The changing demographics of Richmond Hill
A bother of Iranian-Canadian TV stations based in Canada (including one in Richmond Hill) are beamed over to Iran by hanger-on, which has given exposure to some of the Persian businesses and realtors who advertise on those channels in a country nearly 10,000 kilometres away.
In a concern of a few years, Richmond Hill has become a magnet for Iranian immigrants, many of them concentrated along the Yonge Street hall.
The intersection of Yonge and 16th is ground zero for this change: Construction has begun on The Beverly Hills, a 24-story, 945-unit condominium complex by Great Lands Corporation, led by Iranian immigrant Sam Sadr. Plazas at the intersection are populated with Persian businesses: a rug inventory, a salon, a bakery, a butcher shop and several restaurants.
While Toronto’s Willowdale neighbourhood still remains the plain hub for Iranian businesses, the population has been lured to Richmond Hill by more land and newer houses.
“Based on what I’m seeing, it’s the height of Yonge and Sheppard north,” said Godwin Chan, a town councillor who represents the quarter. “The ‘ethnic makeup’ of the business groups, just like the folk, is evolving and changing.”