in intersection, new traffic signals

below: New part of Commissioners Street

construction along the west end of Commissioners street in the port lands, with the toronto skyline in the background

below: The west part of Commissioners ends here

dead end street, Commissioners street, west end, fence and no entry signs, traffic lights

below: If you stand in the same place as the above photo but turn to your right, this is the view that you see.  This is the new part of Cherry Street being realigned to match the section north of Lakeshore Blvd.  The new bridges over the Keating Channel are in place but there is still a lot to be done before this part of Cherry Street can be opened.

Glooking north where the new part part of Cherry Street is being built, new double bridge to go over the Keating channel as well as condos in Distillery District are in the background

below:  Looking south… It is the middle bridge that has been opened to traffic first.  It is located approximately where the T ‘n T grocery store used to be.  An interesting line of large boulders!

new Cherry Street bridge with its yellow curved lines, large rocks in the dirt in the foreground, construction still in progress

below: This is the view from the new bridge looking west.  The large white crane structure predates the construction.  The channel has always been here as it provides water/ship access to the Lafarge cement site on the south side of the waterway.  What is new is that the channel is being extended eastward to join the mouth of the Don River.

view from the Cherry Street bridge new bridge, towards Lake Ontario, Toronto skyline in the background, construction equipment in the foreground for the redevelopment of the Port Lands

below: Traveling northbound

a cement truck and a ttc bus on Cherry street on the new bridge

two cyclists pass over the new Cherry Street bridge in the bike lane

below: Looking east from the bridge.   Pinewood studios in the background on the right.

looking east from port lands yellow bridge, overlooking construction in port lands

below: Another view to the east but slightly more south.  This time Pinewood Studios is more to the left in the photo.   A pedestrian bridge is already built to span the new water channel that is under construction.

port lands redevelopment, noew pedestrian bridge over new water channel that is being created

temporary pole with pedestrian crossing light at an intersection in a construction zone, a cyclist is passing through, new port Lands bridge in the background

below: Looking north up Cherry Street towards the Distillery District.  The old, and now closed part, of the street is being torn up.  The new street and bridge are to the left in this photo.

port lands construction site, starting to tear up the old part of Cherry Street, distillery district condos in the background

port lands construction site, starting to tear up the old part of Cherry Street, distillery district condos in the background

big yellow machinery digging up the asphalt from an old road and placing it in a dump truck

a man in a red shirt walks two dogs on the sidewalk along Cherry street, towards construction and the new bridge, TTC bus in the oncoming lane of traffic

orange construction sign that says be prepared to stop, haul trucks entering and exiting, with construction, and a large dump truck beside and behind the sign

below: To the south, the lift bridge on Cherry Street is being refurbished but not replaced.  This part of Cherry Street is not being moved.

looking south at Cherry Street to lift bridge that is being refurbished

in the early morning sun, stairs in the sunlight beside a bridge, going down to the water, an old building and its reflections behind

Yesterday, Sunday of the long August weekend, I was sitting on a streetcar after walking around downtown.  I was in no rush; I was enjoying the scenery and the people watching.  The streetcar detoured off route so I didn’t end up where I expected to.  But no problem, I had my camera with me.

very front of a TTC bus at a bus stop with a streetcar turning in front of it, also reflections of turning streetcar. Some people standing on the sidewalk

These photos are glimpses of life in the city as seen through a streetcar window as it passes by.  Most of them were taken through glass…  and often the streetcar was moving…  so please don’t expect technically perfect shots!

hot summer day, people waiting for an arriving TTC streetcar on College Street, woman in a wide brim blue hat and flowery skirt, man in blue Hawaiian shirt with orange and yellow flowers

below: Northeast corner of Spadina and College streets.

northeast corner of Spadina and College streets, people crossing Spadina, low rise old brick building

below: “The Best in Town”for banana boats! cones!  sundaes! shakes!

an ice cream truck on College Street,

a person in orange t shirt and white shorts running to cross intersection of Bay and College

below: Dundas at Bay. Ryerson School of Management, Best Buy, and Canadian Tire.

intersection of Bay and Dundas, westbound traffic and bikes, some pedestrians ready to cross Bay as well.

below: Reflections on Dundas

reflections of a TTC streetcar in the window of a building on Dundas

below: Surfacing from Dundas subway station

people exiting Dundas subway station on the northwest corner of Dundas and Yonge, a couple trying to figure where they are

below: The newest mural near Dundas and Victoria.

