Planned communities in Peel Region

It is possible that the development of Bramalea as a completely planned new city may have inspired a handful of large-scale planned neighbourhoods in Peel Region over the years. These projects were typically smaller than Bramalea in size, and were not designed as self-sufficient cities, but they were certainly promoted as planned developments that offered a variety of housing types and amenities. Here is a brief sampling of a few of them. I will re-visit each in subsequent posts examining how they compare to Bramalea.

In Brampton:

Peel Village

Peel Village was begun in Brampton in the 1960s and would have competed with Bramalea for buyers. Even some of their marketing tactics were the same, such as offering helicopter rides to see the development (see Southgate Village). The built similar detached house designs to those in Bramalea and later included semi-detached and townhouses.

I am curious to hear if some of my readers have stories about why their family chose Bramalea over Peel Village during the 1960s.

Peel Village 1

I wonder whatever happened to the model?


The Villages of Heart Lake

The Villages of Heart Lake was begun in Brampton during the 1970s. This neighbourhood had 12 builders involved at one point, each offering an astounding variety of house designs – similar to the A-Section in Bramalea. The development was at a much smaller scale than Bramalea, and was not built as a city, but it is interesting as a planned community with so many builders working together on a project.

I only have a handful of floor plans from this development, but if any of my readers have any please let me know! Also, I would love to hear any stories about why families chose Bramalea over The Villages of Heart Lake in the 1970s, or if any families moved from one to the other.

VHL Sept 3 1978

The Toronto Star, September 9, 1978



Built due north of Bramalea, Springdale was begun in the 1990s and also had an impressive line-up of builders. They offered a variety of housing layouts – including some innovative housing types such as houses with rental suites, interlots, and a new concept for quatroplexes. Instead of letter sections like in Bramalea, when Springdale was first built they had themed neighbourhoods like the “mountain theme”  where all of the streets have names related to mountains.

I was still young when it was begun, but I had a passion for house design so I dragged my parents to the model home show more than once!


In Mississauga:

The two Mississauga developments below are perhaps the closest in terms of scale and vision to Bramalea as they were designed to include both housing and industrial/business parks.

Erin Mills

Erin Mills New Town was created by the same people involved in the development of Don Mills (considered by many  to be the original self-sufficient city built in Canada, begun in the early 1950s). I bought an original copy of the 1969 master plan for Erin Mills (it cost me an “arm and a leg” and is massive). Inside, it reveals that the original design for Erin Mills was to have areas with “innovative housing” such as cluster housing and courtyard housing. Some innovative housing pockets were built, but in later years the area was developed in a way that looked like any other suburban landscape.


I wonder if anyone still has a copy of the Erin Mills movie?


Not to be confused with the more recent Old Meadowvale Village development, Meadowvale New Town was started in the 1970s and designed as a cohesive community with places to live and work. The original vision was to have a more urban landscape “downtown” near the Meadowvale Town Centre and Lake Aquitaine. Tall buildings and townhouse complexes were built in the area, but not at as high a density as originally planned. Interestingly, some of less-expensive houses and rental units were built with spectacular views of Lake Aquitaine.

When first built, Meadowvale also had strict restrictive covenants dictating any changes that could (or could not) be made to a house, and even what type of activities could take place at the houses – “an insurance policy against visual pollution”.

med r 1.6med r 2med r 1

I would love to hear any stories about why families chose Bramalea over some of the other developments being built in Peel Region and/or if families left Bramalea for one of these…and why.

Map of the Bramalea Letter Sections

Recently a reader asked where he could find a map of Bramalea showing all of the letter sections. I am not aware of any sort of map online, but I went through my files and found a map overlay I created probably 10 years ago showing each of the letter sections. Here it is:


Anatomy of a Plan – Journey’s End

It has been a really long time since I published an installment in my “Anatomy of a Plan” series, so here is a new one!

During the early years of Bramalea, one of the more popular bungalow designs was called the Journey’s End. The layout had a lasting legacy in Bramalea, as many of the bungalow and back-split designs built over the years are a variation on this design.


c. 1964-1967, B and D-Section.

The layout of the Journey’s End has an L-Shaped living and dining room combination, with the kitchen tucked in to the crux of the L shape and the entry and staircase beside the living room. At the back of the house are 3 bedrooms, with the bathroom located behind the kitchen. Much like many designs in Bramalea, the roots of such a layout can be found in the historic Foursquare plan for 2-storey houses (see the post on my other blog: The Enduring Foursquare). This 2-storey layout was essentially adapted to a one-storey design with the bedrooms placed behind the living spaces instead of above them. Please also see my older post on the Raised Bungalow in Bramalea.

