The Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), in partnership with the City of Toronto, will be undertaking flood and erosion control work at several waterfront locations to mitigate the impacts of high lake water levels and shoreline flooding.
“These investments in parks and shoreline infrastructure are a critical part of our support for Toronto’s ongoing work to protect against future flooding events and improve the city’s overall climate resilience,” said John Tory, mayor of the City of Toronto. “The City and the Government of Canada are funding these proactive measures to protect Toronto Island Park. This important work will help to ensure this vital city asset is here for future generations.”
Currently, Lake Ontario water levels are more than 12 centimetres above those recorded at the same time last year. Record high levels are anticipated again this year. The City will continue to work closely with TRCA to monitor the conditions that contribute to high lake water levels as spring approaches.
Accelerated flood mitigation work at Toronto Island Park and along Toronto’s waterfront includes:
- Geotechnical assessment of road raising for 300 metres of Lakeshore Avenue and 200 metres of Cibola Avenue at Toronto Island Park.
- Construction of a Ward’s Island beach curb.
- Construction of a berm or an increase in the existing seawall’s height at Algonquin Island, pending the outcome of engineering investigations.
- Drainage improvements to the Cherry Beach off-leash area shoreline.
- Construction of a natural barrier at the eastern beaches.
“Long-term climate change resilience and adaptation measures are essential work for Toronto Island Park and our waterfront,” said Joe Cressy, councillor for ward 10 in the City of Toronto. “We know that sandbagging alone cannot be the solution, and I’m pleased to see the proactive work being undertaken with our partners the TRCA.”
Flood mitigation work along Toronto’s waterfront builds on the ongoing work to proactively address floods by repairing, remediating, and enhancing the resilience of Toronto’s waterfront shoreline structures and tree canopy.
“Long-term planning, coordination, and investments are required to ensure Toronto’s shoreline and waterfront parks are stewarded for future generations,” said Jennifer Innis, chair of TRCA. “TRCA will continue to work alongside the City to assess long-term flood mitigation and adaptation work and to encourage all levels of government to make strategic investments in parks and shoreline infrastructure.”
In 2019, the federal government announced $11.9 million in funding for repair and enhancement projects through the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund, with the City contributing more than $17.9 million. To date, three projects have been completed as part of this work at Bluffers Park, Colonel Samuel Smith Park, and Humber Bay Shores. Another four are expected to be completed at Bluffers Park, Sunnyside Park, Ashbridges Bay Park, and Palace Pier in 2020.