news from our new blue edge

March 2012


Waterfront Toronto Honoured with Prestigious Environmental Award


Waterfront Toronto and Halsall Engineering received a 2012 Award for Excellence in Urban Sustainability from the GLOBE Foundation for their leading-edge Minimum Green Building Requirements.

The GLOBE Awards for Environmental Excellence are Canada’s most high profile annual national environmental accolade. The Award for Excellence in Urban Sustainability honours a local government, private sector company or consortium that has developed and applied outstanding urban sustainability principles.

Ensuring that sustainability principles are integrated into all facets of waterfront revitalization has been a core principle for Waterfront Toronto since inception.  The Minimum Green Building Requirements were developed as a strategic tool for achieving organizational goals for sustainability and to encourage innovation and market transformation.

With funding support from the Ontario Power Authority, the Minimum Green Building Requirements were updated in 2011 to ensure that they were leading the market in best practices for the building industry, incorporating the newest building methods and technologies available.


Environment Canada Celebrates Great Lakes Clean-up at Sherbourne Common


On March 22, Federal Environment Minister Peter Kent visited Toronto’s waterfront to highlight the great work being done to restore and protect the Great Lakes Basin.  As part of World Water Day, Minister Kent held a media event at Sherbourne Common to highlight projects funded by Environment Canada’s Great Lakes Sustainability Fund.

Part of Canada’s Great Lakes Action Plan, the fund is used for projects that restore the environment, such as fish and wildlife habitat improvement, contaminated sediment remediation, land stewardship, and initiatives to control pollution from wastewaters.
Sherbourne Common is the first park in Canada to incorporate a neighbourhood-wide stormwater management system.


Second Round Port Lands Public Consultation


Waterfront Toronto and the City of Toronto are seeking public input into their work to create a business and implementation plan for the Port Lands. The goal of the initiative is to deliver a high-level road map for accelerating development and maximizing the value of the Port Lands as a unique city legacy.

Given the amount of information and its complexity, this second round of consultation will be a two-step process.  Key findings and preliminary options will be presented at an open house drop-in session on March 31, and then public input and comments will be sought at two identical workshop meetings on April 3 and 4.

The open house will feature a series of presentations on the work completed to date, key findings and options for moving forward. A summary overview presentation will be presented at 9:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Between 10:00 a.m. and noon and 1:30 p.m. and 3:30p.m., the open house will feature a series of information stations where members of the public can learn more detailed information. Station topics will be: Port Lands background; economics, markets and financing; flood protection, naturalization and green space; and development planning and phasing.

The feedback workshops will be facilitated roundtable discussions where members of the public provide their input and feedback.  The workshops will be identical and members of the public are encouraged to attend the one most convenient for them.

The project’s first public meeting was held on December 12 and the Meeting Report and Meeting Summary are available for download.


Information Open House
Saturday, March 31
Design Exchange
234 Bay Street
9:30am to 3:30pm
Feedback Workshops
Tuesday, April 3           
St. Lawrence Hall       
The Great Hall           
157 King Street          
6:30 pm-9:30 pm, or

Wednesday, April 4          
Westin Harbour Castle      
Metro West Ballroom          
1 Harbour Square         
6:30 pm-9:30 pm      

If you are unable to attend the meetings you can also participate online at

The site will have the presentations and information from the open house available for viewing. It will also feature an online version of the roundtable discussion.


Lights Installed at Underpass Park


Construction of the first phase of Underpass Park, is nearing completion. In recent weeks, Waterfront Toronto and electrical contractors installed and tested the park’s lighting for the portion located east of St. Lawrence Street. Lights include uplighting on columns and downlighting in key areas of the park that will accommodate uses such as recreational activities. All lights are LED and can be programmed to change colours.

The most extensive park to ever be built under an overpass in Canada and the first ever in Toronto, Underpass Park is located under and around the Eastern Avenue and Richmond/Adelaide overpasses, between Cherry Street and Bayview Avenue. It will open later this year.



Uplighting on columns at Underpass Park.


River City Construction Webcam


Waterfront Toronto recently relocated one of its web cameras to capture the construction progress of Urban Capital’s River City project, the first residential development in the West Don Lands.

The web camera, which was previously used to capture the construction of Sherbourne Common north, is now on the rooftop of Edge Loft condominiums at 625 Queen Street East.  Still images of the site are taken every 15 minutes and can be viewed on Waterfront Toronto’s construction webcam page and on the River City page.  Images are archived and once the project is complete, a two minute time lapse video is created that showcases the transformation of the project from start to finish.

The River City project includes 900 loft-style condos and townhomes plus restaurants and boutiques. Construction is scheduled to be complete in 2013.

