Over the past 30 years Toronto has grown into a large world-class city. It is no coincidence that condo living has become the primary form of housing during this time.
Planners describe world-class cities as those that provide safe and secure living conditions; clean, attractive public spaces and buildings; walkable city centres, safe neighbourhoods; a diverse and vibrant street culture; and access to nature. There is a high level of connectivity when it comes to transportation, community and economic activities. Toronto fits these criteria.
A world-class city is one that provides a lifestyle desired by many.
Much of what Toronto has become can be attributed to condo living.
Condo living provided, and continues to provide, a dramatic increase in housing throughout the city. This large number of people concentrated in one area makes it possible for economic activities coveted by those who desire an urban lifestyle.
As population and tax revenues increase, Toronto has effectively utilized funds in ways that promote an active urban lifestyle that continues to attract people to the benefits of city and condo living.
It’s no wonder tourists from around the world flock to Toronto each year to experience what most Torontonians take for granted.
Toronto deserves the world-wide recognition it receives for the many ways it manages the city for its residents.
Toronto offers a large, efficient, modern and clean transit system that traverses the city and outer regions. Few within the city are more than minutes from public transit. Subway cars arrive at stations every few minutes. The city is easy to reach through regional transit systems providing easy connections to Toronto transit.
Major expansion of the public transit system, late in coming, is underway throughout the region.
Toronto’s transit system has growing pains. There is a need for more transit and modernization. Overcrowding can be a problem. Yet these problems are minor in comparison to most other cities. Government has done an admirable job of maintaining and expanding the region’s public transportation system.
Toronto’s police force does an admirable job. They are approachable, polite and respectful. They work to improve their relationship with local communities through outreach programs. People feel safe in Toronto because of our police force.
Toronto requires a relatively few number of officers to maintain the peace at most major events. Traffic control seems to be their most significant task in a city where people are mostly respectful and appreciative of their efforts.
Restaurants, nightclubs, museums, live theatre and cinemas are the envy of most cities. Scotiabank Arena (formerly Air Canada Centre), Ontario Science Centre, Ripley’s Aquarium and other large venues have few equals elsewhere.
Rogers Centre and Scotiabank Arena are easily accessible to residents and tourists alike. Access to these venues via TTC, regional transit or the PATH are luxuries unavailable in many places.
A People City
Toronto’s efforts to remain a people city are too numerous to mention.
Parks and parkettes offer a break from urban concrete. Seating where people can relax and converse is nearly everywhere. Its clean, safe and maintained public facilities include parks, swimming pools, playgrounds and libraries. Wide and clean sidewalks and regularly emptied trash receptacles make it enjoyable to walk the streets. These are the basics to a livable city.
Marathons, parades and other public events bring people out of their homes. New Year’s Eve, Remembrance Day, Canada Day and Santa Claus Parade celebrations each attract many tens of thousands of people. Street closures to facilitate these celebrations and local fairs are an accepted part of keeping Toronto a city for people.
Each winter Toronto is home to more than 50 outdoor artificial rinks for recreational skating and hockey. All are free to the public from November until March. Among them Nathan Phillips Square is unique. It is in the centre of our city and a winter locale where people enjoy the winter season. Year round residents, workers and tourists stop to relax, take in the view and enjoy Nathan Phillips Square.
Harbourfront, CNE, Nathan Philips Square, Mel Lastman Square, Distillery District and other major venues attract residents and visitors alike. The Danforth, China Town, Italian District and other ethnic centres allow people to enjoy or reside within ethnic cultures of their choosing.
These are just some of the attractions Toronto has to offer which make people want to live in or visit this great city.
Some feel the city is too crowded and congested. What many ignore is that large numbers of people are what make it viable for restaurants and entertainment venues to thrive. Few desire the old days when the city closed up after dark. There were few restaurants and even fewer choices for relaxation or entertainment.
Toronto is a city that works. Let us hope that the next 30 years are as successful as the past 30 years.