Moss Park

Allan Gardens
160 Gerrard Street East
*Note: Please check the website for guidelines to visit the indoor conservatories. Allan Gardens is a botanical garden that comprises over 16,000 square feet. The gardens were founded in 1858, when Toronto lawyer and politician George Allan offered the Toronto Horticultural Society five acres of land to develop a garden. The grounds opened as a park in the 1860s, with the gardens intended to be free and publicly accessible. The gardens have since been an important landmark and community space in Toronto. In 1882 they were visited by Oscar Wilde as he toured Toronto. Wilde gave one of his public lectures in the Great Pavilion that once stood on the grounds. In 2019, an art installation honouring missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls was temporarily installed. 'Red Embers' was created by Indigenous women and was done in partnership with the Native Women's Resource Centre of Toronto across the street.

Miziwe Biik Aboriginal Employment and Training
167 Gerrard Street East
Miziwe Biik Aboriginal Employment and Training was founded in 1991 and was previously known as the Greater Toronto Aboriginal Management Board. The name Miziwe Biik was given to the agency by Elder Jim Windigo and means water which flows all around us. Miziwe Biik is a multiservice Indigenous led agency that is primarily focused on providing the urban Indigenous community with job training and employment services. From bursary opportunities for high school and post-secondary students to academic upgrading and skilled trade training, Miziwe Biik offers a variety of supports for Indigenous people who wish to further their education. It also provides free access to First Aid, Food Handling, and Workplace Hazardous Material Information System (WHMIS) certification, resume help, and facilitates connections between Indigenous people seeking employment and potential employers. In 2013, Miziwe Biik commissioned Anishinaabe artist Joseph Sagaj to paint a large mural of Mohawk physician and philanthropist, Dr. Oronhyatehka on the side of their building at 167 Gerrard Street East. Mizwe Biik is part of the Aboriginal Affairs Advisory Committee of Toronto City Council. It is also a member agency of the Toronto Aboriginal Support Services Council (TASSC).

Doctor O Lane
455 Ontario Street
Doctor O Lane was named in honour of Dr. Oronhyatekha, a member of the Six Nations of The Grand River whose name means Burning Cloud in Kanien'keha (Mohawk). He was a celebrated doctor, philanthropist, businessman, and writer. Baptized Peter Martin, Dr. O was a Residential School survivor. He studied at both the University of Oxford in England, and the Toronto School of Medicine. He earned a medical degree and became the second person registered as a Status Indian in Canada to become an MD. Dr. O served in the Fenian Raids. He was an expert marksman who earned nine medals at the Wimbledon Shoots in England. In 1878, Dr. O joined the American based Independent Order of Foresters (IOF). He was later elected the IOF's first Supreme Chief Ranger. Throughout Dr. O's time in this role, he extended insurance benefits to the general population at a reasonable rate. Previously, insurance was only accessible to the wealthy. He was successful at leading the organization to accept women as full members in 1891, and later expanded benefits to the children of deceased members. The IOF had a member base of 369 people and a debt of $4000 when Dr. O took up his new position. By 1907, at the time of his death, the IOF's membership had grown to over a quarter of a million people across the world, as well as an impressive $11 million in liquid assets. Dr O lived on Carlton Street here in Toronto from 1896 until 1907. When he passed away his body was laid in state at Massey Hall. Over 10,000 people came to pay their respects to Dr. Oronhyatekha. A train was then specially commissioned to carry his body to Tyendinaga Reserve for a family service.

Toronto Council Fire Native Cultural Centre
439 Dundas Street East
The Toronto Council Fire Native Cultural Centre is a cultural centre that aims to provide counselling, material assistance, and services to First Nations people living in Toronto. The centre first began in 1976 as a group of people meeting at St. Barnabas Church to address the increasing number of Indigenous people moving to the downtown core, many of whom were becoming homeless. This meeting group was given a small space at the All Saints Church at Sherbourne and Dundas in 1978. The centre offered potlucks, educational and employment services, food banks and clothing depots, and soon reached clients of all ages. The centre purchased an eye-catching blue building on Dundas East in 1997, and continues to offer programs, services, and events for First Nations people living in the GTA, such as the Youth Pow Wow held in Regent Park.

