Playing Pokemon Go at Jack Layton Ferry Terminal in Toronto
Jack Layton Ferry Terminal in Toronto shuttles 25,000 people per day to-and-from Toronto Island. Over the past few weeks, it’s also been the hottest place for Pokemon Go players to congregate and catch them all. What makes it so appealing is that there are four overlapping PokeStops that are constantly equipped with lures. Furthermore, its geographic location by the water makes it a prime spot for land and water-based pokemon.
The ferry terminal has been so hot that it’s appeared on the local news. Unfortunately, the news isn’t all good. Due to the increased traffic and players getting in the way of people that actually need to use the ferry, the city has asked for the PokeStops to be moved or removed entirely. Before Niantic shuts this down, Steff and I made the pilgrimage to Toronto’s pokemon Valhalla.
When you get there, it’s easy to distinguish between the ferry goers and Pokemon Go players. Gathered mostly on the hill to the west of the ferry entrance, the sea of humanity staring at their phones is unavoidable. The crowd consisted of mostly 20-somethings who probably grew up with the franchise, though we also say many children, adults and senior citizens playing as well. It’s awesome to see all of these people come together to enjoy the same thing.
The hill is such a focal point due to its location relative to the PokeStops in the area. Sit almost anywhere on the hill, and you’ll be within reach of four different PokeStops at once. It’s an easy spot to reload on supplies without moving, while also reaping the benefits of the lures.
Since there are many generous players in that area, the lures are going non-stop. And they spawn quality pokemon that are way better than what I usually catch from a lure. We caught Slowpokes, Weepinbells, Eevees, a Polywhirl, a Growlithe, Clefables and many more rares. Of course, there were also no shortages of the Pidgeys, Rattatas and Drowsee, the most prominent pokemon in Toronto. In under two hours, we caught over 100 pokemon each, which is insane!
Some people have used this gathering as a business opportunity. Team-based merchandise is being sold by local entrepreneurs. More hilarious are the guys selling fully-charged power packs for players who need extra juice. It’s a smart idea, as the game is such a battery drain and it’s a hard place to leave once you experience it for yourself.
It’s a shame that Jack Layton Ferry Terminal’s days as the go-to Pokemon Go destination in the city may be numbered. Being there for myself made me understand the logistical challenge of all of these people getting in the way of regular ferry goers while also making it harder to maintain in terms of garbage. However, I really hope Niantic and the city of Toronto can work something out to preserve the magic of the area, as it’s one of the coolest organic meeting areas the city has seen in quite some time.