By David Dunkelman
Toronto can experience some pretty harsh winters. Want to avoid them? Check out PATH, Downtown Toronto’s underground walkway that links 27 kilometres (16 miles) of shopping, food courts, services and entertainment destinations. PATH is accessible from most Toronto neighbourhoods via the Yonge-University-Spadina subway line.
PATH provides an ice- and snow-free shopping experience in the winter and a refreshing air conditioned marketplace in the summer. Approximately 100,000 daily commuters and thousands of tourists make PATH one of Toronto’s busiest pedestrian corridors.
PATH originated in 1900 when the T. Eaton Co. joined its main store to its bargain annex by way of a tunnel. When Union Station opened in 1927 a tunnel was created to connect it to the Fairmount Royal York Hotel. The 1970s saw great expansion of PATH when a tunnel was built connecting the Richmond Adelaide Centre to the Sheraton Centre.
PATH was officially recognized and branded by the city of Toronto in the 1980s. Signage was introduced in the 1990s to help make navigation easier. PATH does not follow the grid patterns of the streets above so without all the excellent signage now in place it would be easy to get lost.
PATH received a Guinness World Records acknowledgement as the largest underground shopping complex. More than 50 buildings and office towers connect to PATH in addition to five subway stations, two department stores, six major hotels and a railway and bus terminal. The Hockey Hall of Fame, Roy Thomson Hall, Air Canada Centre, Rogers Centre, CN Tower, City Hall and Metro Hall are all connected through PATH. PATH basically encompasses an area from Dundas Street south to Front Street and from Yonge Street to University Avenue with some extensions to the west. PATH is a whole other world, worth checking out.
David Dunkelman is a Broker and ABR* with Royal Lepage R.E.S.Ltd/Johnston and Daniel Division. David is also the Author of “Your Guide to Toronto Neighbourhoods”. *ABR* The Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR®) designation is the benchmark of excellence in buyer representation. This coveted designation is awarded to real estate practitioners by the Real Estate BUYER’S AGENT Council (REBAC) of the National Association of REALTORS® who meet the specified educational and practical experience criteria.