Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Upper Middle

Once again, because I am a little unorganized, I am combining letters for this week's ABC Wednesday challenge of seeing Burlington through the alphabet. I admit to being only 'a little unorganized' because, actually, I made a nice comprehensive list of subjects for each letter way back before this round even started... it is just most weeks, around mid afternoon on Tuesday, I suddenly realize that I have not gotten around to taking the required photos.... and well, y'know how it is.

If you drive along Hwy 403, you will see an exit to Upper Middle Road. This name has always intrigued me. It sounded so... unusual. There is no Lower Middle Road or even a Middle Road. Though I did find out somewhere along my researches for getting to know where I had moved, that the highway that bisects the city, known as the QEW (and also the 403, which merges with it during its run though Oakville and Burlington) was once a road called Middle Road.
Back in the early days of Upper Canada, many of the roads were set out in a grid pattern, with each one being 1 1/4 mile apart. In Burlington there was a track called Lake Shore. Then a new road was built a bit farther from the lake. This was imaginatively named New Street. There was also a road known as Highway 5, or Dundas Street at the top end of the city. And in between the Lake Shore and Hwy 5 was a street known as Middle Road. This was torn up and became part of the Queen Elizabeth Way (and Hwy 403) back in the 1930's. The road that lay between the Middle Road and Dundas Street was called - unimaginatively, or not - Upper Middle Road.
And actually, it is a rather pretty street for a major thoroughfare. It runs roughly east-west across the top of the city, but there are few side streets running off it and any development backs onto it, so there are no driveways to deal with. At each major intersection - i.e. every 1 and 1/4 mile - there is some retail and commercial buildings. There is a hydro corridor along one side with a trail for biking/walking.
Only at the far eastern end are there houses fronting onto the street.
These ones sit across from Tansley Woods

a large and busy Community Centre built in 1996 with a library and beautiful skylit pool.
and undulating hills separating it from the bike path and  Upper Middle Road. I am not in this area very often as it about as far from where I live as you can get before heading out to the rural areas, but I wonder how many people actually use this bit of greenery. As you can see, I took this picture when we were still despairing of some much needed rain.

Here is a closer view of
Tansley Woods

with the bright atrium taken around 3pm before the afterschool crowds.


  1. Your Upper Middle Road does look like a very pretty area. We have had bouts of drought too but have had a few inches in the past week or so. My plants and lawn have really needed it.

  2. Sounds like something from Lord of the Rings.

  3. The Upper Middle Road looks nice, could be called Middle Road, that's less long, lol !

  4. We have a Dundas Street here but unfortunately no Upper Middle. In fact it sounds unique.

  5. Thank you for telling us the history of the name of that road. It all makes sense now and it is a pretty road. It must be nice to live out there and raise a family. Everything is so new and safe looking.

  6. Dear friend,
    Personally, it looks like a nice area. Thanks for sharing.

  7. interesting road history; I actually love that stuff
    ROG, ABC Wednesday team

    1. oh good, I was afraid it might be boring to many who were not familiar with this area.

  8. Tansley Woods looks very attractive - clean, bright buildings and lots of greenery.

  9. Drought? Not a lot of that in Britain at the moment. Nice little tour!

  10. lol! very nice lawn though. love your pictures. hope you can visit my ABC Wednesday here.


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