South Parkdale

60 Atlantic Avenue
60 Atlantic Avenue
*Note: Private property. Please observe the building from the sidewalk only. This heritage-designated building is reflective of the history of the Liberty Village area, which evolved from being primarily industrial, to a burgeoning area for artistic creation, to the more mixed commercial and residential area it is today. The building was originally constructed in 1898 and was home to St. David's Wine Grower's Company, until 1922 when it was utilized by Eaton's as a warehouse. In 1991, Artscape - a group of not-for-profit organizations dedicated to creating space for artists - transformed the building into an artist's enclave that featured 48 affordable studio spaces to a group of painters, sculptors, musicians, and designers. This development was a tremendous catalyst for turning Liberty Village into one of the most important creative employment clusters in Canada. It has since been renovated again to become a retail/commercial site that continues to preserve many of the excellent heritage features of the building.

1177 King Street West
1177 King Street West
*Note: Private property. Please observe the house from the sidewalk only. This lovely heritage-designated home along King Street West hides a more sinister history... Designed by Kivas Tully (once the official architect for the Province of Ontario) this house was the Superintendent's House as part of the Andrew Mercer Reformatory for Women, a massive prison complex that stood nearby this site. The complex opened in 1878 and was the first penitentiary exclusively for women in Canada. Remaining open for almost a century, the prison was closed and demolished in 1969 amidst numerous reports of horrendous conditions and shocking abuse of its inmates. The prison was replaced with neighbouring Allan A. Lamport Stadium. This Superintendent's House is a notable example of Queen Anne Revival design, and is the only remaining building from the prison complex.

Toronto Carpet Manufacturing Company Building
67 Mowat Avenue
One of the most prominent and striking remaining industrial structures in the area, this heritage-designated building opened in 1899 as the home of the Toronto Carpet Manufacturing Company. The booming factory complex employed almost a thousand people by the beginning of the First World War, struggling to keep up with the high demand among Canadians for carpets. The architecture of the building resembles similar industrial facilities constructed in the United States and Great Britain during the nineteenth century. The site was completely self-reliant, producing its own steam-generated heat, power, and electricity. Like many other former industrial structures in Liberty Village, the building has now been turned into an office complex, offering 320,000 square feet of space to a wide variety of tenants.

Trenton Terrace
Trenton Terrace
*Note: Private property. Please observe the houses from the sidewalk only. Hidden on a small, cobblestone laneway west of Cowan Avenue are 10 unique heritage-designated homes. They were originally built as workers' cottages for fishermen by John Coatsworth in the 1880s. Each home features a small front porch and a compact backyard. A memorial garden to a former resident of the street can also be found amongst the sheds lining the south side of the laneway.

Jim Bravo and Kate Young 'Impressions'
Jameson Avenue between Springhurst Boulevard and Queen Street West
Over 65 planters along Jameson Avenue were transformed into one of the largest public photo exhibitions in the world in 2009. Artist Jim Bravo and photographer Kate Young wanted to create a photographic record of the Parkdale community, while creating a permanent outdoor art gallery at the same time. The immensely popular project received an upgrade in 2018 when the photos were printed in aluminum to ensure further longevity.

1313 Queen Street West & Queen Gardens Plaque
1313 Queen Street West
This heritage-designated Art Deco-style building dates back to 1931, when it was constructed as a modern fire hall and police station for the Parkdale area. The building has become an important community hub over the years, with Artscape taking over the building in 1998 and turning it into the Parkdale Arts & Cultural Centre. It was the organization's first foray into mixed-use development, with non-profit tenants on the ground floor, and artist spaces on the upper floor. Organizations utilizing the ground floor space include the Parkdale Village Business Improvement Association, Gallery 1313, and the Kababayan Multicultural Centre, which aids in the settlement of newcomers to Toronto. Beside the building on its western edge is a plaque which describes some of the history of the building and the Parkdale area.

Jim Bravo 'Food Stories' Mural
1325 Queen Street West
This mural tells Parkdale food stories by depicting the types of food that were available in this region hundreds of years ago and the food of the neighbourhood today. Food symbolizes Parkdale's cultural diversity and brings the community together.

