Week 7 main blog: As an observer of Yonge street

Toronto has lots of area that represent different culture and identity such as Koreantown, Chinatown, LGBT area.  Yonge street, in my opinion, is the best place to represent Toronto life. Someone told me Yonge street is the longest road in toronto it links the united states as well, I haven’t got a chance to verify that yet. We don’t need to go that far, so here im talking about the area of yonge street between wellesley and dundas.

It is not one of the identity or culture, it is all of them. You can find an all you can eat korean restaurant, a traditional chinese restaurant, fast food restaurants, Japanese sushi, supermarket, cloth stores, sex shop and tatoo store, all of them on yonge street.  As for the location, it is not like bloor street with tons of high-end boutique stores. And this is the street that I’m most familiar with in Toronto because I could observe the street through the window of my bedroom everyday. I really enjoy looking down on the street from my window, because it gives me an opportunity to understand more of this city.

This is a busy street with all types of people which you could see the homeless people, college students, families, and people driving the aston martin at the same time, because Toronto this city is a place mixed up by different levels of people. The street is functional which all different levels of people can find a right place to go.

‘Quite the contrary; what he loved about Toronto was what he called its “messy urban- ism,” the chaotic streets with streetcars, cyclists, motorists, and crossing pedestrians all mixed together yet respecting each other’s space, fruit stands spilling over sidewalks, and sleek modern buildings sprouting up beside ramshackle old ones.’ (Reid, p18) ‘Messy urbanism’ would be the most suitable word to describe this city. ‘modern buildings sprouting up beside ramshackle old ones’ this is exactly what I observed. When I walking on the street, I could strongly feel this collaboration  of modern and history. I  I started to love toronto once I moved to this new condo. Before that, I was living on spadina and bloor, and the only place I could see from my window is the parking lot of Metro. I don’t feel like living in downtown at all, so I decided to move to Wellesley and Yonge, and now I see another form of the city. It is almost 1 a.m, and Yonge street still looks energetic with lights and noises, and some people walking on the street. I love the noise of the street car, the subway, I also love the voice of the street vender, I like the person standing outside of Wellesley station at 9 a.m and say good morning to every single person passing by. I love toronto, and I can’t believe that. U know the lifestyle between Vancouver and Toronto is completely different. I was surprised by this ‘Messy urbanism’ when I first came here, and I swore I would transfer back to UBC at that time.

Now? No, I love this City.


reference: Reid, D. 2010. Bless this mess. Spacing (Summer), 18-23.


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