Autumn is upon us, and as the sun sinks lower in the sky, every sunny day becomes more appreciated. The streets of downtown Toronto can get dark as you walk among the office towers, but there are locations where the sun still shines.
It has taken me some time to find a new theme for a post. Last week, I journeyed into the downtown core in search of shafts of sunlight. They are even more appealing today as we are greeted by a wet and soggy morning.
Most of the time I found lots of people also out enjoying the sunshine as they adventured into the day.
The high contrast subject matter was best exhibited in a monochrome interpretation. The hard edges of the shadows created by the architectural elements were softened by the human content.
As a follow-up to my blog post on the Doors of St. Thomas Street, I have embarked on a search of other No. 1 Doors in the City of Toronto. This is my expedition to determine if being “No. 1” is reflected in the doors or entrance to a building, and it is a great way to explore this city with some purpose or intention.
This week I have a few doors to contribute to Norm’s Thursday Doors. I have dubbed this post “Series 1,” in anticipation that I will find more similar doors in the future.
Today’s post represents the results of a walk along Yonge Street, starting from Queens Quay, heading north to Bloor Street. But first, a brief history of Yonge Street. There is a heritage plaque at the foot of Yonge Street that explains its origins. The road dates back to 1796, which is “old” in Canadian terms – we only became a country in 1867.
Being the original north-south arterial road, in a grid system of roadways, Yonge Street is the starting point in several ways. For instance, the numbering of all east-west streets starts at Yonge Street. As a result, it is possible to find addresses with the number 1 on either side of Yonge Street.
My first stop was at No. 1 Yonge Street, which is a commercial office building. The Toronto Star newspaper is one of the major tenants. There is nothing special about the doors to this building, so they are not featured here. However, there is one unique aspect to the entrance to this building; it is the only one I have seen that has its own Canada Post mailbox right outside the front door. Somebody had some influence here.
The next two buildings are One Adeleide Street East and One Queen Street East. They are also commercial office buildings. Both buildings have shiny chrome revolving doors at their entrances. For those of you who live in warmer climates and may not be familiar with revolving doors, these help to reduce the amount of cold winter air that enters the building whenever someone enters or exits the building.
One Bloor Street East is a high-rise condominium tower that is nearing completion of construction. This 75 storey tower is being marketed as “the city’s most iconic address,” and it is visible from several kilometers away in all directions. Emerging across the street are the foundations of One Bloor Street West, which will become “The One” at 82 storeys when it is completed.
This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge inspired me to experiment with some “other world” treatment of a recent image. There is a new pedestrian bridge connecting the Eaton Centre with the Hudson’s Bay store in downtown Toronto. The architectural design of the structure has a space-age look, and adding some blurring to the image gives it that final touch.
It has been a couple of weeks since I last posted any images on my blog, so I thought that I would take a moment to reflect on my previous “Door” posts. My first post on doors was in January 2017, when I displayed images of some doors from travels in England and Ireland. Over the ensuing eight months, I posted another 12 sets of door images – making doors my most common theme over the year.
I have received more views and likes of my door images than for any other theme. No doubt, this success was due to my participation in Norm Frampton’s Thursday Doors group. Thank you Norm for all of your work, and thank you to all the other door lovers out there.
My earlier door posts featured images from other parts of the world. Having depleted much of my foreign collection of doors, my posts have become more localized, focused closer to home in Toronto. The subject matter has become more mundane, but I am still trying to find something unique in an otherwise ordinary scene.
When I posted my first series of doors from the UK and Ireland, I had not anticipated that they would become part of a series. The same can be said for my more recent post on Garage Doors. But here I am, posting some more garage doors – all located within walking distance from my home.
Here is this week’s contribution to Norm’s Thursday Doors weekly feature.
I am more attracted by the brick rather than the doors in brick garage. The colour and the texture of the bricks, and the fragility of the structure are most notable. The driveway ramp no longer slopes up to the doors, so one wonders what is stored behind these doors now?
In semi-symmetry, the near-perfect symmetry of the two halves of this semi-detached residence drew my attention. The wrought iron handrails and balconies are identical, while the colour of the garage doors provides some individuality to each side. My guess – the purple door is not original.
I always used to refer to these types of residences as duplexes. However, I have since learned that, in a semi-detached home, the two residences are side-by-side and share one common wall. In a duplex, the two residences are one atop the other. They both have separate exterior entrances.
I will admit that the thing that attracted me initially was the green door in infill. It was only later that I recognized that there is an infill panel where a garage door used to be. The garage door has been replaced with a man-door and HVAC equipment – and there is more space for storing the ubiquitous blue wheelies.
Over the centuries, stone masons have been known to chisel their unique, distinguishing mark into a stone, leaving their signature for future generations. Moving forward in time to the past century, concrete has become a prolific construction material.
Here in Toronto, I have discovered that sidewalk installers have been keen to embed their “signatures” in freshly laid concrete. Here are a few examples of modern day concrete markers, indicating the dates when the concrete was installed. These are my submissions in response to Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Numbers for this week.
For the budding urban archeologist, these sidewalk markers can be used to determine the dates of previous infrastructure upgrades, and identify the businesses that were active in their trade at that time. Anyone interested in doing some sidewalk rubbings?
Stairs are my subject matter this week in my submission to Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge this week. Stairs and staircases are full of diverging and converging lines when you are looking down on them.
I took these photos recently in the TTC subway system in Toronto. I have a colour version of one image on my Flickr site as part of my “Entries and exits” album. These stair views also remind me a little of an MC Escher print, except that these are real stairs and not surreal.