news from our new blue edge

November-December 2014


We want your questions about Toronto’s waterfront revitalization

See how Toronto's waterfront is changing in this new video.

Part of our job at Waterfront Toronto is to inform the public about waterfront revitalization. In fact, we think it is one of the most important elements of what we do, in terms of our commitment to accountability and transparency. Without your engagement, participation and support we can’t build new communities, new parks or new infrastructure. We can’t support the growth and continued success of our local businesses, big and small. And, most importantly, we can’t build our shared vision for this place where the city meets the water.

Last month, we launched our new video designed to get people talking – and in that video we debuted a new hashtag, #TOtheWaterfront, that we want to use to have a public conversation about waterfront revitalization in Toronto. We want everyone to know what’s happening on the waterfront. We want to talk about why it’s happening and what it means for our city, for those of us who live, work and play here.

We hope you want to learn more and join the conversation about what we are doing and what it means to you and the city. Ask us your questions using the #TOtheWaterfront hashtag. We want to answer them and we want you to be a part of this conversation. Read more...



Jack Layton Ferry Terminal and Harbour Square Park design competition

Jack Layton Ferry Terminal as it looks today. 

Waterfront Toronto and the City of Toronto are inviting talented and creative designers from around the world to participate in an Innovative Design Competition for the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal and Harbour Square Park. The primary goal of the design competition is to produce a unifying and inspiring Master Plan for the ferry terminal and park which can be phased in over time.

Five teams will be selected through a pre-qualification process to participate in the Design Competition - an intensive 8-week design exercise that kicks off with a waterfront orientation session in January 2015. At the end of the 8-week design exercise, the teams will present their proposals at a public exhibition for a distinguished jury of design professionals and members of the general public. This major public exhibition, planned for early March 2015, will give Torontonians an opportunity to review the design approaches and provide feedback to the jury.

Once a recommended approach – or combined approach – is selected by the competition jury, the design team will move forward with a Master Plan for the area. The Master Plan will include a phasing strategy to prioritize work. Pursuant to Toronto City Council approval, the Capital Budget includes funding for an initial phase of work. Going forward, the Master Plan will be used to guide budgets and to ensure that revitalization efforts move forward in a coordinated manner. Read more...




International recognition for Corktown Common

More than just a beautiful park, Corktown Common has been a catalyst for neighbourhood regeneration and economic development.

Popular Science magazine has recognized Corktown Common, our signature park in the emerging West Don Lands with a 2014 “Best of What’s New” award in the Green Category for its sustainable design, innovation and positive and lasting impact.

Every year, Popular Science chooses 100 “Best of What’s New” winners from among thousands of entries around the world. When asked what the editors look for in the green category, Jennifer Bogo, Executive Editor, Popular Science, said “We most of all look for impact: Things that are poised to make a significant difference-- dramatically reduce energy use, cut waste, or otherwise leave the world a cleaner and more sustainable place. We also look for things that are truly innovative-- creative solutions to seemingly intractable problems.”

At 7.3 hectares (18 acres), Corktown Common is the largest park in the area and one of the largest parks being built as part of waterfront revitalization. Designed by Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates Inc., Corktown Common is a sophisticated landscape and ecological system that not only serves as a beautiful multi-use urban greenspace, but also as a critical piece of infrastructure that protects over 500 acres of Toronto’s downtown from flooding. Read more...




Berlin-based artists Hadley+Maxwell to create new ‘Garden of Future Follies’ for Front Street East

Hadley+Maxwell will create a series of sculptures at Front Street East at Bayview Avenue in the West Don Lands. (Early rendering, provided by the artist.)

Waterfront Toronto has awarded a commission to Berlin-based artists Hadley+Maxwell to create a new sculptural installation for the corner of Front Street East and Bayview Avenue in the West Don Lands. Installation of this new public art work is expected to be completed in late 2016, after the Pan/Parapan American Games. The site is part of a series of “continuous urban rooms” that will define this section of Front Street East. The new commission joins two previously announced public art projects in the same area, which include work by artist Tadashi Kawamata and the Canadian duo Jennifer Marman and Daniel Borins.

