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  #1  
Old Posted May 6, 2018, 6:57 PM
Docere Docere is online now
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Downtown or not downtown?

Starting with Toronto, though this can be done for other cities as well. Which of the following are and are not downtown?

The Annex
The Beaches
Cabbagetown
Casa Loma
Church-Wellesley
The Danforth
The Drake and the Gladstone
The Grange
Harbourfront
High Park
Kensington Market
Parkdale
Riverside
Rosedale
Trinity Bellwoods Park
University of Toronto - St. George campus
Yonge and Eglinton
Yorkville
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  #2  
Old Posted May 6, 2018, 7:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Docere View Post
Starting with Toronto, though this can be done for other cities as well. Which of the following are and are not downtown?

The Annex
The Beaches
Cabbagetown
Casa Loma
Church-Wellesley
The Danforth
The Drake and the Gladstone
The Grange
Harbourfront
High Park
Kensington Market
Parkdale
Riverside
Rosedale
Trinity Bellwoods Park
University of Toronto - St. George campus
Yonge and Eglinton
Yorkville
Downtown: The Annex, Cabbagetown, Church-Wellesley, Kensington, Yorkville, Harbourfront, U of T St. George, The Grange.

Not downtown: Yonge and Eg, Trinity Bellwoods, Rosedale, Parkdale, High Park, Drake/Gladstone, Danforth, Beaches, Casa Loma.

Page 77 of this Toronto planning document shows the city's officlally decreed downtown borders, and I've never heard any good rationale as to why it should be changed.

If anything I'd be more open to shrinking the borders, rather than expanding (to University or Spadina at the west side, and Sherbourne or Parliament to the east).

But the city's definition seems fine by me...
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  #3  
Old Posted May 6, 2018, 11:07 PM
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Edmonton:

Downtown - actual name of the CBD
Oliver
Grandin
Rossdale
Central McDougall
Queen Mary Park
Chinatown
Whyte?

Boyle Street
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  #4  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 1:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Downtown: The Annex, Cabbagetown, Church-Wellesley, Kensington, Yorkville, Harbourfront, U of T St. George, The Grange.

Not downtown: Yonge and Eg, Trinity Bellwoods, Rosedale, Parkdale, High Park, Drake/Gladstone, Danforth, Beaches, Casa Loma.

Page 77 of this Toronto planning document shows the city's officlally decreed downtown borders, and I've never heard any good rationale as to why it should be changed.

If anything I'd be more open to shrinking the borders, rather than expanding (to University or Spadina at the west side, and Sherbourne or Parliament to the east).

But the city's definition seems fine by me...
Forgot a none of the above option.
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  #5  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 3:46 AM
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The official designation is one thing, but the actual colloquial use of "downtown" in Toronto is a little more abstract (part geographical, part directional) - and which, depending on context can mean pretty much everything from High Park to Riverdale, south of Bloor; or just the immediate core.

I live around College & Ossington, which is not technically downtown, yet in a non-inner Toronto setting I'd still say I live downtown. But if I have to go to the Eaton Centre or something I'd say I'm going downtown. And if I'm headed home then I'm leaving downtown.

So, I'd accept either answer for most of those neighbourhoods with no real argument one way or the other.
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Old Posted May 7, 2018, 3:57 AM
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Originally Posted by MonkeyRonin View Post
The official designation is one thing, but the actual colloquial use of "downtown" in Toronto is a little more abstract (part geographical, part directional) - and which, depending on context can mean pretty much everything from High Park to Riverdale, south of Bloor; or just the immediate core.

I live around College & Ossington, which is not technically downtown, yet in a non-inner Toronto setting I'd still say I live downtown. But if I have to go to the Eaton Centre or something I'd say I'm going downtown. And if I'm headed home then I'm leaving downtown.

So, I'd accept either answer for most of those neighbourhoods with no real argument one way or the other.

Yeah exactly - it's a bit tricky in Toronto that way. I was chatting with my mom in Calgary today and she asked where I live in Toronto now. I said Brockton Village around College and Ossington (my tagline is out of date) and her response was "oh I love that part of downtown". But when I go to work I go downtown. For people who don't live in the city pretty much all of Old Toronto is "downtown".
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  #7  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 5:30 AM
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The TO definition seems to be more of an "extended" or "greater" downtown definition.
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  #8  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 2:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Downtown: The Annex, Cabbagetown, Church-Wellesley, Kensington, Yorkville, Harbourfront, U of T St. George, The Grange.

