François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, announced funding for four projects in the City of Toronto and York Region that will make these communities more resilient to natural disasters.
Over 2,400 residents in mid-town Toronto will benefit from basement flooding protection with the construction of a relief storm sewer that services an area of over 75 hectares. Increasing the capacity of an overloaded storm sewer system will protect buildings from potential flooding and sewer backup, reducing both property damage and the devastating effects on families.
“Toronto is experiencing more severe storms, with more rain falling over a short amount of time,” said John Tory, Mayor of the City of Toronto. “This increases pressure on the sewer system and drainage routes, which leads to basement flooding. This federal government funding partnership is important in helping advance the Midtown Toronto Relief Storm Sewer – part of the city-wide Basement Flooding Protection Program.”
The York Durham Sewage System Forcemain Twinning Project will twin the existing 35-year old main sewage conduit to minimize potential spills, particularly during storms. This will protect the environment, reduce service interruptions, and safeguard the health of over 133,000 residents for the communities of East Gwillimbury, Newmarket, and Aurora.
The City of Markham Flood Control Project will help protect vulnerable areas from flooding, including the Don Mills Employment Lands, and the West Thornhill Community. Past floods have damaged properties, disrupted businesses, affected roads, and even impacted a retirement home in West Thornhill. Families, businesses, and seniors will benefit from an improved system to better handle storms, meaning a safer and healthier community for 18,000 residents.
“Markham’s older neighbourhoods were designed with limited infrastructure capacity to handle extreme rainfall,” said Frank Scarpitti, Mayor of the City of Markham. “Through Markham’s Flood Control Project, we continue to upgrade existing infrastructure to improve flood resiliency and protect our neighbourhoods against the effects climate change or extreme rainfall. This investment will increase capacity and reduce potential flood damage in the Don Mills and West Thornhill communities, protecting our most vulnerable homes and businesses, while building strong and resilient communities our residents can feel safe in now, and for future generations.”
More than 35,000 people in the City of Vaughan will benefit from flood mitigation projects that will improve water quality and reduce the impact of flooding. These improvements will preserve essential services for families, reduce costly losses, and save the community money in the long-term.
“In the City of Vaughan, it is our priority to make ongoing investments in the critical infrastructure that helps keep our residents safe, provides protection to our business community and maintains the high quality of life in our neighbourhoods,” said Maurizio Bevilacqua, Mayor of the City of Vaughan. “Making life better for citizens is our priority – in fact, 97 per cent of Vaughan residents say they are happy with the quality of life here. We are encouraged by these results and by working together with our city-building partners in the federal government, we will continue to deliver positive outcomes for the people of Vaughan.”
The Government of Canada is investing over $150 million in these projects through the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund, with municipal governments providing the remainder.