A vast number of commercial, financial and professional institutions and services together with several government agencies are concentrated in Toronto's Central Business District (CBD), easily recognized by its towering skyscrapers. Every weekday a multitude of bankers, stockbrokers, insurance and property agents, lawyers and business people join with an army of civil servants to squeeze themselves into this relatively small downtown area. Their reinforced concrete office blocks, encased - some attractively, some rather less so - in glass and eloxal, bear fine sounding names such as the Sun Life Center (28 stores), Commerce Court (57 stores), the Toronto Dominion Center (designed by Mies van der Rohe and others) and First Canadian Plaza (consisting of the 72-storey Bank of Montréal, the 36-storey Stock Exchange and the massive Sheraton Hotel). Also prominent is the 70-storey Nova Scotia Bank. The majority of these modern high-rise developments have shopping levels with supermarkets selling food and household goods, fashion boutiques, banks, medical practitioners, hairdressers, hi-fi and camera shops and a variety of similar facilities including, of course, cafés, bistros and restaurants.The main street of the Central Business District is Bay Street. Many of the most important skyscrapers in Toronto line Bay Street.
The high-rise office blocks in the CBD are virtually all connected to one another by underground walkways and shopping concourses. Whatever the weather - rain or snow, strong winds or bitter cold - shoppers can make their way dry shod along the 1.5km / 1mi from Union St. to Dundas St. (north). Outlets selling all the daily necessities stay open till well into the evening. The large Toronto department stores are also linked into this system of subterranean precincts, and at various points there is access to the big city center car parks and the subway.The underground system is also known as the PATH.
Toronto Dominion Centre
The Toronto Dominion Centre consists of six buildings in the financial core of Toronto. The architect of the buildings was Mies Van der Rohe.Within and around the buildings are a variety of artworks all by Canadian artists.Artist Joe Fafard sculpted "The Pasture" which features seven cows lying on the grass. Each cow was sculpted through the use of the same mould.Artist Al McWilliams sculpture of a bronze ring with a 9.1 meter diameter which is broken into three sections is at the King Street plaza of the center. Each break in the ring is marked by a chair which stands approximately 12 to 18 meters from the ring.Two tapestries by Kaija Sanelma Harris hang at the Toronto Dominion Bank Tower. The tapestries, "Sun Ascending", represent the sun over the Canadian landscape.A tapestry by Andrée Marchand is also installed in the Toronto Dominion Bank Tower. "Purure de Samourai" was inspired by Japanese design.Marcel Marois' "Les Angeles dún Site", along with the help of his assistant worked on this tapestry for 10 months. The tapestry features sled dogs combined with abstract shapes.Paulette-Marie Sauve's interpretation of the Canadian landscape is a triptych installed at the Commercial Union Tower.WIthin the Royal Trust Tower is the tapestry by Joanna Staniszkis which represents the skyline of the city as a computer image.
Toronto Dominion Gallery of Inuit Art
In 1965 the Toronto Dominion Bank began collecting works of Inuit origin. These works are now on permanent display at the Toronto Dominion Gallery of Inuit Art.
Address: Toronto-Dominion Centre, Aetna Tower, 79 Wellington Street West, Canada
The Design Exchange is housed in the old Art Deco Toronto Stock Exchange. The Design Exchange features a permanent collection in addition to changing exhibitions. Also on site is the Teknion Exchange Lounge.
Address: Toronto Dominion Centre, 234 Bay Street, Box 18, Toronto, ON M5K1B2, Canada
Royal Bank Plaza
Address: 200 Bay Street, Toronto, ON M5J2J3, Canada