Located in the former city of Etobicoke, the Long Branch neighborhood (aka Long Branch Village) is the south-western tip of Toronto. Long Branch is a waterfront community, bordered by Lake Ontario to the south and a rail line to the north. Long Branch's western border is created by the Etobicoke Creek and Marie Curtis Park, beyond which is the City of Mississauga. To the east, Long Branch runs to 23rd Street below Lake Shore Boulevard West and, roughly, 22nd Street north of Lake Shore.
To the north of Toronto's Long Branch neighborhood is the community of Alderwood, while the neighborhood of New Toronto is to the east.
By political boundaries, Long Branch is located in Toronto's Ward 6, Ontario's Etobicoke-Lakeshore Riding, and the Etobicoke-Lakeshore Federal Riding.
Shopping and Dining
Most of Long Branch's business activity is centered on Lake Shore Boulevard West. There are a variety of bars, cafes, and restaurants, including:
There are also many shops to serve the needs of locals. Larger names include a Shoppers Drug Mart, a Home Hardware, a No Frills grocery, and a Rexall Pharmacy. But of course there are many other small shops and to choose from, with everything from pet supplies and laundromats, to hair salons, a yoga studio, pubs, and spas.
The nearest major shopping center to Long Branch is Sherway Gardens and the big box stores which surround it. Sherway is located north of the neighborhood and can be easily reached by driving up Browns Line to Evans Avenue, then heading west to Sherway Gate. The TTC's 123 Shorncliffe bus runs from the Long Branch Loop to Kipling Station, stopping at Sherway Gardens in between.
The neighborhood has its own Toronto Public Library branch, the aptly named Long Branch Library, found on the corner of 32nd Street and Lake Shore Boulevard West.
For community hockey teams, Long Branch Arena is located in Birch Park. Birch Park also has public tennis courts, as does Laburnham Park.
The Lakeshore Campus of Humber College is located just to the east of Long Branch.
Parks and Greenspaces
There are several great parks in and around Long Branch. Large waterfront parks include Marie Curtis Park at the west end of the neighborhood (home to a public swimming beach), and Colonel Samuel Smith Park in New Toronto (with a public skating trail), the neighborhood immediately east of Long Branch. Lenford Park and Long Branch Park offer a lovely waterfront walk in the middle of the neighborhood. There are also many pockets of green north of the lake, such as Birch Park and Laburnham Park, mentioned above.
Transit and Transportation
Lakeshore Boulevard West runs through Long Branch from east to west and is the main thoroughfare through the neighborhood. It is used by cars, pedestrians, cyclists, streetcars, and buses, yet there's still room for many metered parking spaces outside the storefronts.
The main artery entering Long Branch from the north is Brown's Line, which is very close to the western edge of the neighborhood. Although technically outside the eastern border of the Long Branch, Kipling Avenue also provides easy access to the area.
Long Branch is an excellent neighborhood for transit users as three separate transit lines converge at its western edge:
- TTC: The 501 Queen streetcar runs east/west through Long Branch regularly, with numerous stops available along Lake Shore Boulevard West (the 508 Lake Shore streetcar is also available, but only during rush hour Monday-Friday). You can get all the way across Toronto on the Queen car, and a trip downtown from Long Branch generally takes around an hour.The Long Branch Loop, which is the turnaround point for the streetcars, is on the north side of Lake Shore Boulevard West just west of Browns Line. This is also the endpoint for several TTC bus routes - the 110A and 110B Islington South to Islington Station and the 123 and 123C Shorncliffe to Sherway Gardens and Kipling Station. (Please note that Long Branch Loop is not an actual station. There is no staff on site and nowhere to purchase tickets or tokens for either the TTC or for Mississauga Transit; it is simply a turnaround with a small shelter and some benches.)
- Just outside the eastern boundary of the Long Branch neighborhood, the 44 Kipling bus also provides regular access north to Kipling Station.
- Mississauga Transit: Mississauga Transit buses also use the Long Branch Loop. From this location, you can board the 5 Dixie, which takes a slightly roundabout path to Dixie Outlet Mall before continuing north up Dixie past Hwy 401, or the 23 Lakeshore which goes across the southern edge of Mississauga past the Port Credit GO Station and on to Clarkson GO Station.
- GO transit: The Long Branch GO Station is located on the north side of Lakeshore Boulevard West on Brow Drive, just west of Browns Line and the TTC's Long Branch Loop. It is part of GO Transit's Lakeshore East/Lakeshore West corridor, which can take you as far west as Hamilton or as far east as Newcastle.