East Gwillimbury, Ontario Canada

Discover East Gwillimbury, Ontario: A Blend of History and Modernity

East Gwillimbury, a lower-tier municipality located on the East Holland River, is a part of the Greater Toronto Area in southern Ontario, Canada. This town is nestled within the upper-tier municipality, the Regional Municipality of York. East Gwillimbury was formed through the amalgamation of the Township of East Gwillimbury and all the previously incorporated villages and hamlets within the township.

The Heart of East Gwillimbury, Ontario

The main centres in East Gwillimbury are the villages of Holland Landing, Queensville, Sharon, and Mount Albert. The Civic Centre, which houses the municipal offices, is located along Leslie Street in Sharon. The northernmost interchange of Highway 404 is at the North edge of East Gwillimbury, just south of Ravenshoe Road. The hamlets of Holt and Brown Hill also fall within the town limits.

The Origin of East Gwillimbury, Ontario

The town takes its name from the family of Elizabeth Simcoe, née Gwillim, wife of Sir John Graves Simcoe, the first Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.

Demographics of East Gwillimbury, Ontario

According to the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, East Gwillimbury had a population of 34,637 living in 11,449 of its 11,869 total private dwellings. This was a significant increase of 44.4% from its 2016 population of 23,991. With a land area of 244.91 km2 (94.56 sq mi), it had a population density of 141.4/km2 (366.3/sq mi) in 2021.

Attractions in East Gwillimbury, Ontario

The Sharon Temple, located in the village of Sharon, was designated as a National Historic Site of Canada in 1990. The site is composed of eight distinctive heritage buildings and dwellings, and houses 6,000 artifacts on a 1.8-hectare (4.4-acre) site. The Temple was constructed between 1825 and 1831 by the "Children of Peace", a Quaker sect led by David Willson.

Bare Oaks Family Naturist Park, a naturist (nudist) park located between the villages of Sharon and Mount Albert, attracts thousands of visitors to East Gwillimbury. The Stardust Drive-In Theatre on Mount Albert Road, one of the few remaining drive-in theatres in Canada, opened in the 1950s as North York Drive-In.

Transportation in East Gwillimbury, Ontario

Local public transportation is provided by York Region Transit, who operate bus services to Sharon, Holland Landing and Mount Albert. GO Transit also offers commuter train and bus services to Toronto through its East Gwillimbury Station on the Barrie line. Ontario Highway 404, which has been extended to just south of Keswick in the Town of Georgina, passes through East Gwillimbury. The town is served by three interchanges along Highway 404.

The History of East Gwillimbury, Ontario

East Gwillimbury's history began with the early development of Upper Canada by Lieutenant-Governor John Graves Simcoe in the late 18th century. On his order, Yonge Street was constructed from Lake Ontario to what is now the village of Holland Landing in East Gwillimbury. The areas to the north and east were named East Gwillimbury and North Gwillimbury in honour of Simcoe's wife, Elizabeth Gwillim. The Township of East Gwillimbury was incorporated in 1850, and the Town of East Gwillimbury was incorporated in 1971. As the area grew, a number of communities developed, including the villages or hamlets of Brown Hill, Franklin, Holland Landing, Holt, Mount Albert, Queensville, Ravenshoe, River Drive, and Sharon.