The Canary District

Dogs, coffee, culture and design

shot on my Huawei P20 Lecia 

I have lived in various neighbourhoods in Toronto and I never considered returning to the east end after living in Parkdale for four years but after visiting the recently developed Canary District, I have reconsidered my interest.  I am probably getting ahead of myself but I was hired by a commercial real estate company to photograph the area.  I like new.  New appliances, new buildings and clean anything for that matter.  Pretty much the opposite of my current hood!  The combination of cafés, art installations, the new YMCA and local restaurants…I felt happy and safe bouncing around the Canary District.  I may have looked like a tourist with my camera when a family van pulled over and asked me if I was lost.  My inner Parkdale came out and responded sarcastically with “No, are you?”  To my surprise it was an innocent mother with her daughter trying to help me.  Neighbourhood Watch at it’s finest!  I apologized and explained what I was doing.  Needless to say, few neighbourhoods have this type of community where strangers are willing to pull over and offer help.  Nearby appears to be mix income housing.  The commissioned art next to the playground and in the underpass, was like nothing I had seen before.  Even ‘Joe the Dogwalker’ was creative in his marketing for local pet owners!  So while tenants across the city are fighting to keep our homes in the midst of gentrification, I really enjoyed the spirit of the area.  The opposite of Liberty Village and even more community driven than the Distillery.  Now mind you, it was one of the first sunny days post winter and everyone was in a good mood.  So, I have no clue what it’s like day-to-day but I know the city is undergoing new developments and a lot of people are freaking over the cost of living, I would argue we also care about making a home we call our own for years to come.  I would recommend checking out the Canary District and see how you feel after a weekend afternoon enjoying a new hood in the city.  See if you can find the national team markings where the Pan Am athletes were housed along the way!


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