Hadley+Maxwell’s work for Front Street will bring the past to life by fragmenting and rearranging parts of monuments, sculptures and architecture from all over the City of Toronto. Based on the idea of follies – fanciful and purely decorative structures that were popular in 18th and 19th century landscape gardens– this project reimagines a ‘garden of follies’ using features from the built environment that are normally inaccessible. The artists will incorporate elements from monuments that are normally high above the street and physically out of reach, bringing them down to street level where they can be celebrated and enjoyed. The work will build a collection of characters that creates a sense of play, inviting us to explore and interact with our city’s history. Read more…




In brief

Corktown Common winter maintenance
The washrooms at Corktown Common will close for the season on Sunday, November 30, and reopen in spring 2015. Winter maintenance of the park will follow City of Toronto Parks, Forestry and Recreation procedures. Internal park paths will not be cleared and a series of No Winter Maintenance and Use at Your Own Risk signs will be installed throughout the park to advise park visitors. For more information on Corktown Common...

Get ready to lace up
The ice rink at Sherbourne Common will officially open for the winter season on Saturday, November 29 and remain open until February 22, 2015. Located on the south side of the park, the 920 square metre skating rink offers spectacular views of Lake Ontario and the downtown skyline. For more information on Toronto ice rinks…

John Campbell speaks at Toronto Region Board of Trade
Last month, Waterfront Toronto’s President and CEO, John Campbell, gave a speech to business leaders at a Toronto Region Board of Trade luncheon. His remarks touched on the economic development work our agency has done over the last decade and looked ahead at the decade to come. Read a transcript of his remarks…

How does public consultation help deliver better parks along our waterfront?
In this blog post, we examine how the collaboration between professional designers and community members has helped shape some of the most memorable waterfront public spaces in Toronto, including Canada’s Sugar Beach and Corktown Common. Learn more…

Our favourite things to do on the waterfront this fall and winter
Autumn and winter are the perfect seasons to enjoy the beautiful landscape of our city’s waterfront. Whether you’re looking for an exciting family activity or simply long for a relaxing stroll, the water’s edge has something to offer everyone all year round. Check out a few of our favourite things to see along the water's edge...

Underpass Park competes in World Cities Day challenge
On October 31, the very first World Cities Day was held and 36 finalists – including our very own Underpass Park – took the hot seat to show off their city’s best idea. Learn more about why Paul French from Diamond Schmitt Architects nominated Toronto’s Underpass Park...



Public meeting: Environmental Assessment of the proposed extension of Billy Bishop Airport Runway

The Toronto Port Authority is commencing an environmental assessment of Porter Airline’s proposal to introduce new-technology jet aircraft and extend the main runway at the Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport.
A public meeting will take place to provide information on the purpose of the environmental assessment; review the areas to be studied and the process by which this study will be completed; offer an overview of how the public can participate throughout the process; and provide a forum to ask questions and participate in the process.


Public Meeting Details
Date: Tuesday, December 9, 2014
Time: 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Location: Metro Toronto Convention Centre, North Building, Room 107
255 Front Street West, Toronto

For more information, please visit



Winterfest on the waterfront

Santa returns to the water's edge this holiday season with the Waterfront BIA's annual Winterfest on Toronto's Waterfront. Hosted over two weekends, December 13-14 and 20-21, family activities include free skating at Harbourfront Centre, Mariposa’s Santa Cruises, pet photos with Santa and the Ultimutts stunt dog show at PawsWay and a Frozen Ice Queen & Ice Princess show inside Queen's Quay Terminal.


See here for the full schedule of events.


Construction update: Queens Quay Revitalization

Major progress continues on Queens Quay as crews prepare for winter work across the site. In November, another milestone was achieved when the topcoat of asphalt was installed for the majority of the new roadway. Over a two-day period, crews paved from just east of York Street to the Peter Slip Bridge. This work had to be completed before asphalt plants close for the winter. Roadwork is also underway at the most eastern and western limits of the construction area:

  • Bay Street: Work is now underway on Bay Street (south of Harbour Street) where the street is being widened slightly to allow for new bike lanes and to accommodate bus loading and unloading (on the west side of the street). Construction is occurring on the west side of the street only. The road will be repaved and new line painting installed in the spring.
  • West of Lower Spadina: In mid-November, crews began rebuilding the road between Lower Spadina Avenue and Yo Yo Ma Lane. This new stretch of road is on schedule to be complete by mid-December.

Tents have also been installed across the site to allow for granite installation to continue throughout the winter. In addition to keeping crews warm and dry, the tents are heated to ensure the temperature is appropriate for successful granite installation. Crews will install granite for the new promenade and sidewalks all winter. Work will also continue on the Martin Goodman Trail located just north of the new promenade and south of the streetcar corridor.