A key feature of this design is that there is a back door located behind the staircase to the basement. As you will see, in later (and narrower) incarnations of this design a back door is not possible, so the only way to the back yard is often only through a side door. This is common issue with many bungalow and back-split designs with the bedrooms at the back of the house.

The basic layout of the Journey’s End was reproduced well in to the 1970s under different names, but with the same basic layout:


c. 1970-1972, G-Section.

c. 1971-1972, G-Section.
c. 1970s, M-Section.

The Journey’s End design was also adapted as a back-split. The layout is similar, except for the stairs are moved to the middle of the house to link the change in levels at the back of the plan. The door to the yard is now a side door tucked in behind the garage with access to the basement stairs.

0052c. 1964-1965, B-Section.

c. 1971-1972, G-Section.

The Prides Fancy design below is slightly different as the bathroom is located behind the dining room, but still follows the same basic layout. Unfortunately, my only copy of the plan is cut off at the top.

c. 1964-1965, B-Section.

In some of the back-split variations, the garage is moved to the living room side of the house.

c. 1970-1972, G-Section.


c. 1972, G-Section.
f (2)
c. 1970s, M-Section.

The layout was also adapted as a semi-detached design in both bungalow and back-split versions, both with and without a garage. Notice how the Vanity Flair design does not have a back door to the yard; instead there is a side door near the front of the house.

1962-1965, C and D-Section.

Many semi-detached variations of the design have the bathroom behind the kitchen or staircase, yet the same L-shape arrangement of living and dining rooms remain.

c. 1962-1965, C and D-Section.
l (2)
c. 1962-1965, C and D-Section.
003 (2)
c. 1971-1972, G-Section.
004 (2)

c. 1971-1972, G-Section.

005 (3)

c. 1971-1972, G-Section.

By the 1980s the popularity of such a design for newly-built houses in Bramalea began to wane as bungalows and split level houses became less common. Yet, hints of the basic layout still appeared in some designs:


c. 1979-1980, P-Section/Professor’s Lake.



c. 1980-1982, L-Section.

There are likely many other designs in Bramalea similar to the Journey’s End – these are just a sampling. If you know of any others, I would love to hear from you!

100 Blog Posts!

I have reached the milestone of 100 blog posts since I started the blog in November 2013. I want to thank all of my readers for their help and comments over the past 2 years, and I plan on sharing more about Bramalea in the years to come.

As some of my older posts drop off of the “Recent Posts” menu on the right of the screen, here are the links to some of my older posts…and there are a lot!

The Estates of Bramalea Woods



Kings Row in Bramalea Estates

Southgate Village

Is the Snow Really Whiter in Bramalea?

Highland Park

Sweetheart Homes

Bramalea Estates – Nu-West

Bramalea Estates – Bramalea Limited

The Strand by the Lake and The Strand by the Park

A-Section: A City is Born

Concept 3/Folkstone Terrace

Professor’s Lake – Greenpark

Showcase 2000


Bramalea Townhouses

Place des Artistes

Sunrise Estates

Anatomy of a Plan – The raised bungalow in Bramalea

Sterling Ridge

The Birds of Bramalea

Finchgate Estates

Bellair on the Park

The Great Canadian Home Sale

The Connoisseur Collection

The 1958 Master Plan for Bramalea

H.O.M.E. – Home Ownership Made Easy in Bramalea

King’s Row Limited Edition

The Village(s) in Bramalea

The L-Section

Super Singles Sale

The G-Section

The Timeless Elegance of the Rose in Bramalea Woods

Columbus Bay

Bramalea: a Utopian Dream?

The Clark House: Gateway to Bramalea

An historic Bramalea landmark gone forever?

Anatomy of a Plan: A Trendsetter Before its Time

The latest in semi-deluxe kitchen design, circa 1960

Blue Mount Estates

The C-Section

Montage by the Park

Chatelaine Design Home ’64

Pickwick Village

Times have changed…and so have standard features in houses.

Today when you buy a new house the builder may highlight their standard features such as hardwood floors, 9-foot ceilings or granite counters – but in the past standard features for houses were quite different. In some cases the features that were advertised may now be viewed as negatives. I pulled a handful of old marketing material for houses in Bramalea, and here is what I found – hopefully some of these will take you down memory lane!

Also, you can click on the neighbourhood names to link to the full posts on each area.


Advertisement for houses in the A-Section (early 1960s). At the time wall paneling was a highlight and storm windows were common.

aa 65-67

Southgate Village in the D-Section (1965-1967). I am actually impressed that the houses came with shrubs! Some designs came with electric heating and carports…both of which may not seem like highlights today.

b 69-72

Bramalea Townhouses in parts of the C, D and F-Sections (1970-1972). Drapery tracks were included!


