Thank you for visiting www.GreatMortgageAdvice.com By Cecilia Ramos
Cabbagetown Toronto Community
Cabbagetown is home to the Danny Grossman Dance Company, the Toronto Dance Theatre, and the Canadian Children's Dance Theatre.
Necropolis Cemetery Located at 200 Winchester Street, this cemetery is the final resting place of notable Canadians including William Lyon Mackenzie, leader of the 1837 Rebellion.
According to the Cabbagetown Preservation Association, the neighbourhood comprises "the largest continuous area of preserved Victorian housing in North America".
Local legend has it that Cabbagetown is so named because poor Irish and Macedonian immigrant inhabitants from the late nineteenth century could only afford to eat the cabbage they grew themselves, supposedly in their front yards.
Original boundaries were Gerrard Street to the north, Queen Street to the south, Parliament Street to the west and the Don River to the east. Cabbagetown's current boundaries are now generally accepted as Gerrard Street to the south, Wellesley Street to the north, Sherbourne Street to the west and the Don River to the east.
Cabbagetown was one of the poorest neighbourhoods in Toronto, and in the late 1940s much of the original Cabbagetown was razed to make room for the Regent Park housing project, and the Cabbagetown name (but not necessarily its actual inhabitants) migrated north to the Victorian neighbourhood it now calls home.
As of 2004, the present-day Cabbagetown has become a Heritage Conservation District, protected by municipal bylaw. Included within the district are St. James Cemetery, Necropolis Cemetery, the Riverdale Park and Farm, and Wellesley Park.
The neighbourhood of Corktown, south of Regent Park, now incorporates part of the southern reaches of 'old' Cabbagetown. Along with a small number of houses east of River Street, this is the only part of the original Cabbagetown area not to have been demolished in the 1940s.
Canadian writer Hugh Garner's most famous novel, Cabbagetown, depicts life in this neighbourhood during the Great Depression.
The second week-end in September sees the annual Cabbagetown festival, which is a two day event, with an arts and crafts fair both days in Riverdale Park West. Vendors come from far afield for this event. The highlight of the festival is the parade on Saturday morning, which usually starts at 10:00 a.m. at Riverdale Park West, though the route may vary from year-to-year. Parliament Street between Wellesley Street East and Carlton Street is closed to traffic for the week-end. Organization of the festival is coordinated by the Old Cabbagetown Business Improvement Area (OCBIA) association. The festival also includes a 'Tour of Homes', in which several local homes are opened to a paying public. Tickets are limited and usually sold out ahead of time.
The Annual Cabbagetown Short Film & Video Festival showcases eighteen short films from around the world, and is part of the festival. Actress, producer, writer Gina Dineen, founded the festival fifteen years ago, and since then it has grown into an impressive international juried screening, showcasing Canadian filmmakers John Fawcett, Vincenzo Natali, Michael Dowse, and Sarah Polley. The 2006 programme, selected from 300 submissions received from Toronto, Australia, India, South Korea, and Kazakhstan, covered a full range of genres including animation, documentary, dramatic narrative, comedy, experimental and music. None of the productions run longer than 15 minutes, with the shortest clocking in at 54 seconds.
Heritage Conservation District
In 2004 part of Cabbagetown became a Heritage Conservation District, protected by municipal bylaw. The district was established in two stages: first an area centred on Metcalfe, and later areas to the north and east of the initial area.
The boundaries of the combined district are currently:
St. James Cemetery to the north
just east of Parliament Street to the west (i.e. excluding Parliament Street itself)
Carlton Street to the south, including the south side
Wellesley Park, the Necropolis and Riverdale Park to the east
The area south of Carlton Street and north of, but excluding, Gerrard Street, is under consideration for future inclusion.
Cabbagetown was gentrified by affluent professionals, beginning in the 1970s. Many residents restored small Victorian row houses and became community activists. Today, wrought iron fences, stone walkways and beautifully kept gardens are common in some parts of Cabbagetown. Some traces of a 1960s counter-culture feeling are evident in vintage clothing stores, a gestalt therapy clinic and an adventure travel agency. A Victorian farm, once the site of a zoo, is located adjacent to Riverdale Park West, where a weekly farmer's market is held. A short distance away is the gritty Cabbagetown Boxing Club, a reminder of an earlier, and rougher, past. In recent years, some businesses from the nearby "gay village" of Church and Wellesley, have relocated to the area, attracted by cheaper commercial rents.
An evening of wine-tasting at local restaurants was added to the annual Cabbagetown Festival in 2006. A restaurant review in a September 2005 community newspaper captures something of the neighbourhood's dichotomy:
"Cabbagetown might be one of Toronto's most exclusive neighbourhoods but you'd never know it from strolling down its main drag. A jumble of discount stores and cheap coffee shops that attract the down-on-their luck and the just plain unlucky, Parliament (Street) is the polar opposite of the leafy avenues lined with million-dollar piles only a block away."
Regent Park Revitalization
Regent Park revitalization project is currently underway. Regent Park was/is Torontoâs first housing projects. It has justly or unjustly caused some to view the area negatively. The revitalization project is an active and aggressive cleanup newly architecturally redesigning the neighbourhood. Much of the land that was at one time designated for use by the Toronto Community Housing Cooperation has been sold to condominium developers. These condominium developers have not only attracted more young professionals to the community but they have also attracted new business, including bank branches.
Cabbagetown has many diverse and wonderful businesses along both Carlton Street and Parliament St.
Predominantly liberal, the neighbourhood is home to many artists, musicians, journalists and writers. Other residents include professors, doctors and social workers, many affiliated with the nearby University of Toronto. Former Conservative prime minister Brian Mulroney railed against his trendy Cabbagetown opponents on The Secret Mulroney Tapes -- conversations with journalist Peter C. Newman.
Celebrities who have at some time been residents of Cabbagetown include:
Bradshaw, Richard - General Director, Canadian Opera Company (1998-2007)
Butt, Brent - comedian
Clarkson, Adrienne - journalist and 26th Governor General of Canada
Hall, Barbara - 61st mayor of Toronto
Highway, Tomson - playwright and novelist
Kain, Karen - former ballet dancer and now National Ballet of Canada artistic director
Kent, Peter - journalist and former news anchor
Lavigne, Avril - singer
Amy Millan - indie folk/rock singer and guitarist
Ondaatje, Michael - novelist
Polley, Sarah - actor
Rowlands, June - 60th mayor of Toronto
Sung, Alfred - fashion designer
Watson, Alberta - actor
Rik Liu - actor
Walker, George F. - playwright
With all of its character and charm I personally think that Cabbagetown will continue to positively grow and continue to become a first class neighbourhood in Toronto. I remember and cherish my times spent in Cabbagetown. I have personally frequented many of the shops, restaurants, and establishments in Cabbagetown. I can honestly say that I cherish my many memories of those experiences. Cabbagetown is the kind of community that sticks in your mind because the uniqueness, charm, and character all leave a beautiful impression in your mind.
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