Moss Park
150 Sherbourne Street
Moss Park is a 3.4 hectare green space situated between Shuter Street, Queen Street East, and Sherbourne Street that offers a number of outdoor activities. The previous site of the Allan family mansion, Moss Park is now an important community space for the neighbourhood. The grounds feature a playground and wading pool, as well as sports facilities including a ball diamond, two tennis courts, a basketball court, and the Moss Park Arena, which hosts both youth and adult hockey teams. Along with the arena, the east side of the park also features the John Innes Community Recreation Centre. On the west side of the park stands the Moss Park Armoury. In addition to being an armoury, this location has operated as a shelter and winter respite location for those experiencing homelessness, including providing access to meals and additional supports and services.

Toronto's First Post Office
260 Adelaide Street East
Also known as the Fourth York Post Office, Toronto's First Post Office is a National Historic Site of Canada. The oldest surviving post office in Canada, Toronto's First Post Office is operated by the Town of York Historical Society. It continues to operate as a full service post office, as well as a museum. It was built in 1833 by James Scott Howard, then Postmaster of York. The Georgian brick building acted both as a post office and as Howard's personal residence. The building was restored in 1982, along with the Bank of Upper Canada and the De La Salle Building just down the street to the west, as part of a project to restore the historic block of buildings. A Canada Historic Sites plaque can be viewed outside the building, and a virtual tour of the museum is available on the Town of York Historical Society website.

Berkeley Street Firehall No. 4 and Alumnae Theatre Company
70 Berkeley Street
Built in 1905, the Berkeley Street Firehall was designed by architect Alexander Frank Wickson. The building remains as an example of Edwardian Classical style, though its use as a firehall has changed over the years. The building was renovated in 1972 as a theatre by Ron Thom. It continues to be used by the Alumnae Theatre Company, a group that was first founded in 1918 by women graduates of the University of Toronto. The theatre company was based in a number of different buildings throughout Toronto before settling here on Adelaide Street, and they continue to provide opportunities for all women in theatre. The plaque commemorating the firehall can be seen on the wall by the theatre entrance.

Filming Location of 'Kim's Convenience'
252 Queen Street East
The Kim's Convenience sign, resting above a local variety store, has become a Toronto icon for fans of the hit CBC show of the same name. 'Kim's Convenience' began as a play by Korean-Canadian playwright Ins Choi, based on his memories of his uncle's shop, Kim's Grocer. Set in the Regent Park neighbourhood, the play became a standout hit of the 2011 Fringe Festival, and premiered at the Soulpepper Theatre in 2012. The play became the basis for a CBC show that first premiered in 2016, and has since garnered an international fanbase. The facade for the storefront and the mural on the wall were both added by the set designers of the show with the consent of the store owners, replacing the previous name: Mimi Variety. The storefront, sign, and mural are used for the exterior shots, while a replica of the interior was made to film on a soundstage.

St. Paul's Basilica
83 Power Street
Established in 1822, St. Paul's Basilica was first constructed as a Gothic red brick church. The church provided services for recent immigrants and people experiencing poverty. Eventually, the Catholic population in Toronto grew large enough that the old red brick building was replaced in 1887 by the current Italian Romanesque building that stands out along Queen Street and Power Street. Outside the church is a memorial to those who passed during the typhus epidemic of 1847, a number of whom were buried at the church's cemetery, as well as a plaque commemorating congregation members who died in the First World War. Today, St. Paul's services a diverse community, with over 30 languages spoken in the parish. The church offers support to various social service providers in the neighbourhood, including Covenant House, servicing at-risk youth, and Good Shepherd, which provides shelter to people experiencing homelessness.

Magic Building and Jabari 'Elicser' Elliot Artbox
60 Sumach Street
Located on Sumach Street just south of Queen Street East are two pieces of street art by Jabari 'Elicser' Elliot. The art box, painted as part of the Outside the Box program, depicts a farmer, reminding the viewer of the city's rural roots. The farmer and the wizard on the other side represent support networks for the city itself. The wizard brings to mind Elliot's other mural on the Magic Building, located at 60 Sumach Street. The 50-foot mural depicts a variety of characters, including a wizard. The building itself features a small witch statue peering out above the entrance. The Magic Building was built in 1920 and is now used as an office space. The building is listed on the City of Toronto's Heritage Properties as a warehouse building part of the King-Parliament Historic Context.

