Posts Tagged ‘West Toronto Railpath’

The other day I headed towards Dupont and Dundas West because I heard about a mural that I didn’t recall having seen.  Here it is … and more.

below: The most westerly part of the mural is on the north side of Dundas West where Old Weston Road and Annette Street meet.

mural on a wall beside a busy street

mural with a bird, chicakdee or sparrow beside a large orange tiger lily

mural, large painting of a tiger lily and a sparrow


It continues along the side of the railway underpass on Dupont (it’s a confusing tangle of streets here!)

car stopped in traffic under railway bridge, driver is looking at the mural that is painted under the underpass

….and on the stairwell up to the West Toronto Railpath.

part of a mural, a robin and an orange rose, outside, beside a staircase

colourful mural outside beside a staircase, large flowers and leaves including an orange maple leaf

It was a gorgeous day so I walked around a bit more, of course!

below: On Dundas West

street art of a young person writing on the wall with red letters that say it's just a phase

below: A row of houses with wonderful facades.  You don’t many like that anymore! .. at least not on houses.

older two storey row houses with facades that extend above the roof line,

below: These fooled me at first.  Interesting black and white photos looking grubby and worn… with a small McDonalds logo on the bottom right.   The photo on the bottom left also has a few words in small print that give away the fact this is a McDonalds promotion.  I don’t think I’ve seen any like these elsewhere – or have I missed something?

4 large black and white photos of people eating hamburgers, that is actually a mcdonalds ad

below: The large black metal staircase at the end of the footbridge over the tracks at Wallace Ave are gone.  The replacement stairs are dull and bland.  This change was meant to accommodate new development on Wallace.

new stairs at the end of a footbridge over the train tracks at Wallace street in Toronto, beside the West Toronto Railpath

below: Railpath window reflections.

reflections of the sky in a window

below: Also on the West Toronto Railpath, someone has hung this colourful ‘curtain’ on the fence in order to add a splash of colour to a sitting area.  Once upon a time there were more chairs here.  And a table if I remember correctly.

fabric hanging from a rope beside a footpath, large green cylinder stoarge unit behind it.

below: One of two chalkboards installed by crazydames where people have written notes to cyclists imploring them to slow down and use their bells.  I totally agree!  Just before I came upon this, a man on an electric bike came up behind me, silently and fast.

large chalkboard on an orange brick wall with notes to tell cyclists to slow down and ring their bells.

below: This little gnome still stands by the entrance to a convenience store.  This guarden gnome has been here (Bloor West) for a few years.

a small gnome painted on the wall beside a door to a convenience store. The door is open and people are walking past

below: Reduce, reuse, recycle – here the R used is reuse.   Truck and tractor parts and other bits and pieces craftily arranged and put to use on the outside of the Farmhouse Tavern.  It should look better in a couple of months!

planters on an exterior wall, made of truck and tractor parts

below: A fairy in a garden of mushrooms.

a mural of a fairy, woman, with wings, holding something in her hand and looking upwards, in a garden with large mushrooms,

graffiti on a black wall, white bird like head on pick square

One last look at part of that mural!

mural with flowers, shadows in front

part of a mural, large light purple flower with yellow center and dark pink at inner most part of petals


But not a running, or even a jogging, track!  No, yesterday’s walk was an oval-ish loop at walking pace from Dundas West station, up one side of the railway tracks and back down the other.

below: Just past the subway station I saw the mural on “The Friendly Trini’s” which is now closed.  If the mural is telling the truth, they once served butter chicken, curried goat roti, jerk chicken with rice and peas, as well as drinks in coconuts and pineapples.  Feeling hungry already, and I’ve only just begun my walk.

a mural on the side of the Friendly Trinis restaurant that is now closed. Two women are walking on the sidewalk by the restaurant, a sign for Jennys bar and restaurant is in the background. The mural has drinks in coconuts and pineapples as well as a list of some of the food they served

below: Also on Dundas West, the King’z Convenience and Dollar Store which sells Filipino products and delicacies is adjacent to the Slovenija meat & delicatessen.  Multicultural.  I regret not taking pictures of the window of the Slovenian store – juice and beer brands that were unfamiliar to me.