Not downtown: Yonge and Eg, Trinity Bellwoods, Rosedale, Parkdale, High Park, Drake/Gladstone, Danforth, Beaches, Casa Loma.

Page 77 of this Toronto planning document shows the city's officlally decreed downtown borders, and I've never heard any good rationale as to why it should be changed.

If anything I'd be more open to shrinking the borders, rather than expanding (to University or Spadina at the west side, and Sherbourne or Parliament to the east).

But the city's definition seems fine by me...

It's says proposed downtown plan. Does anyone know if the current one still extend to Dufferin south of Queen?
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Old Posted May 7, 2018, 2:43 PM
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Originally Posted by niwell View Post
Yeah exactly - it's a bit tricky in Toronto that way. I was chatting with my mom in Calgary today and she asked where I live in Toronto now. I said Brockton Village around College and Ossington (my tagline is out of date) and her response was "oh I love that part of downtown". But when I go to work I go downtown. For people who don't live in the city pretty much all of Old Toronto is "downtown".
I don't care what suburbanites think in our local context. My definition happens to be smaller than the official designation (whatever that is now) We're at odds with almost everything. It does keep thinks interesting.
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Old Posted May 7, 2018, 3:50 PM
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I grew up in the burbs and live in the burbs but have worked in CBD for the past 10 years.

Before working DT, I would come in all the time for games, to eat with my family, play in the arcades on Yonge, and then as I got older, to go clubbing more times than I can remember.

Pretty much anything between Parkdale and the DVP and from Yonge and Eg down was downtown to me.

Still to this day, if I'm at home and I have to tell someone that I'm going anywhere remotely close to downtown, I'll say I'm going downtown even though I could be going to Forest Hill, Leslieville, Leaside or Oakwood. For simplification purposes, it's much easier to say that because most people from outside the city couldn't place those neighbourhoods. Lots of people can visualize The Beaches, Little Italy or The Danforth and somewhat approximate the distance to the core.

If I'm talking to a city person, past or present, or someone who drives all over the place doing service calls like a couple of my cousins, then I can specify a couple dozen neighbourhoods and they'll understand, and I don't have to say "downtown".

I myself drive all over the place on weekends so I have a grasp on the locations of many, many neighbourhoods, and I spend a lot of times looking at google maps for work and out of interest, but even just yesterday when I left Oakville to go to a wedding in Yorkville, I think to myself that I'm going downtown because I'm driving somewhere that takes 35-40 minutes and I'm going somewhere that is surrounded by tall buildings. It feels like I'm downtown.

Yet, when I'm at work in the CBD, I don't consider Yorkville to be downtown because I'm already downtown. And it's somewhat of a trek to get up to Bloor. It's not an easy walk. So basically, vertically, the cutoff feels like Bloor. Horizontally, it's centred around Yonge, but then widens as it heads south towards the lake.

Also, the presence or abundance of SFHs changes my perceptions. Yorkville is in the vicinity of many houses, not just condos.

So in regards to your list, only Church-Wellesley, UofT and Harbourfront feel downtown to me. Though I am not a city guy as I don't live in the city so this is far from an expert opinion.

Last edited by megadude; May 7, 2018 at 4:50 PM.
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  #11  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 4:03 PM
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Originally Posted by WhipperSnapper View Post
I don't care what suburbanites think in our local context. My definition happens to be smaller than the official designation (whatever that is now) We're at odds with almost everything. It does keep thinks interesting.
Hey I'm putting High Park and Yonge and Eg and so on out there because some people seem to think there is only "downtown" (former city of Toronto) and "suburbs" - but not because I do! I find that ridiculous actually.
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  #12  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 4:35 PM
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One thing suburbanites and urbanites do have in common is pride in their community. You can have a lot of fun with that. If I'm downtown than you're in Vaughan instead of Thornhill.
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Old Posted May 7, 2018, 5:38 PM
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For Oakville I'll say Cornwall to the north, Chartwell to the east and Sixteen Mile Creek to the west.

