East End Toronto | Danforth Mosaic
The following is an article titled 'Supply and Demand" written August 28/2010 by a blogger who goes by the handle "Danforth Mosaic" reprinted with permission and edited (barely) by me. The opinions presented here are those of the guest blogger. http://danforthmosaic.com/ (BTW, if you have relevant content you'd like to share about The Danforth, Leslieville, The Beaches, or Riverdale, please get in touch with me.)
Supply and Demand by Danforth Mosaic
Took a stroll down Queen Street East last night and man, there are a lot of cool, trendy and fun spots along that strip. It got me thinking about our neighbourhood, and reflecting on how we can continue to point it in a better direction.
Along the Danforth / Woodbine strip, there's one good restaurant east of Woodbine - Relish, and one good restaurant west of Woodbine - Melanie’s. Don’t get me wrong, there are lots of cool spots nearby (Celena’s, Cozy Cafe, True Brew, etc.), but only two good sit-down restaurants where you'd actually want to go out for dinner. And there are no really good pubs (Wise Guys is okay, and is above the full-on “dive” level of several other nearby pubs, but it’s still not a “nice” pub experience).
Things have changed
Here’s the thing: houses have been selling for $500,000-$650,000 in this neighbourhood. The types of people moving in have disposable income and they want to be able to walk to a great restaurant or a great bar within five or ten minutes. As of now (again, with a few exceptions), they simply can’t.
Well, the good thing is: there's potential. The Danforth Mosaic - Danforth East neighbourhood is ripe for change, and the pieces are in place.
There's also precedent. I recall that same Queen East strip I was walking down last night didn’t look particularly snazzy just a few years ago. Even when I was looking at houses a few years ago in Leslieville, it wasn’t even close to the overflowingly-cool location it is now.
Danforth Mosaic - 1 of Top 5 Neighbourhoods to Watch (Globe & Mail Sept/2010)
So this bodes well for us! The Danforth is the next nicest available neighbourhood in the city, as named by publications and general word-of-mouth, and it’s filling in with a desirable demographic.
Right now somebody is dreaming up/thinking up/writing up the next cool spot for the neighbourhood. And as our ‘hood grows, it will be fun to watch it bloom. The addition of the Carmelina Condos will help, with instantly-added population density and foot traffic. Those people are going to need places to eat, drink and shop. It's fun to be here for the ride, watching things grow in a positive way.
Here's how we can bring about this positive change
When nice businesses continue to open in our ‘hood, let’s continue to support them, as we have done. Awesome tapas restaurant Relish took a chance when it opened and has now been around for five or six years, while newer businesses like Melanie’s and Celena’s are thriving one or two years into their existence.
Look a few blocks west to Danforth and Coxwell area. Patisserie la Cignon opened there and seems to be flourishing and, across from Sarah’s pub on the opposite side of the street, it’s turned into quite the little corner. Nearby, ten feet tall packs them in for jazz shows and delicious dins.(recently closed darn it!) I hit up Wazema last night for some fantastic Ethiopian grub.
Point being, entrepreneurs, restauranteurs and business owners have been monitoring the Danforth Mosaic and are seeing a heck of a lot of potential. Hence, the nice businesses have started to migrate east and north to our little zone. Let’s keep it that way! Nice work, folks!
To turn a little “Field of Dreams” saying on its head,when they build it we must come.Then they will continue to build it.
Business owners recognize the needs and desires of our new and emerging demographic. They know we want to see great new businesses opening right here in our neighbourhood - within a quick stroll of our homes - not a short drive. The demand is there, now the supply must follow! Cheers.