News   Jan 27, 2023
 647     0 
News   Jan 27, 2023
 1.6K     0 
News   Jan 27, 2023
 3.5K     1 

Rexdale Plaza

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
Today's submission outlines developmental plans for the surrounding area of Rexdale way back in 1953. You can find this map
in the February 13th, 1953 issue of the Toronto Daily Star.

The "14.4 Acre area purchased by Simpsons-Sears" would become the Sears outlet on Rexdale Boulevard.

The "New Ontario Jockey Club Racetrack to be built here" is a reference to the forthcoming Woodbine Racetrack.

"310 homes just completed" if not mistaken, is the future home of Rexdale Plaza.



1619724312271.png

Photo credit: Dhillon Singh
 
Last edited:

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
Rexdale Boulevard used to be Malton Road!?!?
The Etobicoke Historical Society was kind enough to provide this map of Etobicoke from 1856. 100 years before the subdivision known as Rexdale began development.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it looks like Rexdale Boulevard was originally part of the Grand Trunk Railway. There's also a smaller road above it with the writing "M. Vean Road"
which I think is short for McVean Road.

On the 1953 map, I think Rexdale Boulevard was then named C.N.R. - which is short for Canadian National Railway.

1619827378516.png
 

ShonTron

Moderator
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 24, 2007
Messages
11,722
Reaction score
7,168
Location
Ward 13 - Toronto Centre
The Etobicoke Historical Society was kind enough to provide this map of Etobicoke from 1856. 100 years before the subdivision known as Rexdale began development.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it looks like Rexdale Boulevard was originally part of the Grand Trunk Railway. There's also a smaller road above it with the writing "M. Vean Road"
which I think is short for McVean Road.

On the 1953 map, I think Rexdale Boulevard was then named C.N.R. - which is short for Canadian National Railway.

View attachment 316251

It says “McVean” - just with a small superscript C.

As for Rexdale Blvd, it took its name from the Rexdale development by Rex Heslop, who also built the Delrex development in Georgetown.
 

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
"I'd buy that for a dollar." Well, you wouldn't be able to with these menu items - all under a buck!
Woolworth's menu from Rexdale Plaza's early years:

181291801_4068617063218433_9105185700870713871_n.jpg

Photo credit: Eugenio Arcilesi
 

interchange42

Administrator
Staff member
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 23, 2007
Messages
26,376
Reaction score
32,182
Location
by the Humber
Today's submission outlines developmental plans for the surrounding area of Rexdale way back in 1953. You can find this map
in the February 13th, 1953 issue of the Toronto Daily Star.

The "14.4 Acre area purchased by Simpsons-Sears" would become the Sears outlet on Rexdale Boulevard.

The "New Ontario Jockey Club Racetrack to be built here" is a reference to the forthcoming Woodbine Racetrack.

"310 homes just completed" if not mistaken, is the future home of Rexdale Plaza.



View attachment 315998
Photo credit: Dhillon Singh
The 310 homes completed would be in the Pine Point and The Elms area to the east of Rexdale Plaza.

The Etobicoke Historical Society was kind enough to provide this map of Etobicoke from 1856. 100 years before the subdivision known as Rexdale began development.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it looks like Rexdale Boulevard was originally part of the Grand Trunk Railway. There's also a smaller road above it with the writing "M. Vean Road"
which I think is short for McVean Road.

On the 1953 map, I think Rexdale Boulevard was then named C.N.R. - which is short for Canadian National Railway.

View attachment 316251
No, the Grand Trunk became the CNR, and that's still the railway, now owned by Metrolinx, not Rexdale Boulevard. McVean Road became Rexdale Boulevard.

42
 

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
Thanks for the corrections, interchange42.

Here's a store list of Rexdale Plaza from 1982. 10 years after being enclosed.

1620535813546.png


Photo credit: Adrian Caprara

Bargain Harold's - if I remember correctly, was located on the lower level (Dominion end of the plaza).

Baskin Robbins - Up until now, I never knew Rexdale Plaza had a name-brand fast food chain in the plaza.

Dominion - One of Rexdale Plaza's first major anchors. Lasted for several years after.

Music World - Another surprise to me that I don't remember seeing in the early 1990's. Shoppers World Albion
also had a Music World in the 1980's as well.

Rexdale Restaurant and Tavern - I've read that the owners of Rexdale Tavern converted this establishment into
Catalina Grille.

Rexdale Snackbar - A long-standing kiosk that was best known for it's delicious fries and gravy. Remained with
Rexdale Plaza for another two decades prior to the mall's second demolition.

Shoppers Drug Mart - Some of my last memories of Rexdale Plaza involved visiting this location prior to the mall's
demolition. Next to Dollarama, Shoppers Drug Mart was the only name brand store left in the mall.

Towers Department Store
- Converted into Zellers in the years to follow. Now an amalgamation of different stores.

Woolco
- Another fixture that lasted for quite some time. Used to be located near Towers.
 
Last edited:

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
195950_5038698727_9793_n.jpg


Here's an exterior shot of Rexdale Plaza before the mall was demolished. Any idea on date?

