ALEXANDRA PARK, named for Queen Alexandra, wife of King Edward VII, occupies a large swath of prime downtown real estate, south of KENSINGTON MARKET. Sixty years ago the city demolished a neighbourhood of tumbledown Victoriana and built a complex of dead-end streets and lowrise, brick apartment blocks and town houses. This was urban renewal in the 60’s and it happened in cities everywhere. About the same time REGENT PARK and LAWRENCE PARK were built in much the same way. All three have fallen on hard times, and all three are being – or are about to be – rebuilt and revitalized.
<Alexandra Park, lower centre, Urban Strategies Inc. – photo>
The plan for ALEXANDRA PARK will be phased in over 15 years. 333 townhouses and apartments will be demolished and replaced by a mix of market-value and public housing units. 473 tower apartments will be renovated. There’ll be new public parks and retail outlets. Several streets that are now closed off will be re-opened, eliminating dead-ends and dark nooks and crannies.
A similar formula is already working (with amazing results) in REGENT PARK on the East Side. <PHOTO BELOW – workman’s cottages, Alexandra Park, pre-1960>