Percy Park
12 Percy Street
*Note: Percy Street is a private street. Please only view the street from the park and enter the park via Sumach Street. Tucked off to the side of Sumach Street, Percy Park is a small parkette at the end of a short cobblestone lane. The park can be accessed off Sumach Street before walking under the Richmond and Adelaide overpasses, and is considered a hidden gem of the neighbourhood. It rests at the end of Percy Street, and a small private street lined with a row of small houses that once belonged to workers of the city's breweries and distilleries.

Underpass Park
29 Lower River Street
Located under the Eastern Avenue, Richmond, and Adelaide overpasses, Underpass Park was designed by landscape architects Philips Farevaag Smallenberg and The Planning Partnership. This space has been revitalized to host recreation space for children and adults, community spaces, and public art. Underpass Park offers a space to explore vibrant street art from artists across Canada, including Jabari 'Elicser' Elliot. Other art pieces include the 'Multipli'city' project, a collaboration between 17 artists that decorates the pillars beneath Eastern Avenue, and 'Mirage' by Paul Raff, an installation of 57 reflective octagons on the underside of the overpass.

Cube House
1 Sumach Street
*Note: Private property. Please observe the house from the sidewalk only. The distinctive Cube House stands out at Sumach and Eastern, designed by Ottawa architect Ben Kutner and his partner Jeff Brown in 1996. The design was inspired by Dutch architect Piet Blom, and was meant to resemble a tree. The intention behind this house was to incorporate it into an affordable housing project, by promoting the design as a way to build affordable homes on hard to develop land. The house was built as a prototype, with the idea that the design would allow for a more efficient use of indoor space, but it was never expanded beyond the cube house at this location.

Explore Moss Park

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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.
Randell Adjei
Mackenzie House
82 Bond St, Toronto, ON M5B 1X2

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 takes you through the complex history of old Toronto, while showcasing beautiful parks and gardens, public art, and attractions in the downtown core. On this stroll, you will visit the oldest remaining post office in Canada, while learning about the Indigenous history of the Toronto region through the story of Doctor Oronhyatekha. Experience local attractions that have appeared on popular television shows including 'Kim's Convenience', and explore downtown green spaces and vibrant street art. This stroll leads you through Historic Queen East, Cabbagetown, and the St. Lawrence Market Neighbourhood BIAs, allowing you to visit a wide range of shops, restaurants, and other local businesses.

