While many a planned community in Canada is stricken with relentless criticism and griping, the West Don Lands seem to have a pretty good handle on public opinion and have, incredibly, been embraced by the majority of the Toronto population. The former industrial waste lands have been the site of heavy work for years, covering over formerly swampy areas and erecting what will become 6,000 housing units, due for completion in the very near future. Bordered on two sides by the Don River, with easy accessibility to the Gardiner Expressway and just a few minutes west of downtown Toronto by car or several transit options, the West Don Lands have incited excitement among a number of Torontonians.
No one yet, but the target resident is a young professional, single or couple, and small families. Seniors might also like the proximity and accessibility to downtown, plus the big Corktown Common Park right within the community.
More of the above.
Not a fan of big condo buildings where everything looks the same? West Don Lands might not appeal, then.
The plan is to turn the West Don Lands into a nearly self-sustaining village; in fact, several areas within the neighbourhood are being called villages on their own, such as the Athletes’ Village, which is part of the housing development for the 2015 Pan Am Games. The goal is to have West Don Lands residents be able to take care of their shopping and entertainment needs right within the community.
It’s unclear as yet what rents will look like in the West Don Lands. Most of the units will be geared toward buyers, many of whom will undoubtedly rent them out. Buyers and renters alike can expect prices and rates to be about average to start, then will likely rise as the buildings fill up. It’s important to note that the community will include 243 units of affordable rent housing geared to families and seniors.
Brand-new condos and townhomes
Many of the condo buildings in the West Don Lands are built with retail and/or office space on the ground floor, making room for services, food and cafes when the place is up and running. In total, the developers are promising 23 acres of parks and public space, the two biggest of which are Corktown Common Park and Underpass Park. Next door to the West Don Lands neighbourhood is St. Lawrence, home to the famous St. Lawrence Market and lots of great theatre, art and nightlife options. While there aren’t any schools planned for the community itself, there are at least four public schools within walking distance of the neighbourhood, plus St. Paul’s Elementary Catholic School in Corktown and Voice Intermediate Private School in St. Lawrence.