two storefronts on a street, one is a slovenian grocery store and the other is a convenience store

below: Detail, boy riding an old fashioned bike on a little hook above a door.

a decorative ornament hanging high on a brick wall, a hook that extends from the wall about 8 to 10 inches, on top is a flat rendition of a boy on an old fashioned bicycle

below: And someone has decorated their balcony.

a balcony railing has been decorated with different colours of fabric that has woven between the rails

below: Just before I reached the bridge over the railway tracks I saw these words on a wall.

graffiti on a wall, in white paint on grey wall, the words "I have a dream'

below:  The dream theme continues on the metal steps up to the bridge.  This one was small and I almost missed it.  I’m not sure if it was painted black to blend into the background, or if the painting was an attempt to “clean up” the graffiti when prying off the letters proved to be too difficult (the D is broken so maybe someone tried).  Insert words about killing other people’s dreams here.

a raised word, 'dream' in cursive that has been stuck on the side of a set of stairs and then painted black to match the steps

below: From the top of the steps looking south.  The minimalist new Bloor GO and UP (Union Pearson) station is finished, top left of the photo.  Don’t you think we should call it ‘Get UP and GO’?  The street is Dundas West and yes, that mural is new.

view from a bridge, a street, and a railway and some buildings in between. There is a mural at the bottom of the steps.

below: Helping to hold up the bridge, west side of the tracks.  He’s carrying the weight of the world, or maybe just the bridge, on his shoulders.

mural on the concrete base supporting metal struts bridge supports.

After crossing the bridge, I walked north along the West Toronto Railpath. The fencing along the path has all been upgraded.  There used to be some spots where you could get through the fence (non-railway side) but those are gone.  Between the tracks and the path there is a new clear (glass? plastic?) fence.  Of course it has already been ‘vandalized’ or ‘tagged’ – choose your verb.  Because I was there on a sunny afternoon, the sun was shining through the ‘artwork’ and making interesting designs.  A few thistles and other weeds added some compositional elements.

glass that has been spray painted yellow and orange, with some black that has run, weeds are growing in front of it, the sun is shining from behind it

a bright red heart has been sprayed painted onto a glass wall, weeds growing front, train tracks behind, the sun shining through the glass.

There were quite a few hearts on my route, especially around the Dupont exit of the Railpath.

below: Many hearts on the fence.

two street art pieces painted on a glass wall. the first is a red and black heart with a white banner across it on which the word love is written. the other is 8 little red hearts on white stems growing from the ground below.

below: A heart for Hex and Nish wherever, and whomever, they may be.

a bright red heart painted on a man made boulder, words hex and nish written on it

below: Three heart balloons on the Dupont sign.  You can get a good view of the fence here.

glass fence beside railway tracks, path, trees, also a metal sign on which three red hearts on white stems have been painted.

below: Part of the West Toronto Railpath runs alongside Planet Storage, an large old brick building.  There used to be a lot of street art along the side of the building but it’s all been painted over.   A few tattle tale remnants remain.

wall, part of an older brick building that has been painted a rust colour, with windows, some of which have metal grilles over them. Remnants of old graffiti on the metal grilles.

below: My favorite, little details like the bright yellow giraffe looking at the clouds.

looking into a window, toy yellow giraffe on the window sill as well as two toy trolls, one with yellow hair and the other with orange. Reflections of clouds in the window

below: There is one mural on the Railpath, the back of Osler’s Fish Market is covered with a fish and fishing themed mural.

back of Osler Fish Market covered with a fish and fishing mural

below: Fish heads in the weeds.  Queen Anne’s lace, that plant with the white flowers, was growing in abundance along the path.  You might know it by its other name, Wild Carrot.

detail of a mural, fish heads, on a wall with Queens Annes lace and other weeds growing in front.

mural with fisherman bringing in a load of fish to the shore, boat in the background, more fish in the foreground.

mural, man sitting, mending fishing nets, woman on the shore carrying a bundle towards some fishing boats.

below: A splash of red on a street just off the railpath.

the top part of an old Victorian brick 2 storey house, painted red with white trim

below: The sign on the table says: “Hi! La Witch Cat here.  Enjoy the space, but PLEASE do not litter.  I provided a garbage can. Use it!  This includes cigarette butts.  Put in trash once extinguished.  Thanks!  XXO”.  Marvellous!  I sooo agree with the part about cigarette butts.  Why do people who don’t litter still consider it okay to throw cigarette butts wherever they please?  I smiled but I didn’t stop to rest.

