You can find a beautiful area with flowering parks, a short walk away from trendy shops and great schools, and a quick commute to the downtown core at Yonge and Lawrence. This neighbourhood is coveted by growing families that want to raise their children in a tranquil and accessible area.
Yonge and Lawrence by Steven Hoang
The border for the Yonge and Lawrence area is roughly up and down Yonge Street from Glengrove Avenue on the south to Brooke Avenue on the north. Yonge Street is arguably the city’s main street, and Lawrence is located part-way between midtown and uptown Toronto. This makes the neighbourhood easily accessible to all of the GTA — a great location for frequent visits to both downtown and North York.
- Yonge Street was formerly listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest street in the world, at 1,896 kilometres (1,178 miles).
Yonge/Lawrence Street Festival by Kevin D. Clarke
- In 2011, Canadian Business magazine named Lawrence Park the wealthiest postal code in Canada by household net worth, averaging at $3.88 million.
- Roberta Bondar, the first Canadian female astronaut, is one of the area’s notable residents.
In 1907, the Dovercourt Land Building and Saving Company received the northern part of Lawrence Park from John Lawrence and began developing the area under Wilfred Servington Dinnick as a neighbourhood for the “well to do” and “aristocratic.” The two world wars slowed this area’s development, but plans progressed between 1920 and 1950, when most of the big houses were built.
Homes, Architecture, and Real Estate
The neighbourhood’s proximity to Yonge Street and the prestige of Lawrence Park mean this area comes with a fairly hefty price tag, but it hosts beautiful homes. Lawrence Park, an affluent neighbourhood in the area, has a wide-range of architectural styles like English Cottage, Tudor Revival, Georgian, and Colonial designs built between 1910 and 1950. These are mostly very large and expensive homes, with the average resale house price in the neighbourhood at $2,421,036 in 2011. This means people have the means to customize old homes to make them more contemporary, which has changed the neighbourhood so it’s a mixture of the old and the new. Homes closer to Mount Pleasant Avenue are medium-sized but have long, deep lots. Lawrence Park North had a similar average sale price in 2012 of $943,962, including apartments or condominiums.
Who Is Your Neighbour?
Uptown Toronto borders North York (an area once viewed as a suburb of Toronto but that has grown exponentially in the past ten years) as well as midtown Toronto (with its quirky shops and trendy restaurants up and down Yonge Street), offering a quick commute to the downtown core. Neighbourhoods in this area are on the costly side — with Lawrence Park housing some of the wealthiest Canadians and Rosedale, a bit farther south, one of the most highly priced neighbourhoods in Toronto, with homes well over $1 million. The Blythwood area in Lawrence Park has an average household income of $622,238.
Yonge Street from Sheppard to Rosedale is home to young professionals and small families who like the easy commute to everything in the city, as well as the green spaces, good schools, and great shops.
Parks and Green Spaces
The beauty of midtown Toronto is that although it’s home to some of the best restaurants and shopping the city has to offer, it has its fair share of green space too. Here are some of the parks in the area.
- Wanless Park is a five-acre green space just north of Lawrence Avenue with tennis courts, a basketball court, a playground, a wading pool (with a lifeguard), a baseball diamond, and a skating rink in the winter.
- The Alexander Muir Memorial Gardens are named after famous composer Alexander Muir, who wrote “The Maple Leaf Forever” in 1867. There are walking trails and beautiful herbs and flowers here, inviting you to take a stroll along the ravine system.
- Blythewood Ravine Park is a forested trail along the Northern Ravines with a wading pool, playground, dog off-leash area, and baseball diamond.
Blythwood Ravine by Kwong Yee Cheng
- Lawrence Park, at the southeast corner of Yonge and Lawrence (behind the library) is full of luscious trees and open spaces that are perfect for a picnic with the family.