1501 Queen Street West
1501 Queen Street West
*Note: Private property. Please observe the building from the street only. This heritage-designated apartment building has an intriguing history, which is largely reflective of the Parkdale neighbourhood itself. It originally opened as an apartment building by developer David Lavine in early 1912. Combined with its nearly identical neighbour down the street at 194 Dowling Avenue - the two properties were known as the 'Parkdale Mansions'. The building is an excellent example of Edwardian Classicism, featuring a round-arch bay doorway and red and buff brick cladding with cast stone trim. The building eventually became a guest/rooming house, as many other old mansions and apartment buildings in Parkdale have over the years. In a victory for affordable housing advocates, the building was purchased in May 2020 by the Parkdale Activity-Recreation Centre (PARC), a local charity that operates out of a facility next door. PARC intends to maintain the below-market rent status of its 38 units, allowing current residents to remain in their homes without fear of large rent increases or eviction.

Parkdale Theatre
1605 Queen Street West
First opening as a movie theatre in 1920, the Parkdale Theatre featured an opulent interior with ornate trim and large chandeliers. The theatre closed in 1970, and the building became a retail store that sold second-hand furniture and antiques. In 2020, the building was purchased by a local real estate developer who has been attempting to return the building to its former glory and turn it into an event venue. Many of the interior architectural features of the building have been restored, and an antique market operates out of the building on Sundays (a nod to this section of Queen Street West's reputation for housing many antique businesses).

Tadeusz Janowski 'Katyn Memorial'
Beaty Boulevard Park
Commissioned by the Canadian Polish Congress, this monument created by artist Tadeusz Janowski was unveiled in 1980. It is meant to commemorate the approximately 22,000 Polish prisoners of war who were murdered and buried in mass graves near Katyn in the Soviet Union in 1940. The inscription on the monument itself states that 15,000 died, but revelations from the Soviet government in the early 1990s revealed the death toll to be much higher. Members of the Polish-Canadian community in Toronto place flowers and candles on the monument on the anniversary of the massacre to this day.

Lakeshore Boulevard Parklands & American Troops Landing at York Plaque
1389 Lake Shore Boulevard West
Fantastic parklands line the south side of Lake Shore Boulevard in this area, with plenty of lovely views of Lake Ontario and some beaches to relax on. This section of the shore is also important historically, as a Heritage Toronto plaque along the Martin Goodman Trail indicates. The Battle of York - during the War of 1812 - began as an assault by American troops landing near this site on April 27, 1813. A group of Anishnaabeg under the command of British Major James Givins fought the American attack, but were forced into the woods. Ultimately, the Americans captured Fort York and won the battle.

Palais Royale
1601 Lake Shore Boulevard West
Opened in 1928 as both a dance hall and boat factory, the Palais Royale is now a heritage-designated building. It was particularly prominent during the 1930s as big bands led by legends such as Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey, Count Basie, and Duke Ellington played there to large crowds. It has also been a prime concert venue, hosting concerts by notable artists such as Blue Rodeo, Sloan, Blur, and even The Rolling Stones in 2002. The building continues to be a dance hall and popular event space.

Victor Tolgyesi 'Tenth Anniversary of Hungarian Uprising 1956'
Lake Shore Boulevard West and Budapest Lane (in Budapest Park)
This monument was erected in 1966 by artist Victor Tolgyesi to commemorate the more than 37,000 Hungarian refugees who fled to Canada as a result of the Hungarian Revolution a decade earlier. (Tolgyesi himself was one of these refugees). It was the first mass immigration from the communist Eastern Bloc countries to Canada, and involved the Canadian government acting quickly to select, transport, and resettle people in cooperation with local non-profit organizations. Many of these refugees settled in Toronto and in other places across Canada, where they made significant positive contributions to economic and cultural life. The event was designated as an event of national historic importance by the Government of Canada, as it established an important precedent and model for receiving future refugees to Canada.

