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LAST UPDATE: September 21 2021
The City of Toronto has released plans for an affordable housing project at 1113-1117 Dundas Street West. The future of the extant building at 1113 Dundas Street West is unclear at present.
Past plans for the site - including a 2018 proposal for the expansion of the adjacent parking lot - have proposed demolition of 1113 Dundas Street West.
1113 Dundas Street West is a 2 storey Italianate building located on the south side of Dundas Street West between Shaw Street and Ossington Avenue in the Trinity-Bellwoods neighbourhood of Toronto. 1113 Dundas Street West was constructed in circa. 1884 and was originally the eastmost of a row of 4 houses. 1113 Dundas Street West is of brick construction, which has been painted on its primary elevation. During the 1910s or early 1920s, the building appears to have undergone renovations to create the ground floor storefront.
The rest of the row at 1115-1119 Dundas Street West was demolished during the mid-to-late 20th century. The former site of 1115-1119 Dundas Street West is now a surface parking lot. Despite the demolition of the rest of the row, 1113 Dundas Street West has retained significant potential heritage value.
1113 Dundas Street West is representative of some of the earliest development of the Dundas Street West and Ossington Avenue area. 1113 Dundas Street West is also the oldest surviving building on this block of Dundas Street West.
Former addresses of 1113 Dundas Street West include: 201 Arthur Street, which was used between 1884/1885 and 1889; and 279 Arthur Street, which was used between 1890 and 1917. The present-day address - 1113 Dundas Street West - has been used since 1918.
Arthur Street commenced at Bathurst Street and ran westwards. Prior to 1883, the western terminus of Arthur Street was at Manning Avenue (then known as Hope Street). In 1883, the City of Toronto extended Arthur Street westwards after purchasing land from Edward Oscar Bickford for $2350. Shortly after, in 1884, a wooden public bridge was constructed to allow Arthur Street to pass over Garrison Creek and its ravine. This bridge allowed Arthur Street to connect with a dead-end spur of the nearby Dundas Highway (Dundas Street) situated to the west and allowed easier east-west traffic through the area. The bridge simultaneously eliminated and/or mitigated challenges formerly associated with crossing the Garrison Creek and its ravine, including trails mired with mud; steep and eroding banks; foul creek water that had become akin to an open sewer; and/or long detours to other area bridges. This public bridge subsequently became a vital link to businesses and residences that had been established along the Dundas Highway to the west and south, as well during residential development in the area during the late 19th century and early 20th century. The bridge was later replaced with a sturdier cement version, which was later demolished and/or buried due to the infill of the ravine and sewering of Garrison Creek.
1113 Dundas Street West additionally predates the Trinity-Bellwoods building boom of 1887-1890. Michael Cook notes in Burying the Garrison Creek: A History that this building boom was spurred by the sewering of the fouled Garrison Creek and that "over half of the houses in Trinity-Bellwoods were built during these 4 years."
1113 Dundas Street West is situated on former Park Lot 24. Park Lot 24 was granted to Captain Joseph B. Bouchette on 2 September 1793, but later sold to Captain James Givins in July 1802. Of note is that when 1113-1119 Dundas Street West was first constructed, the row was located immediately northwest of the Givins (Givens) family's Pine Grove homestead. Pine Grove was constructed in 1802 by Colonel James Givens and had become the oldest occupied house in Toronto by the 1880s. Following the War of 1812, the house had a reputation for having "blood stained floors" as British, Canadian, and First Nations soldiers had their wounds sutured by Angelique (Angelica) Givins in the kitchen. Beginning by the late 1850s, sections of the Pine Grove estate were sold off and surveyed for redevelopment. A few wood frame structures had been constructed on this block of present-day Dundas Street West by 1858, albeit these have all since been demolished. By the late 1880s, Pine Grove was solely occupied by the elderly Cecilia Givins - who was one of the children of Colonel James Givins and Angelique (Angelica) Givins. Following the death of Cecilia Givins, the Pine Grove house was demolished in 1891 and its remaining lands were sold off for redevelopment. Further research is required to discern if the Givins family had any direct connection to the construction or development of this row house in circa. 1884.
For more information on the history of the Ossington Avenue area and the evolution of the Dundas Highway, please see Benj Hellie's On the Ossington Strip (2015).