From the halcyon days of yore, here's some vintage ads promoting Coles at the Rexdale Plaza:

187128559_4111194582294014_2680206684323090106_n.jpg


Besides books, Coles also sold hobby supplies. Rexdale Plaza is mentioned directly above this text.

186990798_4111195128960626_7599778110713277144_n.jpg


I wonder how many of these comics would be worth something today? Original Action comics from the early 1900's can
command a small fortune.

Both clippings come courtesy of Eugenio Arcilesi.

Lastly, the showstopper for this post:

1621321102265.png


Photo credit Vicky Duclos and submitted by Eugenio Arcilesi. Eugenio writes:

"Hi everyone, here's a beautiful photo that I call a "room with a view" showing a crisp cold day back in the winter of 1962-63.. this photo was taken at 11 Bergamot ave on the 7th floor looking southeast showing the intersection of Rexdale blvd at islington ave. In the background you can see Rexdale Plaza and to the left of photo the red building is the Red Barn, notice even back then the children were social distancing. Photo courtesy of Vicky Duclos, enjoy!"
 
Last edited:

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
Another popular store name that comes up when referencing the heyday of the Rexdale Plaza is the Rexdale Hobby Centre:

134914306_3621612471260572_8006407233062721130_n.jpg


The next submission comes from Bonnie Hogan. A 1967 cookbook that contains vintage clippings of stores from Rexdale Plaza, Albion Mall and a few other nearby shops. Bonnie writes:

"Centennial cookbook from St Paul the Apostle church on Kipling which I attended from when it was built in the late 1950’s until I got married there in 1972. I included some advertising pages. Did anybody else go to this church?"


1621474370457.png


1621474410517.png


1621474434864.png


1621474465725.png


1621459995365.png
 

Attachments

  • 188274657_593439105383123_7599668447962194176_n.jpg
    188274657_593439105383123_7599668447962194176_n.jpg
    58.4 KB · Views: 139
Last edited:

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
For lovers of vintage cars, this early Rexdale Plaza advertising piece & contest might be of interest:

1621912512837.png

Photo uploaded by: Brian Cole

I believe the sign above the Ford Crown Victoria reads "Win This NEW Ford at REXDALE PLAZA".

In the comments section, some have speculated that the photo was taken in 1954 or 1955 after Labour Day. Though, the Rexdale Plaza wasn't
built until 1956. All in all, a pretty convincing means to get shoppers to visit the newly-created Rexdale Plaza.

Now, for those of you who visited Rexdale Plaza in the 1970's - 1980's, you may remember this piece of currency at Towers Department Store:

1621914020036.png

Photo credit: Doug North

Towers' own version of Canadian Tire money.

1621916048428.png

Photo credit: Eugenio Arcilesi

Here's a Towers ad from the 1970's.


1621916247641.png

Photo credit: Eugenio Arcilesi

Not too far from the Rexdale Plaza was Valdi Discount Foods (located in the Rexdale Mews across from Sears)
The above photo was taken in 1980.

I can spot Aylmer brand Tomato Catsup, stacks of Colgate Toothpaste and Carasse baby lotion/shampoo.
 
Last edited:

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
Still on the lookout for inside mall shots from the 70's, 80's and 90's. Though, on tonight's search I came across this vintage clipping
(Rexdale Plaza is mentioned in the bottom corner as one of the locations):


1622524485806.png

Photo submitted by Hopkin Design.


No idea on the year. I wonder if I'd qualify for a "free rose" (see middle-left of above ad) with my long hair?
 

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
Get on your Dazy Dukes for this next advertising piece. A Dukes of Hazard and Rexdale Plaza tie-in from 1983!


1624127241167.png

Photo credit: Adrian Caprara

Rexdale Plaza had it all in 1983...except for a movie theatre. Which, the neighbouring Albion Centre had established (Albion Cinemas)
since the early 1970's and the forthcoming Woodbine Centre would add in two years time.

Prior to Rexdale Mall's second demolition in 2003, I remember the indoor flea markets every weekend. Though, by that point, there
wasn't a 25 cent admission fee.
 
Last edited:

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
Thanks to Adrian Caprara's knowledgeable insight, the following application from toronto.ca's website indicates there were plans
to have a movie theatre in the Rexdale Plaza after all!:

1624151599481.png


How about that? A Cineplex Odeon at the Rexdale Plaza circa 1979? Where do you think the Cinema would have been placed?

Instead, Cineplex opted to go with the far more spacious Woodbine Centre for the mall's grand opening in 1985.
 
Last edited:

Justin Ziadeh

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 9, 2019
Messages
314
Reaction score
484
Heading back to the mid 1960's, this next post provides a vintage look of a familiar view in front of Rexdale Plaza:

1624166622153.png


Submitted by Eugenio Arcilesi to the Rexdale Old Photos Facebook Group, Eugenio adds:

"Islington ave looking northwest to near the Hwy 401 bridge to Rexdale bvld.. in the background you can see the Sears water tower mid 1960s."
 

Top