That's what feels downtown to me. Past the creek it's Kerr Village. North of Cornwall it's industrial. East of Chartwell is more arbitrary as there is no clear transition in appearance.

Kerr Village in particular is a neighbourhood that some people would include as downtown Oakville.

As is often the case, there is no clear delineation, but have to set a boundary somewhere.
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Old Posted May 7, 2018, 5:40 PM
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Downtown Brampton I'll say Vodden to the north, McMurchy to the west, Etobicoke Creek to the east, Clarence/Harold to the south.
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  #15  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 5:47 PM
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I can see the case for more narrowly defined and reasonably extended downtown definitions.

What about something like Kensington Market? It's certainly centrally located. It's more of a commercial area than a residential one at this point. I can see the case for both its exclusion and inclusion.

The Annex is a residential neighborhood, but it doesn't really fit neatly with the west end or north Toronto, so I guess it's left "downtown" (central) by default.

Last edited by Docere; May 7, 2018 at 6:04 PM.
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  #16  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 6:06 PM
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Some "purists" I suppose would exclude Church-Wellesley in Toronto, kind of like how the West End in Vancouver is not thought of as downtown proper.

Last edited by Docere; May 7, 2018 at 6:20 PM.
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Old Posted May 7, 2018, 6:51 PM
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What about downtown Hawkesbury or North Battleford? I want to hear about the interesting downtown districts of these locales.
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Old Posted May 7, 2018, 8:36 PM
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Originally Posted by MolsonExport View Post
What about downtown Hawkesbury or North Battleford? I want to hear about the interesting downtown districts of these locales.
I got you fam.

The Saint John CBD is referred to as Uptown (some say it's because of the hilly terrain - my guess is because it's located on the "upper" portion of the Central Peninsula), so technically nowhere is called "downtown".

As to where the boundaries of Uptown are, that's the subject of debate and depends on how you want to define it. The map below offers one official and one quasi-official definition.



The red dashed line is the boundary of the Uptown Business Improvement Area, which encompasses most of the commercial CBD - but notably leaves out the main commercial block of Waterloo, the J.D. Irving office tower and Prince Edward Square, among other omissions. Nonetheless, this is the most official definition of the Uptown that exists.

The yellow highlighted area is the Uptown as defined by the City of Saint John's neighbourhoods spatial dataset, which I downloaded from their Open Data site. This definition corrects the more glaring omissions of the BIA boundary, but has no administrative repercussions and is not necessarily what a layperson would define as the Uptown - this is why I call it "quasi-official".

Here's a Google Maps Link so you know what streets I'm talking about below

So what are the true boundaries of the Uptown? Where does Uptown stop and the South End (to the south) and Waterloo Village (to the north) begin? Certain residential streets (Germain Street is a prominent example) are commonly considered to be part of the Uptown despite their residential character. Some people say the South End generally starts at Princess Street, some say Orange, some say Duke. There's also the King Street East area, which is a bit too far north to be considered the South End but too far east to be included in the Uptown. As for Waterloo Village, some people say it's everything north of Union Street, while others keep it more confined to the Waterloo/Prince Edward corridors and side streets branching off of them (avoiding the BIA boundary north of Union).

To recap, while we have some guideposts to delineate the Uptown area, there is no consensus on exactly what's included. I'd be interested to know what the other SJ/NB forumers think if they see this.
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  #19  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 9:54 PM
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Originally Posted by MolsonExport View Post
What about downtown Hawkesbury or North Battleford? I want to hear about the interesting downtown districts of these locales.
God damn. You're relentless.
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  #20  
Old Posted May 7, 2018, 11:01 PM
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I've spoken about Fredericton's downtown boundaries here before. Many people use it to describe an area bound by essentially by Rookwood, Waggoners/Dundonald/Beaverbrook and the River, for 3km^2. This includes many single-detached homes and a few suburban-style developments, but is mostly limited to the entire prewar developed area. This is based off of terrain, as this is the flat area at the bottom of the hill, but that would also have to include Sunshine Gardens, which while old is a suburb by any rational measure and pushes the area to 3.5 km^2.

The city defines the downtown, in sharp contrast, as exclusively between the River, Odell Ave, halfway between Brunswick and George and the section of trail between University and Church, so mostly including dense development.
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