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Parking It: Discovering Coronation Park

Jul 25, 2016

Looking across the harbour, you can see the green space and lush canopy of mature trees that stretches over Coronation Park.

Looking across the harbour, you can see the green space and lush canopy of mature trees that stretches over Coronation Park. (Image by @karicamk on Instagram) 

Parking It is a weekly series of blog posts – running all summer long – that will explore Toronto’s system of waterfront parks.

By Tennille Dowers 

If thinking about Toronto’s downtown brings to mind visions of sky-scraping glass and steel structures or traffic congestion, then a walk through Coronation Park should be a welcome respite.

At 27 acres (11 hectares) in size, Coronation Park is a large urban green space on the western edge of the downtown waterfront. To put its size in perspective, Coronation Park is roughly 27 times the size of Yonge-Dundas Square. It’s just a few hectares shy of the much busier Trinity Bellwoods Park. Coronation Park usually welcomes a much smaller number of park-goers, so you’ll rarely have trouble grabbing a picnic table or a patch of shade. 

An aerial view of two of Coronation Park’s three ball diamonds and the grove of oak and maple trees next to the water.

An aerial view of two of Coronation Park’s three ball diamonds and the grove of oak and maple trees next to the water. (Image by @beautysplendours on Instagram)

Walking into the park, you’ll almost feel like you’ve stumbled on a secret. The open and quiet atmosphere of Coronation Park is in juxtaposition to the bustling movement of Lakeshore Boulevard just to the north. The waterfront views and an impressive amount of greenery set this park apart from its urban surroundings. 

Joggers, strollers and cyclists are a regular sight along the Martin Goodman Trail, which passes through the park. Closer to the water, you’ll see a nautical backdrop of sailboats and Lake Ontario. Coronation Park is also a destination for aviation enthusiasts who want a prime location to watch planes taking off from and landing at the Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. 

Frolicking dogs play catch with their humans in the fenced off-leash dog park.

Frolicking dogs play catch with their humans in the fenced off-leash dog park. 

Dogs run freely in a generous off-leash area that is fenced-off from the rest of the park. On the park’s northern strip, three baseball diamonds stand along Lakeshore Boulevard, all equipped with lighting fixtures that illuminate nighttime ball games. A centrally located pavilion provides access to restrooms and change rooms. 

Important plaques and monuments commemorating Toronto’s heritage are hidden in plain sight around Coronation Park.

While their significance may not be readily apparent at a glance, the grove of massive mature oak and maple trees clustered along the park’s centre are anything but unassuming. These trees stand several stories high and are a tribute to Canada’s rich military history

Towering trees form a canopy shading park goers moving along Coronation Park’s trails.

Towering trees form a canopy shading park-goers moving along Coronation Park’s trails. (Image from the Tomatoes from Canada blog) 

A towering Royal Oak tree in the middle of the park stands in honour of the coronation of King George VI. Maple trees surround this oak as symbol of the strength of the British Empire and the role played by Canadian troops’ in defending it during World War I. More oak and maple trees grouped around the park’s middle were planted in honour of Canadian veterans who fought for the Commonwealth in various other conflicts.  

The Canadian Flag waves over the Victory Peace monument commemorating Canadian troops.

The Canadian Flag waves over the Victory Peace monument commemorating Canadian troops. (Image by Digital Journal)

Victory Peace, a World War II monument by artist, John McEwan sits in a clearing a short distance from the commemorative trees. From here, boats are visible on the water, many of which gather near HMCS York headquarters where a division of the Canadian Naval Forces is stationed on the south east corner of the park. Sailboats from the National Yacht Club and Alexandria Yacht Club are also moored in this part of the harbour. 

Boats cluster on Lake Ontario along the southern edge of the Coronation Park.

Boats cluster on Lake Ontario along the southern edge of the Coronation Park.  

Quick Coronation Park Facts:

•    27 acres (11 hectares) of open green space

•    Barrier-free access to trails and other amenities, including: 

o    Three sports diamonds
o    Fenced-in off-leash dog park
o    Picnic benches  
o    Pavilion with change rooms 
o    Restrooms 
o    Parking

We’re working to connect Toronto’s system of waterfront parks. Learn more about our vision for Toronto’s parks and public spaces.

post contributor

  • Tennille Dowers

    Tennille Dowers was a social media and online content intern at Waterfront Toronto in 2016.