Main Streets: Carlton Street, Jarvis Street, Dundas Street East, Queen Street East, King Street East, Parliament Street, Sherbourne Street, Front Street East
  1. Allan Gardens
    160 Gerrard Street East
    *Note: Please check the website for guidelines to visit the indoor conservatories. Allan Gardens is a botanical garden that comprises over 16,000 square feet. The gardens were founded in 1858, when Toronto lawyer and politician George Allan offered the Toronto Horticultural Society five acres of land to develop a garden. The grounds opened as a park in the 1860s, with the gardens intended to be free and publicly accessible. The gardens have since been an important landmark and community space in Toronto. In 1882 they were visited by Oscar Wilde as he toured Toronto. Wilde gave one of his public lectures in the Great Pavilion that once stood on the grounds. In 2019, an art installation honouring missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls was temporarily installed. 'Red Embers' was created by Indigenous women and was done in partnership with the Native Women's Resource Centre of Toronto across the street.
  2. Miziwe Biik Aboriginal Employment and Training
    167 Gerrard Street East
    Miziwe Biik Aboriginal Employment and Training was founded in 1991 and was previously known as the Greater Toronto Aboriginal Management Board. The name Miziwe Biik was given to the agency by Elder Jim Windigo and means water which flows all around us. Miziwe Biik is a multiservice Indigenous led agency that is primarily focused on providing the urban Indigenous community with job training and employment services. From bursary opportunities for high school and post-secondary students to academic upgrading and skilled trade training, Miziwe Biik offers a variety of supports for Indigenous people who wish to further their education. It also provides free access to First Aid, Food Handling, and Workplace Hazardous Material Information System (WHMIS) certification, resume help, and facilitates connections between Indigenous people seeking employment and potential employers. In 2013, Miziwe Biik commissioned Anishinaabe artist Joseph Sagaj to paint a large mural of Mohawk physician and philanthropist, Dr. Oronhyatehka on the side of their building at 167 Gerrard Street East. Mizwe Biik is part of the Aboriginal Affairs Advisory Committee of Toronto City Council. It is also a member agency of the Toronto Aboriginal Support Services Council (TASSC).
  3. Doctor O Lane
    455 Ontario Street
    Doctor O Lane was named in honour of Dr. Oronhyatekha, a member of the Six Nations of The Grand River whose name means Burning Cloud in Kanien'keha (Mohawk). He was a celebrated doctor, philanthropist, businessman, and writer. Baptized Peter Martin, Dr. O was a Residential School survivor. He studied at both the University of Oxford in England, and the Toronto School of Medicine. He earned a medical degree and became the second person registered as a Status Indian in Canada to become an MD. Dr. O served in the Fenian Raids. He was an expert marksman who earned nine medals at the Wimbledon Shoots in England. In 1878, Dr. O joined the American based Independent Order of Foresters (IOF). He was later elected the IOF's first Supreme Chief Ranger. Throughout Dr. O's time in this role, he extended insurance benefits to the general population at a reasonable rate. Previously, insurance was only accessible to the wealthy. He was successful at leading the organization to accept women as full members in 1891, and later expanded benefits to the children of deceased members. The IOF had a member base of 369 people and a debt of $4000 when Dr. O took up his new position. By 1907, at the time of his death, the IOF's membership had grown to over a quarter of a million people across the world, as well as an impressive $11 million in liquid assets. Dr O lived on Carlton Street here in Toronto from 1896 until 1907. When he passed away his body was laid in state at Massey Hall. Over 10,000 people came to pay their respects to Dr. Oronhyatekha. A train was then specially commissioned to carry his body to Tyendinaga Reserve for a family service.
  4. Toronto Council Fire Native Cultural Centre
    439 Dundas Street East
    The Toronto Council Fire Native Cultural Centre is a cultural centre that aims to provide counselling, material assistance, and services to First Nations people living in Toronto. The centre first began in 1976 as a group of people meeting at St. Barnabas Church to address the increasing number of Indigenous people moving to the downtown core, many of whom were becoming homeless. This meeting group was given a small space at the All Saints Church at Sherbourne and Dundas in 1978. The centre offered potlucks, educational and employment services, food banks and clothing depots, and soon reached clients of all ages. The centre purchased an eye-catching blue building on Dundas East in 1997, and continues to offer programs, services, and events for First Nations people living in the GTA, such as the Youth Pow Wow held in Regent Park.
  5. Moss Park
    150 Sherbourne Street
    Moss Park is a 3.4 hectare green space situated between Shuter Street, Queen Street East, and Sherbourne Street that offers a number of outdoor activities. The previous site of the Allan family mansion, Moss Park is now an important community space for the neighbourhood. The grounds feature a playground and wading pool, as well as sports facilities including a ball diamond, two tennis courts, a basketball court, and the Moss Park Arena, which hosts both youth and adult hockey teams. Along with the arena, the east side of the park also features the John Innes Community Recreation Centre. On the west side of the park stands the Moss Park Armoury. In addition to being an armoury, this location has operated as a shelter and winter respite location for those experiencing homelessness, including providing access to meals and additional supports and services.
  6. Toronto's First Post Office
    260 Adelaide Street East
    Also known as the Fourth York Post Office, Toronto's First Post Office is a National Historic Site of Canada. The oldest surviving post office in Canada, Toronto's First Post Office is operated by the Town of York Historical Society. It continues to operate as a full service post office, as well as a museum. It was built in 1833 by James Scott Howard, then Postmaster of York. The Georgian brick building acted both as a post office and as Howard's personal residence. The building was restored in 1982, along with the Bank of Upper Canada and the De La Salle Building just down the street to the west, as part of a project to restore the historic block of buildings. A Canada Historic Sites plaque can be viewed outside the building, and a virtual tour of the museum is available on the Town of York Historical Society website.