Westgate in the B-Section (1964-1965). I am not sure what a “Hollywood style vanity” is. At the time coloured bathroom fixtures and linoleum tiles were considered good standard features.


Bramalea in Southdown Estates in Mississauga (c. 1972) – although similar plans were built in Bramalea. Aluminum siding was worthy of mention.


Also from Southdown Estates. Formica and Arborite were seen as a plus as they are easy-to-clean!


A final Southdown Estates example. Vinyl asbestos flooring! Eek! I am not sure that similar models built in Bramalea had this type of flooring…but it is possible.


Bay Meadows in the M-Section (1976), and the design was likely also built in Other areas of Bramalea. What is a “post-formed” laminate counter?

h the strand 81-82

The Strand in the J and N-Sections (1981-1983). Quality broadloom, vinyl flooring and aluminium siding were all seen as worthy of mention as standard features.

hh blue mount 81-82

Blue Mount Estates in the L-Section (1980-1982). A paneled recreation room was seen as a good thing (I remember the one we had when I was a kid!), as well as a dropped ceiling with florescent lighting in the kitchen (remember the so-called “Florida ceilings”!).

i showcase 2000 82

Showcase 2000 in the section without a letter (1982). What is a “hammered Swedish steel picket”? Also, remember when dishwashers were not standard and houses came with a cupboard that you could remove to add one if you wanted.

j columbus bay 83-84

Columbus Bay in the P-Section (1982-1985). Here upgrades included stippled ceilings, arborite or formica counters, a smoke detector (just one), and a coloured exhaust hood fan (I wonder how many colours they offered?).

l 1988 NEW

Nortonville Estates West in the L-Section (1988). Back when having a bidet and wet bar were popular.

Thirty or so years from now I am sure we will look back and muse about the standard features in houses built today!


Bramalea Consolidated Developments Limited in South Mississauga

In my recent research I came across some advertising items from a couple of Bramalea Consolidated Development’s (BCD) 1970s-era developments in Mississauga. I thought it would be nice to share these documents to show how large a company BCD had became by the 1970s, building across the continent and even in England.

southdown 2Southdown


The plans shown below are for a the Southdown Estates development in Mississauga, but some of the facades look similar to houses built in Bramalea (I think the Burleigh was built in the G-Section and the M-Section). If any of my readers notices a design that they know was built in Bramalea, please let me know where, so I can share!




Some of the plans built in the Sheridan South neighbourhood in Mississauga are the same as those built in Place des Artistes in the G-Section of Bramalea. The price list and site plan are below.


Continue reading

Autumn Glen

When: Built circa 1973

Where: Autumn Boulevard, south of Algonquin Boulevard

Who: Putwell Construction

What I Know: This small in-fill development consists of 10 semi-detached houses in the A-Section built later than most of the houses in the area that were contructed during the 1960s. The designs are unusual as they have attached garages, and the majority of houses in the A-Section do not have attached garages  – probably to save costs when they were first built.

An older map I have indicates that a Baptist church was on the north part of the land near the corner of Algonquin Boulevard. I suspect that this building has been turned in to the Rowntree Montessori School – so perhaps when the church became a school the land behind this building was sold off to build the 10 houses. The website for the Bramalea Baptist Church (located at the northwest corner of Dixie Road and Queen Street East) states that the church was founded in 1963 and has expanded over the years. Maybe the building that is now the Montessori school was the original location of this congregation? I would love to find out, so if you know anything about this land and/or the buildings on it please let me know!


The Toronto Star, July 28, 1973

birds eye

Image courtesy of Google Maps.

Lakeview Homes in Professor’s Lake

Lakeview Homes’ largest development on Professor’s Lake is Columbus Bay (see my older post on Columbus Bay), yet the builder also had smaller developments in the P-Section. Below I will present each of them in chronological order and share the plans that I do have – although I am missing some.

Water’s Edge

When: Built circa 1981-1983

Where: Peregrine Grove

Who: Lakeview Estates

What I Know: These are some of Lakeview’s more unusual designs, and it appears that they only built 15 houses on one cul-de-sac. The article below suggests that there were to be other phases, but it looks like the project was re-branded and smaller (less-expensive) houses were built. Take note of the rising prices of the houses in just a few months…plus the 14 3/4% mortgage rates!

I only have one plan for the area…but I wish I had them all!


Toronto Star, May 30, 1981

Toronto Star, June 13, 1981 81jun20

Toronto Star, June 20, 1981

The 3-storey design in the article above was not actually built.