In a veryshady spot, against a metal fence, two old chairs with a white table between them, a sign on the table and a small garbage can to the left.

below: At one point I found myself at this intersection.  What is a pedestrian to do? It’s possible I walked where I shouldn’t have, or at least where foot traffic is rare.  All the roads in the photo are Dundas West; it’s where the street splits as it approaches Dupont and Annette.  There was a small park behind me, called Traffic Island park.  The name sums it up I think.

wide intersection where two roads meet in a V shape. not much else in the picture, only the nose of one car, no other traffic. hydro poles and wires in the picture

two old Toronto street signs, slightly rusted, on a hydro pole, one for Dundas St. WEst and one for Dupont street

below: A lament for the streetscape.  One more line in an elegy to public spaces.  The result of a half hearted attempt.  Massive hydro poles on the narrow sidewalk.  A large ad. A green space that needs attention.  If you look carefully, you can see  a plaque on a small stand.

sidewalk right beside a road, with hydro poles on the sidewalk, a small stretch of green space (about a metre) befoew a large fence that is concrete on the bottom and glass on the top. A couple of small trees that are dying are in the green space.

below: This is the plaque.  According to the words, this strip of land was replanted in 2001-2003 with a number of native species with the plan that they would spread and “create an oasis in the middle of the city”.   It mentions three plants – Nannyberry tree, Staghorn sumac, and Bottlebrush grass.   Disconnect alert.

plaque describing the railside garden with words about its history and some picture of the plants that grow there

below: On my way back to the subway station I spotted this 24 hour lovebot.

a lovebot sticker on a TTC bus stop pole, between the sign that says 24 hours and the symbol of a bus, older industrial building behind it.

…. that was where I walked yesterday but before I leave, a few small details.  Ciao!

graffiti on a grey metal door of a girl's head with lots of pink hair. A pink heart beneath her with the word love under that

red background, silhouette of sumac leaves

blue background, graffiti drawing of man's head, wearing large crown, sad eyes, heart in word bubble

a plate in a window that says Good Morning Sunshine, also two small ceramic figures of cats, and one ceramic dog

The Bloor GO station  is undergoing a number of renovations as it will be the first stop on the updated Kitchener rail corridor running between Union Station and Kitchener.  Bloor will be a stop for the new Union Pearson  Express service to the airport.

A temporary wood fence has been erected between the tracks and the West Toronto Railpath for the duration of the construction.  This fence has become a canvas for some of the local graffiti artists.  I walked the length of the fence yesterday and I took a lot of photos!    I started at the north end of the fence and the following photos appear in the order that they were taken.

large graffiti picture of a close up of a mouth interior showing many orange teet, a blue tongue and purple gums.

open wide and say “ah”!


graffiti of a witch's face. She has green eyes and green hair. She is wearing a purple hat. Her boney hand is in front of her mouth so you can see her long green finger nails.

Wickedly enchanting.


Spud graffiti tag on a pink background. Rob Ford faces fill the letter U. The S P and D are different colours

Rob Ford and U in the middle of Spud.


Street art picture of 2 male heads. One is wearing a brown baseball cap backwards. The word Toronto is written on it in orange letters.

Toronto on backwards.


Three faces graffiti. Two men's heads on the left and a woman's head on the right. They are painted on a wood gate that is closed and locked with a chain.

Face to face across the chained gate.


Looking along a temporary wood fence that has been covered with graffiti. The art that you can see in the foreground consists of a number of head. A dirt pathway runs along beside the fence.

