Posts Tagged ‘Exploring Toronto’

Designated Survivor Filming Washington, DC in Toronto & North York

December 20, 2016 29 comments




Mystery building to the left of the street light on the far side of the road. (Click to Enlarge)

This summer I was meandering around my neighborhood in North York (fine, I was playing Pokémon Go and was on a poke-walk! Don’t judge me!) when I noticed this weird building to the west of the Allen Rd in what was either Downsview Airport or the grounds of the upcoming Downsview Park TTC Station. It looked like it was a medieval castle but not. I knew I needed to find out what it was so I came back with my point-and-shoot camera that has 21x optical zoom and took a bunch more snaps.


I asked friends and neighbours if they knew what it was and showed the photos but no one had any better idea what the mystery building was.



Fast forward to September 28 when I watched the second episode of the new Kiefer Sutherland show, Designated Survivor made by ABC and aired here in Canada on CTV. The show’s plot involves the destruction of the US Capitol building and they were showing the destruction’s aftermath when I noticed some familiar shapes.



Read more…

Repurposed Art Deco Allenby Theatre On The Danforth: Exploring Toronto Part VIII

April 30, 2013 Leave a comment

Esso Tim Hortons Allenby Theatre Toronto

A while back I was driving down Danforth Avenue and I passed an Esso & Tim Hortons which was – to say the least – different from most every other I have seen. The address for this building is 1213 Danforth Ave (map).

I grew up in North York and didn’t spend a lot of time in The Danforth area of the city so seeing this structure was completely new to me. What struck me was that it clearly was no longer a movie theater even though the facade appeared to be one. And those movie titles…”Tim Hortons”? “On The Run”? Those weren’t movie titles, they were store names! I looked into it some more once I got home to a computer and found this document from the City of Toronto – 1213 Danforth Avenue (Allenby Theatre) – Alterations to a Designated Heritage Property (PDF Link) – which identifies the theater building as a “Designated Heritage Property” as the title indicates. It also gives some great details into the history of the building which you can find quoted below the next picture:

Allenby Theatre Esso Tim Hortons Toronto December 2012

Looking from the east side of the building.

The Allenby Theatre (more recently known as the Roxy Theatre), was constructed in 1935 by the partnership of Kaplan and Sprachman, the firm responsible for between 70 and 80% of all movie theatres constructed in Canada between 1921 and 1950.

The Allenby Theatre was designated by the City in 2006 as a representative example of the style of theatre constructed between World War I and II with notable Art Deco / Art Moderne detailing

Esso Tim Hortons Allenby Theatre Toronto December 2012


For more on the theater and for more pictures check out this article from Torontoist dated October 19, 2010: “From Double Feature To Double-Double.”

Pretty interesting redevelopment of an old building isn’t it? I love finding these cool little things in a city and if you know of any in Toronto/The Greater Toronto Area you think I should check out let me know!

Also, if you or your family members have any memories of going to the Roxy/Allenby I would really love to read them in the comments below.


Legally Turn Left On A Red Light? In Toronto?: Exploring Toronto Part VII

January 15, 2013 2 comments
Sign allowing left turn on red light

Sign allowing left turn on red light southbound on Hilda Ave onto Jonathan Gate

No, technically this sign is not in Toronto. This sign and the intersection for which it is giving instructions is in the Greater Toronto Area in the city of Vaughan a bit north of Toronto’s city line. I have never seen any other sign like this or an intersection like it anywhere else in North America so I thought it was interesting enough to share in my Exploring Toronto series of blog posts.

Legal Left Turn On Red Thornhill Ontario Canada

How I wish that light had been red when I took this picture!

