Last week while strolling with my BFF we were astonished to discover that St. Andrew's was open!!
I didn't take any outside photos this time so these are from previous trips past this lovely church during various seasons.
The congregation was founded in 1830 as the first Church of Scotland congregation in the Town of York. The original church was located at the southwest corner of Church and Adelaide East Streets was built by John Ewart. After the 1843 split of the Presbyterian Church in Scotland, a portion of the congregation supportive of the Free Church Movement left St. Andrew's the following summer and founded Knox Presbyterian along with another group led by Rev. James Harris that had been separate since 1834.
The main congregation moved to the new Romanesque Revival architecture church that became known as New St. Andrew's. This building was designed by noted Toronto architect W. G. Storm and the church was the central Presbyterian church in Toronto, with an addition and renovation in 1906. It and became especially well known under the ministry of renowned orator Rev. D. J. Macdonnell (1870-1896) who pushed the church towards an active social role, and was the centre of a heresy trial in 1876, a minor bump in the recently formed Presbyterian Church in Canada. King and Simcoe became the central intersection of Toronto. The four corners popularly said to represent the four parts of society: Salvation, the church; Legislation the Lieutenant-Governor's Residence;Education, the original home of Upper Canada College; and damnation, a tavern.
Eventually the revival of the downtown core in the 1970s and 1980s, began with the opening of the St. Andrew Subway Station at nearby University Avenue in 1963. Further redevelopment of the area, has included the addition of the Roy Thomson Hall on the south west corner of Simcoe and King Streets, and has transformed the neighbourhood, and the church is again prospering. After acquiring air rights from new buildings in the area, there was an extensive rebuilding at the south end, including construction of a new condominium tower in which the congregation retained the first three floors.