Granite is now complete in several locations along Queens Quay, including the area around Simcoe WaveDeck.

Getting Ready for 2015
Queens Quay is on schedule to be complete in June 2015. As we enter our last winter of construction, it’s helpful to remember how far we’ve come.

Keep an eye on Queens Quay construction looking east and west from Waterfront Toronto’s webcams.

Need more information?
Thank you for your patience during construction. If you have questions send an email to or call 416-214-9990.

For urgent construction issues
Please contact Queens Quay Construction Liaison Officer, Robert Pasut at or call 416-505-3073.


Construction update: East Bayfront

Queens Quay East: Interim Improvements


Rendering of the interim improvements for East Bayfront showing the new sidewalk and extension of the Martin Goodman Trail.

Construction is progressing well on a series of interim improvements for cyclists and pedestrians in East Bayfront. The work, which is occurring between Lower Jarvis and Parliament Streets, is extending the Martin Goodman Trail through the area and adding a wider concrete sidewalk on the south side of Queens Quay. The majority of old curbs and asphalt have been removed and the new sidewalks and Martin Goodman Trail are being formed. Crews have also completed the installation of a section of new granite mosaic promenade at head of the Jarvis Slip – which connects pedestrians to Canada’s Sugar Beach. In addition, work is about to begin on a new north-south crosswalk along the east side of the Parliament Street and Lake Shore intersection.  This new crosswalk will make it easier for pedestrians to walk to communities north of East Bayfront such as the Distillery District.

Construction Notices: If you are interested in receiving regular construction updates for this project please email and request to be added to the East Bayfront construction notice list.

Bayside Toronto Development


Construction of Merchants' Wharf - the new main street in Bayside - is well underway.

Crews are continuing to work on the infrastructure and public realm required to support the new Bayside Toronto community.  Underground services, surface landscaping treatments, tree planting and irrigation have now been completed along Merchants’ Wharf (the main street in Bayside).  Street furniture and street lighting will be installed over the next two months.   

East Bayfront’s new stormwater management infrastructure is also progressing well. The concrete walls for the 12-metre diameter storm water management shaft is complete and the roof is expected to be completed in December.  Stormwater conveyance pipes are being connected from the lake into the new stormwater shaft.  When this new stormwater infrastructure is complete, the surface area – located just east of Sherbourne Common near the water’s edge – will be ready for landscape work to begin in early spring. All of the public realm and infrastructure required to support the first phase of the Bayside development is expected to be completed by spring 2015.

Temporary Fencing at Sherbourne Common: Crews are installing electrical conduits along the east side of the water channel at Sherbourne Common. Temporary fencing has been installed around the channel (south of the Pavilion) to protect the public from the trenching underway. This work – which is required to support the new Bayside Development –  is expected to be complete by mid-December.

New Work Begins on Essential External Servicing Infrastructure in East Bayfront

Work getting underway at 480 Lake Shore Boulevard on the Sanitary Pumping Station.

Waterfront Toronto has begun work on a new wastewater infrastructure project that will serve the East Bayfront and future North Keating communities. Like most of the 2,000 acre designated waterfront, these precincts are former industrial brownfields lacking the infrastructure necessary to support redevelopment of the lands into mixed-use communities. The project is part of a wider effort to build new or upgraded infrastructure across the waterfront to support revitalization.
The East Bayfront External Servicing Infrastructure project includes a new Sanitary Pumping Station, a new sanitary trunk sewer, a new sanitary forcemain and new stormwater forcemains. The new sanitary infrastructure will convey flows easterly to the existing sanitary sewer located beneath Cherry Street, just north of the rail corridor. The new stormwater forcemains are part of the larger stormwater project currently underway in East Bayfront.

To maximize efficiencies, the new Sanitary Pumping Station will be located on the same site as the new Stormwater Facility at 480 Lake Shore Boulevard. Controls for the sanitary pumping station will be integrated into the new stormwater building, and all required equipment – pumps, valves, etc. - will be located below grade within the pumping station.

The new sanitary trunk sewer will start at Bonnycastle Street in East Bayfront and make its way east to the new pumping station at 480 Lake Shore Boulevard East. The sanitary trunk sewer is a gravity system that will be installed six to seven metres below ground. A pumping station is required because the new sanitary sewer will be at a lower elevation than the existing sewer on Cherry Street, requiring the flows to be pumped up to the elevation of the existing sewer.