This sign which says that at this intersection it is permitted for a driver to make a left turn on a red can be found at the intersection of Jonathan Gate and Hilda Avenue in the community of Thornhill in Vaughan, Ontario, Canada. I have known about this intersection for well over a decade as I have a number of friends who grew up right around the corner from here and have always taken a special pleasure in making a left turn on this red light…although to be honest I almost never have reason to because I almost never had a reason to go down Jonathan Gate. Just look at where it is (in the Google Maps screen grab below). Read more…

Journey Into The Milky Way: Exploring Toronto Part VI

December 3, 2011 Leave a comment

Milky Way Parkdale Toronto

Yes, I was just as amazed to see this street sign as you all are. Once I saw it, I knew I would have to add it to my Exploring Toronto series. This laneway/alley is in the area of Toronto referred to as Parkdale. It is just south of Queen and west of Dufferin.

View of Milky Wy Parkdale TorontoAnother angle below of the alley called Milky Way. Check out the graffiti in the alley as well! I wonder who named it this and how recently it was. The name itself seems like a more modern joke.

Another angle view of Milky Wy Parkdale Toronto



TTC Spadina Station Entrance That’s An Old House!: Exploring Toronto Part V

November 22, 2011 4 comments

TTC Spadina Station Norman B. Gash House from the outside standing on Spadina Rd with Kendal Ave behind me.

This is the fifth post in my continuing  Exploring Toronto series (here are the links for Part IPart II, Part III, and Part IV). I was having a discussion about cool things from the ‘olden days’ with my friends Katie (@kathrynboland) and Jason (@videojey) that are still around in Toronto only disguised as run of the mill every day things and I mentioned the TTC subway entrance/exit to Spadina Station at Kendal Avenue which used to be an old house. Since Jason and Katie were not the first people I have mentioned this to who had no idea of its existence I thought it would be a good addition to the Exploring Toronto series.

That house, as I learned from the plaque they have up on the building is the “Norman B. Gash House.” Norman Gash was a lawyer Read more…

Monument To Multiculturalism Outside Union Station Toronto: Exploring Toronto Part IV

November 8, 2011 3 comments

When I was writing my  “Being Erica On CBC Tonight: 7 Possible Owners Of The Gloved Hand & What I Want To See From Season 4” I was looking for the name of that statue I saw outside of Union Station at the end of Season 3. I started looking for it online and what I could find about it and pictures of it was somewhat sparse. Therefore, as I was walking around downtown the other day looking for a Movember Beck Taxi I passed by the statue – which is called Monument To Multiculturalism and is outside Toronto’s Union Station. I realized that I had done already 3 posts in my Exploring Toronto series (Part I, Part II, and Part III) and decided that it’d be a great idea to do another one featuring this statue.

In my research on the statue (and in reading the plaques on it) I found out that it was made by by Francesco Pirelli. What I didn’t know until I looked on the interwebs was that four identical sculptures are located in Buffalo City, South Africa; Changchun, China; Sarajevo, Bosnia and Sydney, Australia. That little tidbit I got from Read more…

Big Red Canoe At Canoe Landing Park: Exploring Toronto Part III

September 25, 2011 3 comments

Today’s blog post is another in my Exploring Toronto series which includes “Exploring Toronto: Henry Mulholland Cairn in North York” and “Life Looks Good On Easy Street: Exploring Toronto Part II.”

You may have seen this giant red canoe when you are driving on the Gardiner Expressway out of Toronto and wondered what the heck it is. I have seen it for the past two years from afar and kept meaning to actually go check it out since they opened “Canoe Landing Park” designed by Douglas Coupland in 2009 and I finally went today with my friend Shannon (@Shananigans5) & her friend from Saskatchewan. (He doesn’t have Twitter…I don’t think they have Twitter or even internet in Saskatchewan. I kid, I kid.) The canoe itself even has its own Foursquare check-in that is separate from the Canoe Landing Park check-in location. As well, it has been rated as one of the “Best Makeout Spots in Toronto” by BlogTO.

I was really excited to check it out and needed something to take my mind off watching the Dolphins go to 0-3 after they blew their lead in the 4th quarter as I watched at one of my new favorite downtown chill spots – Fort York Fox & Fiddle (Facebook here and @FortYorkFox on Twitter). The canoe was visible off across the open field/pit – where I think they’re building another condo – and I said to Shannon that since it was such a gorgeous day we should go check it out. She has been there a million times but was willing to humor me being a tourist in my own city. Read more…

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