The Junction BIA provides a beautiful, safe space where the local business community can flourish as part of the robust neighbourhood anchored at Dundas St West and Keele St, east to Indian Grove, and west to Quebec Ave. Building on the area’s history as the original commercial strip for the West Toronto railway connection community, the Junction is Toronto’s Favourite Meeting Place. The JBIA provides a resource and hub for the diverse mix of businesses that welcome patrons to enjoy this vibrant neighbourhood.
Recognized as one of the ‘hip’ communities by the New York Times and one of the 50 “coolest neighbourhoods” in the world by Time Out, the Junction is a must-visit Toronto destination. In addition, it is well known for being the Patio Lover’s Paradise of Toronto through the CaféTO in the Junction program in the summer and the annual Window Wonderland in the winter, an interactive, outdoor gallery featuring unique augmented reality (AR) installations by local and international artists.
The Junction has a rich and fascinating history. Originally, Native Canadian trading trails met at this location. Railway tracks were laid to follow these trails which fostered the growth of industry. Soon, hotels and taverns sprung up to accommodate the bevy of male workers. By 1904, the behaviour of the Junction workers was compared to that of the “wild west”, leading the residents to vote for banning the sale of alcohol until 1998. It was a long and tough fight lead by Vesuvio Pizzeria and Spaghetti House to regain the right to again serve alcohol in the area and it wasn’t until 2000 that the first drink was poured east of Keele Street at Shox’s. This is credited by many as the beginning of the revitalization of the Junction.
Founded in 1884 as a village, the Junction grew into a town, and then it became the City of West Toronto before amalgamation with the City of Toronto in 1909. The Junction has always retained a sense of its own small town feel and has continued to be a thriving centre for business. With much of the original architecture intact, this vibrant business area offers much to see both out and inside. Come and experience The Junction for a historical experience and visit the businesses to find out why it is considered such a trendy and progressive shopping area.
Only businesses in commercial property in this boundary are members of the BIA. Click on the map to download it.
What is a BIA?
A Business Improvement Area (BIA) is a non-profit association of commercial property owners and tenants within a defined area who collaborates with the City to create thriving, competitive, and safe business areas that attract shoppers and diners, tourists, and new businesses. By working collectively, local businesses have the organizational and funding capacity to be catalysts for civic improvement, enhancing the quality of life in their local neighbourhood and the City. Toronto now boasts a total of 85 BIAs, representing more than 90,000 businesses – the largest number of BIAs in North America. The world’s first BIA was started in Toronto in 1970. Since then, this innovative public-private partnership model has been copied internationally. Focusing on street/sidewalk beautification, marketing and promotional campaigns, street festivals, clean street/graffiti removal campaigns, and crime prevention strategies, BIAs also act as a unified voice to address issues on behalf of their membership. BIA members employ more than 400,000 people in full-time and part-time positions. Over 7.4 million people attend the more than 160 community events, and street festivals supported and produced by BIAs throughout the year. Source: City of Toronto website.
How does a BIA works?
A BIA is run by a volunteer Board of Management elected from its members. The Board is nominated at an Annual General Meeting and, once approved by City Council, serves a four-year term concurrent with the term of Council. The Board works on behalf of its BIA and meets regularly to develop budgets, set priorities, implement capital improvements, plan festivals, and promote its business area.
Marketing and Events Working Group
Volunteer group composed of BIA members and staff who make recommendations to the Board regarding programs and events in the Junction on a project-project basis. Working Group members focus on the impact on the overall community, successes and challenges, and growth opportunities within the context of our mandate.
Streetscape Working Group
Volunteer group composed of BIA members and staff who make recommendations to the Board regarding The Junction’s streetscape and capital projects on a project-by-project basis. The Streetscape Master Plan vision provides an organizing framework that further strengthens the central theme of the Junction as a point of convergence for business, culture, the arts and shared community values