Toronto Star, July 11, 1981


Toronto Star, May 8, 1982


Toronto Star, June 12, 1982


Professor’s Lake

When: Built circa 1982-1983

Where: Peaceful Place, Philosophers Trail (parts)

Who: Lakeview Estates

What I Know: These are the narrowest and smallest detached houses in Professor’s Lake. The prices were also comparatively less compared to Water’s Edge – presumably due to the narrower lot widths and smaller house sizes. The neighbourhood was marketed along with Lakeview’s other local developments as houses “on a park” (in Brampton) and those “on a lake” (in Bramalea).

In 1982 Lakeview also started advertising the Columbus Bay development on Professor’s Lake, seemingly indicating another re-branding of the development as it moved east and south. They also introduced other, mostly larger, floor plans in Columbus Bay.


Toronto Star, March 27, 1982b82apr3a

Toronto Star, April 3, 1982 c82apr3

Toronto Star, April 3, 1982


Toronto Star, April 17, 1982 e82apr24

Toronto Star, April 24, 1982

Interestingly, the cul-de-sac depicted with 11 houses in Lakeview’s advertisements at the time does not appear to be any that actually exist on Professor’s Lake.


Toronto Star, May 1, 1982 g82may1a

Toronto Star, May 1, 1982

Toronto Star, June 26, 1982 k82oct2

Toronto Star, October 2, 1982 l82oct30

Toronto Star, October 30, 1982 m82nov27

Toronto Star, November 27, 1982 n83feb12

Toronto Star, February 12, 1983

The advertisement above indicates that the Water’s Edge development and Professor’s Lake were both being sold at the same time – even though they were right next to each other.

Below are some of the plans for Lakeview’s Brampton “park” neighbourhoods, but I suspect that they are the same designs built on Professor’s Lake (perhaps with other plan names). In the Columbus Bay development, the Lake 19 design is the same as the Park 2 depicted below.

013 013a 014 014a 015 015a 016 016a 017 018

The Landings

When: Built circa 1986

Where: Professor’s Lake Parkway (parts), Peachwood Place (parts), Pebble Beach Court, Pepperwood Place (parts)

Who: Lakeview

What I Know: The landings include of a limited number of houses that back directly on to Professor’s Lake and do not have a pathway behind. This phase has some of the larger plans from the Columbus Bay development and some even larger and wider designs. There are also what appear to be custom home designs within this area, but I do no know if Lakeview also built these houses, or if it was another builder.

Interestingly, in 1981 a 2,100 square foot design at Water’s Edge was offered for sale at $170,000, yet by 1986 a 2,530 square foot design at The Landings was offered for sale at $172,990. Ah, the ups and downs of the real estate market!


001a 001b 002 004 004a 004b 005 003 004

z28 z29 z30 z31 z32 z33

005 005a 006 006a 007 007a 008 012

z34 z35

As always, this blog is meant to be interactive and made better by my readers. So, if you want to share anything else that I do not know about the contents of the blog, please feel free to comment below or email me!

The Heart Lake Mystery

I have a bit of a mystery that perhaps my readers can help me solve. As far as I know Bramalea Limited never built in the Villages of Heart Lake area of Brampton during the 1970s. Yet, there is one semi-detached paring in that area that is a carbon-copy of Bramalea Limited’s plans built in the L-Section of Bramalea (specifically, in the Moore Park and Bramalea Estates Semis neighbourhoods).

So, did a builder completely copy the design…or did Bramalea Limited just built this one pair for some reason?

Below is the pair in the Villages of Heart Lake:

amberwood sq

Here are two images of the same design in Bramalea (with updated windows):Laurelcrest leacrest

Bramalea Limited also built the same design in Amberlea, Pickering, as shown below.

pickering Shadybrook

Below is a portion of an article from 1977 showing the model homes for Bramalea Estates Semis showing the design on the left.


Toronto Star, November 5, 1977

I would love to read any insights or theories from my blog readers.

Bramalea’s sister city that was never built

A while ago I stumbled upon a book titled “Chinguacousy Satellite” that I assumed was on Bramalea. Yet, to my surprise, the book was actually a proposal from 1969 for another satellite city in the northwest corner of Chinguacousy Township.

Perhaps the most fascinating aspect of the proposal is that the new satellite city was to be very dense and to be designed to reduce the use of cars –  it was to be a walkable city with extensive public transit and golf carts to get around – something that was remarkably progressive for the time.

For some reason the city was never built, and 46-years later the land is still farmland. I am curious if any of my readers know anything about this proposal and why it was never realized.

Many pages from the proposal are reproduced below:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39

A special thank you to Nick for sending me this article from the January 21, 1970 Brampton Guardian on why the project was shelved:

BramptonGuardian-Reel10-113 (002)