Downtown Toronto is the vibrant, dynamic core of the GTHA (Greater Toronto Hamilton Area). Thousands of people live work and play in the downtown. Lets discover a little bit of what this important heart of the largest Canadian city has to offer.
The Downtown core can be roughly defined as running from the renewed urban pathways of the Don Valley River to the east, to the largest park in the city, High Park, in the West, and from one of the world's largest freshwater lakes, Lake Ontario, up to a world renowned luxury shopping area of Bloor Street in the north. Within that area live over 350 000 people, in a mix of condominiums, apartments, townhouses, row houses, single family dwellings and duplxes. Whether it be families from South America, singles from the inner suburbs, or retired couples from the United Kingdom - the mix of people from all over the world in the Downtown of Toronto provides a unique dynamism and quality of life unsurpassed in the rest of the world.
PATH is downtown Toronto's underground walkway linking 28 kilometres of shopping, services and entertainment. Follow PATH and you'll reach your downtown destination easily in weatherproof comfort.
PATH provides an important contribution to the economic viability of the city's downtown core. The system facilitates pedestrian linkages to public transit, accommodating more than 100,000 daily commuters, and thousands of additional tourists and residents on route to sports and cultural events. Its underground location provides pedestrians with a safe haven from the winter cold and snow, and the summer heat.
According to Guinness World Records, PATH is the largest underground shopping complex with 29 km (18 miles) of shopping arcades. It has 371,600 sq. metres (4 million sq. ft) of retail space. In fact, the retail space connected to PATH rivals the West Edmonton Mall in size.
The approximate 1,200 shops and services, such as photocopy shops and shoe repairs, found in PATH, employ about 5,000 people. Once a year, businesses in PATH host the world's largest underground sidewalk sale.
More than 50 buildings/office towers are connected through PATH. Twenty parking garages, five subway stations, two major department stores, six major hotels, and a railway terminal are also accessible through PATH. It also provides links to some of Toronto's major tourist and entertainment attractions such as: the Hockey Hall of Fame, Roy Thomson Hall, Air Canada Centre, Rogers Centre, and the CN Tower. City Hall and Metro Hall are also connected through PATH.
There are more than 125 grade level access points and 60 decision points where a pedestrian has to decide between turning left or right, or continuing straight on. The average size of a connecting link is 20 metres (66 ft.) long by 6 metres (20 ft.) wide.
The building furthest north on the PATH network is the Toronto Coach Terminal at Dundas and Bay Streets. The building furthest south that can be accessed through PATH is the Toronto Convention Centre's Convention South Building. PATH does not follow the grid patterns of the streets above.
The first underground path in Toronto originated in 1900 when the T Eaton Co. joined its main store at 178 Yonge St. and its bargain annex by tunnels. By 1917 there were five tunnels in the downtown core. With the opening of Union Station in 1927, an underground tunnel was built to connect it to the Royal York Hotel (now known as the Fairmont Royal York). The real growth of PATH began in the 1970s when a tunnel was built to connect the Richmond-Adelaide and Sheraton Centres.
(Accessed at http://www.toronto.ca/path/)
Visit Nutcracker Sweet's Downtown Toronto Store along the PATH in the Scotia Plaza Concourse