John T. Moore was a man with a vision. More than a land developer, he built not only a subdivision, but a railway line connecting it to the city. He spoke of a community "wheron taste and wealth may rear palatial mansions beautiful in their immediate surroundings, and commanding vistas over valley, hill and lake (that) will yield perpetual pleasure.” In 1889, Moore and a group of Toronto businessmen incorporated the Toronto Belt Land Corporation and the Toronto Belt Line Railway Company. They planned to develop and sell properties made accessible by the Belt Line Railway. Moore named the new subdivision after himself, and Moore Park was born.
In 1890, the bottom fell out of Toronto’s land boom. Both the Belt Land Corporation and the Railway Company declared bankruptcy. The new development was stalled for a decade, and would not be complete until the 1930s.
Today’s Moore Park is a community of two storey detached houses set on 25 to 50 foot wide lots. Tall trees and light auto traffic make for a peaceful atmosphere. Condominium development near Yonge and St. Clair and the rebuilding of some of the homes have not disturbed the neighbourhood’s “establishment” flavour. 2012 house prices ranged from above $600,000 to over $3,000,000. Condo prices for the same year ranged from under $300,000 to over $2,000,000.
Moore Park is bordered on three sides by green space; Mount Pleasant Cemetery to the north, Moore Park Ravine to the east and the Vale of Avoca Ravine to the west. The Canadian Pacific Railway tracks make up its southern border. St. Clair Avenue East takes local residents to Yonge Street and the St. Clair subway station. Mount Pleasant Road serves as a conduit to downtown.
The Belt Line Railway is now a nature trail encircling Moore Park and north Rosedale. It is popular with joggers, cyclists and families out for a stroll. Rosehill Reservoir Park features children’s playgrounds and a formal garden. The Badminton and Racquet Club, a private club offering racquet sports facilities, is located at 25 St. Clair Avenue West. Moorevale Park, at 175 Moore Avenue, is the home of The Moore Park Tennis Club. Locals can catch up with community news at The Moore Park Resident’s Association website.
The area’s two shopping hubs are at Yonge and St Clair and Mount Pleasant Road between Davisville and Eglinton. The Yonge and St Clair Centre has a supermarket, a pharmacy and a gym. The shops of Mount Pleasant Village offer everything from home décor to yoga.
From a distant suburb accessible only by rail, Moore Park has become an established mid-town neighbourhood. Its convenient location, well-built homes and quiet charm ensure its continuing value.
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The Toronto neighbourhood text profiles, sketches and maps displayed on this website were published in “Your Guide to Toronto Neighbourhoods”, are copyright Maple Tree Publishing and have been reproduced by the Toronto Real Estate Board under license.