7 Little Known Facts about the Toronto PATH Underground Walkway

PATH 1

The Toronto Path is the largest mall in North America

  • 30+ km of connected walkways
  • 200,000+ people use it each day
  • 1200 stores (50% more than the West Edmonton Mall!)
  • 0 winter coats required to get around

Never heard of the Toronto PATH? It’s a network of underground connections between buildings in Toronto’s downtown core that includes shopping, food courts, and a weather-proof way to get around. See the most up-to-date map.

PATH 2

You can live your entire life in the PATH

If you live near the PATH or can take the subway or GO Train into the Financial District, you’ll appreciate this one:

Toronto Path

If you’re an employer who wants your workers to never have an excuse to leave the office building, you’ll appreciate this one, too. Many of the Financial District’s office towers have clothing stores, pharmacies, shopping markets, gyms, dentists and doctors.

Click on the above map to see the full size area map.

Click on the above map to see the full size area map.

PATH 3

18 of the 25 tallest buildings in Toronto are connected by the PATH (and it’s growing quickly)

skyscrapers

This count includes six major office buildings under construction right now. Each is around a million square feet and within a 10 minute walking distance of Union Station. They’ll each be connected to the PATH.

PATH 4

The Toronto PATH has three museums and extensive Public Art

The Hockey Hall of Fame, Design Exchange, and the TD Centre Gallery of Inuit Art are all PATH-connected in the Financial District. Not to mention some of Toronto’s biggest attractions: the Air Canada Centre, Roy Thomson Hall, Toronto Eaton Centre, CN Tower and the Toronto Convention Centre.

The Financial District is also home to the greatest collection of public art and architecture in Canada, including these highlights:

Art Collage

Top Left: The Hand- Sorel Etrog, Top Right: Mural-Trump Hotel Toronto, Bottom Left: The Stanley Cup – Hockey Hall of Fame, Bottom Right: Allen Lambert Galleria- Brookfield Place

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The last major project of architect Mies van der Rohe helped kick off the PATH

The origin of the PATH underground walkway spans decades as different puzzle pieces came together.

1900s – The Eaton’s department store connected two buildings with an underground tunnel that is now the connection between the Toronto Eaton Centre and Bell Trinity Square.

1927 Union Station and the Royal York Hotel are connected by an underground tunnel.

1960s – City of Toronto planner Matthew Lawson seeks to alleviate congestion on downtown sidewalks by encouraging buildings to connect underground and allow expansion to connect to further construction projects.

1967The Toronto-Dominion Centre’s first towers opens. This is beginning of a complex spanning an entire city block and designed by the great architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. The iconic TD Centre incorporated an extensive network of underground shopping and connections between its office towers. The design included room to connect to neighbouring buildings as they were built around the TD Centre.

td cENTRE tOP AND bOTTOM

1970s-1990s – The Sheraton Centre complex and Richmond-Adelaide Centre are connected and the puzzles pieces start to come together as more and more office towers are built with PATH connections to their neighbours included.

TODAY – The current Union Station Revitalization Project includes a PATH extension along York Street. Buildings south of Union Station are being connected by above-ground connections. There are now approximately 80 buildings connected to the PATH (current map) and another 15 being built with connections included in construction.

 

PATH 6

The PATH map is always pointing North

Sometimes this makes reading the map a little awkward

PATH 7Getting around the PATH is getting easier

As you may be able to tell in the above photo, getting around the PATH can be a little confusing to newcomers. The Toronto Financial District BIA is currently looking for ways to fix that.

Along with the City of Toronto and Tourism Toronto, we’re working on a new wayfinding signage system that will be on display in our area before the Pan Am Games in Summer 2015. We’re also assisting Google with ways to include the PATH underground walkway on their beloved Google Maps.

Keep up to date! Follow @MyTOFD on Twitter or visit this website’s main page for daily updates about what’s happening each day in the Financial District.

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Sources:
City of Toronto
Wikipedia
City of Toronto (PATH Map)
Skyscraper Page
TD Centre