Rockcliffe-Smythe

GAWD Mural
Western side of Runnymede Road railway underpass (between Maria Street and Ryding Avenue)
This beautiful mural adorns the western side of Runnymede Road under the railway underpass. It was painted in 2017 by surrealist Montreal artist Christopher Ross (GAWD), who's known for street art that features whimsical and complex landscapes. This work features various animals - including a dragonfly, pigs and birds - mostly in shades of pink and blue.

Marie Baldwin Park
746 Jane Street
*Note: Please follow Toronto Public Health's guidelines for visiting community & allotment gardens. A small park on Jane Street north of St. Clair Avenue West with pathways and a community garden. The park was originally known as Woolner Park, but was renamed after Marie Baldwin, a local resident who dedicated forty years to volunteer service to the area, which included helping to secure a new playground for the park.

Jane & Woolner Mural
251 Woolner Avenue
This wonderful mural was painted on the side of a building at Jane Street and Woolner Avenue by a group of six local students and professional artist Jessica Volpe as part of an arts development initiative undertaken by the UrbanArts Community Arts Council. The work depicts people from a variety of cultural backgrounds, with a specific theme of anti-violence. The project allowed the students (aged from 11 to 17 at the time it was painted) to develop invaluable personal and professional skills.

Yasaman Mehrsa 'Twin Walls' Mural
251 Woolner Avenue
These two landscape murals, titled 'Twin Walls', are painted on two separate walls of this building. They were commissioned by the building's owner and completed by artist Yasaman Mehrsa in the summer of 2020. Mehrsa's work focuses on the relationship between humans and nature, guided by the belief that art can help open eyes to the beauty and intricacy of the natural world.

Smythe Park
61 Black Creek Boulevard
Smythe Park features walking trails along Black Creek, several ponds, wetlands and recreational facilities. The park is named for Conn Smythe, a former coach, general manager and owner of the Toronto Maple Leafs. He acquired the team in 1927, changing the name to the Toronto Maple Leafs from their former name, the St. Patricks. The team won seven championships under his ownership. In 1931, Conn Smythe built Maple Leaf Gardens, an arena located downtown on Carlton Street. Smythe also operated several businesses, including the sand and gravel enterprise Conn Smythe Limited Company. Smythe Park is located on what was once the quarry for the company. He was also a resident of the nearby neighbourhood Baby Point.

EGR Artbox
Jane Street and Alliance Avenue
This artbox was painted by artist EGR in 2015. It depicts a woman whose hair grows into tree branches with a beautiful bird nesting on one of the limbs.

Westlake Park
86 Jasper Avenue
This lovely neighbourhood park hidden in a residential area features a ball diamond, drinking fountain, and playground. It was originally named Jasper Park, but was renamed in 1996 after three brothers who lived nearby. Tommy, Albert, and George Westlake were all Canadian soldiers who died within days of each other after landing on Juno Beach in France on D-Day (June 6, 1944). The Westlake family name and sacrifice of these brothers continues to be widely known in the Normandy region of France, where a French youth association is named after them. A laneway running through the park was renamed Heroes Lane in 2016 to honour all those from the neighbourhood who have given their lives in the line of duty.

Black Creek at Weston Road
Intersection of Weston Road and Humber Boulevard
Toronto's geography was shaped by repeated glaciations over thousands of years and the rapid draining of Lake Iroquois, which created steep ridges and depressions on the landscape to form the abundance of ravines and rivers that run throughout the city to this day. This view of Black Creek is a striking example of the human impact on natural water features and offers a glimpse of the channelization that stretches along the majority of the creek's path. It was channelized to avoid future flooding after damage caused by Hurricane Hazel in 1954. Many of Toronto's ravines and waterways are channelized and buried under its built environment. Unfortunately, the channelization of the creek removed much of the natural wetlands that provided habitat for wildlife and filtered pollutants from the urbanized watershed.

St. Oscar Romero Catholic Secondary School
99 Humber Boulevard
This school was the first Catholic high school in York when it originally opened in 1989. It was moved to this building in 1995 after a $12 million construction project that created a state-of-the-art facility. It was named after St. Oscar Romero, who was the Archbishop of El Salvador from 1977 to 1980. El Salvador was experiencing an enormous amount of political turmoil at the time Archbishop Romero was instated, and he frequently spoke out against injustices committed against the poor, and challenged the El Salvadorean government to put a stop to the violence plaguing the country. Archbishop Romero was brutally murdered on March 24, 1980, but his example continued to inspire those around the globe. His tomb in San Salvador is often visited by both high profile political dignitaries and the public. Romero was elevated to sainthood by the Catholic Church in 2018.

Lavender Creek Trail
Stretches from Rockcliffe Boulevard to Gunns Road (along Lavender Creek)
The Lavender Creek Trail is a park and cycling path that offers an oasis away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Though, it was not always as natural as it is today. Decades ago, Lavender Creek was frequently polluted from spillages emanating from nearby meat processing companies, often with visible impacts to the water quality of the creek. Students from nearby St. Oscar Romero Catholic High School (then known as Archbishop Romero Catholic High School) tested the waters as part of a school project in the early 2000s and discovered many industries in the area were continuing to pollute the creek. The work of the students led to many changes and resulted in a noticeable improvement in the creek's water quality.

Explore Rockcliffe-Smythe

Now is the time for residents to experience all that tourists have been raving about for years. Discover shops, stops, places and spaces on city main streets. Stay curious, Toronto.

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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.
Kate Nankervis
Toronto Public Library: Mount Dennis Branch
1123 Weston Rd, York, ON M6N 3S3

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 predominantly residential neighbourhood features bustling retail strips, and spectacular public art and green spaces. Much of the public art is centred around the intersection of Jane Street and Woolner Avenue with some inspirational, community-painted works. Great local businesses can be found on St. Clair Avenue West, Jane Street, Scarlett Road, and along Weston Road in the Rogers Road and Mount Dennis BIAs.