Once the flows from East Bayfront reach the new pumping station at 480 Lake Shore, they will be pumped into the new sanitary forcemain. Forcemains are used when gravity is not sufficient to move flows. They are pipelines that convey wastewater under pressure from the discharge side of a pump to another point in the system. The sanitary forcemain for this project begins at the pumping station and moves north on Cherry Street beneath the rail underpass, and then connects into the existing system just north of the bridge, where flows continue on to the Ashbridges Bay Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Stormwater forcemains are also being built as part of this initiative. There will be two new forcemains – one to take stormwater from the new Stormwater Attenuation Shaft at Bonnycastle Street east to the new Stormwater Facility for secondary treatment, and a second one to take treated stormwater back to East Bayfront for final treatment at the Sherbourne Common UV treatment facility before discharge into Lake Ontario.

PCL, Waterfront Toronto’s Construction Manager for the project, is overseeing construction. They are currently onsite at 480 Lake Shore Boulevard drilling caissons and driving sheet piles. Caissons create a water-tight envelope within which to build the Pumping Station. Once this work is complete, they will start forming and pouring the concrete structure in early 2015.



Construction update: Pan Am Athletes’ Village/Canary District

Looking east over Pan/Parapan American Games Athletes’ Village/Canary District site with Corktown Common in the background.

The Village is nearing completion and progress continues across the project in preparation for turnover to the  Pan/Parapan Am Games Organizing Committee in early 2015.

Cherry Street and Old Eastern Avenue between Eastern Avenue and St. Lawrence Street opened to the public earlier this month.

Tree planting on Front Street and the installation of silva cells on local streets is complete. The installation of unit pavers and light poles on local streets and the reconstruction work on the east side of Sumach Street is nearing completion.

YMCA/George Brown College
Work is substantially complete in both the YMCA and George Brown College buildings.  The City of Toronto has completed occupancy inspections and the correction of minor deficiencies on both buildings is underway in preparation for turnover.
Affordable Housing Buildings
At both the Fred Victor and Wigwamen buildings interior work is substantially complete. The City of Toronto occupancy inspections have also been completed on these buildings and minor deficiency correction work is underway at both buildings in preparation for turnover.
Canary District Condominiums
Progress continues on Canary District Condominiums, the first market housing condominium. The fire alarm verification process is underway and mechanical and electrical installation continues to progress. Elevator installation is ongoing, while painting, suite floor micro-topping, bathroom vanity, rollershade installation and washroom tile work continues. Balcony railings are in and glass panel installation is underway. Landscaping in the outdoor amenity areas continues to progress.

At Canary Park Condominiums, the second market housing building, mechanical and electrical installations and the fire stopping and smoke seal installation are underway. Elevator installation and roofing are nearing completion. Inside, interior finishings, framing of suites and the gypsum board installation on corridor walls are in progress. Prime painting continues, while interior suite doors, rollershades, washroom tiling and bathroom vanities continue to be installed. Outside, the metal panel and terrace pavers are being installed and balcony work – the installation of railings and glass panels - progresses.

For more information on the award winning Canary District or to view the live construction feed visit their website at or their brand new presentation centre located at 398 Front Street (parking available off Trinity Street).



King-Queen bridge construction update from Infrastructure Ontario

Work underway beneath the King-Queen bridge.

The work currently underway by Infrastructure Ontario below the King-Queen bridge continues to progress. The permanent Back Flow Preventer (BFP) has been installed and the temporary BFP has been removed.

Installation of the micro piles has also been progressing with only three remaining. Micro piles are small diameter rods drilled into bedrock adjacent to the bridge columns to reinforce the columns and support the bridge span. The micro piles are encased in a steel pipe and then filled with concrete grout for stability.

The remaining three micro piles are expected to be completed this month. This work entails jacking up the bridge while the micro piles are being installed. The new concrete pile caps will be formed and installed at the same time.  Once complete, the bridge will be put back on the reinforced columns and work will be performed to ensure the bridge columns are level and plumb.

Infrastructure Ontario expects to complete the work in early 2015 and is grateful for the community’s patience. Infrastructure Ontario will continue to make every effort to keep the community up-to-date on the status of work going forward.

For more information or questions about the work being undertaken at the King-Queen bridge please contact



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