King West Village is one of the most dynamic neighbourhoods in Toronto. It’s a community full of townhouses, eclectic shops, fashionable restaurants and artist studios minutes from downtown Toronto by the TTC. In the past few years, King West has undergone a spectacular transformation that now epitomizes urban living in the city.
It wasn’t always like that. Today it was once a huge industrial area with factories such as Macgregor Socks. The memories of those times are still present in the form of street signs – many streets bear names such as Massey and Battery road after the manufacturing plants. This is, however, all gone today – now you can see new spectacular lofts and condominiums served by retail and big box stores such as Dominion, offering nearby cafes, art galleries, trendy bars and restaurants, and parks that provide places to walk, bicycle, rollerblade, and entertain friends.
King West Village is bordered roughly by Spadina, Front, Adelaide and Bathurst. It has become suddenly very alive – you can see properties being constructed, demolished, renovated and renewed all the time. Developers are grabbing every available lot in this area, driving out long-time fixtures and pushing up values. Six recent land sales in the will see 1000 new condominium units constructed, with some of them being very luxurious indeed.
Another contributing factor to the appeal of the neighbourhood is its rich history: you can see old factory buildings and warehouses along King & Wellington streets, the famous Wheat Sheaf Tavern which has been a Bathurst & King fixture for more than 150 years, and Victoria Memorial Park, which is actually a cemetery for some of the dead of the war of 1812. It is currently going through a more than $1 million restoration. The majority of these historical buildings in King West Village are protected, and hopefully this fact will help to keep the neighourhood just as pedestrian-friendly as it’s considered now.
The reason for this unique flavour of King West lies not only in its historical roots. It offers a vast array of modern conveniences of great shops, independent galleries, restaurants and clubs. It has also parks, carwashes, fitness centers, health food shops and yoga classes, just as you would expect from any modern, higher class neighbourhood. Have a morning coffee at a cafe and then hop the streetcar for a five-minute ride to Bay Street or the subway station. Or drive to the Gardiner Expressway – it’s less than five minutes away.
Despite all these attractive features, what really makes King West is the genuine sense of community you can experience here – residents say that they actually know their neighbours, and see the same people jogging down the street, shopping and having espresso. It’s this ambience of community that pervades it and allows the people here to be at home with urban living. The location provides residents very easy access to Toronto’s business and financial districts – minutes by car or streetcar, while the frequent Bathurst streetcar connects to the Bloor Line in minutes. Famous destinations such as the Skydome, Exhibition Place, Harborfront, Fort York and the Toronto Islands are also all very accessible.
King Street itself offers shops, professional services and restaurants that serve the area’s day-to-day needs. In terms of local recreation, Stanley Park is a favourite neighbourhood meeting place, offering baseball diamonds, tennis courts, an outdoor pool, and a soccer field. The community centre located on its grounds is used for residents’ meetings, community-based programs and social functions.
With close proximity to another uber-trendy neighbourhood, Queen Street West, King West Village offers few bargains; however one advantage to those wishing to purchase in this rapidly emerging area is that properties are fairly large by downtown standards, offering big underground garages and elevations up to 20 stories. custom logo dress socks