College Park, located on the South-West corner of College and Yonge streets was one of the now defunct Eaton's Retail Empire's greatest dreams that never came to fruition.
Construction began in the late 1920's on this impressive, forty-story, art deco structure. Sadly, it was never completed as planned due to the interference of the depression and it primarily served as the housewares and appliances retail outlet for the Eaton's chain. Any visitor (even to this day,) can see the ornate and beautiful structure that was completed and can only imagine "what if" the entire project had been finished.
One of the lesser known parts of this "mall" (after Eaton's gave up the location, smaller shops moved in and now it's home to a "food court", some municipal offices and courts, small boutiques as well as one of the main entrances to the College Subway Station,) is the auditorium located on the upper floors.
We have heard from many sources that there are footsteps heard all around the auditorium and around several of the staircases around the auditorium. Oddly enough, a couple of our sources say that they feel this is "Mrs. Eaton", Timothy's wife which if it is, she would be working from architectural schematics as she passed away in 1925. Still, almost all the folks that have told us of experiences in the auditorium put the "sex" of the ghost as female.
What makes this story interesting beyond the traditional "ghostly footsteps" to us is the amount of sources from all different walks that we have heard about this auditorium from. By the number of first and second hand stories we've heard from people about the "ghost of College Court", we can assume that it is one of the more active presences in Toronto.
We hope to do more historical research and more interviews with people who have run into this particular Toronto ghost and post more information on this page.
The Carlu at College Park
We were recently (August 2004) contacted by a security officer at College Park whom shared the following experience with us. He had heard the building was haunted, but was not quite prepared to believe it until he had what he believes may be an encounter with a ghost.
"I had heard from my colleagues that this place is haunted, and I didn't beileve them until I did a patrol on the 7th floor of the Carlu on an early Monday morning (2am) of August the 16th. Another security officer and myself entered the building. We walk around and he's showing me the place cause I've never been up there before. So as were walking around we heard whistling! We think nothing of it as it could have been the wind. So as we were walking around we get to this round room with a fountain in the middle,and there are four smaller rooms which seem to be in the four corners of the room if it wasn't round, it could fit a table of 6 comfortably! So anyways I walk into the room and my colleague stands in the doorway. As I approach the one area of the room I hear a woman's voice talking. I turn to the other security officer and ask, "Is there cleaning people up here right now" in which he replies, "No, cleaning staff only do that stuff in the day time!" As he's saying this I turn around to investigate and he asks, "Why whats up?" And I say, "Oh I hear a womans voice somewhere in this room!" As I'm saying this I turn back to my collegue who has left the doorway and made a mad dash to the elevator! As I'm watching him run I'm thinking, "Why is he running?" Then It finally clicks in for me. No cleaning people, cleaning people only come in the day........ghosts!!! And as I'm thinking this I feel a cold breeze against the back of my neck. It was like someone opening an ice box. I immediately bolted after the other security guard, and just made it into the elevator. I think that he was so scared, and he was going to leave me up there! We returned around 6:30 am and nothing more occurred. So now everyone at work thinks I'm the crazy new guy who hears voices in the Carlu."
If you believe that you have also had an experience at College Park please do consider sharing it with us.