Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Rosedale Toronto... Mmm pretty...

Photography by Charles Moffat.

Rosedale is an idyllic neighbourhood smack dab in the middle of Toronto. I live right near it so I like to go cycling and for walks there, and who wouldn't when you see the rows of old trees and the often unique architecture of the homes (both old and new) in Rosedale.

Rosedale was once considered a suburb 100 years ago, but is now really more uptown or midtown Toronto as the city has spread and is now a megacity metropolis. It is now the 2nd wealthiest neighbourhood in Toronto (Forest Hill, where Conrad Black lives when he is not in prison is #1).

Bordering on the CPR railway tracks, Yonge Street and Bloor Street, and Bayview Avenue Rosedale is conveniently near no less than 5 subway stations and also the Don Valley Parkway. A ravine running east and west divides Rosedale into sections, the south end and the north end.

I admit I get lost in Rosedale almost every time I go there. The streets are rather confusing to an outsider (a bit like visiting Kitchener-Waterloo where my cousins live). Still the mystery and feeling of exploration never leaves me because I always feel like I am discovering a new part of the city I never knew about.

Historically South Rosedale was first settled by Sheriff William Jarvis (whom Jarvis Street is named after) and his wife, Mary, in 1820. Mary Jarvis' walks and horseback rides blazed the trails which would later become Rosedale's streets and forested paths that are still used today. It was Mary who gave Rosedale its name, after the wild roses that used to grow there. (Many Rosedale residents still have roses, but they're usually of the tamer variety.)

The Jarvis Family sold their Rosedale property in 1864 and it became a residential development.

(Note: You may have noticed a lot of the buildings or trees in Rosedale have ivy growing on them. I LOVE IVY. I'd pay extra just to own a house covered in ivy. Or Wisteria. I love Wisteria too. I recommend that people trying to planning to sell their home eventually to plant ivy and Wisteria around the sides of the building. It looks beautiful and it should help jack up the price.)

North Rosedale was home to St. Andrew's College (1899-1924), an all-boys boarding school. The place was also known for the Rosedale Golf Club, a lacrosse field (Rosedale Field) and was the site of the first Grey Cup Canadian football game. When a bridge (Glen Road Bridge) was built across the ravine (now known as Park Drive Ravine) in 1909 it led to residential development both in Rosedale and other neighbourhoods north of the ravine.

Technically there is three ravines that run through Rosedale. Building on the edge of a ravine is risky so its served to create natural parkland all around Rosedale, creating physical boundaries to the neighbourhood. These ravines and the wonderful old buildings / architecture is why I think its such a nice neighbourhood to cycle in and live in.

Plus there's almost ZERO traffic. For a cyclist or even someone just walking this is important because it means you can wander the neighbourhood with little worry of being struck by a car (less worry if you have children who run amok too).

Most of the homes in Rosedale are single detached.

For the family minded Rosedale also has a specialty arts school, an exclusive all-girls school, Branksome Hall and Rosedale Elementary Public School and there is the community centre Mooredale House, which is also home to the Mooredale Orchestra.

Rosedale Park hosts a Mayfair annual party usually on the first Saturday in May, which includes rides, games, flea market and carnival-like activities. The event is run and funded by Mooredale House.

According to Statistics Canada (2006) the average income of Rosedale Residents is $213,941.

So yeah... if you go shopping for a home in Rosedale expect to pay over $1 million for it. I doubt I will ever be able to afford a home in such a beautiful part of Toronto, but that doesn't stop me from dreaming right?

See Also:
Rosedale Real Estate Blog
Search Rosedale Homes by Map

Moore Park is a tiny section just north of Rosedale on the north side of the railway line. I consider it to be part of Rosedale itself, although some people will doubtlessly disagree with me.

Mooredale Real Estate Blog
Search Moore Park Homes by Map

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