Marilyn Bell Plaque
Budapest Park
This plaque commemorates Marilyn Bell, a 16-year-old who became the first person to swim across Lake Ontario on September 9, 1954. Bell was inspired to complete the swim after the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) offered American swimmer Florence Chadwick $10,000 to swim across the lake without offering any Canadian swimmers the same opportunity (Chadwick was forced to give up part-way due to illness). Bell faced numerous gruelling obstacles during her 21-hour, 51-kilometre swim, including eels, high winds, and frigid waters. Radio reports noted Bell's progress every hour as she made her way across the lake, and 300,000 people crowded the shore near this site to witness her complete the swim. Bell immediately became a source of immense national pride for Canadians, and challenged beliefs at that time, to prove that women could compete in endurance sports.

Sunnyside Pavilion
1755 Lake Shore Boulevard West
One of the few remaining buildings from the famous Sunnyside Amusement Park, Sunnyside Pavilion is a heritage-designated building that opened in 1922. Designed in Beaux-Arts style by the architectural firm Chapman, Oxley & Bishop, it features an impressive archway with a decorative panel, and Classical columns and pilasters. The pavilion had enough room for 7,700 guests at one time. There is also a plaque on the building that notes the Sunnyside Amusement Area, which used to be situated just east of the Pavilion. Modelled after English and American resorts, it featured midway rides, games of chance, and a large outdoor swimming pool. The history of this site also highlights the blatant anti-Semitism that existed in Toronto at the time: Jewish members of the community were barred from entering the building. The park was closed in the 1950s and demolished to make way for the Gardiner Expressway. The Pavilion has also been used as a filming location for numerous productions, including 'The Handmaid's Tale', where it acts as June's daughter's school.

Explore South Parkdale

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.

We want to hear from you! Click here to complete a short survey

Suppport small business owners by Shopping Small.

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: Runnymede Branch
2178 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M6S 1M8

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 covers several diverse areas, including Liberty Village, Parkdale Village, and the shoreline along Lake Ontario. Along the way, numerous historic sites are featured, including some reflective of the industrial heritage of the area, some fascinating monuments along the lake, and several notable public art pieces. Queen Street West, with all of its trendy stores, cafes, and bars, is also the heart of the largest Tibetan community in Canada. A vast array of wonderful local businesses can be found along the stroll in the Liberty Village, Parkdale Village, and Roncesvalles Village BIAs.

