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In the shadow of retail giants: TTC PCC 4343 is operating on a Downtowner tripper run eastbound to Bingham loop, paused at the lights on Queen Street at Yonge Street. This was long a major downtown Toronto retail corner as on the north side (right) was Eaton's famed Queen Street store, and on the side side was Simpson's (later The Bay's) flagship Toronto location. A Woolworth's was present at the north-west corner, tucked into but separate from Eaton's. The Yonge and Queen streetcar lines ferried Toronto shoppers to/from the downtown department stores here for decades, and eventually the Yonge Subway provided more direct store access and more efficient service. A Ford C-series cabover truck waits at the light alongside (possibly a Bell utility truck).

The Eaton's Queen Street department store, built on land parceled together from various storefronts along Yonge and Queen over the years, was part of Eaton's sprawling downtown holdings which included buildings for mail-order, catalogue, manufacturing, distribution and a secondary Annex/budget store. Despite being spruced up with a coat of white paint, it was all on borrowed time: to the north Eaton's was busy building their new flagship Toronto store at Dundas Street (1 million square feet of retail space) as part of their new Eaton Centre shopping mall development. It would open in February 1977, and the Queen Street store would close and be demolished for the next phase of mall development. The Woolworths store at the corner was spared the wrecking ball (it has been undergoing restoration in present times). Simpsons was purchased by the Hudson's Bay Company in 1978, and operated as their higher-end chain until the name was phased out in the early 90's.

J.W.(Bill) Vigrass photo, Dan Dell'Unto collection slide.
Copyright Notice: This image ©J.W.Vigrass photo, Dan Dell'Unto coll. all rights reserved.



Caption: In the shadow of retail giants: TTC PCC 4343 is operating on a Downtowner tripper run eastbound to Bingham loop, paused at the lights on Queen Street at Yonge Street. This was long a major downtown Toronto retail corner as on the north side (right) was Eaton's famed Queen Street store, and on the south side was Simpson's (later The Bay's) flagship Toronto location. A Woolworth's was present at the north-west corner, tucked into but separate from Eaton's. The Yonge and Queen streetcar lines ferried Toronto shoppers to/from the downtown department stores here for decades, and eventually the Yonge Subway provided more direct store access and more efficient service (note the TTC subway marker signs hanging on both stores). A Ford C-series cabover truck waits at the light alongside (possibly a Bell utility truck).

The Eaton's Queen Street department store, built on land parceled together from various storefronts along Yonge and Queen over the years, was part of Eaton's sprawling downtown holdings which included buildings for mail-order, catalogue, manufacturing, distribution and a secondary Annex/budget store. Despite being spruced up with a coat of white paint, it was all on borrowed time: to the north Eaton's was busy building their new flagship Toronto store at Dundas Street (1 million square feet of retail space) as part of their new Eaton Centre shopping mall development. It would open in February 1977, and the Queen Street store would close and be demolished for the next phase of mall development. The Woolworths store at the corner was spared the wrecking ball (it has been undergoing restoration in present times). Simpsons was purchased by the Hudson's Bay Company in 1978, and operated as their higher-end chain until the name was phased out in the early 90's.

J.W.(Bill) Vigrass photo, Dan Dell'Unto collection slide.

Photographer:
J.W.Vigrass photo, Dan Dell'Unto coll. [772] (more) (contact)
Date: Circa May-1976 (search)
Railway: Toronto Transit Commission (search)
Reporting Marks: TTC 4343 (search)
Train Symbol: Downtowner (ebnd to Bingham) (search)
Subdivision/SNS: Queen St. & Yonge St. (search)
City/Town: Toronto (search)
Province: Ontario (search)
Share Link: http://www.railpictures.ca/?attachment_id=48291
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Photo ID: 47017

Map courtesy of Open Street Map

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One Comment
  1. I think that may be a Toronto Hydro truck.

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