What the suburbs used to look like around Toronto
Although the former municipalities of Etobicoke, North York, York, and Scarborough are sometimes still referred to as suburbs of Toronto, development in these areas over the last 30 years and the sprawl that's given birth to the Greater Toronto Area should probably mute such references.
While not as dense as the downtown core, wide areas of Toronto's former suburbs have become more and more urbanized over the years, a process which continues to take place as steep real estate prices drive would-be home owners further and further from the core.
But what did they look like before this process took place?
Let's be honest, there aren't a lot of surprises here. Sure there are a few shots of streets and intersections that have changed dramatically over the years, but the thing about suburban architecture is that its individual features tend to blend in with one another.
Are we in North York or Etobicoke? It's tough to tell once you get to the residential streets. The design of these places speaks more to the time period in which they were built rather than the specific place they're located.
There is, however, plenty that's fascinating about the birth of the suburbs in Toronto. In addition to demonstrating how mass car ownership transformed planning principles, there's something else to be spotted in these photos.
There's this strange combination of optimism and fear that seems built into the very form of these communities, from their well manicured but generally empty front yards to the eerie preponderance of abandoned tricycles. This is the stuff nostalgia is made out of.
Here's what Toronto's suburbs used to look like.
Join the conversation Load comments