Looking up and down the railpath.


graffiti picture of the face, shoulders and arms of a fat man. The backs of his hands have tattos of a bicycle and a cupcake.

Eyes closed, with a cupcake and a bike and perhaps a prayer.


graffiti picture of the upper bodies of 3 people, 2 men and a girl. The girl seems to have an orange halo around her head. The men have orange crowns on their heads.

Of kings and angels.


graffiti tag in blues and oranges



graffiti picture of the head and shoulders of two men. The one of the right is in shades of grey while the one on the left is a more natural colour.



close up of part of a graffiti tag. Multicoloured.

dotted eyes


graffiti tag - stylized letters forming the word Peru in green, blue and red. Some grey bricks have been painted behind the letters.

Peruvian tag


parts of a couple of pieces of graffiti. Multicoloured. Also in the picture is a black and white cat's head.

Danger cat.


Part of an orange and beige graffiti tag. It surrounds a small sign that points to the entrance to the train station.

To the trains, orange and orange.


green and orange graffiti tage on blue background

Unfortunately I cut off some of the words written in purple, Junction Joe , Kwest, Takefive, Other Sense, Honour?, Rhinowreck


Graffiti of two women's heads. There is also a red and white danger sign in the middle of the picture.

Danger women and something black.


part of two green tags. A sign pointing to the train station entrance is in the middle. Someone has written the word dark on the sign.

Dark and Jetone the lurker.


Silver and black graffiti that consists of drawings many different things - skull, bottles, hearts, hats, moon, dice, etc. as well as some words, slayed, the truth is out there, and danger

The truth is out there, and many other things in black and silver.


Graffiti of the words listen, study, develop

Listen, study, develop



The gate was boarded up too.





sink in




blue man by elicser


Between the 2nd of October and the end of November when my photos were taken, there were some additions to the street art pieces, especially at the north end of the fence.


1655 Dupont Street, a large red brick building that once housed the Viceroy Rubber Company factory.  Now it is Planet Storage with over 10,000 square feet of self-storage space.

The building, now designated as a heritage building,  has had it’s structure preserved although some of the lower storey windows have been boarded up. The east side of the building backs onto the Toronto Railpath and it has been decorated with graffiti at ground level.  An old storage tank at the southeast corner of the building has been painted bright green to match the Planet Storage logo.

Viceroy still makes hockey pucks and other rubber items but at a newer plant on Weston Road, under the name of Allied Viceroy.

Three storey brick factory building.  The windows in the lower storey are covered with orange wood. There is graffiti along the lower five or six feet of the building.

looking south along the side of the building


Looking north along the side of the old Viceroy rubber factory building.  A red brick building with large windows.  There is graffiti on the bottom five or six feet of the building.

Looking north along the West Toronto Railpath.


a chainlink fence is in the foreground.  Behind the fence is a tall green storage tank (the top part of it is not in the picture.  One wall of a three storey red brick building is in the background.

At the southwest corner of the building and behind a fence is a tall green storage tank.


bottom two storeys of a red brick factory.  The lower storey has the windows boarded up and painted orange.  There are graffiti tags along the bottom of the building.

tags under the orange


An open window covered with metal bars and a metal screen.  Graffiti on the walls too.



a large tree is in the foreground and it is casting a shadow over the wall of a red brick building that has graffiti on it.

In the shadows.


Large windows on a red brick building.  The window frames are metal and they are rusty.

Rust, writing, and reflections


an old door is painted bright green and on it is a piece of street art of a man in a black and white striped shirt.  A blue and white graffiti tag is on either side of the door.

on the green door.


a black and white drawing of a woman with binoculars sitting beside a train track waiting for a train that is in the distance

S is for Siderodronophilia, a proclivity to become aroused by watching or riding trains.


The sun is shining on a red brick building with large windows.  Graffiti tags are on the wall.

Tags in the sunshine.


graffiti of many white fingers in at least three rows of four.  The fingers have eyes and their noses look like the number two.

many fingers with twos.