In 1913 the first of five Wychwood “Barns” were built by the city of Toronto as a streetcar maintenance facility. Streetcars accessed the site from the mainlines on St. Clair Ave., which is just to the north, via tracks on Wychwood Avenue.

There were five barns built from 1913 to 1921 as industrial buildings.  They are brick structures, two storeys high with an interior steel structure that was exposed. The facility remained part of the TTC until 1992. The City of Toronto currently leases the site to Toronto Artscape Inc., a not-for-profit organization that develops and operates space for the arts, at $1 a year on a 50 year lease.

Barn 1 has been converted into a private live-work studio and housing for community artists, while Barn 2 was made into a community gathering space, including a theatre. Barns 1 & 2 became a covered street that is two storeys high, 60 metres long, and 10 meters wide. Barns 3 and 4 are private-public spaces where non-profit organizations can operate.

Interior of the present day Wychwood Barns, central part. Historical photos of Toronto streetcars hang over the doors on the right.

Interior of the present day Wychwood Barns, central part (barns 1 and 2). Historical photos of Toronto streetcars hang over the doors on the right.

A greenhouse and community gardens are located in Barn four.  The roof was removed from Barn 5. All that remains is the steel structure that forms the arcade.

A large number 5 hangs over the remains of the fifth barn.

Barn number 5

part of an old wall showing the brick details.

Exposed interior wall

sunflowers

Sunflowers growing in the community gardens in barn 4.

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