Recreation and Culture
Some of the fitness studios in the area include:
- Anytime Fitness, 2739 Yonge Street, (647) 865-4433
- North Toronto Basketball Association, 2482 Yonge Street, (416) 481-1555
- Barreworks, 2576 Yonge Street, (416) 232-2773
- The Body Temple, 3287 Yonge Street, (647) 350-2564
Several churches provide places of worship in the neighbourhood, including St. Leonard’s Church (25 Wanless Avenue), Malaysian Singaporean Bible Church (11 Bedford Park Avenue), Blessed Sacrament Church (24 Cheritan Avenue), and Glenview Presbyterian Church (1 Glenview Avenue).
The local library for this neighbourhood is a Toronto Public Library at 3083 Yonge Street.
Schools, Colleges, and Universities
The schools near Yonge and Lawrence are some of the best and most upscale the city has to offer.
- Blessed Sacrament Catholic School, 24 Bedford Park Avenue, (416) 393-5226
- Lawrence Park Collegiate Institute, 125 Chatsworth Drive, (416) 393-9500
- Saint Clements School 21 St Clements Avenue, (416) 483-4835
- Havergal College, 1451 Avenue Road, (416) 483-3843
- Northern Secondary School, 851 Mount Pleasant Road, (416) 393-0270
- Toronto French School, 306 Lawrence Avenue E, (416) 484-6533
Arts and Entertainment
- Images Art Gallery Inc., 3345 Yonge Street, (416) 481-9584
- Art Avenue, 1710 Avenue Road, (416) 789-0419
- Cineplex Yonge-Eglinton, 2300 Yonge Street, (416) 544-1236
- Mount Pleasant Theatre, 675 Mount Pleasant Road, (416) 489-8484
- Regent Theatre, 551 Mount Pleasant Road, (416) 480-9884
A highlight of this midtown Toronto neighbourhood is its proximity to great shopping without the overwhelming streets of the downtown core. Yonge Street offers a plethora of trendy clothing, jewellery, and furniture shops. There are plenty of gift stores, photography or framing stores, beauty salons, and book stores here. A stroll in the spring from Lawrence to Eglinton will allow you to take a peek at these unique independent businesses and stop at a local café on the way.
Even better than midtown’s shopping is its food. Here are a few of the many restaurants in the area.
- Hero Certified Burgers, 3250 Yonge Street, (647) 748-2525
- Piazetta Trattoria, 3441 Yonge Street, (416) 440-1777
- Trio Ristorante Pizzeria, 3239 Yonge Street, (416) 486-5786
- Parmigiano Trattoria, 3186 Yonge Street, (416) 489-6668
- Gabbys, 3263 Yonge Street, (416) 322-3621
- Shinobu Restaurant, 3403 Yonge Street, (647) 340-2298
This part of the city is very public transit–friendly, with subway stations all along Yonge Street from Bloor-Yonge to Lawrence stations. It’s a 15-minute subway ride from Lawrence to the downtown core, with the last train running southbound at 1:25 AM. There are bus routes running east and west from Lawrence Station at all hours.
By car, the Don Valley Parkway is a 15-minute drive east, while it takes eight minutes to travel west to Allen Road, and it’s a quick seven-minute ride north up to the 401, which will take you all around the GTA.
Medical Centres and Doctors
The closest hospitals include:
- Sunnybrook Hospital, 2075 Bayview Avenue, (416) 480-6100
- North York General Hospital, 4001 Leslie Street, (416) 756-6000
- Toronto East General Hospital, 825 Coxwell Avenue, (416) 461-8272
- Toronto General Hospital, 200 Elizabeth Street, (416) 340-4800
- Mount Sinai Hospital, 600 University Avenue, (416) 596-4200
- St. Michael’s Hospital, 30 Bond Street, (416) 360-4000
- Princess Margaret Hospital, 610 University Avenue, (416) 946-4501
32 Division – 30 Ellerslie Avenue (416) 808-3200
Toronto Fire Station 134 (16 Montgomery Avenue)