large black and white mural on Dundas Street, white car parked in front of it. Mural features portraits of people

below: University buildings at Dundas and Church – and the rebranding of Ryerson as TMU (Toronto Metropolitan University).

corner of Dundas and Church streets, looking northwest, Ryerson University buildings, a man on a bike waiting for a green light

below: Ran out of gas, northeast corner of Dundas and Church

northeast corner of Dundas and College. Old gas station that has pumps and most of buildings removed, overhang structure still in place, taller buildings behind

below: Dundas and Mutual.  An old building put to a modern use.

corner of Dundas and Mutual, two men on bikes, older house on corner with yellowish brick and mansord roof, now a cannabis shop

below: The sign says it all. Every time I pass Filmores I am surprised to still see it standing. I thought that it was supposed to be torn down months (years?) ago.  I was also surprised to see Filmores on sites like Expedia, Hotel.com and Booking.com.  You can’t actually book one of their “straight forward rooms” on these sites, you have to call or email the hotel directly.  If you want to know more than that, you’ll have to do your own research!

front of Filmores Hotel on Dundas Ave., with sign over front entrance that says the rumours of our closing are greatly exaggerated

below: You might be able to stay at Filmores, but you can’t eat at The Love Cafe anymore.

old sign for the love cafe, bent and slightly broken above heart shaped sign, on exterior of the restaurant

below: Christmas wreaths on the doors of Dunhill Electric Co.

Dunhill electric, a very narrow storefront on Dundas

below: Dundas and Ontario Streets, Royal Oak Inn

Dundas and Ontario streets, Royal Oak Inn, Hydra Tattoo

below: Dundas and Parliament, north side

Dundas at Parliament

people sitting on a TTC bus

a young woman in black hajib and white bag walks past closed doors of a bus

Happy trails!

Starting at King and Berkeley and walking a little bit north and a bit farther west.

below: This wall, at King and Berkeley, used to have a large painting of a black chair on it.  Now it has two boys on the run with an Afghan flag.

tall white building with graffiti of two boys running with Afghan flag

below: It was painted by Mahyar Amiri a few months ago in an effort to raise awareness of the ongoing crisis in Afghanistan.

 white building with graffiti street art of two young boys running. one is carrying an afghan flag, Afghanistan, the other is carrying a tire or similar shaped item, with the words not art written on it

below: In front of the Alumni Theatre on Berkeley Street.

painting on metal street box in front of Alumni theater on Berkeley street, beside laneway with another black and white mural on side of building

below: Also on Berkeley Street, the old Christie Brown stables are now the lower floors of a condo building.

95 Berkeley Street, old brick building that houses Christie Smith bakery stables, now the lower part of a condo development

historic plaque for Christie, Brown and company stables at 95 Berkeley street

“This building was once a stable that housed horses and wagons for one of Canada’s largest biscuit manufacturers. From here, Christie, Brown & Co delivered baked goods prepared at its Adelaide Street factory across Toronto.”
  “Designed by the architectural firm of Sproatt & Rolph, the building’s Beaux-Arts Classical style was popular at the turn of the 20th century for its appearance of stability and grandeur.  With elements such as the contrasting stone trim and arcade windows, it was built to reflect the appearance of the nearby Christie factory.  The state-of-the-art stable included two floors of wagon storage with a purpose-made elevator, stalls in the back for the care of sick horses, and a central horse shower underneath a large skylight. “
“Founded by Scottish-born businessman William Christie (1829-1900), Christie Brown & Co manufactured over 400 types of baked goods at its peak.  In 1928, Nabisco acquired the company. The stable was later used as a garage, seed plant, and film production office.  It is now part of a residential complex. “

below: Christie Brown biscuit factory on Adelaide street in 1902. The building still exists and is part of George Brown College.  It takes up the whole block between George and Frederick streets.

old colour photo of Christie Brown cookie factory on Adelaide street, brick building with windows with curved tops

below: This neighbourhood advertises itself as “Old Town, since 1793”.