  7. Berkeley Street Firehall No. 4 and Alumnae Theatre Company
    70 Berkeley Street
    Built in 1905, the Berkeley Street Firehall was designed by architect Alexander Frank Wickson. The building remains as an example of Edwardian Classical style, though its use as a firehall has changed over the years. The building was renovated in 1972 as a theatre by Ron Thom. It continues to be used by the Alumnae Theatre Company, a group that was first founded in 1918 by women graduates of the University of Toronto. The theatre company was based in a number of different buildings throughout Toronto before settling here on Adelaide Street, and they continue to provide opportunities for all women in theatre. The plaque commemorating the firehall can be seen on the wall by the theatre entrance.
  8. Filming Location of 'Kim's Convenience'
    252 Queen Street East
    The Kim's Convenience sign, resting above a local variety store, has become a Toronto icon for fans of the hit CBC show of the same name. 'Kim's Convenience' began as a play by Korean-Canadian playwright Ins Choi, based on his memories of his uncle's shop, Kim's Grocer. Set in the Regent Park neighbourhood, the play became a standout hit of the 2011 Fringe Festival, and premiered at the Soulpepper Theatre in 2012. The play became the basis for a CBC show that first premiered in 2016, and has since garnered an international fanbase. The facade for the storefront and the mural on the wall were both added by the set designers of the show with the consent of the store owners, replacing the previous name: Mimi Variety. The storefront, sign, and mural are used for the exterior shots, while a replica of the interior was made to film on a soundstage.
  9. St. Paul's Basilica
    83 Power Street
    Established in 1822, St. Paul's Basilica was first constructed as a Gothic red brick church. The church provided services for recent immigrants and people experiencing poverty. Eventually, the Catholic population in Toronto grew large enough that the old red brick building was replaced in 1887 by the current Italian Romanesque building that stands out along Queen Street and Power Street. Outside the church is a memorial to those who passed during the typhus epidemic of 1847, a number of whom were buried at the church's cemetery, as well as a plaque commemorating congregation members who died in the First World War. Today, St. Paul's services a diverse community, with over 30 languages spoken in the parish. The church offers support to various social service providers in the neighbourhood, including Covenant House, servicing at-risk youth, and Good Shepherd, which provides shelter to people experiencing homelessness.
  10. Magic Building and Jabari 'Elicser' Elliot Artbox
    60 Sumach Street
    Located on Sumach Street just south of Queen Street East are two pieces of street art by Jabari 'Elicser' Elliot. The art box, painted as part of the Outside the Box program, depicts a farmer, reminding the viewer of the city's rural roots. The farmer and the wizard on the other side represent support networks for the city itself. The wizard brings to mind Elliot's other mural on the Magic Building, located at 60 Sumach Street. The 50-foot mural depicts a variety of characters, including a wizard. The building itself features a small witch statue peering out above the entrance. The Magic Building was built in 1920 and is now used as an office space. The building is listed on the City of Toronto's Heritage Properties as a warehouse building part of the King-Parliament Historic Context.
  11. Percy Park
    12 Percy Street
    *Note: Percy Street is a private street. Please only view the street from the park and enter the park via Sumach Street. Tucked off to the side of Sumach Street, Percy Park is a small parkette at the end of a short cobblestone lane. The park can be accessed off Sumach Street before walking under the Richmond and Adelaide overpasses, and is considered a hidden gem of the neighbourhood. It rests at the end of Percy Street, and a small private street lined with a row of small houses that once belonged to workers of the city's breweries and distilleries.
  12. Underpass Park
    29 Lower River Street
    Located under the Eastern Avenue, Richmond, and Adelaide overpasses, Underpass Park was designed by landscape architects Philips Farevaag Smallenberg and The Planning Partnership. This space has been revitalized to host recreation space for children and adults, community spaces, and public art. Underpass Park offers a space to explore vibrant street art from artists across Canada, including Jabari 'Elicser' Elliot. Other art pieces include the 'Multipli'city' project, a collaboration between 17 artists that decorates the pillars beneath Eastern Avenue, and 'Mirage' by Paul Raff, an installation of 57 reflective octagons on the underside of the overpass.
  13. Cube House
    1 Sumach Street
    *Note: Private property. Please observe the house from the sidewalk only. The distinctive Cube House stands out at Sumach and Eastern, designed by Ottawa architect Ben Kutner and his partner Jeff Brown in 1996. The design was inspired by Dutch architect Piet Blom, and was meant to resemble a tree. The intention behind this house was to incorporate it into an affordable housing project, by promoting the design as a way to build affordable homes on hard to develop land. The house was built as a prototype, with the idea that the design would allow for a more efficient use of indoor space, but it was never expanded beyond the cube house at this location.

Accessibility information: This walk takes place on streets and paved paths. All stops are viewable from the sidewalk. There is a slight incline to walk into the Dreamer's Garden, and the paths through Allan Gardens, Moss Park, Percy Park, and Underpass Park may be difficult to maneuver depending on weather conditions. Smaller streets like Doctor O Lane and Percy Street do not have sidewalks, and must be used with caution as cars may drive down these lanes. Both laneways are viewable from the sidewalk without needing to walk down them. There is a small incline to access Percy Park from Sumach Street.

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.