7 Interesting facts about Toronto
What Do You Know About Toronto?
This list could easily be hundreds of points long, filled with great knowledge about Canada’s largest city. As a hub of international culture, as well as having a rich and storied history, Toronto has countless facts that would even surprise Torontonians that have lived here all their lives. Put your knowledge to the test and see if you already know these 7 interesting facts about Toronto.
1. Toronto Diversity
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With a population that exceeds 2.5 million, Toronto is the fifth largest city in all of North America. Of theses 2.5 million residents nearly half are immigrants giving the metropolis one of the most diverse cultures in all of the world. To put that into perspective, Canada’s other official language (French) is only 12th on the list of as first language in census data. As a result of this immense diversity, Toronto has a great lineup of festivals that run throughout the year.
2. We have a lot of green space
The city has 1,600 named parks, over 8,000 hectares of undeveloped space (ravines, rivers, creeks, fields) and more than 200 km of trails. It is estimated that Toronto has more than 10 million trees of which 4 million are owned and maintained by the city.
3. The PATH
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According to the Guinness Book of World Records the PATH is the world’s largest underground shopping complex. Situated under the financial core more than 29km of walkways connect 50 office towers, 6 hotels, 5 subway stops and 1,200 shops and restaurants. Very convenient for the bitter cold winter months but be sure to consult a map before entering this labyrinth.
4. Toronto’s Gold Bullion
Below the PATH lies the one of the most intensely guarded locations in all of Canada, ScotiaBank’s precious and base metal stores. Operated by ScotiaMocatta, a division of the bank, no one really knows what goes on here because of the lack of guest passes issued.
5. Fort York is the reason the White House was burnt
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In 1793 the Britsh established a Fort York in the banks of Lake Ontario, which is known today as the city of Toronto. During the war of 1812 U.S. soldiers captured the fort, destroying most of it as well as burning the parliament building. This is said to be the main motivation for the burning of Washington by British soldiers just one year later.
6. The first map of Toronto was drawn by a 13-year-old
Image source: torontoist.com
The year was 1834 and Fort York had just been incorporated as the City of Tronto. A young boy by the name of Todd Alpheus had just moved to the city with his parents. When walking the streets Todd would count his steps from one street to the next and then pen his results, to scale, when he arrived home. So impressed by the young boys catography a prominent lawyer lobbied for his appointment to the library of the House of Assembly of Upper Canada. Alpheus spent the remainder of his professional career there.
7. Babe Ruth hit his first professional home run in Toronto
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Yes, believe it or not, the legendary baseball player hit his very first professional home run right here in Toronto at Hanlan’s Point Stadium on Toronto island. Erected in 1897, the ball field suffered a catastrophic fire in 1909 but was rebuilt the next year, bigger and better. On September 5, 1914 Babe Ruth stepped to the plate and smacked a 3 run shot over the right field wall thus beginning an illustrious career. Babe Ruth would go on to be one of baseball’s all-time greats. The stadium was deemed unsafe in 1937 and was removed to make way for the now Billy Bishop Airport.