Toronto city street sign for Worts Lane, turquoise banner advertising the fact that this is part of Old Town, since 1793

below: But a lot of it is starting to look shiney and new (what? a new parking lot in downtown Toronto?)

new condos on Richmond Street east, with new staples store and a just paved new parking lot

below: A copy of a late 1890’s lithographic poster advertising bicycles from Fernand Clement & Cie Cycles Paris. The original artist was Jean de Paléologue (1860-1942). This version is a large mural on Worts Lane.

fernand clement and cie mural of woman on a bicycle with large moon, night time scene

below: Mother of God of Prousa Greek Orthodox Church on Richmond East

Mother of God Prousa Greek Orthodox church on Richmond Eat, small simple stucco building with central wood door and small cross on roof peak

below: Old and not so old.  The taller grey building is the Chapter House for the Greek Orthodox church that is immediately to the east.

two adjacent houses on Richmond Street, half of old black house remains, other half has been renovated to three storey building

one way street sign in front of a window of a brick building painted blue

below: Apparently everything ends here on Ontario Street

car parked in front of old brick building on Ontario street, with graffiti words on wall that says all ends here

… and around the corner

an exterior brick wall with some of the bricks covered with rectangular pieces of mirror

blue painted graffiti words on a pale grey brick building that say this is all gonna end badly

below: This street art faces a parking lot between Brigden and Queen East that is now fenced off.  It is one of 4 or 5 paintings along that wall.

old street art that has small shrubs and vines growing over it

below: This is one of the street art pieces on the same wall. The photo was taken in  2012 when the site was accessible and before the vines and shrubs took over.

photo taken in 2012 of street art with iconic red tongue from rolling stones

below: A very large empty building and vacant lot that used to be a car dealership. This is part of a large section of land that has been under redevelopment for at least five years (includes the parking lot in the photos above).

bags of yard waste lie on the sidewalk on Richmond Street on sidewalk by large vacant lot, east of Sherbourne

below: … The original proposal back in February 2016 was three towers of 39, 45 and 39 storeys, on top of two base buildings ranging from 3 to 11 storeys within a site bordered by Queen Street East, Ontario Street, Richmond Street East and McFarrens Lane. That was turned down by the city. Since then there has been various modifications, appeals, and litigation (ongoing?).

a black and a blue metal drum shaped container, barrels, in vacant lot, with large puddle and tall weeds by vacant Downtown collision center building

a chair, outside, litter on ground, vines on wall behind

below: On what was once a Honda dealership there is now an art installation with words…

exterior wall of empty honda dealership, word graffiti that says to win the outergame you must first master the inner game, dr. joe

below: … and pasteups from jumblefacefoto aka Jeremy Lynch

pasteups by jumbleface foto

pasteup collages by Jeremy Lynch, eyes in the center, abstract around

below:  On the same wall: In the line of fire – urban ninja squadron‘s t-bonez takes aim with very heavy firepower.  It looks like spudbomb has already been hit by an arrow and is bentoghoul providing the target?

pasteups on a black wall, an urban ninja squadron with a large missile, a spudbomb and another poster like graffiti by bentoghoul

below: Looking west on Richmond from Brigden Place.  Richmond Street jogs to the right at Jarvis – it doesn’t dead end like it looks in the photo.

looking west on Richmond street from near Sherbourne

below: Looking north on McFarrens Lane to Queen Street

looking north on McFarrens Lane from Richomnd Steet, to the babrber and hairstylist shop on Queen.  Tall apartment building behind that

below: About 1910 this is what the northeast corner of Richmond and Sherbourne Streets looked like.  Not surprisingly, this is all long gone.

old black and white photo from about 1910 of the northeast corner of Richmond and Sherbourne streets

an old car from the 70s parked beside a building, a new TTC streetcar behind

below: From biscuits to hot dogs…. Soloways Hot Dog Factory Outlet, in business since 1927. They sell a wide range of bulk meat, meta products, and plant based meat products both wholesale and to the public.

sign over entrance to Soloways Hot dog factory outlet in nondescript brick building

below: Richmond and George, with the bright red of the George Diner dominating the intersection.

at Richmond and George streets, red building on corner is George's Diner, with large sign that says Delicious Food that Satisfies

below: The windows have been painted.

one of the windows of Georges Diner, a red brick building, painted with a scene of the interior of the restaurant.

below: Old newspaper articles taped to the window.  The top one is a review of the restaurant (with apologies for it being too small/fuzzy to read).   The bottom one has a headline that reads “Don’t be like Dick”.  With an image like that I immediately think of Dick and Jane (yikes, those of us who remember Dick and Jane from our childhoods are dwindling in number!).

