Today I visited High Park up in the hills just north of Humber Bay. This huge park is the legacy of John George Howard, the former official surveyor and civil engineer of Toronto. He was also an architect who designed many of the city’s early public buildings.
|John George Howard|
In 1836 Howard purchased 165 acres of land west of Toronto. He intended to farm it, then decided to subdivide it. The land was full of steep hills, wetlands and sandy soil, plus was a distance from town and a hard commute. Howard did build a cottage for him and his wife on the highest hill overlooking Lake Ontario. He named it Colburne Lodge after his first patron, Lieutenant Governor Sir John Colborne.
Even though High Park is no longer far from the city, most of the park is still in a more or less wild state. It allows the city folks to get back to nature. Hiking and picnicking are popular. There is a 35 acre lake here called Grenadier Pond that is a popular fishing spot. In winter it’s used for skating, hockey and curling. 100 years from now, a third of the park will still be left natural. By then it will be expanded to 399 acres.
|The Howard Memorial at High Park built by John Howard|
|Colburne Lodge by John Howard|
|King Street in Toronto by John Howard|
showing the City Hall and Jail he had designed