John Street (Markham)

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John Street Markham.PNG

John Street
Route information
Maintained by the City of Markham Transportation department
Length: 6.125 km (3.806 mi)
Existed: 1800s – present
Major junctions
West end: York Regional Road 1.svg Yonge Street
  York Regional Road 34.svg Bayview Avenue
York Regional Road 12.svg Don Mills Road / Leslie Street
Ontario 404.svg Highway 404 (underpass)
East end: York Regional Road 8.svg Woodbine Avenue
Location
Counties: York
Major cities: Markham (Thornhill)

John Street is an east-west arterial road in the city of Markham, Ontario. It is one of the oldest roads in the city of Markham and forms the backbone of the 200-year-old community of Thornhill.

The street originally ran east from Yonge Street across a tributary of the Don River, at which point it branched north to what is now Leslie Street and south on German Mills Road. This was a travelled road which did not match the alignment of any concession road or lot line and was constructed along the most convenient route to farms and mills to serve the needs of the inhabitants at that time. In the late 20th century an extension was made across Highway 404 and through an industrial area to connect to Woodbine Avenue, east of which it joins with Esna Park Drive.

John Street has had a major impact in shaping the community; the parallel Green Lane/14th Avenue east-west road allowance has never been fully opened and Leslie Street still diverts from the route laid out by the township survey to join Don Mills Road near the former easterly end of John Street.

Description[edit]

John Street is complete and paved. It is a modern urban road between Woodbine Avenue and Bayview Avenue, and more like a suburban road near Yonge Street, due to the influence of Old Thornhill. The road was re-paved recently in 2006. John Street serves to relieve traffic on Steeles Avenue, and Highway 7. John Street also serves as an extension of York Regional Road 71 (14th Avenue). Some other roads that are marked York Regional Road 71 are Alden Road, Esna Park Drive and parts of Centre Street in the City of Vaughan.

John Street has four lanes between Woodbine Avenue and Bayview Avenue, which means there are two lanes per direction. During that section of the road, there are occasional traffic lights. This part of John Street has one bridge, and one steep valley. Between Leslie Street, and Bayview Avenue, the street heads into a steep valley, and rise up again shortly to meet Aileen Road. During that part of the road, John Street has 7 intersections with traffic light. The road is fairly straight, and heads towards the northwest direction.

Between Bayview Avenue and Yonge Street, John Street is two lanes wide. During that section of the road, there are several stop signs. This part of John street goes up and down through valleys and ridges. As it approaches to Pomona Mills Park, the landscape becomes more level. During this section of the road, the roadway is very narrow with a sign near Yonge Street, warning people that roads could be dangerous at times because the street is very narrow.

Between Woodbine Avenue and Ontario Highway 404, all zonings are industrial. Between Highway 404 and Bayview Avenue, a mix of light railroad industrial and medium-density residence along the road. When the road approaches to Yonge Street, light residential areas are found.

History[edit]

A historic map of John Street in the Township of Markham

This road, along with any side streets in Thornhill[citation needed], are one of the oldest roads in Markham, with over 200 years of history[citation needed]. The road is believed to be built in the 19th century, named after John Colborne along with Colborne Street, immediately south of John Street.[1] John Street was believed to be built around 1828-1836. Prior to that, Thornhill was a little community with houses along Yonge Street. John Street allowed eastward developments. The development of Thornhill in the 19th century stopped at what is now Henderson Avenue, and along the section of John Street between Yonge Street and Henderson Avenue are developments from that time.[2] The area is now preserved under the city of Markham's Heritage Department. Along John Street in this area, the road signs are labelled as "Old Thornhill Circa 1794". This part of John Street is also considered as the heart of Old Thornhill.

The road is also home to the Sutton Frizzel's house. Originally located on Yonge and Royal Orchard, it was moved in the 20th century due to the widening of Yonge Street. It was built by the Tory Loyalist in the 19th century, and its original occupants played a significant role in the Rebellions of 1837.[1]

In the 20th century, as Markham's population rapidly grew, John Street was extended to its current length, with modern housing along the road.

In 2004, the corner of John and Bayview is under redevelopment of medium dense residential. This new redevelopment is referred to as "Olde Thornhill Village".[3]

Landmarks[edit]

  • Sutton Frizzell's House, 18 John Street.
  • Thornhill Cemetery (1867)
  • Pomona Mills Park
  • Thornhill Community Centre has two ice rinks rink, 3 community halls, an auditorium and a library.
  • John Welsh House (known as Thornlea), 288 John Street, now 'Santorini Bar & Grill'
  • Thornhill Square Shopping Centre, 300 John Street, now mostly demolished and replaced by a Townhouse development.
  • R.J. Clathworthy Arena is equipped with one ice rink.
  • Bishops Cross Park has a major baseball and soccer field, along with playgrounds and running track.

Public transit[edit]

The York Region Transit operates the YRT Route #2 (Milliken), servicing almost the entire route of John Street east of Henderson Avenue. In addition, the Toronto Transit Commission also serves the industrial park near the east end of John Street with TTC Route #224C.

Intersecting roads[edit]

  • York Regional Road 8.svg Woodbine Avenue, where the street terminates, and changes its name to Esna Park Drive.
  • Nolan Court
  • Steelcase Road
  • Ontario 404.svg Highway 404 - John St. crosses over the highway on a bridge; no intersection per se
  • York Regional Road 12.svg Don Mills Road / Leslie Street
  • Rockingham Court
  • Chestnut Gate
  • Cottonwood Court
  • Dawn Hill Trail
  • Bayview Fairways Drive
  • Aileen Road
  • Porterfield Crescent
  • York Regional Road 34.svg Bayview Avenue, John Street becomes a collector road west of Bayview Avenue
  • Bayfield Gate / Candice Gate
  • Johnson Street
  • Henderson Avenue
  • Deanbank Drive
  • Leahill Drive
  • Summer Lane
  • Paul Street
  • Church Lane
  • Marie Court
  • Confederation Way / Dudley Avenue
  • York Regional Road 1.svg Yonge Street, where the street terminates.

References[edit]

Maps
TTC/ Transit maps
  • Multi-Languages Transit Guide Versions 1/2
Notes
  1. ^ a b "The Society for the Preservation of Old Thornhill". Retrieved 2008-06-09. 
  2. ^ "Town of Markham - Heritage and History". Archived from the original on October 12, 2007. Retrieved 2008-06-09. 
  3. ^ "Olde Thornhill Village". Retrieved 2008-06-09.