Tag Archives: Riverside Lofts
By Rebecca Laing
In a metropolis known as “the city of neighbourhoods”, how does one find their place? Because of the unique characteristics and vitality of its many communities, Toronto has upwards of 240 distinct and named neighbourhoods within its boundaries. As you can imagine, selecting a single neighbourhood as my favourite choice of residence is a difficult feat. But, the lure of Riverdale prevailsâ€¦
Why Riverdale? It’s absolutely lovely here. Riverdale has a beautiful assemblage of mostly older homes laden with character, as well as a handful of very tastefully built newer homes. There are wonderful parks, excellent schools, and fantastic shopping and dining on the Danforth. Riverdale is convenient, with quick accessibility to downtown Toronto through multiple subway stops, TTC streetcars, and the Don Valley Parkway. Overall, Riverdale is a superb community, especially for young families. I know you will love Riverdale as much as I do!
North Riverdale Homes
North Riverdale stretches from Gerrard Street East in the south, to as far north as Mortimer Avenue in spots, reaching to as far as Greenwood Avenue in the east, with the Don Valley Parkway serving as its western boundary. (Note that borders are imprecise and non-linear throughout Riverdale). The area’s residents are mainly young professionals and upper-middle class families, as well as some long-term residents who have lived here their entire lives.
North Riverdale homes display both Edwardian and Victorian architecture, dating from the late 1800s to the 1920s. Homes are mostly two and three stories, and range from very large detached homes, to tall and skinny semis and rowhouses. Many North Riverdale homes have been wonderfully restored, with the utmost attention to detail.
Other than in multi-million dollar renos and design magazines, never have I seen finer materials and more exquisite dÃ©cor than in some of these renovated Riverdale gems. It is the trend here; residents take great pride in their homes, both inside and out. The gardens are lovely, full of perennials, and enhance the beautiful architectural details of these historic buildings. The streets here are hilly, winding, and tree laden, setting a perfect backdrop for these inviting residences.
In the part of North Riverdale above the Danforthh, proximity to Jackman Public School, and the Danforth itself, are major drivers of real estate prices. South of the Danforth, Withrow Park serves as a hub of the community; homes close to Withrow are the most in demand. This entire stretch of North Riverdale above Riverdale Avenue is referred to as Upper Riverdale, or Prime Riverdale.
Of course, one of the best parts of living in North Riverdale is having the vibrant and cosmopolitan Greektown around the corner. Greektown on The Danforth offers something for everyone, whether it be shopping, strolling, relaxing on a patio, or people watching.
No longer just a place to get a souvlaki fix, Greektown is now a multicultural dining destination, with its myriad of restaurants offering foods from virtually every nationality found in Toronto. Fine boutiques and purveyors of natural products and health-promoting services round out this dynamic retail landscape.
South Riverdale Homes
South Riverdale lies south of Gerrard and west of the Don Valley Parkway, extending down to Eastern Avenue. The eastern boundary is most disputed; although technically, South Riverdale is oft described as extending past Greenwood, even to as far as Coxwell Avenue, most of my Riverdale home buyers find that once you are east of Leslie, the character really changes to that of Leslieville. I could further confuse matters by bringing Little India and Riverside (formerly Queen-Broadview Village) into the discussion, and stating how Leslieville is arguably a sub-neighbourhood of South Riverdale, but this is confusing enough already.
Homes in South Riverdale are more affordable than those to the north; the Riverdale area is hence home to more working class families and young couples. South Riverdale homes are largely Victorian in style. Two and three storey gothic rowhouses and semis are common, as are gingerbread cottages, such as those found on Degrassi Street (made famous by the series of Degrassi TV shows filmed in and around Leslieville and Riverdale, though the actual school locations were in East York and West Toronto).
For those more inclined towards a condo lifestyle, the newer Broadview Lofts and Riverside Lofts feature modern urban styling, while the Carlaw Lofts offer authentic loft-living in a converted Soho-style warehouse.
Although South Riverdale is a bit of a hike from the Danforth subway, it does offer the convenience of the Broadview, Gerrard, and Queen streetcar routes. For those looking for a little shopping or nightlife, Riverside (at Queen and Broadview) is now exploding new with shops and cafes, and the downtown core is just a brief bicycle or streetcar ride away.
Riverdale Real Estate Boundaries
As mentioned, the boundaries of Riverdale and its various sub-communities are jagged and porous on all sides, thereby making them often subject to debate. Using its most generous boundaries, Riverdale stretches from as far west as the Don Valley Parkway to as far east as Coxwell, and from Eastern Avenue in the south to as far north as Mortimer Avenue.
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By Rebecca Laing
Until a few years ago, homes in Leslieville stood largely in the shadows of those in ever popular Riverdale. Mirroring its cousin Beaconsfield Village on Queen West, a stigma of seediness overhung the neighbourhood, as Leslieville real estate values languished. But that was then…
In lockstep with the renewal of businesses along Queen Street East, and the arrival of Starbucks at Logan, many Leslieville homes are receiving makeovers as well, restoring their gorgeous century-old character.
While this renewal has certainly driven up the value of Leslieville real estate, it is still very much a middle class neighbourhood. Its wide range of house styles present many affordable, close-to-downtown living options, ranging from classic semi-detached homes, to pint-sized bungalows, to grand old Victorians (some complete with coach house), to scattered sprinklings of newer townhomes, to the new Riverside lofts at Broadview.
Leslieville: Queen Street Eastâ€™s Shopping Village
Part of Leslievilleâ€™s attractiveness stems from its stylish and vibrant dining and shopping scene. Verveine, Joy, and Kubo Radio are a few of the superb bistros that have arrived on this stretch of Queen East, making Leslieville a dining destination for moderately-priced, creative cuisine.
Meanwhile, an eclectic array of trendy and funky shops is gradually filling the retail landscape. You will find a heavy emphasis on home furnishings from Leslievilleâ€™s merchants, whose distinctive offerings include antique, retro, and minimalist designs.
Leslieville Real Estate Boundaries
Leslieville spans from Coxwell Avenue west to approximately Empire Avenue (past Carlaw). Eastern Avenue is the clearly defined southern border, however, things get a bit more murky to the north. While Leslievilleâ€™s character is quite evident up to Dundas Street East, there are those that consider Leslieville to extend all the way to the railway line north of Gerrard, which would therefore include Little India.
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