Main Streets: Queen Street West and King Street West
  1. 60 Atlantic Avenue
    60 Atlantic Avenue
    *Note: Private property. Please observe the building from the sidewalk only. This heritage-designated building is reflective of the history of the Liberty Village area, which evolved from being primarily industrial, to a burgeoning area for artistic creation, to the more mixed commercial and residential area it is today. The building was originally constructed in 1898 and was home to St. David's Wine Grower's Company, until 1922 when it was utilized by Eaton's as a warehouse. In 1991, Artscape - a group of not-for-profit organizations dedicated to creating space for artists - transformed the building into an artist's enclave that featured 48 affordable studio spaces to a group of painters, sculptors, musicians, and designers. This development was a tremendous catalyst for turning Liberty Village into one of the most important creative employment clusters in Canada. It has since been renovated again to become a retail/commercial site that continues to preserve many of the excellent heritage features of the building.
  2. 1177 King Street West
    1177 King Street West
    *Note: Private property. Please observe the house from the sidewalk only. This lovely heritage-designated home along King Street West hides a more sinister history... Designed by Kivas Tully (once the official architect for the Province of Ontario) this house was the Superintendent's House as part of the Andrew Mercer Reformatory for Women, a massive prison complex that stood nearby this site. The complex opened in 1878 and was the first penitentiary exclusively for women in Canada. Remaining open for almost a century, the prison was closed and demolished in 1969 amidst numerous reports of horrendous conditions and shocking abuse of its inmates. The prison was replaced with neighbouring Allan A. Lamport Stadium. This Superintendent's House is a notable example of Queen Anne Revival design, and is the only remaining building from the prison complex.
  3. Toronto Carpet Manufacturing Company Building
    67 Mowat Avenue
    One of the most prominent and striking remaining industrial structures in the area, this heritage-designated building opened in 1899 as the home of the Toronto Carpet Manufacturing Company. The booming factory complex employed almost a thousand people by the beginning of the First World War, struggling to keep up with the high demand among Canadians for carpets. The architecture of the building resembles similar industrial facilities constructed in the United States and Great Britain during the nineteenth century. The site was completely self-reliant, producing its own steam-generated heat, power, and electricity. Like many other former industrial structures in Liberty Village, the building has now been turned into an office complex, offering 320,000 square feet of space to a wide variety of tenants.
  4. Trenton Terrace
    Trenton Terrace
    *Note: Private property. Please observe the houses from the sidewalk only. Hidden on a small, cobblestone laneway west of Cowan Avenue are 10 unique heritage-designated homes. They were originally built as workers' cottages for fishermen by John Coatsworth in the 1880s. Each home features a small front porch and a compact backyard. A memorial garden to a former resident of the street can also be found amongst the sheds lining the south side of the laneway.
  5. Jim Bravo and Kate Young 'Impressions'
    Jameson Avenue between Springhurst Boulevard and Queen Street West
    Over 65 planters along Jameson Avenue were transformed into one of the largest public photo exhibitions in the world in 2009. Artist Jim Bravo and photographer Kate Young wanted to create a photographic record of the Parkdale community, while creating a permanent outdoor art gallery at the same time. The immensely popular project received an upgrade in 2018 when the photos were printed in aluminum to ensure further longevity.
  6. 1313 Queen Street West & Queen Gardens Plaque
    1313 Queen Street West
    This heritage-designated Art Deco-style building dates back to 1931, when it was constructed as a modern fire hall and police station for the Parkdale area. The building has become an important community hub over the years, with Artscape taking over the building in 1998 and turning it into the Parkdale Arts & Cultural Centre. It was the organization's first foray into mixed-use development, with non-profit tenants on the ground floor, and artist spaces on the upper floor. Organizations utilizing the ground floor space include the Parkdale Village Business Improvement Association, Gallery 1313, and the Kababayan Multicultural Centre, which aids in the settlement of newcomers to Toronto. Beside the building on its western edge is a plaque which describes some of the history of the building and the Parkdale area.
  7. Jim Bravo 'Food Stories' Mural
    1325 Queen Street West
    This mural tells Parkdale food stories by depicting the types of food that were available in this region hundreds of years ago and the food of the neighbourhood today. Food symbolizes Parkdale's cultural diversity and brings the community together.
  8. 1501 Queen Street West
    1501 Queen Street West
    *Note: Private property. Please observe the building from the street only. This heritage-designated apartment building has an intriguing history, which is largely reflective of the Parkdale neighbourhood itself. It originally opened as an apartment building by developer David Lavine in early 1912. Combined with its nearly identical neighbour down the street at 194 Dowling Avenue - the two properties were known as the 'Parkdale Mansions'. The building is an excellent example of Edwardian Classicism, featuring a round-arch bay doorway and red and buff brick cladding with cast stone trim. The building eventually became a guest/rooming house, as many other old mansions and apartment buildings in Parkdale have over the years. In a victory for affordable housing advocates, the building was purchased in May 2020 by the Parkdale Activity-Recreation Centre (PARC), a local charity that operates out of a facility next door. PARC intends to maintain the below-market rent status of its 38 units, allowing current residents to remain in their homes without fear of large rent increases or eviction.