old newspaper articles taped to window with coke machine behind it

below: At Richmond and Jarvis, northeast corner

indigenous theme mural on the side of a Petro Canada station at Richmond and Jarvis

below: Mystic Muffin on the southeast corner of Jarvis and Richmond.

mystic muffin, a blue building, on the southeast corner of Richmond and Jarvis

below: Richmond Street bike lanes are now separated from traffic by a low kerb that has been decorated by a number of street artists.  This section is the work of AndreaCataRo aka Andrea Rodriguez

brick building and parking lot behind chainlink fence

red ant painted on a kerb separating bike lanes from traffic

below: Another view of the bike lane barrier, this one at the intersection of Richmond and Berkeley and looking west towards the city center.

Richmond Street east, at Berkeley, with barrier between bike lanes and other traffic

little purple mouse sticker graffiti

two black and white sticker slaps graffiti on a grey metal pole, one is a black rabbit with words why suspect us. and the other is a white abstract drawing on black background

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

McDonalds drive-thru with demolition…. yes, I’ll have fries with that.

Mcdonalds drive thru lanes with a black car, in front of two apartment buildings now empty and getting ready to be demolished

The demolition hasn’t really started yet but the buildings are empty and the grounds interiors are being cleared out.

blue construction fence around a pile of rubble outside of an apartment building getting ready to be demolished, old concrete, twisted metal, red bike,

empty apartment building at 1555 Queen East

pile of rubble outside of an apartment building getting ready to be demolished, old concrete, twisted metal,

below: Sidewalk along Eastern Avenue, looking east towards Lower Coxwell

sidewalk along Eastern Avenue, green grassy boulevard, empty apartment buildings behind chainlink fence

below: At Lower Coxwell and Eastern there is a gap in the old fence and overgrown bushes that leads to what once was a parking lot. The building in the background is one the ones being torn down.

path through old rusty fence and overgrown hedge to vacant lot that used to be a parking lot, empty building in the background

below: There are some cool old parking meters still standing

a pair of old coin fed parking meters still standing on their metal pole in an abandoned parking lot

below: The old parking lot is behind a row of businesses on Queen East

beind the buildings on the south side of Queen East, near Coxwell, Subway, Canadian Dry Cleaners,

below: Looking northeast towards Queen East and Coxwell

view from a vacant lot at Lower Coxwell and Eastern, looking northeast towards Coxwell and Queen East intersection

brick apartment building with balconies, empty, some broken windows, some white debris in a pile in front, blue construction fence

yellow arches mcdonalds sign pointing to drive thru, open 24 hours, in the background, 2 brick apartment buildings that are empty. blue construction fence between, buildings are about to be demolished

blue and white scarborough street sign for Kennedy Road on a blue sky day, with street scene behind it ,

Sometimes it’s difficult to remember that Toronto includes a large number of outlying areas, not just the downtown core.   Also, if you are looking for a “safe” place to walk during these Covid times, head to Kennedy Road in Scarborough.  I wasn’t alone the day I walked it but people were few and far between.  Out Scarborough way they aren’t as used to people wandering around with cameras so I got a few quizzical, skeptical looks.   The street scene is definitely different from the central core but every street has a story to tell.  Sometimes you just have to slow down and look for it.

below: What lured me into the area?  I caught a glimpse of this moose and it made me want to explore more.  It stands beside Kennedy Road, just south of the 401.    Back in 2000 there were 326 of these sculptures scattered around the city, all were the identical moose shapes but all were painted differently.   Collectively, they were “Moose in the City”.

a stature of a life sized moose painted like a Canadian flag beside a large welcome to Scarborough sign, from Kennedy BIA.

You might have noticed that the sign also says Mike Myers Way, named for the actor who grew up in Scarborough.   I am not sure if this means that all of Kennedy Road is named after him but there is a Mike Myers Drive just to the south of this (south of Lawrence).

below: The sign on the Elite Bakery is trilingual – Greek, English, and another in an alphabet that I don’t recognize (Arabic?).  It all looks good in any language, doesn’t it?

sign on the outside wall of a greek bakery, words in greek, anglish, and a south asian language (or arabic). wedding cakes in the window

below: More signs of the multicultural nature of Toronto

green and white symbol of Habib bank, white lion with a sword above it

below: Another common Toronto feature – the construction site! … with its plethora of safety rules and regulations.

