The Scarborough Bluffs tower above the shores of Lake Ontario in Toronto, Canada, and offer public greenspace and habitat for a variety of birds, fish, and other wildlife. A variety of factors, including urbanization and loss of vegetation at the top of the bluffs, have made them vulnerable to erosion. Soon, however, they will better protected and more accessible to the public.
Following a public consultation process, approval by the City of Toronto Council and review by the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, the environmental assessment for the Scarborough Waterfront Project has received final approval from the Honourable Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. Undertaken by Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) in partnership with the City of Toronto, the project will see the creation of additional accessible community greenspaces, enhanced shoreline protection, and habitat improvements along an 11-kilometer (6.8-mile) shoreline multi-use trail for users of all abilities between Bluffer’s Park and East Point Park.
The Scarborough Bluffs feature habitat for a wide variety of fish, birds, and other wildlife. As such, the Scarborough Waterfront Project will be designed to balance the reality of creating a key linkage for the Lake Ontario Waterfront Trail in Canada’s largest urban center with protecting and creating a higher-quality wildlife habitat. The innovative project will also prevent shoreline erosion caused by high lake levels and severe weather events, manage public safety and property risk and improve water quality.
“For the citizens of Scarborough and the Greater Toronto Area, the Scarborough Bluffs represent a strikingly beautiful natural greenspace where they can gather with friends and family and enjoy nature,” said John MacKenzie, CEO of TRCA. “By adding much-needed community recreation space, completing portions of the Lake Ontario Waterfront Trail, creating habitat, and increasing shoreline erosion protection, the Scarborough Waterfront Project will create a legacy for generations to come.”
With the Scarborough Waterfront Project’s environmental assessment now approved, the project will be built in phases, with TRCA pursuing all available opportunities for funding. Detailed design of the West Segment of the Scarborough Waterfront Project (from Bluffer’s Park to Meadowcliffe) is slated to begin in November 2019 and continue through 2020, with construction anticipated to begin in 2020. Implementation of the Central and East Segments of the project will follow.
For more information and updates on the Scarborough Waterfront Project, visit www.trca.ca/swp. For more information on the project’s environmental assessment, visit www.ontario.ca/page/scarborough-waterfront-project.