Forest Hill is an affluent neighborhood in central Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Along with Lawrence Park, Rosedale, and The Bridle Path, it is one of Toronto’s wealthiest neighbourhoods.
The neighbourhood’s original boundaries were Bathurst Street to the west, Upper Canada College to the east, Eglinton Avenue to the north, and Lonsdale Road and a portion of Montclair Avenue to the south (the original boundaries of School Section 30). Neighbourhoods north of Eglinton are sometimes though not unanimously regarded as Forest Hill. In 1999 Robert Fulford compared Forest Hill to Rosedale, the other traditional home of Toronto’s elite: “While Rosedale has remained stable for half a century, Forest Hill’s prestige has been growing steadily. There’s a key tonal difference in the architecture of the two places: where big Rosedale houses shout ‘history,’ big Forest Hill houses shout ‘grandeur.’ More than any other district in the central city, Forest Hill has become the site of spectacular new ‘neo-traditional’ homes built on a grand scale, usually with lawns to match.”
Forest Hill Village is a part of Forest Hill occupying most of the original area of the village. The Village extends roughly from Briar Hill Avenue in the north (the Upper Village, officially part of Forest Hill North) to Heath Street in the south (the Lower Village, officially the major part of Forest Hill South along Spadina Road between Bathurst Street/Cedarvale Ravine (whichever is further east) and Avenue Road. The designations Upper and Lower are based on height of land and not on positions on a map or along a watercourse.
The Lower Village was completely developed by the 1930s and is known for its upscale shopping and dining, although the actual mix of stores includes several modest enterprises. The Lower Village has attracted extensive residential development (especially of apartments), both within the original boundaries of Forest Hill and in adjacent neighborhoods to which developers have now extended the Village and Forest Hill names.
The Upper Village was slower to develop due to the fact it had previously been occupied by the old Belt Line Railway, and then by industry. Its houses were built mostly in the 1940s and 50’s. Many homes have been, or are being significantly renovated, with some being torn down completely to make way for monster ‘neo-classical’ homes.
Boundaries of Forest Hill North
Forest Hill North extends from Briar Hill Avenue in the north to Eglinton Avenue West in the south, and from Latimer Avenue in the east to Allen Road and Marlee Avenue in the north-west and south-west, respectively. For administrative purposes, Forest Hill North is Toronto neighborhood
Boundaries of Forest Hill South
As the name would imply, Forest Hill South is directly south of Forest Hill North. It extends from Eglinton Ave West in the north to Tichester Road in the south, and from Bathurst Street in the west to Elmsthorpe Road in the northeast and Avenue Road and the Oriole Parkway in the east. There is an additional stretch of Forest Hill South between Bathurst Street and Spadina Road, north of Lonsdale Road.
Throughout Forest Hill, one housing type makes up the majority of the area. This is the Conventional Suburbs type, but without the aspect of homogeneous households. In simplicity, Forest Hill housing has dominant traits of the conventional suburbs housing type. In further analysis, characteristics of low density, large lots, being car oriented, as well as having segregated land uses are all evident in the neighborhood.
In regards to Forest Hill, a lot of the residential housing is based on the conventional suburbs type. However, what makes it distinct from housing in other parts of Toronto, is its characteristics of singularity. In other words, houses, schools, places of worship and other building types are all architecturally built with different styles. Each building is distinct from one another. For instance, the town houses located in the East York neighborhood or the semi detached housing in Davisville, are more or less homogeneous in design compared to the housing style of Forest Hill.