Coid prevention signs secured to a metal fence surrounding a construction site, a cement truck is working there

construction fence around a Tim Hortons and Petro Canada station, sign says open for takeout and drive thru

below: Looking west on Eglinton at Kennedy.   That is one tall utility pole!

looking west on Eglinton at Kennedy, north side of the street, a man standing at the corner, hydro poles, high rises in the distance, traffic.

below: Magical Aquarium Club

Magical Aquarium Club building in Scarborough

a picture of a green frog and a green reptile, large, on the outside of an aquarium shop

below: Grace Church and Grace Place Food Bank

Grace church and Grace Place food bank, design of cross in the roof shingles, cars parked in front, red brick building for the 1960s

below: Mount Zion Church, The Apostle Doctrine of God

side of a plaza with entrance for the Mount Zion Church

below: Bright pink and red will make your business stand out!

large pink and red store, contractor depot, on kennedy road,

below: A faded photo above the entrance to a furniture store – highlighting their wares.  She seems like a very satisfied customer!

faded black and white photo on the exterior of a furniture store, a woman stands alone in a dining room with table, chairs, and a hutch

below: Or, show your product by having it on display outside (these are Covid times after all)

mattresses on display outside a store, leaning against the pillars of the building

a van parked out front of a store with signs, factory outlet, warehouse sale, sign in back window of van advertising a mattress sale

below: Jostling to be seen, a jumble of words and colours.

many signs for stores and businesses, posted beside the sidewalk,

below: Eye exams on site… but the I (eye?) fell over.  Carpets & Rugs, Kairali Indian cuisine – lunch buffet for an unknown price.

signs for stores along Kennedy road

below: Real Kerala groceries at Motherland Foods.  Mr. John’s take out.

set back from the street a bit, with shrubs and a parking lot in front of it, Motherland Food, kerala groceries

below: The two storey brick plaza. Many of these were built around the suburban areas, back when suburbs were newer and growing quickly in the 1950s and 1960s.

two storey brick plaza with many stores

below: It seems fitting that the Private Eye and Spy Shop is close to the Adult Movies store.  You can also eat at Lucile’s West Indian Restaurant and Groceries or at Just Love Caribbean Restaurant.

large sign in front of plaza listing all the stores, adult movies, spa, private eye spy shop,

tall empty frame for a sign outside a closed business

below: Agincourt Used Cars, closed and waiting for redevelopment – into townhouse like complex with retail on the ground floor facing the street (in one proposal from December 2015 anyhow.  There are 25 documents associated with this development, all available online.  The latest one was March 2018.  I didn’t read them.)

yellow gate and construction fence around a vacant lot with a building in the far corner, Agincourt Used cars, closed business, graffiti on building,

below: To the east, as seen from a parking lot on Kennedy Road.

rowhouses on a side street running perpendicular to Kennedy Road, vacant lot in the foreground,

below: An older housing development with direct access to Kennedy.

rounded arch over the sidewalk leading into a residential development

semis, 18 wheelers backed into spaces at distribution center

a row of trucks parked in a parking lot

a person walks past stores with large signs in front of them, 2001 Audio and Video, Crazy Joes Drapery, Sleep Factory mattress, and a flooring store

below: Just to prove that I wasn’t totally alone!

a man in a blue jacket sits on a concrete railing while drinking from a Tim Hortons cup

a man rides his bike on the sidewalk on Kennedy Road with back to camera

I read in the news this morning that the graffiti and artwork on the hoardings around the old foundry site in Corktown/Canary District are being painted over now. I had previously mentioned some of the stencils and posters that we here when I first saw them back in February. Unfortunately I am a bit behind on my posts so I haven’t uploaded the pictures that I took on a subsequent visit to the area…. here they are now. This is what is being painted over today:

below: “The history that is represented in this era of globalization is very important not to bulldoze”
“I want to save the Foundry because the buildings lend character to an area that is being made more and more bland every day.”
Meanwhile Doug Ford can’t keep his hands off Toronto City Hall.

red hearts stenciled on plywood hoardings along with a poster showing parody of Doug Ford with his hands meddling with a model of Toronto City Hall.  Other posters with words describing why saving the old Dominion Wheel Foundry is important

below: “Municipal Destruction Minister Steve Clark screws up plans for A-Ford-A-Bull-Housing.”

below: Why Doug? Why?

below: “Dear Doug Ford: Let us fix this for you.”