Toronto’s Best New Public Spaces (Best of 2017)

The city's best new and updated parks

There’s an old proverb that people have been saying in Toronto, “there’s only two seasons; winter and construction.” While that is for the most part true, occasionally projects are completed and little by litle, the city changes.

This year we saw the completion of many new (and much needed) outdoor public spaces. Some revitalized old parks in need of a face-lift, and others transformed useless lots into scenic new spaces. Here are our best new Public spaces in Toronto:

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THE BENTWAY


It’s hard to think of a more picture-perfect setting than skating underneath the city lights. That’s why when the city announced they would be opening up a 220-metre trail underneath the Gardiner this winter from Strachan to Bathurst, Toronto got pretty excited. Technically speaking, this one makes our year-end list by narrow margins since the trail doesn’t open until January 6th 2018, but considering how close it is we’ll give this one a conditional pass.
 

TRILLIUM PARK

The gorgeous new Trillium Park opened Spring of 2017 to much adornment. The 7.5-acre park and connecting William G. Davis Trail turned what was once an overflow parking lot for Ontario Place into a lush new green space, with an incredible view of the city skyline.
 


 

GRANGE PARK

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The Grange Park that lies just beneath OCAD, north of Queen and John has been fenced off for the better part of three years while it underwent development. This summer the park was officially reopened, and it’s definitely a sight for sore eyes. Included in the lush new green space is Henry Moore’s “Two Large Forms,” a modern looking playground and plenty of blooming foliage (in the warmer months of course).
 

CORKTOWN COMMON

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The new jewel of Toronto’s east end Corktown Common is a 7.3-hectare (18 acre) park located at the foot of Lower River Street and Bayview Avenue. Located on the grounds of a former industrial park, Corktown Commons is a scenic new green space complete with a marsh, urban prairies, playground areas, a splash pad and and even an outdoor fireplace.
 


 

LOWER DON VALLEY TRAIL

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Next time you plan on venturing up to Evergreen Brickworks from downtown, take the scenic route. The Lower Don Valley Trail, a trail that runs north-south along the Don Valley Parkway was temporarily closed this summer as part of the installation for the city’s new initiative called The Don River Valley Park Art Program. Now, cyclists and pedestrians travling along the trail will find a series of gargoyles designed by artist Duane Linklater. The striking new sculptures are said to be “adorning prominent buildings in downtown Toronto.”

 

BERCZY PARK

Undoubtedly one of the city’s best new installations has to be the new Berczy Park over at King and Front. Located steps away from the picture worth Gooderham Flatiron building and the St Laurence market, the new downtown park boasts a dog-themed fountain that was the talk of the town. Complete with 27 sculptures of the dogs, the fountain attracts thousands of dog-owners and dog lovers alike, and even inspired the process of putting in a new new feline-friendly park in the near future.


 
Stay tuned to Indie88.com over the coming weeks for our entire
Best of 2017 series.
Up next: Best Toronto Stories of 2017 (Tuesday, December 12th)