Monday, December 19, 2011

Crescent Point Subdivision - 1910


Crescent Point Subdivision - Toronto World - July 31, 1910

White and Company Real Estate launched their Mimico Crescent Point subdivision in 1910.  The land has a long history.  

Purchased from the Mississauga nation as part of the Toronto Purchase in 1797, the property became part of Lot B, Range D Concession on Lake Ontario.  This lot, along with the much smaller Lot A was granted by the Crown to Robert Gray on April 24, 1811.  In 1824 these lands were seized by Samuel Ridout, Sheriff as part of a judgement against Robert Gray and sold to John Brown.  In turn, John Brown passed the land on to Mary (Brown) Arthurs, his daughter, upon his death in 1835 and she sold them to a member of her family.  The lands remained in the family for the next 39 years until they were purchased by Francis Hendry in 1874.

With the founding of the adjacent community of New Toronto in 1890 by the Mimico Real Estate Security Company, area land was in demand for residential development.  William Pinkerton purchased the Hendry lands for $38,000 (approximately $750,000 today), paying a portion of the transaction in cash, with Hendry holding the remainder as a mortgage.  He registered Plan 1056 for the area in 1890, then registered it again as Plan M 161 in 1891.  However, with the severe depression that hit the economy in the mid 1890s Pinkerton was unable to keep up with the mortgage payments and the lands were taken back by the Hendry family.

In 1910 Hendry sold the lands to Joseph McNabb for $45,000 (approximately $900,000 today).  McNabb registered his Crescent Point plan about a week later and launched the new subdivision at the end of the month.  His marketing plan was one of exclusivity and prestige, with statements like "It is the first high-class district west of High Park", and photos of a few of the "high-class homes in the District".  Photos appearing in the large advertisement in the Toronto World included:  Lynne Lodge (Fetherstonhaugh Estate), as well as the Hunter and Ormsby Estates.

In order to control the type of development that took place on the large waterfront lots, which were the showcase of the development concept, McNabb registered a covenant on title.  The covenant, which was to last for a period of 20 years from the registration of the plan, stipulated that "no trade, business or manufacture" was to be permitted in the area.  In addition, all homes had to be at least 50 feet from the street, no closer than 3 feet from the side lot line and cost a minimum of $ 4,500.  Lands in the rest of the subdivision also contained restrictions for homes ranging from $1,500 to $4,000 each.

Today homes in Crescent Point remain highly desirable.  The area is well known for its narrow roads, grassed boulevards and tall trees.  It would make a perfect Heritage Conservation District.

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