146 Crescent Rd., Toronto, Ontario M4W 1V2
The Rosedale – Moore Park Association (RMPA)
As early as 1933, the records show that the Moore Park neighbourhoods, thinking toward the future, had adopted a constitution to support a community association, including a community centre to serve the residents. This was a far-seeing concept because community centres did not become an integral part of the North American society until the post-war years. Moore Park, North Rosedale and South Rosedale were distinctly separate residents’ groups prior to 1939, but all were thinking along the same lines. It made sense, when the residents agreed to work together, to form the Rosedale – Moore Park Community Council in 1946.
The chief force behind the community centre idea was a desire to provide social, recreational and extra-curricular activities for the children in Rosedale and Moore Park and to provide them close to home. The solid beginning of community mindedness might be said to have been made when a group of teenagers and younger personnel, 18 to 30 years of age, returned from their war services and formed the T.N.T., or The Teen and Twenty Club. They realized there were no groups or organized activities for young people and proceeded to do something about it. The T.N.T. Club was a roaring success!!
In 1948 a drive for funds was launched by the Council with the help of the T.N.T Club for the purpose of building a community centre, as the young people desperately needed a place to meet on a regular basis. Meetings were held with the City of Toronto, community organizations and the three ratepayers groups in the area to search for a site. One of the earliest suggestions was to convert Chorley Park, the Lieutenant-Governor’s official residence, which has been doomed for destruction as early as the 1930’s but during the war and, until 1953, was used as a military hospital. The very size of Chorley Park would have doomed the RMPA to early extinction
At this same time there was growing awareness from both the T.N.T. Club and the Council of the need for a counselor, an overseer of all activities. A fundraising effort was launched to raise funds for a new community centre and to pay for a counselor to oversee all activities. As generous as the donations were, total contributions fell short of the sum required to institute the building program.
About this same time, construction was proceeding on the Mount Pleasant extension (earlier known as the Clifton Road extension) and the City acquired property at 146 Crescent Road, a portion of which was required for the new road and its approaches. The house remained intact, with the exception of a porte-cochere that had been on the west side. Though “a project”, the building known to generations as MOOREDALE HOUSE, had much to recommend it as the future home of the T.N.T. Club and the Community Council for their activities.