Downsview-Roding-CFB

John McKinnon 'Boney Bus'
1035 Sheppard Avenue West
An art installation right outside Sheppard West Station designed by artist John McKinnon, the work consists of a doodle of a bus made from giant metal beams.

The Hangar
75 Carl Hall Road
This building was a former hangar of the de Havilland Aircraft of Canada complex, which was originally constructed in the 1930s. The de Havilland Company was Canada's largest supplier of government-owned aircraft in the 1930s, and produced 1,100 Mosquito bombers and other fighter planes for use by Allied military forces during the Second World War. De Havilland moved its production facilities to another newly constructed facility to the southeast of this location in the early 1950s, where aircraft are still produced to this day by Bombardier. The building is now known as 'The Hangar' and is home to a multi-purpose sports recreation facility.

Downsview Park Play Zone
Across from 70 Canuck Avenue
An aviation-themed play zone featuring model aircraft, a multi-use sport and basketball court, play structures, and a sharing circle.

Downsview Park Urban Agriculture
Southeast corner of Keele Street and Sheppard Avenue West
In 2011, Downsview Park launched a pilot project to determine community interest in urban farming. The project turned out to be an immense success with almost 3 acres of urban farms now being cultivated onsite by the Toronto Beekeepers Collective and Fresh City Farms.

Downsview Park Urban Forest
Mid to Southwest portion of Downsview Park (70 Canuck Avenue)
18 hectares of forestland make up the Downsview Park Urban Forest, which was created with the intention of creating a more robust forest cover and variety of vegetation over time. The forest links the park to Boake's Grove, a woodlot that remains from a homestead of the Boake Family who lived here in the 1830s. The Forest contains a collection of black locust, silver maple and walnut trees. Some of the trees may have been originally planted by Indigenous Peoples, as the lands that now make up Downsview Park were at various times part of the Wendat, Haudenosaunee, and Mississauga territories. Pre-European contact ceramic artifacts have also been found at Downsview Park over the years.

George Jackson House
2950 Keele Street
*Note: Private property. Please observe the house from the street only. A heritage listed building dating to the late 1880s and inhabited by members of the Jackson Family until 1967. The building is a fine representative example of a nineteenth century farmhouse, with its design blending elements of Queen Anne Revival and Richardsonian Romanesque styles popular at the time. The property is one of the few surviving buildings that reflect the development of Downsview as an agricultural community in the 1800s. The building now consists of professional offices.

Giovanni Caboto Park to Heathrow Park Path (Black Creek Trail System)
Giovanni Caboto Park 160 Tavistock Avenue, Heathrow Park - 69 Heathrow Drive
Heathrow Park
A pathway that's part of the Black Creek Trail System connects three separate parks in this area. Starting at Giovanni Caboto Park, the path winds its way to Exbury Park, and then ends at Heathrow Park, passing through greenspace along the way. All parks have children's playgrounds. Exbury Park also has two bocce courts and Heathrow Park has a splash pad.

Jane-Exbury Towers
Jane Street and Exbury Road
Five identical heritage designated towers dating from the late 1960s and designed by Toronto-based architect Uno Prii. Prii was inspired by the flying buttresses seen on medieval cathedrals in Europe when designing these towers. The towers are considered to be an example of Modernist architecture.

Jeannie Thib and Scott Torrance 'MOTH Gardens'
1092 Wilson Avenue
The design of 'MOTH Gardens' is inspired by Downsview's history of aviation. At the core of the gardens, a limestone sculpture refers to the first airplanes manufactured in Downsview the Gypsy and Tiger Moths. The artwork was inspired by a photograph from the 1920s showing the word MOTH written in large white letters on the turf beside the original Downsview airstrip. The sculpture's stone sections of varying heights, which also serve as tables and seating, coalesce into the letters M,O,T,H when seen from above. A vine covered steel arbour at the west side of the gardens incorporates various aircraft references. A row of windsocks marks the park's eastern end. The central grassy airstrip is defined by a line of blue solar runway lights and blue LED light strips attached under the stones cast a soft blue outline around the MOTH letters at night. Each letter of the MOTH sculpture is surrounded by a unique garden. These rose, flowering annual, scented herb and butterfly gardens are intersected by walkways patterned on Italian Renaissance garden designs in recognition of the area's early Italian immigrants. Downsview Memorial Parkette was originally dedicated in 1946 to honour local men and women who sacrificed their lives in the Second World War. A dedication to them is inscribed in the low stone wall that makes up one section of the O.

