Riverdale is a rather large area geographically, and as a result, is comprised of many different smaller neighbourhoods and communities. Officially, the boundaries of Riverdale run from the Don River Valley to the west, Danforth Avenue to the north, Jones Avenue and the CN/GO tracks to the east and Lakeshore Boulevard to the south. Bordering neighbourhoods include Leslieville to the east and both Corktown and Cabbagetown to the west. Originally called “Riverside” because it straddled the Don River, the area was later renamed Riverdale, named after the large park in the area when it was annexed by the City of Toronto.
Riverdale’s real estate, demographics and character have gone through many changes in its long history, but now seems to have comfortably grown into its current identity as a culturally and economically diverse area, with a very strong arts community. Centred around Gerrard Street and Dundas Avenue is what is known as ”East Chinatown” because of larger counterpart, just west of downtown near Spadina Avenue. The primary commercial district that runs the length of Danforth Avenue is at the heart of what is known as “Greektown”, a vibrant area known especially for its upscale clothing stores, restaurants, cafes and bars. For one weekend every summer, the street is closed off to cars for one of Toronto’s most popular street festivals, “A Taste of The Danforth”. In recent years, Toronto has come to be known as “Hollywood North” because of the number of movies being shot in the city. Almost exclusively, you will find all of the studios built in Toronto for this purpose in the southernmost part of Riverdale, along Lakeshore Blvd. The influx of these studios has gone a long way towards revitalizing what was once considered a down-trodden, under-developed part of Toronto. Just north of the studio district, one finds a stretch of Queen Street East that finds itself full of independent art galleries, studios and custom furniture makers.
Most of the Riverdale real estate was built between the 1880’s and the Great Depression in the Edwardian or Victorian style. Many of these grand old Rirverdale homes for sale have been upgraded or modernized in recent years as the area has seen a large influx of well-to-do buyers. Riverdale real estate has become highly sought-after particularly due to how it is conveniently located just minutes from downtown, and it also affords very easy access to major highways (Don Valley Parkway and Gardiner Expressway) for commuters. Oftentimes, one will hear reference to “North” and “South” Riverdale, with Gerrard St. East being the dividing line.
Riverdale is home to about 20,000 residents, their average household income is significantly above average when compared to the rest of Toronto and the average price for Rirverdale homes for sale is approximately $500,000.