1113 Dundas Street West is one of a number of buildings on Dundas Street West between Bathurst Street and Ossington Avenue that were originally constructed for residential purposes, but later renovated to have ground floor commercial space(s). Along this stretch, many of these commercial renovations had taken place by the early 20th century. Of particular note is that the first regular commercial tenant appears at 1113 Dundas Street West in the 1920 Edition of the City of Toronto Directory, although a painting business was briefly based at the property during the mid-1910s. This emergence of the first regular commercial tenant was shortly after the creation of the present-day iteration of Dundas Street West in 1918, which incorporated Arthur Street into its route. This formation of Dundas Street West resulted in increased traffic through the area and likely contributed - alongside increased neighbourhood development, including the construction of several lowrise apartment blocks across the street in the 1910s - to the creation of a ground floor storefront at 1113 Dundas Street West as the property increased in value.
The City of Toronto Directories indicate that the first occupants of 1113 Dundas Street West - then known as 201 Arthur Street - were Richard Johnson, Agnes Johnson, and David Johnson. The Johnson family lived here from 1885 until 1887. Richard Johnson and Agnes Johnson were married. Richard Johnson appears to have died in 1885/1886, as Agnes Johnson was listed as being a widow by the publication of the 1886 City of Toronto Directory. David Johnson - potentially their son - was a carpenter by trade.
Please note that the family's surname is spelled multiple ways in different historical materials, including Johnson, Johnston, Johnstone, and Johnsten.
Later Occupants and Uses:
Later occupants and uses of 1113 Dundas Street West after the Johnson family include:
1888-1889: John W. L. Jones - a foreman at the Toronto Upholstery Company.
Circa. 1890: John Leithead - a stove fitter.
Circa. 1895: Robert Kerr - a printer.
Circa. 1900: John J. Daly - a bricklayer at the Toronto Asylum, which was located only a short distance south on Queen Street West and is now the CAMH Campus.
Circa. 1905: Charles F. Tarling - of C. Tarling & Company, a map and drawing paper mounting and publishing company based at 46 Front Street East and 41 Wellington Street East.
Circa. 1910: Rich & Klein - painters.
Circa. 1915: Albert Luck - a polisher.
1917-1918: Edward Godfrey - a decorator.
1919-1945: David Danzinger - David Danzinger (also spelled Dansinger) was associated with 1113 Dundas Street West between 1919 and 1945. In 1920, Danzinger opened a tailor's shop at the property, which had evolved into a vulcanizing shop by the mid-1920s and again to an automotive service station by 1930. Unfortunately, limited information is available about Danzinger at present. His business appears to have closed by 1940. Further research is required to discern if Danzinger commissioned the creation of the storefront space circa. 1919/1920.
1946-1949: Anthony Traczyk, Edward Traczyk, Norman Geller, and Alexander Goutouski. Anthony Traczyk was an employee at Hinde & Dauch Paper Company; Edward Traczyk was an offset press feeder at Davis and Henderson; Norman Geller was a waiter at the Hotel Eton; and Anthony Goutouski was a salesman.
1950-1953: Fred Master - a vulcanizer, who ran his business from the property.
1954-2012/2013: During the mid-to-late 20th century, Edward Kondratsd (also spelled Kondraths) resided at and operated a tailor's shop from 1113 Dundas Street West. By 1955, the storefront had been assigned the address 1113½ Dundas Street West. Mary Summers was also listed as a resident of 1113 Dundas Street West during the mid-1950s, but had moved by 1965. The Kondratas family continued to own 1113 Dundas Street West until its recent sale to the Toronto Parking Authority in 2012/2013.
Present Day: 1113 Dundas Street West was purchased by the Toronto Parking Authority from the Kondratas family for $950 000 in 2012/2013. The building is presently vacant, although may be used for auxiliary storage based on items visible in the shop window.
Please note the above list is not exhaustive of all former occupants and uses of the property and aims to provide a general overview of its occupants and uses over time.
Future Redevelopment of 1113-1117 Dundas Street West:
In 2018, proposals were brought forward by the City of Toronto regarding selling 1113 Dundas Street West and the adjacent parking lot at 1117 Dundas Street West to a private developer. This plan was ultimately not enacted.
In late June 2021, Councillor Joe Cressy's (Ward 10 - Spadina Fort York) office released a statement that 1113-1117 Dundas Street West would be explored for redevelopment as an affordable housing project with preliminary proposals for this project being released in Fall 2021. While some preliminary statements about the project focus on "activating" the surface parking lot of 1117 Dundas Street West, the future of 1113 Dundas Street West is uncertain. While affordable housing is important, steps should be taken to ensure this area heritage resource (1113 Dundas Street West) is not lost to demolition.
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