Ancaster Park
43 Ancaster Road
This 2.8 hectare Downsview neighbourhood park features a multipurpose sports field, a ball diamond, tennis courts, a bocce court, a children's playground and a splash pad.

Toronto Public Library: Downsview Branch
2793 Keele St, North York, ON M3M 2G3
Poems For Your Path
Artists from various disciplines present messages of hope and resilience throughout the city in the form of text-based visual art installations.
Mark Reinhart

Explore Downsview-Roding-CFB

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Don't Miss

Artists from various disciplines present messages of hope and resilience throughout the city in the form of text-based visual art installations.
Mark Reinhart
Toronto Public Library: Downsview Branch
2793 Keele St, North York, ON M3M 2G3

Check out main street storefront art installations, in the neighbourhood or nearby, created by Local Arts Organizations and Business Improvement Areas across the City.

Painting Icon StrollTO Guided Walks:

On select weekend dates, join guided walks and discover the diverse histories and cultural significance behind neighbourhood landmarks and attractions.
Learn more and register.

We hope that you enjoyed exploring this Toronto neighbourhood and found many other points of interest along the way. While StrollTO highlights some of the 'hidden gems' in the neighbourhood, there may be others that could be included in a future edition. Would you like to share a point of interest that you discovered in the neighbourhood? Email us at [email protected].

Neighbourhood Stroll

This stroll highlights the noteworthy aviation history of the area through The Hangar and 'MOTH Gardens', wide open greenspace to explore in Downsview Park and the Black Creek Trail System, and heritage designated buildings such as the Jane-Exbury Towers and George Jackson House. The stroll offers a great selection of local businesses to visit as you pass through the Wilson Village BIA.

