Richmond Hill is a town in York Region north of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It is part of the Greater Toronto Area.
Richmond Hill: a safe, clean town committed to managing growth, which provides a welcoming, diverse and environmentally sustainable community that enhances residents' quality of life.
This vision statement was approved by Council in November 2001 as part of the Town's overall Strategic Plan which sets out the goals and objectives which the Town will strive towards over the next three to five years. The Plan was created with input from the Town's many stakeholders including residents, community organizations and staff.
A Brief History
The Town of Richmond Hill started out as a small settlement located partially in the Township of Vaughan and partially in the Township of Markham. The Town's development was closely linked with the development of Yonge Street, which was planned primarily as a military road by John Graves Simcoe, the first Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of Upper Canada.
The Town was officially incorporated on June 18, 1872 as a village and the first council meeting was held on January 1, 1873 under the leadership of Abraham Law as Reeve. Richmond Hill developed because of its proximity to Toronto, as farmers came into town on their way to Toronto markets and people travelled up and down Yonge Street to and from communities further north.
Early in the twentieth century, several large greenhouse operations were built in Richmond Hill, while rose growing turned the Town into the "rose capital" of Canada. In the 1920's, village council adopted the motto of the Duke of Richmond, for whom the Town may have been named. A local artist and carriage painter, William Ashford Wright, created a town crest that included elements of the Duke of Richmond's coat of arms and roses.
Data from the recent census conducted by Statistics Canada indicated that Richmond Hill continues to be one of Canada's fastest growing municipalities. It is estimated that by the year 2021, the Town's population will reach 200,000.
Over the years, Richmond Hill has remained a distinctive community, one of change yet with strong historical roots. Even during this time of most extensive growth to-date, Richmond Hill has remained a community with a friendly, down-to-earth flavour. That is why the Town's un-official motto is "A little north, a little nicer."
Planning a trip to Richmond Hill and want to know what the best things are to do? Take a look at our "Top Ten Reasons To Visit Richmond Hill" and you're sure to get the most out of your visit! Just by being in Richmond Hill you are close to so many wonderful attractions. Located directly north of Toronto by mere minutes, a visit will show you why Richmond Hill's motto is "a little north, a little nicer."
10. Ride The Waves At The Wave Pool!
Spend a day at the beach...an indoor beach that is! Check out The Wave Pool at the Lois Hancey Aquatic Centre, the only indoor wave pool within the Greater Toronto Area. Swim and bodysurf in 4-foot waves, frolic on water mats or try bodysurfing. Ride the thrilling 160 ft. twisting water slide, or simply relax in our sauna.
9. Explore Richmond Hill History!
With the largest repository of genealogical data in York Region, Richmond Hill Public Library has over one hundred volumes of information on families from surrounding regions. The Richmond Hill Heritage Centre also highlights the rich history of the community with its exhibits, collections and documentation. Take a stroll through the old downtown core which has recently been renovated in a new beautification project. Or go even further back in time and see the A.J. Clark Interpretive Centre at the Elgin West Community Centre. The nearby archeological dig site has been successful in unearthing important historical artifacts and providing residents with an opportunity to discover firsthand the lives of those who inhabited the Town many years ago. Take a trip in time and experience the Richmond Hill of old!
8. Exercise Your Mind And Body At Our 150 Beautiful Parks & Amenities!
Name your sport or favourite recreational activity and Richmond Hill probably has it with over 150 parks and amenities! Recreational and sporting facilities include hockey arenas, indoor and outdoor soccer fields, indoor swimming pools, water play areas, baseball diamonds, bocce courts, playgrounds, and more. Or if you prefer a more relaxing day, then gather for a BBQ, walk or bike the nature trails, or photograph the wildlife and natural settings. Some must-see parks include Phyllis Rawlinson Park, Ozark Park, Mill Pond Park and Sunset Beach Park.
7. Plant Yourself At The "Communities In Bloom" Competition!
Take the time to smell the roses...literally! For the past few year Richmond Hill has competed in the international "Communities In Bloom" competition to show off its exquisite and immaculate gardens, parks, open spaces, businesses and homes. Whether you're a garden enthusiast or an amateur photographer, you're sure to enjoy our beautiful community in full bloom!
6. Shop Till You Drop!
If shopping is a sport for you, then you better have a world champion speed record to experience the wide variety of stores Richmond Hill has to offer. Malls, mini-malls, local shops, plazas, business parks and home businesses contain over 4,000 stores which carry everything from clothing to household appliances and computers to items native only to Richmond Hill. For a listing of places to shop, please visit York Region Tourism.
5. Golf The Links!
Bring your clubs because Richmond Hill is home to many beautiful and renowned golf courses like Richmond Hill Golf and Country Club, Summit Golf and Country Club, Bathurst Glen Golf Club, Bloomington Downs Golf Club, and DiamondBack Golf Club. Also very close are several world-class golf clubs including, Angus Glen Golf Club and Glen Abbey Golf Club. For a listing of surrounding golf courses, please visit York Region Tourism. Whether you are here for business meetings and conventions or golfing pleasure, Richmond Hill golfing rivals even the best ranking courses. See you on the links!
4. Mill Pond "Concerts In The Park"!
Join residents and visitors for an evening of musical entertainment and great food at beautiful Mill Pond Park every Thursday in July and August at 7 p.m. for our "Concerts In The Park" series. Also enjoy Sunday concerts at Richmond Green Park. The series features a dynamic lineup catering to a wide variety of musical tastes. All you need to bring is your lawn chair, your family and friends and a good listening ear for these free events. Past "Concerts In The Park" bands have included Barenaked Ladies, The Good Brothers and the Wallflowers to name a few. So come on out and sing and dance along!
3. Set Your Sights On The David Dunlap Observatory!
Home to the largest optical telescope in Canada, the David Dunlap Observatory is a research centre of the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics in the Faculty of Arts and Science at the University of Toronto. Located on beautifully landscaped property, the observatory also carries out active public education and teaching programs. The 1.88-metre telescope is the largest in Canada, weighing in at approximately 23 tonnes and it was used to discover the first observational evidence for a black hole back in 1972. Be sure to see where Richmond Hill resides in this vast galaxy of ours.
2. Experience Richmond Hill's Multiculturalism!
Richmond Hill is as diverse in its ethnicity as it is in its attractions. Experience international foods from one of hundreds of restaurants in the Town with everything from Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Italian, Thai, British, and others. Richmond Hill is made up of many different cultures and backgrounds, providing a vast array of sights, sounds and tastes. The Town also has many different religious organizations and places of worship as well. Visiting Richmond Hill is like going on a world tour of the palette.
1. Attend A Richmond Hill Community Event!
No matter what time of year you visit Richmond Hill you're sure to see one of our many community events. Year round, the Town hosts numerous events like the Winter Carnival, Santa Claus Parade, Canada Day Celebrations, Heritage Village Day, Concerts In The Park, and others. Whether it's music, holiday celebrations or just browsing through the street vendors, Richmond Hill has an event to suit your style.