These communities are along east side of Dufferin street between Queen & Bloor, centered around the huge Dufferin Grove Park. This area was settled by the Denison family, English immigrants who not only cleared the forests to farm their land, but were involved in colonial politics and military matters. By the 1870s, they began subdividing their land and building houses. Beaconsfield, just north of Queens Street, was developed around Beaconsfield Avenue, named for former British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, who was given the title of Lord Beaconsfield by Queen Victoria. The area north of College was developed later, mostly in the early 1900s. The area attracted working class people and Portuguese (and other) immigrants, who frequent the Rua Acores shopping district.
Motorists have a 10 minute drive into downtown via the Gardiner Expressway. TTC riders can take the Dufferin or Dovercourt buses to the respective stations on the Bloor-Danforth subway line. The College and Dundas streetcars take passengers downtown and to stations on the Yonge-University-Spadina subway line.
The area is served by 4 elementary schools, 2 Catholic elementary schools, 2 high schools, and 2 libraries. University of Toronto is accessed via the Bloor-Danforth subway, and Ryerson University and Ontario College of Art & Design are nearby in downtown Toronto.
There are lots of on-street shops & restaurants along Dundas, College and Bloor Streets. The Rua Acores shopping district on Dundas Street West has Portuguese restaurants and shops.Queen Street West has lots of clothing boutiques, extending all the way to the former MuchMusic headquarters on John St. The 100 store Dufferin Mall, opposite from Dufferin Grove Park handles the neighbourhood's mall shopping needs.
Dufferin Grove Park is a large community park, that hosts live theatre, summer festivals, summer basketball and tennis, and in winter an outdoor ice rink. The West-End YMCA on College Street has a gym, and an indoor pool. Just west of Dufferin, the McCormick Recreation Centre has an indoor pool, gym and arena. South of Queen Street is the Famous People Players' performance venue, and just east of Ossington is the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art. Just down Dufferin is the Canadian National Exhibition grounds, which includes Ontario Place, The Queen Elizabeth Theatre, and the Ricoh Coliseum.
Beaconsfield Village homes date to the 1880s and 90s, and include many historically designated homes along Beaconsfield Avenue. Homes here are typically Victorian row and semi-detached houses, and some have been renovated and converted to house 2 or more families. Homes in Dufferin Grove houses were built later, between 1890 and 1930 and include late Victorian and Edwardian homes, generally larger than those in the downtown area. Home prices are in the low to medium ranges. More Queen-Dufferin Photos