Amazingly, prime land just east of the Harbourfront neighbourhood of downtown Toronto was, for years, an industrial zone that was poorly used and frankly, an eyesore. Today, the area is being dubbed the East Bayfront, and is being built into a mixed-use community with high-rise condominium towers, institutions, office and retail. Stats boast that the new neighbourhood of East Bayfront includes five acres of parks and public spaces, 6,000 residential units, and space for new shops, restaurants and other commercial uses. Situated steps from downtown on one side and bordered by Lake Ontario on the other, East Bayfront has the boxes for location, views, public spaces and modern living checked off, along with high rents and plenty of construction as your companions for the next few years while the project gets built up. The neighbourhood stretches from Jarvis to Parliament, on the water side of the Expressway.
Downtown's young professionals who want to skip the long commutes, enjoy great views and live in a modern condo, and have the deep pockets to make it all happen. The crowd here is decidedly early 30s, although the George Brown College Waterfront Campus located will start attracting students in their 20s.
Employees of downtown Toronto and entrepreneurs making their way in the city – if you're succeeding.
Families with a few kids. While there are a few townhouses available in East Bayfront, they're few and far between and usually are owner-occupied. The condos planned for the new neighbourhood will mostly have one to two bedrooms, making raising kids here a bit of a squeeze.
East Bayfront is close to everything. Downtown is just on the other side of the Expressway, making commuting to work an absolute cinch. It's also close to some of the best restaurants, bars and nightclubs in the city, being that the neighbourhood is just steps from the Distillery District and an easy cab ride from the Fashion and Entertainment Districts. One of the main features of the new neighbourhood is the promenade along the waterfront, which connects to the Harbourfront boardwalk and the Martin Goodman Trail and meanders along the shoreline for a pretty 56 kilometres. Parks, cafes, restaurants and shops are all planned to be part of East Bayfront's lifestyle offerings.
With virtually no rentals available in the neighbourhood itself, it's impossible to pinpoint the likely rental market for East Bayfront. In the Harbourfront neighbourhood, however, rents for a two-bedroom condo unit go for more than $2,500 a month, especially when water views are at their best, and can top out at over $4,000 a month. The same can be expected for East Bayfront, where condos are selling at around the half-million-dollar mark before construction is even complete.
Many of the towers and townhouses of East Bayfront's new incarnation are still under construction. Too few rentals are currently available.
Modern high-rise condominiums
At the foot of the condos going up in East Bayfront are not only a series of parks and walkways, there's also Sugar Beach, named after the Redpath Sugar Refinery just next to it. It's a sandy beach with great views over Lake Ontario and got a stack of awards for being generally awesome, especially its landscaping and design. Located nearby is Sherbourne Common Park, a tree-lined paved park that doubles as a water treatment facility, although you'd barely know it. George Brown College's new Waterfront Campus is located here, as is the Corus Entertainment headquarters (they do TV and radio productions).