Main Streets: Jane Street, Scarlett Road, St. Clair Avenue West and Weston Road
  1. GAWD Mural
    Western side of Runnymede Road railway underpass (between Maria Street and Ryding Avenue)
    This beautiful mural adorns the western side of Runnymede Road under the railway underpass. It was painted in 2017 by surrealist Montreal artist Christopher Ross (GAWD), who's known for street art that features whimsical and complex landscapes. This work features various animals - including a dragonfly, pigs and birds - mostly in shades of pink and blue.
  2. Marie Baldwin Park
    746 Jane Street
    *Note: Please follow Toronto Public Health's guidelines for visiting community & allotment gardens. A small park on Jane Street north of St. Clair Avenue West with pathways and a community garden. The park was originally known as Woolner Park, but was renamed after Marie Baldwin, a local resident who dedicated forty years to volunteer service to the area, which included helping to secure a new playground for the park.
  3. Jane & Woolner Mural
    251 Woolner Avenue
    This wonderful mural was painted on the side of a building at Jane Street and Woolner Avenue by a group of six local students and professional artist Jessica Volpe as part of an arts development initiative undertaken by the UrbanArts Community Arts Council. The work depicts people from a variety of cultural backgrounds, with a specific theme of anti-violence. The project allowed the students (aged from 11 to 17 at the time it was painted) to develop invaluable personal and professional skills.
  4. Yasaman Mehrsa 'Twin Walls' Mural
    251 Woolner Avenue
    These two landscape murals, titled 'Twin Walls', are painted on two separate walls of this building. They were commissioned by the building's owner and completed by artist Yasaman Mehrsa in the summer of 2020. Mehrsa's work focuses on the relationship between humans and nature, guided by the belief that art can help open eyes to the beauty and intricacy of the natural world.
  5. Smythe Park
    61 Black Creek Boulevard
    Smythe Park features walking trails along Black Creek, several ponds, wetlands and recreational facilities. The park is named for Conn Smythe, a former coach, general manager and owner of the Toronto Maple Leafs. He acquired the team in 1927, changing the name to the Toronto Maple Leafs from their former name, the St. Patricks. The team won seven championships under his ownership. In 1931, Conn Smythe built Maple Leaf Gardens, an arena located downtown on Carlton Street. Smythe also operated several businesses, including the sand and gravel enterprise Conn Smythe Limited Company. Smythe Park is located on what was once the quarry for the company. He was also a resident of the nearby neighbourhood Baby Point.
  6. EGR Artbox
    Jane Street and Alliance Avenue
    This artbox was painted by artist EGR in 2015. It depicts a woman whose hair grows into tree branches with a beautiful bird nesting on one of the limbs.
  7. Westlake Park
    86 Jasper Avenue
    This lovely neighbourhood park hidden in a residential area features a ball diamond, drinking fountain, and playground. It was originally named Jasper Park, but was renamed in 1996 after three brothers who lived nearby. Tommy, Albert, and George Westlake were all Canadian soldiers who died within days of each other after landing on Juno Beach in France on D-Day (June 6, 1944). The Westlake family name and sacrifice of these brothers continues to be widely known in the Normandy region of France, where a French youth association is named after them. A laneway running through the park was renamed Heroes Lane in 2016 to honour all those from the neighbourhood who have given their lives in the line of duty.
  8. Black Creek at Weston Road
    Intersection of Weston Road and Humber Boulevard
    Toronto's geography was shaped by repeated glaciations over thousands of years and the rapid draining of Lake Iroquois, which created steep ridges and depressions on the landscape to form the abundance of ravines and rivers that run throughout the city to this day. This view of Black Creek is a striking example of the human impact on natural water features and offers a glimpse of the channelization that stretches along the majority of the creek's path. It was channelized to avoid future flooding after damage caused by Hurricane Hazel in 1954. Many of Toronto's ravines and waterways are channelized and buried under its built environment. Unfortunately, the channelization of the creek removed much of the natural wetlands that provided habitat for wildlife and filtered pollutants from the urbanized watershed.
  9. St. Oscar Romero Catholic Secondary School
    99 Humber Boulevard
    This school was the first Catholic high school in York when it originally opened in 1989. It was moved to this building in 1995 after a $12 million construction project that created a state-of-the-art facility. It was named after St. Oscar Romero, who was the Archbishop of El Salvador from 1977 to 1980. El Salvador was experiencing an enormous amount of political turmoil at the time Archbishop Romero was instated, and he frequently spoke out against injustices committed against the poor, and challenged the El Salvadorean government to put a stop to the violence plaguing the country. Archbishop Romero was brutally murdered on March 24, 1980, but his example continued to inspire those around the globe. His tomb in San Salvador is often visited by both high profile political dignitaries and the public. Romero was elevated to sainthood by the Catholic Church in 2018.
  10. Lavender Creek Trail
    Stretches from Rockcliffe Boulevard to Gunns Road (along Lavender Creek)
    The Lavender Creek Trail is a park and cycling path that offers an oasis away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Though, it was not always as natural as it is today. Decades ago, Lavender Creek was frequently polluted from spillages emanating from nearby meat processing companies, often with visible impacts to the water quality of the creek. Students from nearby St. Oscar Romero Catholic High School (then known as Archbishop Romero Catholic High School) tested the waters as part of a school project in the early 2000s and discovered many industries in the area were continuing to pollute the creek. The work of the students led to many changes and resulted in a noticeable improvement in the creek's water quality.

Accessibility information: All points of interest on this stroll except Marie Curtis Park have paved paths. Please note that the neighbourhood is quite hilly with many steep inclines/declines.

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.