Thank you to the Edge Lofts’ Board of Directors for allowing the use of their building.


George Brown Waterfront Campus Public Realm


Construction is set to begin on the landscaping and public realm surrounding the George Brown Waterfront Health Sciences Centre campus in East Bayfront. The project includes the eastern section of Dockside Drive to Queens Quay East, the George Brown Campus laneway, finishing the east Corus Quay laneway and the Water’s Edge Promenade fronting the George Brown Campus.

As a part of this work, a storm sewer and water main is being installed that will connect into the neighbourhood-wide stormwater treatment system. The project will be complete by the end of August, in time for the grand opening of the George Brown Campus in September.


East Bayfront External Sanitary Sewer Construction Update


The sanitary sewer work, which is critical to service the East Bayfront community, is progressing on schedule. Excavation along The Esplanade is now 75 percent complete. Temporary pavement along the north side of The Esplanade, west of Church Street, has been laid and there is full access to all businesses and residences in the area.

Crews continue to work on the sewer construction along Queens Quay east of Lower Jarvis Street. Traffic controls on Queens Quay are in place from Lower Jarvis to Richardson streets in the centre lanes. The first of two new sections of the storm sewer, which will allow room for the new sanitary sewer to be installed, is nearing completion. On Richardson Street at Queens Quay, part of the north bound lane is closed but two-way traffic along Richardson Street is being maintained.


York Quay Construction Update


Construction advances on the underground parking garage at York Quay and Harbourfront Centre. The above grade elements of the garage including the stairwells, the central elevator towers and the ramp into the garage are now visible and complete. Work is underway on the mechanical and electrical work inside the garage. The garage will be operational in June. Replacing the surface parking lot with an underground parking garage is allowing this prime waterfront site to be developed into public space in the future.

View the construction progress online.


Union Station Construction Update


Waterfront Toronto and the TTC are rebuilding the subway station at Union Station.  The project includes the construction of a second subway platform and expansion of the concourse level to improve passenger flow through the station.

The central subway station is being expanded to include a new platform on the south side of the existing subway tracks to separate eastbound and westbound passenger flow. The platform will provide additional passenger capacity, improve safety, make the station fully accessible and streamline the operational efficiency of Union Station. The expansion plans also include a new elevator and ramp system connecting the subway area and the railway station, new collector booths and fare lines, new east automatic entrance and improved access to the underground PATH system.

Construction began in January 2010 and is slated to continue until 2014. Construction is being done in phases and much of the work is done on weekends and at night so as to not adversely affect regular weekday TTC service. Union Station, a key hub for passenger rail, Go Transit and the TTC subway, is the busiest transportation facility in Canada servicing 65 million passengers annually.

Ongoing construction activities include shoring installation throughout the entire project area, selective demolition in the station, vibration monitoring and pilaster installation. Over the next few weeks, crews will continue with shoring excavations including pile installation, demolition works, installation of light weight fill and siphon sewer installation.

More information is available on TTC’s website.


Jane’s Walk on the Waterfront– Save the date


Waterfront Toronto will be participating in the annual Jane’s Walk event taking place the first weekend of May. Jane’s Walk is a free annual event that celebrates the ideas and legacy of urbanist Jane Jacobs by getting people out exploring their neighbourhoods.

Join us on May 6 at 10:30 a.m., as we take a walking tour of the West Don Lands community, which is currently under construction and soon-to-be home to the Toronto 2015 Pan American Games Athletes’ Village, and see the exciting transformation of the area first-hand.  

The West Don Lands walking tour is being organized by dedicated community members who want to help promote the revitalization of Toronto’s waterfront.

Watch for more details in next month’s newsletter.


Doors Open at Corus Quay


The Corus Quay building is participating in the City of Toronto’s annual Doors Open Toronto program from May 26 to 27. Every year, approximately 150 buildings of architectural, historic, cultural and social significance open their doors to the public for a city-wide celebration. The Doors Open program allows Torontonians free access to buildings that are not usually open to the public or ones that charge an entrance fee.

Headquarters for Corus Entertainment, Corus Quay will open its doors to visitors wishing to explore one of Canada’s leading media and entertainment companies. Located in the heart of East Bayfront, the  leading-edge broadcast facility is designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects with interiors outfitted by Quadrangle Architects Ltd. Visitors can expect performances, activities and talent appearances from Corus Entertainment’s many brands.

Corus Quay’s open concept design creates a collaborative and innovative work environment. The LEED® Gold Certified building is environmentally responsible with features that include a significantly reduced power signature, five-storey biowall for air filtration and energy efficient lighting.

Please visit the Doors Open website for more information.


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