Around 1833, a teenager named John Coulson, newly-emigrated to Canada from England, built a log house on what is now known as the north-west corner of Parkwoods Village Drive and Victoria Park. Amazingly enough, the Coulson log cabin remained standing until 1956, right about the time when development in the neighbourhood started. Charles D. Maginn, Coulson's long-time neighbour to the South was a Welshman who arrived in the area around 1832. He was a general merchant in the community and was known to be 'very adept at spearing salmon in the Deer Lick, a small stream that ran near his farm. He often lent out his grove to the local methodist church for their field meetings. This church established a cemetery in 1841, where many of Parkwoods' first settlers are buried and this cemetery was declared a heritage property by the city.
The majority of Parkwoods-Donalda's two-storey, split-level homes and ranch-style bungalows were constructed in the 1960's. The varied architecture incorporates elements of Tudor and Georgian Revival as well as more contemporary styles. The area also contains a number of semi-detached starter homes north of York Mills Road, in addition to a large concentration or rental and condominium townhouses south of York Mills Road. Most property prices increase the closer they are to the Donalda golf course.
In the Parkwoods-Donalda area, at the Fenside Arena, you can pleasure skate; there's year-round tennis at Cassandra Park and the Broadlands community centre boasts an outdoor pool. There is a great network of local parks that have a wide range of facilities that include baseball diamonds, indoor and outdoor pools, basketball, tennis courts and children's play areas. Brookbanks Park makes its way through the centre of this neighbourhood and is a verdant and pretty ravine valley with a thick tree canopy and a well-loved nature trail. The park is year-round and also has a paved path ideal for walking, jogging, roller-blading and cycling. During the winter months, residents cross-country ski and snowshoe through the park.
There are many public schools in the Parkwoods-Donalda neighbourhood, among them are Broadlands, Brookbanks, Cassandra, Fenside, Ranchdale, and Roywood. Victoria Park is a public high school and there are a few catholic schools, including Annunciation, St. Catherine, St. Issac Jogues, Sainte-Madelaine and Senator O'Connor. Parkwoods is quickly gaining a reputation as a well-balanced and affordable neighbourhood when compared to the more recognizable names in the city of Toronto.