Main Streets: Wilson Avenue & Keele Street
  1. John McKinnon 'Boney Bus'
    1035 Sheppard Avenue West
    An art installation right outside Sheppard West Station designed by artist John McKinnon, the work consists of a doodle of a bus made from giant metal beams.
  2. The Hangar
    75 Carl Hall Road
    This building was a former hangar of the de Havilland Aircraft of Canada complex, which was originally constructed in the 1930s. The de Havilland Company was Canada's largest supplier of government-owned aircraft in the 1930s, and produced 1,100 Mosquito bombers and other fighter planes for use by Allied military forces during the Second World War. De Havilland moved its production facilities to another newly constructed facility to the southeast of this location in the early 1950s, where aircraft are still produced to this day by Bombardier. The building is now known as 'The Hangar' and is home to a multi-purpose sports recreation facility.
  3. Downsview Park Play Zone
    Across from 70 Canuck Avenue
    An aviation-themed play zone featuring model aircraft, a multi-use sport and basketball court, play structures, and a sharing circle.
  4. Downsview Park Urban Agriculture
    Southeast corner of Keele Street and Sheppard Avenue West
    In 2011, Downsview Park launched a pilot project to determine community interest in urban farming. The project turned out to be an immense success with almost 3 acres of urban farms now being cultivated onsite by the Toronto Beekeepers Collective and Fresh City Farms.
  5. Downsview Park Urban Forest
    Mid to Southwest portion of Downsview Park (70 Canuck Avenue)
    18 hectares of forestland make up the Downsview Park Urban Forest, which was created with the intention of creating a more robust forest cover and variety of vegetation over time. The forest links the park to Boake's Grove, a woodlot that remains from a homestead of the Boake Family who lived here in the 1830s. The Forest contains a collection of black locust, silver maple and walnut trees. Some of the trees may have been originally planted by Indigenous Peoples, as the lands that now make up Downsview Park were at various times part of the Wendat, Haudenosaunee, and Mississauga territories. Pre-European contact ceramic artifacts have also been found at Downsview Park over the years.
  6. George Jackson House
    2950 Keele Street
    *Note: Private property. Please observe the house from the street only. A heritage listed building dating to the late 1880s and inhabited by members of the Jackson Family until 1967. The building is a fine representative example of a nineteenth century farmhouse, with its design blending elements of Queen Anne Revival and Richardsonian Romanesque styles popular at the time. The property is one of the few surviving buildings that reflect the development of Downsview as an agricultural community in the 1800s. The building now consists of professional offices.
  7. Giovanni Caboto Park to Heathrow Park Path (Black Creek Trail System)
    Giovanni Caboto Park 160 Tavistock Avenue, Heathrow Park - 69 Heathrow Drive
    Heathrow Park
    A pathway that's part of the Black Creek Trail System connects three separate parks in this area. Starting at Giovanni Caboto Park, the path winds its way to Exbury Park, and then ends at Heathrow Park, passing through greenspace along the way. All parks have children's playgrounds. Exbury Park also has two bocce courts and Heathrow Park has a splash pad.
  8. Jane-Exbury Towers
    Jane Street and Exbury Road
    Five identical heritage designated towers dating from the late 1960s and designed by Toronto-based architect Uno Prii. Prii was inspired by the flying buttresses seen on medieval cathedrals in Europe when designing these towers. The towers are considered to be an example of Modernist architecture.
  9. Jeannie Thib and Scott Torrance 'MOTH Gardens'
    1092 Wilson Avenue
    The design of 'MOTH Gardens' is inspired by Downsview's history of aviation. At the core of the gardens, a limestone sculpture refers to the first airplanes manufactured in Downsview the Gypsy and Tiger Moths. The artwork was inspired by a photograph from the 1920s showing the word MOTH written in large white letters on the turf beside the original Downsview airstrip. The sculpture's stone sections of varying heights, which also serve as tables and seating, coalesce into the letters M,O,T,H when seen from above. A vine covered steel arbour at the west side of the gardens incorporates various aircraft references. A row of windsocks marks the park's eastern end. The central grassy airstrip is defined by a line of blue solar runway lights and blue LED light strips attached under the stones cast a soft blue outline around the MOTH letters at night. Each letter of the MOTH sculpture is surrounded by a unique garden. These rose, flowering annual, scented herb and butterfly gardens are intersected by walkways patterned on Italian Renaissance garden designs in recognition of the area's early Italian immigrants. Downsview Memorial Parkette was originally dedicated in 1946 to honour local men and women who sacrificed their lives in the Second World War. A dedication to them is inscribed in the low stone wall that makes up one section of the O.
  10. Ancaster Park
    43 Ancaster Road
    This 2.8 hectare Downsview neighbourhood park features a multipurpose sports field, a ball diamond, tennis courts, a bocce court, a children's playground and a splash pad.
  11. Toronto Public Library: Downsview Branch
    2793 Keele St, North York, ON M3M 2G3
    Poems For Your Path
    Artists from various disciplines present messages of hope and resilience throughout the city in the form of text-based visual art installations.
    Mark Reinhart

Accessibility information: Most of this walk takes place on streets and paved paths. However, there may be some unpaved paths and uneven surfaces in Downsview Park, and along the Black Creek Trail System between Giovanni Caboto Park and Heathrow Park.

Soundtracks of the City

From global superstars to local favourites and ones to watch, the Soundtracks of the City playlists all feature artists who have called Toronto home. Whether it’s a lyric about the neighborhood, an artist representing a cultural community, or a tie-in to the StrollTO itinerary itself, all the music reflects connections to an individual ward or the City as a whole.

Music was chosen based on an artist’s Spotify presence and each song’s broad appeal, as well as its associations with the cultures, languages and ethnicities that reflect Toronto’s neighborhoods and diverse music scene. Soundtracks of the City combines 425 songs that feature more than 500 different local artists or acts, showcasing songs in 23 different languages.