Runnymede is a quiet neighbourhood in Toronto that has convenient access to shopping and transportation. The community is surrounded between some of Toronto’s affluent neighbourhoods including Baby Point, Bloor West Village and High Park. The area is very family oriented and features affordable housing and a good selection of schools.
The majority of Runnymede is residential, however, the northern boundary along the Dundas Street West is a commercial corridor. North of Dundas Street includes light industry and the Canadian Pacific Railway tracks.
Runnymede developed around the former estate of John Scarlett, who settled in the area in 1808. Scarlett became the proprietor of a number of mills that tan along the banks of the Humber River. He eventually built a rough-cast English cottage-style house named the “Runnymede” in 1838. It was situated at the present day intersection of Dundas and Runnymede Roads.
Even though the house isn’t standing anymore, there are many other landmarks that are named after Runnymede. Today you can see the Runnymede high school, Runnymede Hospital, Runnymede Road and many of the local churches. There weren’t many homes built in this neighbourhood until the early 1900’s.
The neighbourhood features tree-lined streets with a great mix of houses including Victorian mansions, pre and post-war bungalows, duplex and triplex dwellings. There are also a variety of detached and semi-detached homes.
The houses in Runnymede have no discernable building pattern because they were built in stages from roughly 1890 to 1950. The homes have many different types of exteriors including wood, insulbrick, frame siding, stucco, brick and stone. Many of the roofs have a distinctive barn-like appearance since this was popular in the early 1900’s.
Runnymede has many shopping areas that are in close proximity to its residents. Jane Street features a decent mix of stores including a pharmacy, a local grocer, antique stores, and variety stores. Annette Street features a large discount store and neighbourhood restaurants, hair salons, professional offices, and variety stores.
Dundas Street attracts many residents as it has a commercial strip with a variety of different stores. The strip includes two shopping plazas, fast food outlets, bars, restaurants, gas stations, car repair shops, and fitness classes.
Residents in Runnymede are within walking distance of Etienne BržlŽ and Home Smith parks. These parks are located along the Humber River. The scenic parks attract people for walking, jogging, cycling, cross-country trails, fishing, and picnics.
There is also Runnymede Park just north of the railway tracks off of Cobalt Avenue which is a multi-faceted park. It features a children’s playground, a wading pool, and sports fields. Residents also enjoy access to the Jane-Dundas Library at 620 Jane Street.
Runnymede residents have excellent access to public transit. Bus routes on Jane, Annette and Dundas Streets connect to stations on the Bloor-Danforth subway line. The Jane station at Bloor Street is a fifteen to twenty minute walk from most of the houses in this neighbourhood.
Motorists are close to Dundas and Bloor Streets which provide director access to downtown Toronto in twenty to twenty five minutes. Those looking to leave the city have east access to Black Creek Drive.
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