History of the Annex Community in Toronto

By
Real Estate Agent with Chestnut Park Real Estate Limited/Brokerage

The dry basin of post-glacial Lake Iroquois is where you will find the Toronto, Canada community fondly known as "the Annex". The community was given its name by Simeon Janes in 1886 when he surveyed the land that would make up the community. Before the Annex was surveyed, it was part of the province of Yorkville which was a municipal village. Due to rising costs of services, the residents of Yorkville agreed to annex to the City of Toronto thus creating the need for surveyors and a new name.

While development did occur in the Annex, it was slow in coming since the area was favored as a residential community. High-class residences abounded here and any address located in the Annex was considered to be a prestigious one. Today, the Annex is still favored as a residential area although some fingers of the city have reached into the community.

Most of the homes in the Annex were built in two waves, from 1880 to 1910 and from 1910 to 1930, using architectural styles ranging from Victorian and Queen Anne to English Cottage and Georgian.  Many homes feature sandstone from the nearby Credit River.

After a street construction project in 1952 cut off some of the residents of the Annex from the main segment of the community, residents of the Annex recognized the need for an organization to preserve the rich heritage of the community. Two organizations were formed: the West Annex Neighbourhood Association and the East Neighbourhood Association. These two organizations joined the Annex Ratepayers' Association in 1960 to form the Annex Residents' Association.

During the 1970s, disaster loomed again as another street project threatened the Annex. The project, if completed, would wipe out several residential blocks and increase through traffic. The fight was fierce but the Annex Residents' Association won the battle and the project was cancelled.

Today, the Annex is much as it was years ago with gorgeous historical architecture and a diverse demographic. It is also just steps away from all of the conveniences of downtown Toronto.

For more information on this article or on Lawrence Park real estate, visit KathyBlend.com.

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