Parkdale is a neighbourhood in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, west of downtown. It was founded as a village in 1879, joining Toronto in 1889. It was an upper income residential area for the first half of the 20th Century, with several notable mansions. The area changed dramatically with the building of the Gardiner Expressway, demolishing the southern section of the neighbourhood and the creation of a barrier between the neighbourhood and the lakeshore. This led to both an outflux of prosperous residents west, and a decline in the economy. Most of the residential buildings remain, but the composition of the residents is much different, including a higher proportion of lower incomes. Today, it is a working class neighbourhood, having some problems associated with poverty, but is also an area of considerable artistic activity centred around the Queen west west strip.