BROADVIEW AVENUE, a north-south street bordering Riverdale Park East, is a worthy destination for urban explorers. We begin at Gerrard and Broadview, the crossroads of Chinatown East (POSTCARD OPPOSITE); then comes the Old Don Jail, the National Presbyterian Museum; the repositioned and restored St. Matthew’s lawn bowling clubhouse; and the nearby statue of Dr. Sun Yat-Sen.
At 469 Broadview, John Cox Cottage, the 3rd oldest structure in the city, built originally of square cut logs, 1807; 660 Broadview, the home of William Peyton Hubbard (1842-1935), son of Virginia slaves, Toronto’s first black politician, first elected in 1894, won 13 consecutive civic elections, a baker, cab driver and businessman; the Playter Society Building. 757 Broadview, built by Albert and George Playter in 1909. Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians played here regularly in the 1930’s; on the east side, Holy Eucharist Ukrainian Catholic Church. (PHOTOS BELOW)
Neighbourhoods worth exploring on both sides of Broadview – restored worker’s cottages; a Don Valley/Brickworks lookoff at Chester Hill Road; the original Playter homestead (now being restored); the Playter Estate mansions; uphill and downdale Riverdale; and the restored Danforth Music hall, one of ten Allen theatres built following World War I.