Little Italy is a neighbourhood with both strong Italian and Portuguese communities, with a Portuguese Canadian Cultural Centre and the Portugal Village shopping district on Dundas Street West. This inner-city neighbourhood surrounds the huge well-treed Trinity-Bellwoods Park with walking trails. In the early 1800's, Trinity-Bellwoods was owned by Captain Samuel Smith. Smith. The land was used to build Trinity College in 1852, on the site where Trinity-Bellwoods Park is now situated. Today only the entrance gates at Queen Street & Strachan Avenue remain. The residential neighbourhood was developed from 1800 to 1900,. and in the 1920s College Street's 'Little Italy', became the heart and commercial centre of Toronto's Italian community. By the 1960s, many Italians move north to St. Clair Avenue West, around the Corso Italia district, and Portuguese, Chinese, Vietnamese and Spanish cultures moved in.
Motorists are five minutes from downtown, or the Lake Shore Boulevard and the Gardiner Expressway to head towards the city's freeway network. TTC streetcar service on College Street and Dundas Street takes commuters into downtown, while streetcars on Ossington Avenue and Bathurst Street connect to the Bloor-Danforth subway link
The area is served by 3 elementary schools, 3 Catholic elementary school, 2 high schools, 1 Catholic high school, and 2 libraries. University of Toronto and the Ontario College of Art & Design are adjacent, and Ryerson University is nearby in downtown Toronto.
The area has three main shopping areas: Little Italy on College Street (between Shaw Street and Euclid Avenue) , Portugal Village shopping district on Dundas Street (between Grace and Markham Streets) and Queen Street West with its the art galleries and organic/vegetarian
Trinity-Bellwoods Park is the heart of this neighbourhood, with walking trails, sports fields, 3 baseball diamonds, 4 tennis courts , an ice rink, and playground and wading pool,. The West End YMCA on College Street has a gym, and an indoor swimming pool/
The nearby University of Toronto Athletic Centre has an Olympic-size pool, weight machines, aerobics, a gymnasium and indoor track, as well as courts for playing squash, tennis or badminton. The Jewish Community Centre (Spadina & Bloor) has an indoor pool, a track, squash and racquetball courts, gym and a weight room.
Queen's Park is the site of Ontario's Legislative Buildings, offering both quiet green space, as well as the setting for civic events, parades, and protests . There are also a number of performance theatres along Bloor Street.
The homes in this area were built from 1880-1910, and mostly row houses and Victorian homes, with back lanes to garages for each home. Many Trinity-Bellwoods homes back onto the park, and the community's larger houses are along the double-wide tree-lined boulevard of Shaw Street. There are also a number of lofts in the Trinity Bellwoods area. House prices are in the low to low-medium price range. More Corso Italia Photos