Etobicoke is one of the least pronounceable suburbs of the city of Toronto. Taking up most of the western portion of the Greater Toronto Metropolitan Area the name derives from the Mississauga First Nations word wadoopikang, which means "the place where wild black alders grow." Locally it is pronounced as "Et-oh-bi-ko". Etobicoke used to be a separate city but was absorbed into Toronto's growing maw in 1998.
The population of the area is about 350,000, which is less than 13% of Toronto's overall population but 20% of its total area. Thusly, Etobicoke has a lower population density than most other areas of Toronto, but you still won't find the same about of space as with Port Perry homes. While this would seem advantageous, this low density is not the result of large housing lots or extensive green spaces that would make it a desirable suburban neighborhood. Instead the low population density comes from the fact that Etobicoke is home to large tracts of industrial land, both currently in use making things like a bench calibrator and abandoned.
Generally Etobicoke is not regarded as one of the best areas of Toronto in which to live if one does not own a car. There are only a few public transit stops which offer service into Toronto proper and not much local routing. Cars are the primary method of inter and intra city transport in Etobicoke. There are several major highways running through the region, however even those are remarkable for their poor planning and confusing layouts.
Etobicoke has a mix of different neighborhood styles and real estate offerings. Inner ring neighborhoods like Rexdale should be avoided. There housing is generally cheap and single story. Roads and infrastructure are designed for the car culture with a lot of concrete and asphalt currently in disrepair and are very few trees or natural land features. If you're used to the landscaping Kitchener and it's neighbours can offer, you'll be disappointed in this section of Etobicoke. Real estate values are low and not likely to go up due to poverty and crime.
In central Etobicoke things begin to improve. This area is closer to the GO train and reasonably well served by public transit. The neighborhoods here are middle class, with offerings from small detached houses to apartments and are relatively safe.
Southern Etobicoke is the polar opposite of the inner ring. It is close to the GO train, well served by public transit, and features many parks and green spaces. Southern Etobicoke is home to Canada's 3rd best golf course, the St. George's Golf and Country Club, and the beautiful James Gardens Park on the Humber River, which has rock gardens and waterfalls and is a popular spot for wedding photography. If you live in this neighbourhood you could replace that treadmill Toronto gyms offer with a nice walk or golf game.
Neighborhoods in southern Etobicoke include Markland Wood, The Kingsway, and New Toronto. They feature typical suburban single family detached homes and tree-lined streets. Kingsway South, in fact, has become one of Toronto's more prominent neighborhoods. Most people who live there have families, large houses and earn more than $100,000 per year. Neighborhoods in this area are accented by high-end boutiques, restaurants and cafes housed on small, quaint, glass-fronted shops that are often associated with small-town life. Indeed, southern Etobicoke offers small town life with big-city amenities.