Most Walkable Toronto Neighbourhoods Over $1 Million - 2011

Top Ten Logo-July 15 2011

Realosophy Top Ten: Most Walkable Toronto Neighbourhoods Over $1 Million

It’s the second installment of Realosophy's Top Ten, a data-driven list that tells you what really want to know about Toronto neighbourhoods. Instead of pointing out where Canada’s Top Chefs live, we’ll show you which neighbourhoods offer the most walkable lifestyles, give you the most school power for your housing buck or have the greatest potential for downsizers. And okay, we’ll try to figure out the best ‘hoods for gourmet hot dogs while we’re at it.

Map: Click on any shaded neighbourhood above. Click on green tab beside "Layers" title to shrink box. Unshaded neighbourhoods do not meet criteria (see below).

This week, we look at urban luxury. At Realosophy, we talk a lot about the “faux Manhattan” effect in Toronto. Thanks to the free fall that is the city's transit and transportation system, many home buyers now refuse to look north of St. Clair, west of Dufferin and east of the DVP. Even luxury is getting more urban, shaking up our image of Toronto’s money being stuffed into the old pockets of Rosedale, Forest Hill and Bridle Path. While admittedly not our most practical list for most buyers, it’s our summer ode to beautiful walkers (and dreamers) everywhere.

Criteria: Only Toronto neighbourhoods with houses or condos that sold over 1 million in 2010 and score above 80 on walkability need apply. Walkability is calculated by Walk Score.

Ranking: Neighbourhoods are ranked by walkability and sales volume (measured by the number of units that sold in 2010 over 1 million with a walkability score over 80).

1. Yorkville (Central)

No surprise here. It’s the first of four condo neighbourhoods on our list and the second most expensive (#5 Bay Street Corridor is the priciest - see below). Latest condos include the Four Seasons, The Hazelton and The Regency.

Walk Score: 100

Urban Outing: Browse art galleries then sip cappuccino and people watch at Pusateri’s

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $1,899,880

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Condo Apartment

 

2. Summerhill (Central)

The first of several Yonge St. neighbourhoods on our list. Most of us know Summerhill for its gorgeous train-station-turned-LCBO, but its top-rated schools, TTC access and 3 bedroom houses are the more responsible draw.

Walk Score: 100

Urban Outing: Antique shopping and lunch at Terroni’s

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $1,381,463

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Semi-Detached and Townhomes

 

3. The Beach (East)

The lone non-Central neighbourhood on our list, The Beach proves that only a lake can rival the subway when it comes to luxury (perhaps the only time you’ll see the words luxury and subway side by side in Toronto). The area’s roomy houses and top schools attract families while the water attracts an army of dog-lovers and runners. (The Beach also made last month's Top Ten – Best Schools on a $500K Budget.)

Walk Score: 98

Urban Outing: Grab your dog or borrow one, stoop & scoop on the boardwalk and get ice cream at Ed’s

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $1,332,213

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Detached 3-Storey House

 

4. Davisville Village (Central)

Young families are lured to this Yonge St. neighbourhood by high-performing Maurice Cody Junior Public School and the relatively spacious houses close to downtown.

Walk Score: 98

Urban Outing: Jog long enough in the Key Gardner Belt Line park (converted from an old train track) to justify dinner on Mount Pleasant (Debu’s, Celestin, Across the Road or Chicken Deli)

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $1,267,679

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Detached

 

5. Bay Street Corridor (Central)

Another condo neighbourhood and the most expensive on our list. Relatively newer than its Yorkville counterpart (in 2010, Yorkville had three times as many sales over 1 million), it’s symbolic of the rise of urban luxury in Toronto. Latest condos include One St Thomas and Lumiere.

Walk Score: 98

Suggested Urban Outing: Walk to work and meet a friend for dinner at Bistro 990

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $2,093,275

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Condo Apartment

6. South Annex (Central)

It may not be as posh as its northern counterpart, The Annex (which had over three times as many sales over 1 million in 2010), but South Annex offers a slightly more walkable lifestyle and the thriving Harbord Street food scene. With both neighbourhoods dominated by University of Toronto staff and students, perhaps the only real difference between northern and southern residents is their tenure status.

Walk Score: 97

Suggested Urban Outing: Wait in line for brunch at Aunties & Uncles and browse bookstores

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $1,425,406

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Semi-Detached

 

7. Fashion District (Central)

Once home to fabric merchants and clothing manufacturers, you’re more likely to come across aspiring fashion stylists in this condo neighbourhood. The Fashion District is a newbie on the luxury scene (it had the fewest sales over 1 million in 2010 on our list) - the glitter is all thanks to Freed projects Thompson Residences and 66 Portland.

Walk Score: 97

Suggested Urban Outing: Fuel up with burgers at Big Smoke Burger (formerly Craft Burger) or Grindhouse and then do a cocktail run along King St.

Avg. Price for Houses/Condo over 1M: $1,583,599

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Condo Apartments 

 

8. Deer Park (Central)

Another Yonge St. neighbourhood, Deer Park offers the best mix of housing when it comes to urban luxury. Top schools and a surprisingly leafy retreat just steps away from the St. Clair subway make this neighbourhood very attractive to families and professionals alike.

Walk Score: 95

Suggested Urban Outing: Toss a coin to decide if you’re dining at Cava or Didier’s

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $1,416,929

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Condo Apartment, Detached, Semi-Detached

 

9. North Toronto (Central)

This midtown Yonge St. neighbourhood is a self-sustaining ecosystem. With access to the subway, varied retail on Yonge, Mount Pleasant, Bayview and Eglinton, good schools and a lively night scene, there is no need for residents to leave.

Walk Score: 95

Suggested Urban Outing: Catch the latest movie and have dinner at North 44

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $1,357,714

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Detached

 

10. Harbourfront (Central)

One normally associates unfulfilled promises not luxury with the waterfront, but all those cranes threatening our view of the CN Tower had to result in a few penthouses here. In spite of fast and furious condo development, Harbourfront has been notorious for failing the milk run test, but new grocery stores are making this an increasingly walkable neighbourhood. And it’s fitting that another relatively new downtown condo neighbourhood rounds out our Top Ten for Urban Luxury.

Walk Score: 95

Suggested Urban Outing: Try to spend a day in the neighbourhood without running into a tourist

Avg. Price for Houses/Condos over 1M: $1,405,267

Dominant Housing Type over 1M: Condo Apartment

See Also: Best Toronto Schools on a $500K Budget (Realosophy Top Ten)

 

Urmi Desai is editor of the Move Smartly blog and is responsible for Realosophy’s strategy and marketing. Realosophy Realty Inc. Brokerage researches Toronto neighbourhoods to help our clients make smarter real estate decisions. Email Urmi

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