While the overall aesthetic of the neighbourhood hasn’t changed much over the years, the atmosphere in the Junction certainly has. Plenty of longstanding industrial buildings fill the neighbourhood, as both manufacturing and meatpacking once took place here. Yet the Junction is named for yet another industry that has influenced this west end Toronto neighbourhood: the name is an ode to the West Toronto Diamond, a junction of railway lines used by Metrolinx, GO Transit, UP Express, and Via Rail.
The last great change to the Junction wasn’t its deindustrialization, but something that came along years later: the lifting of prohibition in the neighbourhood. The ban on selling and consuming alcohol in the Junction was only overturned in 1997, nearly a century after the law was set in place to mitigate the drinking habits of workers employed in nearby factories.
Only after prohibition was lifted could the Junction experience true gentrification. New restaurants quickly began to appear in the neighbourhood, as well as bars and venues for live music. The latter is one of the neighbourhood’s strong suits today, with visitors making the trek from all over the city to attend shows at the Junction City Music Hall, Hole in the Wall, and 3030 Dundas. Most recently — and unsurprisingly — an enormous new LCBO was built at Dundas and Keele.
Prospective buyers interested in condos for sale in the Junction can also rest assured that there’s plenty of options for shopping in the neighbourhood. The neighbourhood is known for its reclaimed furniture shops, and its independent cafés and vegan bakeries add to the Junction’s hipster vibe. Then there’s the Stockyards District, just north of Dundas. Here, shoppers can find big-box stores like Home Depot, Best Buy, and Canadian Tire, as well as a handful of fashion stores.
Thanks to its former life as a manufacturing hotbed, the Junction is filled with disused buildings. The most exciting part of these industrial edifices, though, is their ability to be transformed into residential homes. Loft lovers hoping to buy a condo for sale in the Junction will be glad to hear that this neighbourhood is home to many authentic conversions – industrial and otherwise.
One St Johns Place Lofts, for example, exists within a former office building at 1 St. Johns Road, and contains just 15 units. The Victoria Lofts at 152 Annette Street is one of the few church conversions in the city, and even contains some units that are suitable for sizeable families, as the largest suites span up to 2,500 square feet. Yet another church conversion, the Park Lofts, can be found at 200 Annette.
As for those who prefer contemporary condos, anyone hoping to purchase a Junction condo for sale should note that this is not the place to come for soaring glass towers. While developers have begun to build in the Junction in recent decades, these new buildings are strictly low-rise and mid-rise buildings, or Toronto townhouses.
Condos for sale in the Junction are ideal for buyers who plan to explore the entire city of Toronto. Residents can land themselves in the downtown core in no time by using the Dundas streetcar. Those heading east and west can also walk or take the bus down to Bloor Street, where they can reach Runnymede, High Park, Keele, or Dundas West Station on the Bloor-Danforth subway line.
The Bloor GO/UP Station is within close reach for residents of the Junction as well. From here, travelers can catch GO trains heading toward neighbouring cities, or they can travel to Pearson International in just 20 minutes using the UP Express.
The Locals: West-end hipsters and long standing residents who have put up with prohibition for far too long.
Code of Conduct: While alcohol consumption is finally legal here, residents are encouraged to drink responsibly.
What You’ll Find: Industrial 19th-century architecture alongside 21st-century big-box stores.
What You Won’t Find: Skyscrapers.
The Homes: Mid-rises, low-rises, townhomes, and lofts.
Sealing the Deal: The combination of unique history and modern-day amenities.