Ouch! South Riverdale ranks as one of city's worst neighbourhoods by Toronto Life

Photo:  Toronto Life

Photo: Toronto Life

Yonge-Eglinton is the best place to live in the city and Westminster-Branson (wherever that is) the worst, according to a new ranking by Toronto Life of the city's 140 neighbourhoods. South Riverdale, comprised of both Riverside and Leslieville, is way down near the bottom of the pile, coming in at an utterly miserable 123.

Ranking criteria includes 10 factors that contribute to the quality of a place: affordability and appreciation of housing, crime, transit, shopping, health and environment, entertainment, community, diversity, schools and employment.

As you can imagine, the rankings are already proving controversial, generating heated debate among passionate locals loyal to their stomping grounds. Leslieville and Riverside residents have a lot of love for and pride in the east side, and typically the consensus is that area stacks up well among other neighbourhoods of similar demographic calibre in the city. After all, it's fiercely desirable to live, work, shop, dine, drink and stroll in our pocket.

It's only natural then that we get our collective backs up about the piss-poor ranking of South Riverdale compared to, say, Regent Park (71), Agincourt North (104), Etobicoke West Mall (121). Heck, even Greenwood-Coxwell, which is just an extension of Leslieville came in at 73.

Regardless of whether or not it’s even useful to rank totally different neighbourhoods against each other, there's little doubt the list is designed to raise eyebrows, incite chatter and increase page views for Toronto Life. The result has made for laughable and entertaining WTF? comments on social media channels.

Ultimately, a neighbourhood’s appeal depends on what you value. The Toronto Life website allows readers to recalibrate rankings according to individual tastes, but even then it falls flat in properly extracting emotion and the je ne sais quoi that makes people fall in love with a neighbourhood in the first place and remain fixated for the long-term.

To view the entire Toronto neighbourhood ranking, check out Toronto Life's website. For more detailed look at the methodology, please visit the Martin Prosperity Institute’s website.