Swansea Village is the only Toronto neighbourhood that has its own community run Town Hall. Swansea is also the only Toronto neighbourhood to have a lake, a river, and a pond as it’s natural boundaries. Swansea’s hilly terrain, winding roads and many mature trees accentuate the storybook houses that line the residential streets of this neighbourhood.
Swansea was incorporated as a village in 1926. The Swansea Village corporate seal reveals a great deal about the colourful history of this neighbourhood.
Included on the Swansea seal is explorer Etienne Brule, who in 1615 became the first European to set foot on what is now Swansea. Also shown is a First Nations member. This is symbolic in that it recognizes that First Nations members were the first people to inhabit Swansea, hundreds of years ago.
The hills in the Swansea Village seal represent Swansea’s rolling countryside, which is similar to the topography found in Swansea, Wales, after which this neighbourhood is named. The water in the Swansea seal refers to Swansea’s natural boundaries, which include Lake Ontario, the Humber River and Grenadier Pond.
In 1967, Swansea Village joined Forest Hill Village as one of the last two independent villages to be annexed by the City of Toronto.
The two figures are Etienne Brule the first white man to set foot on what is now Swansea (Feb 15, 1615) and an Indian representing the Mississauga Indians who lived in the area.
The hills represent the rolling countryside which is similar to Swansea, Wales and Windermere, England. The water refers to Lake Ontario and the Humber River.
The Village was incorporated on January 01, 1926.
The Seal was approved by a resolution of the Village Council on February 15, 1926.
(Source: Swansea Public Library, 95 Lavinia Avenu, Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
– François René de Chateaubriand
Swansea’s high end homes are located either at the western edge of High Park overlooking Grenadier Pond, or at the Brule Gardens enclave found in the north-west pocket of Swansea.
Swansea also contains a large number of semi-detached houses and bungalows located mostly in the centre of the neighbourhood. The typical Swansea house was built between 1905 and 1935.
At the south end of Swansea, down Windermere Avenue, is a cluster of rental apartment buildings. This pocket includes some of the original Swansea workers cottages, built in the 1880’s.
The most convenient shopping district for Swansea residents is the Bloor West Village shopping district on Bloor Street West. Bloor West Village features Toronto’s best selection of European bakeries and delis.
The Swansea Town Hall and Community Centre includes a small gymnasium, and a selection of meeting rooms available for a variety of functions. Swansea Town Hall is also the home of the Swansea Memorial Public Library, the smallest branch of the Toronto Public Library system. This branch specializes in material for children and seniors and provides complete inter-library loan services.
Rennie Park, located on the east side of Rennie Terrace, south of Morningside Avenue, has four tennis courts, an artificial ice rink, and a wading pool. High Park which can be accessed from Bloor Street, features a full day of recreational activities including fishing, theatre performances, train rides, an animal zoo, historical exhibits, a restaurant and a myriad of fitness opportunities.
Swansea is served by a bus route on Windermere and Morningside Avenues. The Runnymede and Jane subway stations on the Bloor-Danforth subway line are within walking distance of many of the houses in this neighbourhood.
Motorists enjoy the convenience of being located only minutes away from the Gardiner Expressway and Lake Shore Boulevard.
Bloor West Village is a Toronto neighborhood, bounded by Bloor Street West to the South, Jane Street to the West, Runnymede Road to the East and Annette Street to the North. BUT, Bloor West Village Business Improvement Area has a different boundary focusing more on businesses rather than residential areas, and therefore refers only to that section of Bloor Street from Jane to High Park.
Bloor West Village is Canada’s oldest BIA (Business Improvement Area), founded in 1970 by Alex Ling and soon the concept expanded to other part of the city and North America. Bloor West Village BIA now consists of more than 440 shops, restaurants and services. The organization promotes business activity in the area by hosting several annual events and festivals. Read more about Bloor West Village Business Improvement Area at BloorWestVillage.ca Web Site – interesting to read.
Classic retail shops, business offices and professional service establishments are natural and native to this area. Bloor West also offers distinctive bakeries with fascinating European backgrounds, particularly Eastern European, as well as delicatessens and both family and high end restaurants. Bloor West Village is widely recognized as one of most popular shopping areas in Toronto, as well as being the host for the Ukrainian Bloor West Village Festival. There are over 400 shops, it is really a small city in a big city.
Map of Swansea relative to North America
Map of Swansea within Toronto boundaries
Detailed Swansea map, Toronto, Ontario, Canada