If you attend university in Toronto, at some point during your post-secondary education you and your friends will come to live or play in the Annex neighbourhood—and you’ll use Bathurst station.

TTC Bathurst station streetcar platform
Bathurst station’s streetcar and bus platform

Opened in 1966, the station is presently gifted with a couple of aural quirks that seem amusingly correlated. As you walk the corridors, the sudden squawking of distressed pigeons might startle you. These recorded sounds are part of a trial project to reduce the presence of the winged pests, which poop everywhere and make the station less cleanly.

Pigeon at Bathurst station
Piped-in bird distress calls at Bathurst station are meant to drive out nuisances like this one. Begone, ye winged pestilence! 

Additionally, you might detect the refined strains of Bach or Beethoven wafting through the air. After a 1998 stabbing at Kennedy station, the TTC opted to play classical music at certain locations to deter noisome and unruly teenage loiterers (perhaps this is how the pigeon idea originated). Bathurst station is one of several—Kennedy, Warden, Victoria Park, Main Street, Greenwood, Dundas West, Runnymede, and Finch being the others—that are occasionally graced with the music, at a reported cost of $14,500 a year.

Personally, I’d advocate for classical music at every station! It adds refinement to the trip.

Markham St. exit
A study in contrast: the Markham St. exit

Bathurst station also features two distinct ‘green’ complements of interest. I recommend an examination of both:
  • Just north of the main station entrance, the Ed & Anne Mirvish Parkette honours the flamboyant businessman whose Honest Ed’s warehouse emporium was a community landmark since 1948. When Honest Ed’s finally disappears in the not-too-distant-future, the complexion of the neighbourhood will change irrevocably, and this under-used parkette will be all that remains—aside from our memories. I know in my heart that Honest Ed’s time has come and gone, but all the same, we’ll miss it.
  • Outside the Markham entrance, there is an Urban Forest Demonstration Garden assembled by LEAF, a not-for-profit advocacy group. The garden is best viewed during the day; it’s... sketchy feeling at night.

The final aspect that this station is known for (not counting the patties from the bakery shop), is its connection to the 511 Bathurst streetcar route. Hop on, and ride down to the CNE!

Photo Gallery

Tour the station, and view captioned historical images from its past:

Bathurst station photo gallery

Bathurst station transfer
Bathurst station transfer

Bonus historical tidbit: Bathurst street was named for Henry Bathurst, 3rd Earl Bathurst. North of Queen St. it used to be called Crookshank’s Lane (after George Crookshank), but this was changed in 1870. Imagine going to Crookshank station!

Bonus 2: On November 1, 2017, the TTC paid tribute to the Honest Ed’s store, and temporarily transformed the Bathurst station signage, in the hand-lettered Honest Ed style. Here’s my gallery of the display (click to view):

Bathurst station with Honest Ed signage

Also: the TTC video about the transformation, and  some coverage.

More about Bathurst

TTC Station info | Map | Wikipedia: Bathurst

My next stop: Pape
Previous station: Sherbourne

Alphabetical Station Selector