Toronto's 5 most transit-friendly neighbourhoods

By Estelle on September 17th, 2018

Toronto is Canada’s largest city, and has the third best transit system out of all North American metropolises, according to its Transit Score. This score, assigned by Walkscore.com, measures the efficiency of a city’s public transport systems.

But Toronto is a massive place, and transit is not equally accessible from everywhere. For example, you’re more easily able to get around if you live in City Place than if you live in the Woodbine Corridor. In either case, the Transit Score is high - which is typical of most Toronto neighbourhoods - but variance does exist.

In this article, we take a look at the five neighbourhoods that score best on the Transit Score scale. As you’ll see, it’s pretty cluttered near the top. If you’re looking into a neighbourhood that isn’t here, don’t fret; there are about 20 more neighbourhoods that rank as excellent throughout the city.

1. Bay Street Corridor

Transit Score: 100

The Bay Street Corridor is as good as it gets if you’re someone who wants to stay connected to the rest of the city at all times. That’s because it not only carries a perfect Transit Score of 100, it’s also classed as Toronto's most walkable neighbourhood, with a Walk Score of 99.

Bay Street is slowly becoming a real condo hotspot, attracting a wide range of people, from business people to young professionals and students, thanks to its prime location and amazing transport links.

Residents of this thriving hub will have access to the King, Queen Dundas and College streetcars, which run directly through the corridor, each conveniently connecting to a number of subway stations. And Union Station, Toronto’s main transport hub, is just a short journey away.

Combine the short commute downtown with convenient, urban living and some aesthetically beautiful new buildings, and you’ve got yourself a winning location.

2. Kensington-Chinatown

Transit Score: 100

Kensington-Chinatown in an eclectic centrality, with Spadina Road at its heart. It's no surprise then, that this downtown hub is one of the top scoring areas for transit. In fact, it has two efficient streetcar lines, the Queen car and the Spadina car, which offer access to numerous subway stations on both the Yonge and Bloor lines. The Spadina streetcar also offers fast, direct access to the Waterfront and Union Station.

But the access doesn’t stop there; the area has also earned itself a great 97 Walk Score, and both St. Patrick and Osgoode subway stations are well within walking distance.

It’s close proximity to King and Queen Street, as well as the financial district, means that many creative entrepreneurs have found themselves settling into the area. However, many families and students also call the exotic sights and sounds of Kensington-Chinatown home.

3. University

Transit Score: 100

Yet another neighbourhood with a perfect Transit Score. Students from all over the world flock to U of T, and many choose to call the surrounding area home. There are amenities just a stone's throw from most front doors, as well as the direct transit links zig-zagging their way across the vicinity. On top of all of that, most daily errands and commutes can be done on foot, thanks to a Walk Score of 97.

Nestled just west of the Bay Street Corridor and north of Kensington-Chinatown, residents can make use of both area’s transport networks, including access to the Spadina streetcar, Bloor subway and Yonge subway line.

4. Trinity Bellwoods

Transit Score: 99

A score shy of perfect? Oh the shame!

Residents of Trinity Bellwoods find themselves sandwiched between four great transport routes; three streetcars journeying along Dundas, Queen and Bathurst, and one timely bus route up and down Ossington. However, commuters should be aware things can get a little crowded during rush hour, perhaps why this area hasn’t quite managed a perfect score.

Luckily, everything you could possibly need is pretty much right outside of your front door. From the park’s sprawling 32-foot expanse of greenery, to a variety of small businesses, coffee shops, bars and restaurants all dotted along Queen and Dundas Street, you’re never at a loss for somewhere to go.

The area attracts families, students and young professionals, so no matter what your age or interests, you’re bound to fit in here!

5. Niagara

Transit Score: 99

Niagara has become a thriving spot for condos, with many exciting new builds filled with contemporary amenities springing up, with Liberty Village attracting professionals from across the city.

Much like Trinity Bellwoods, the only downside comes with the unavoidable crowding during rush hour. Luckily, the King Streetcar is within reach and these longer, much faster and more frequent cars are the neighbourhood’s saving grace during busy periods.

And if public transport isn’t for you, fear not, because everything you could ever need is within walking distance, landing Niagara with a Walk Score of 84. In fact, if you’re in Liberty Village, you’re blessed with grocery stores, beer stores and even speciality running stores right on your complex.