No profile of Corso-Italia Davenport is complete without discussing transit. The St. Clair streetcar right-of-way extension dominates the landscape, and for years was a popular – if controversial – topic. This neighbourhood – bounded on the west by the CNR rail racks, on the north Morrison Avenue, to the east by Westmount Avenue and Oakwood Avenue, and on the south by Davenport Road – has a lot more going for it than the TTC.
With notable Italian, Portuguese and Latin American contingents, Corso-Italia Davenport is a fun, lively and active neighbourhood with landmarks, businesses and attractions that reflect this cultural make-up. Heritage and national pride are evident throughout, especially during the World Cup and European soccer championships. During these times, it's fun to be in the neighbourhood, but getting around the streets by car? Not so much.
Lively and active, Corso-Italia Davenport screams multiculturalism. It’s about people. College Street may be known as Toronto’s official Little Italy, but Corso-Italia Davenport’s authentic Italian heritage comes through loud and clear, as does that of the Portuguese and growing Latin American presence.
If you ever wondered how well Italy and Portugal get along, one visit to Corso-Italia Davenport will provide clarity. Your first impression might be Italian, but you’re just as likely to hear Portuguese being spoken, partly due to the Latin American contingent in the area. Still, you’ll note the influence of Italian immigrants, who are celebrated by The Monument to Italian-Canadian Immigrants. “Family, Work, Community.” Pretty much says it all.
Location, location, location, right? Corso Italia-Davenport is close to downtown, boasts tons of personality, and traffic issues notwithstanding, represents an opportunity to buy or rent in a great location at a reasonable price. There's lots of detached homes and bungalows, some of which have been rebuilt or otherwise modernized, and for those not quite in the market yet, a good supply of duplex and traditional rental apartments.
With its dedicated raised lanes imparting a forest of signals, signage and other transit paraphernalia, the St. Clair streetcar right-of-way is a striking presence. It took five years (2005-10) and $106 million to build. It does accomplish its goal to provide improved streetcar service, but it also wreaks havoc for cars – particularly along stretches of St. Clair where motor vehicle traffic is reduced to one lane.
Do you love independent clothiers, fresh markets, and, of course, quaint restaurants and cafes? You’ll find all of that and more here, with a good mix of Italian and Latin American restos and other businesses that have called the neighbourhood home for decades. For fun, the Joseph J. Piccininni Community Centre is one of the largest facilities in Toronto, with facilities for swimming, fitness, tennis and an outdoor rink.
Corso-Italia Davenport is fun, lively and active. It’s common to see the Italian, Portuguese and Canadian flags all hanging from the same household or business. Italian restaurants and pizza joints are interspersed with Mexican, Caribbean and other takeout hotspots. The modernized St. Clair streetcar not only zips you downtown, but its shelters boast some eye-catching artwork. One drawback: car traffic, especially in stretches along St. Clair with single car lanes.
Rio 40 brings a little taste of Brazil to the Corso-Italia Devenport neighbourhood, but also delivers some Portuguese and Italian dishes.? Known especially for its pizzas and desserts.more info
From pastries to deli meats and everything in between, Tre Mari Bakery is a family business that has been catering to Corso-Italia Davenport for more than 50 years.more info
The Joseph J. Piccininni Community Centre is one of the largest such facilities in Toronto. Features programs for preschoolers to seniors, a, large outdoor pool, tennis courts and an ice rink.more info
Frank’s Pizza House has been celebrated by numerous customer voting outlets not just for best pizza in Toronto, but also best delivery and best panzerotti/calzone! Can't get any "best-er" than that!more info
With a beautiful and inviting wood-laden entrance, Novecento Caffe brings an authentic taste of Italy to Toronto. Gelato, desserts, Paninis and, of course, delicious coffees – with an ambience that delivers an authentic Italian caffe experience.more info
Pizza e Pazzi translates to 'Pizza and the Crazies,' referring to the owners' propensity for the 'unlikely.' With 'uncompromising selection' of ingredients and 'training' in pizza preparation... you may be counting yourself among the certifiable.more info