A Toronto Album 2: More Glimpses of the City That Was (No.2) by Mike Filey

By Mike Filey

A Toronto Album 2, better half version to Mike Filey's immensely well known unique album, is a photographic trip via bustling Toronto from the overdue Thirties to the early Nineteen Seventies. one of the 100-plus images is a quartet that indicates the amazing alterations to Toronto's skyline over a half-century. Others trap the 1939 royal stopover at, steam trains of their twilight years, the evolution of the medical institution for ill youngsters, a glance at Christmas prior, and glimpses of some landmark structures we were not shrewdpermanent adequate to maintain. A Toronto Album 2 is a souvenir Torontonians will treasure.

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43 Mike Filey 55 Toronto's landmark sports facility, Maple Leaf Gardens, 1955. In 1919 a rumour was going around town that the so-called mystery block, a prime piece of Toronto real estate bounded by Yonge, Carlton, Church, and Alexander streets, on which Maple Leaf Gardens would eventually be built, had been secretly acquired by the Canadian Pacific Railway as the site of an enormous new hotel. This structure would be connected by a onehundred-foot-wide, mile-long tunnel to the recently opened CPR North Toronto Station that straddled CPR's main line into and out of the city.

That was still the question. Eventually, the government announced that it was considering two possible sites, both of which were in the still rural Township of North York. The first would involve the expansion of an existing airfield on the west side of Dufferin Street, a mile or so north of today's Lawrence Avenue West. ) The second possibility was the creation of an airport on a large piece of farmland at the northeast corner of Dufferin Street and Wilson Avenue that was owned by the Toronto Flying Club.

Today, neighbourhood movie houses are few and far between, although an intrepid few, like the Mt. Pleasant, Metro, and Belsize, continue to soldier on. 58 A Toronto Album 2 68 The popular Casino theatre on the south side of Queen Street West, directly opposite today's New City Hall The Casino opened in 1936 as a vaudeville and burlesque house. After nearly two decades in that business, theatre management changed its policy and began offering customers a place to see and enjoy young up-and-coming recording stars and not-so-young, on-their-waydown movie actors and actresses.

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