Heritage Preservation

The City of Toronto’s Official Plan defines the different precincts within the ABC boundaries as Areas of Special Identity. All these areas make an important contribution to the City’s rich legacy of neighbourhoods. ABCRA is committed to preserving and enhancing this rich heritage and character of the community.

A list of designated and listed properties in the area can be found on the City’s website. See The City of Toronto 2022 Draft Heritage Context Statement below and the ABCRA response to this statement highlighting some commonly overlooked properties of interest that we believe deserve protection from insensitive development.

Penny Farthing coffee house 1963

Bloor-Yorkville Historic Context Statement

City of Toronto Heritage Planning utilises Cultural Heritage Resource Assessments (CHRAs) to document and analyse an area’s history and ensure that properties of potential cultural heritage value or interest are appropriately identified, understood and conserved. In December 2020, Heritage Planning engaged Common Bond Collective to prepare the Bloor-Yorkville Cultural Heritage Resource Assessment (CHRA). The Bloor-Yorkville CHRA is being undertaken as part of, and coordinated with, the Bloor-Yorkville Secondary Plan Study.

Ramsden Park sign in winter

Ramsden Park: A Park that Built a Community

The ABC Residents Association believes Ramsden Park has an interesting and important story to tell. Since the City of York’s earliest beginnings, this unique landscape has had a meaningful connection to this community. We believe that Ramsden Park meets the criteria for designation as a Cultural Heritage Landscape.

Yonge & Yorkville 1975

ABCRA provides comments to the City’s Bloor Yorkville Heritage Assessment

City of Toronto Heritage Planning utilizes Cultural Heritage Resource Assessments (CHRAs) to document and analyze an area’s history and ensure that properties of potential cultural heritage value or interest are appropriately identified, understood and conserved. Read our submission to the City, providing input and recommendations for the CHRA field study of the Bloor-Yorkville/North Midtown Area. 

Heritage News

171 Lowther proposal submitted to City of Toronto

Eye-popping 11-storey tower proposed for site of historic Toronto homes

A row of homes dating back almost 125 years could be transformed by an impressive 11-storey tower, if a new development application is approved by the city. Not surprisingly, local residents have questions about the growing intensity in a quiet section of one of the city’s oldest neighbourhoods where a number of proposals to increase density are piling up.

Albert Campbell Branch Library

Winners Announced for the 2023 Heritage Toronto Awards

Canadian architects and urbanists were at the helm of five projects that were among the winners of the the 2023 Heritage Toronto Awards. The Heritage Toronto Awards bring together leaders, innovators and emerging professionals from across cultural, development, and policy-making sectors to celebrate achievements in Toronto’s heritage. The event is also Heritage Toronto’s major fundraiser of the year and raises monies in support of its public programming.

148 Avenue Road

Historical designation of 148 and 156-158 Avenue Road

In review of the development application, the applicant is proposing to remove existing buildings along Avenue Road to increase the width of pedestrian sidewalks, provide for a signature plaza at the intersection, increase on-site public space and widen an existing laneway for both vehicular and pedestrian use. These public realm enhancements are desirable for both pedestrian and vehicular safety and support the creation of a community node at a key intersection in the City of Toronto.

Bloor Viaduct

5 little-known facts you might not know about the Bloor Viaduct

The Bloor Viaduct is one of Toronto’s most iconic structures. Built between 1914 and 1918, it was officially named the Prince Edward Viaduct after the Prince of Wales, a fact which Torontonians tend to gloss over by stubbornly referring to it by its street-related colloquial name.

Despite its significant status, there’s plenty of mostly unknown information about the bridge, not the least of which is that it’s actually not one bridge at all!

Bloor viaduct under construction

The history of Toronto in photos

The history of Toronto in photos is not an authoritative history of this city (far from from it), but the 90 some odd posts linked to below provide a thematically organized visual overview of Toronto that I hope will be worth a return visit or two for those interested in the city of yesteryear.

The vast majority of the photographs featured below derive from the Toronto Archives, which means that should you see something that you really like, it’s probably available for purchase from the source.