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Walking the City: The many faces of Alderwood

October 9, 2013 | Shawn Micallef | Comments (1)

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On Saturday we walked Alderwood, one of the walks we're doing this fall as part of the Writer in Residency, designed to get people thinking, talking, and hopefully, writing about their city. I had only a rough route in mind and hoped people would contribute their thoughts along the way. They did. Here at our first stop people remembered a bar and convienence store in a currently vacant building, things that otherwise tend to go unrecorded. In just about 1.5 hours, we saw some varied landscapes. All photos by Phyllis Jacklin

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Deeper into the neighbourhood we passed by Alderwood's variety of housing types, most built in the couple decades after the war, including many wartime houses like this one above.

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Part of what makes Alderwood interesting is how much industry is there. Here tractor trailers unload just across from houses. It's a mix that cities used to have all over, but now we separate these things with greater distances. Here people working in a factory can actually walk to work.

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There are also some modern gems in the neighbourhood, and many houses that have multiple apartments inside.

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Good neighbourhoods have good pedestrian passageways and are permeable, making what might be longer distances in a car much shorter on foot.

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Lots of modern design elements in Alderwood, including this church.

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Like so many stripmalls around Toronto's inner suburbs, this one at the top of Brown's Line is filled with independent stores of all sort.

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Neat. An old farm house made from river stone, likely from nearby Etobicoke Creek.

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We all went down into the creek, a great linear park, partially forested, with fine views of Mississauga just across the water. Walking the few blocks to the park probably traced the steps of that farm family.

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After a day of rain, the creek was still draining the watershed and was running quite fast.

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Before heading back up out of the floodplain we walked underneath the QEW overpass to see the original 1932 concrete arches of the original bridge. When designed, the QEW was much more of a parkway than the expressway it is today.

There are a 1000 stories in the naked city, as the saying goes, and you should be writing some of them. Writer in Residence Shawn Micallef will be encouraging people to write about their city. Follow along here on city explorations and journeys into the library stacks. Shawn will also be posting some of the city-writing that he receives from people like you.

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