  9. Parkdale Theatre
    1605 Queen Street West
    First opening as a movie theatre in 1920, the Parkdale Theatre featured an opulent interior with ornate trim and large chandeliers. The theatre closed in 1970, and the building became a retail store that sold second-hand furniture and antiques. In 2020, the building was purchased by a local real estate developer who has been attempting to return the building to its former glory and turn it into an event venue. Many of the interior architectural features of the building have been restored, and an antique market operates out of the building on Sundays (a nod to this section of Queen Street West's reputation for housing many antique businesses).
  10. Tadeusz Janowski 'Katyn Memorial'
    Beaty Boulevard Park
    Commissioned by the Canadian Polish Congress, this monument created by artist Tadeusz Janowski was unveiled in 1980. It is meant to commemorate the approximately 22,000 Polish prisoners of war who were murdered and buried in mass graves near Katyn in the Soviet Union in 1940. The inscription on the monument itself states that 15,000 died, but revelations from the Soviet government in the early 1990s revealed the death toll to be much higher. Members of the Polish-Canadian community in Toronto place flowers and candles on the monument on the anniversary of the massacre to this day.
  11. Lakeshore Boulevard Parklands & American Troops Landing at York Plaque
    1389 Lake Shore Boulevard West
    Fantastic parklands line the south side of Lake Shore Boulevard in this area, with plenty of lovely views of Lake Ontario and some beaches to relax on. This section of the shore is also important historically, as a Heritage Toronto plaque along the Martin Goodman Trail indicates. The Battle of York - during the War of 1812 - began as an assault by American troops landing near this site on April 27, 1813. A group of Anishnaabeg under the command of British Major James Givins fought the American attack, but were forced into the woods. Ultimately, the Americans captured Fort York and won the battle.
  12. Palais Royale
    1601 Lake Shore Boulevard West
    Opened in 1928 as both a dance hall and boat factory, the Palais Royale is now a heritage-designated building. It was particularly prominent during the 1930s as big bands led by legends such as Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey, Count Basie, and Duke Ellington played there to large crowds. It has also been a prime concert venue, hosting concerts by notable artists such as Blue Rodeo, Sloan, Blur, and even The Rolling Stones in 2002. The building continues to be a dance hall and popular event space.
  13. Victor Tolgyesi 'Tenth Anniversary of Hungarian Uprising 1956'
    Lake Shore Boulevard West and Budapest Lane (in Budapest Park)
    This monument was erected in 1966 by artist Victor Tolgyesi to commemorate the more than 37,000 Hungarian refugees who fled to Canada as a result of the Hungarian Revolution a decade earlier. (Tolgyesi himself was one of these refugees). It was the first mass immigration from the communist Eastern Bloc countries to Canada, and involved the Canadian government acting quickly to select, transport, and resettle people in cooperation with local non-profit organizations. Many of these refugees settled in Toronto and in other places across Canada, where they made significant positive contributions to economic and cultural life. The event was designated as an event of national historic importance by the Government of Canada, as it established an important precedent and model for receiving future refugees to Canada.
  14. Marilyn Bell Plaque
    Budapest Park
    This plaque commemorates Marilyn Bell, a 16-year-old who became the first person to swim across Lake Ontario on September 9, 1954. Bell was inspired to complete the swim after the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) offered American swimmer Florence Chadwick $10,000 to swim across the lake without offering any Canadian swimmers the same opportunity (Chadwick was forced to give up part-way due to illness). Bell faced numerous gruelling obstacles during her 21-hour, 51-kilometre swim, including eels, high winds, and frigid waters. Radio reports noted Bell's progress every hour as she made her way across the lake, and 300,000 people crowded the shore near this site to witness her complete the swim. Bell immediately became a source of immense national pride for Canadians, and challenged beliefs at that time, to prove that women could compete in endurance sports.
  15. Sunnyside Pavilion
    1755 Lake Shore Boulevard West
    One of the few remaining buildings from the famous Sunnyside Amusement Park, Sunnyside Pavilion is a heritage-designated building that opened in 1922. Designed in Beaux-Arts style by the architectural firm Chapman, Oxley & Bishop, it features an impressive archway with a decorative panel, and Classical columns and pilasters. The pavilion had enough room for 7,700 guests at one time. There is also a plaque on the building that notes the Sunnyside Amusement Area, which used to be situated just east of the Pavilion. Modelled after English and American resorts, it featured midway rides, games of chance, and a large outdoor swimming pool. The history of this site also highlights the blatant anti-Semitism that existed in Toronto at the time: Jewish members of the community were barred from entering the building. The park was closed in the 1950s and demolished to make way for the Gardiner Expressway. The Pavilion has also been used as a filming location for numerous productions, including 'The Handmaid's Tale', where it acts as June's daughter's school.

Accessibility information: All of the points of interest on this stroll are viewable from streets or park paths. Sites along the shore of Lake Ontario can be accessed by bridges at the foot of either Dowling Avenue, Jameson Avenue, or Roncesvalles Avenue. Trenton Terrace is paved with some brick and cobblestone.

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.