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Even without the name recognition of other affluent Toronto neighbourhoods, this proud community has capitalized upon its distinctive strengths to become a highly-sought after market for home purchasers while simultaneously retaining its own unique character.
Prominently defined by local landmark the Scarborough Bluffs, Cliffcrest offers an unparalleled natural combination of lake, greenspace, beaches, and cliffs that makes the area feel more like cottage country than in the middle of the big city. Bound by Midland Avenue to the west, the Canadian National Railway train tracks to the north, Bellamy Road to the east, and Lake Ontario to the south, this niche community of 15,935 residents is unlike anywhere else in Toronto.
Named after the hometown limestone cliffs of the first lieutenant governor of Upper Canada’s wife Elizabeth Simcoe, the Scarborough Bluffs are a natural wonder that have been incorporated into local parks that serve to protect its natural features while enhancing local wildlife habitats.
Running for 15 kilometres along the lakeshore and reaching a maximum height of 90 metres, the iconic escarpment contains numerous lakefront walking trails and fine-grained beaches that, along with its playgrounds, splash pads, and tennis courts, make it ideal city-wide destination for family outings, outdoor activities, and birdwatching.
This neighbourhood’s ideal conditions for a residence are perhaps best encapsulated by
Fool’s Paradise, the historic home of local landscape artist Doris McCarthy. Criticized by her mother for purchasing the lakefront property for the exorbitant sum of $1,250 in 1939, this artist’s retreat high atop the Bluff now embodies all the many advantages of Cliffcrest living: incredible lakeside vistas, fast access to some of the city’s best parks and public facilities, and the serenity of a slower-paced lifestyle that is far removed from the clutter of the downtown core.
This peace of mind takes place in a lavish, upmarket residential community. With a median household income of $75,291 that soars above the city wide average of $65,829, the prosperous residents of Cliffcrest have shown a preference for living in single-detached homes that make up 57 percent of all local private dwellings and were primarily built before 1960. On the other hand, condominiums constitute just 150 of this neighbourhood’s 6,094 private dwellings, which at just 2 percent is far lower than the city average of 26 percent.
With a low percentage of local renter households (just 33 percent compared to the city average of 47 percent), a lot of progress can be made in this area. And yet, a look at numerous townhome and condo developments springing up in former motels and car dealerships along the neighbourhood’s major thoroughfare Kingston Road shows a wave of redevelopment have come to Cliffcrest, sparking a new trend in local housing.
As already known by this diverse neighbourhood that contains diverse home-spoken languages such as Bengali, Tamil, Tagalog, and Chinese, this area has a lot to offer besides housing. The former Highway 2-designated Kingston Road remains a busy traffic conduit that is home to many retail shops and services such as many restaurants, coffee shops, and a Canadian Tire outlet. Cliffcrest Plaza serves as the area’s biggest retail area where local residents can find a post office, a drug store, banks, a public library, and a supermarket. As well, the area is served by the Scarborough Golf Club and The Hunt Club.
Further establishing Cliffcrest as a walkable community are its many municipal facilities and services that cater to this family-friendly neighbourhood.
In addition to Bluffer’s Park by the waterside, local greenspace found throughout the area include Cathedral Bluffs Park, Cudia Park, Muir Park, Holy Blossom Memorial Park, and Sunnypoint-Neilson Park. The local Totts Tot Lot makes for a great family destination with it children’s playground and baseball diamond as does Halbert Park with its wading pool and outdoor pool.
This affluent community has used its resources to establish a top-tier line-up of educational facilities, many of which have strict enrollment requirements. R.H. King Academy was Scarborough’s first high school and continues to serve the public. Other local schools include Fairmount Public School, Bliss Carman Senior Public School, H.A. Halbert Junior Public School, and Anson Park Public School.
And although it may feel far removed from the city, Cliffcrest is imbued with numerous transportation options that make it a well-connected Toronto locality.
This neighbourhood is served by two local GO train stations that allow for downtown commutes to Union Station in about 20 minutes. In addition to local bus service, two TTC subway stations found in the nearby vicinity include Warden Station and Kennedy Station, the latter of which will serve as the eastern terminus of the future Line 5 Eglinton LRT as well as the starting point of the proposed subway extension to Scarborough Town Centre. Meanwhile, an extensive arterial road system means local motorists can use the Don Valley Parkway to reach downtown in around 35 minutes or take historic Kingston Road down to Lakeshore Road or up to Highway 401 and beyond.
For a friendly neighbourhood that is as distinctive as it is practical, consider Cliffcrest as the location of your next real estate investment.
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