Toronto’s population is growing exponentially, and who can blame people who want to move to this great city? As population density grows and rent prices get higher and higher in the core of the city, people are spreading out further and further into the Greater Toronto Area. The GTA includes the downtown core of Toronto as well as the four regional municipalities surrounding it, Durham, York, Peel, and Halton. For the most part though, people associate the GTA with suburbia and there is truth to that, but there are a lot of benefits that come with looking for a place to live outside the city core. There’s more space to be had the more north you go, it’s safer, rent is a lot more reasonable, and there is a load of fun stuff to do! Also, for most of us these neighbourhoods give us the best opportunity to actually buy and own a house in Toronto with the current market. Here are 10 up and coming GTA neighbourhoods!
1. Vaughn has been growing for years now and has become an affordable place for families to buy a home close to the city. The Vaughn Mall is huge and has a lot to offer in the way of shopping and entertainment. It has it’s own transit system making getting around up there easy. From Finch station it is only around a twenty minute bus ride, so don’t be scared that it is too far out.
2. Danforth Village is a lot more than just Greek Town. Lots of indie businesses and restaurants make up the streets here. In the summer there are a lot of outdoor festivals that take place and the houses are still affordable by Toronto standards. With it’s great TTC accessibility on top of everything else, it has become a hot spot for Toronto yuppies.
3. Gerrard East has long been just an area to pass through but it is quickly changing into one of the most active streets in Toronto. It’s located east of Chinatown and north of Leslieville. Mad Dog Café opened up a couple years ago, and where one hipster coffee shop opens more always follow. And with them they bring in the young and hip! The area has always been heavily populated but now businesses are opening up offering more services to the people living there. With Chinatown and Little India close by, it’s a great area for people who love amazing ethnic food. Not to mention it’s close to the Beaches!
4. Ajax is located in the eastern part of the GTA. A lot of families and kids live here because the real estate is much cheaper than directly in the city, and it is a naturally beautiful place to live. The last couple years have seen a lot of development going on in the downtown area of Ajax near Harwood ave bringing more activity and people to Ajax. While it is mostly families up there, more and more young people are moving there these days.
5. Six Points is being labeled as the ‘Downtown Etobicoke’ and the development it has undergone in the recent years and continues to do so is confirmation of that. Lots of condos have sprouted up here offering affordable housing. It is also home to the infamous ‘Spaghetti Junction.’ It is where Bloor St W, Kipling Ave and Dundas St W all meet and it has been a point of contention for people living in the neighbourhood because it is a mess and dangerous. The city has vowed to work on that and fix the flow of traffic for cars and pedestrians as the population there soars.
6. Unionville is an often forgotten gem in the GTA. The town is gorgeous but too often people write it off as only a place to visit for the day and get some ice cream. Charming and quaint come to mind when considering Unionville, and it is definitely more than just a tourist stop. There is a nearby conservation area with scenic walking trails, the main street has great restaurants and art galleries. You will not be bored in Unionville! Especially in the summer.
7. Sutton is located 2 km south of Lake Simcoe. The lake provides gorgeous views. Definitely quieter than the city proper, Sutton makes up for it with quaint shops and cafes as well as golf courses. There are also a ton of beautiful beaches to visit. A couple of years ago Sutton was considered to be cottage area, but with housing development growing more and more people are choosing to live here.
8. Rockcliffe – Smyth may be a neighbourhood you never heard of until Air B’n’B billed it as the hottest area in Toronto. Lots of green outdoor space makes up the neighbourhood. It also has the Stockyards Shopping Mall offering great shopping and dining to residents. If you are an outdoorsy person that likes running and trails, this could be the hood for you.
9. Weston now has a UP Express and a GO Station, making its popularity rise with people looking to buy and live in Toronto. There is shopping, an Artscape Hub under construction that will be a place for community events, and a pedestrian bridge making walking around much easier.
10. Birch Cliff is located east past the Beaches. It is often overlooked as a suburb of the beaches but it has recently experience development that has made it, it’s own distinct and appealing neighbourhood. It has huge homes as well condos, offering a variety of different housing options to people. A lot of hip coffee shops and stores have opened up here in the last couple of years, and as the Beaches gets more and more expensive people are spreading out to Birch Cliff more.