Waterfront Toronto to proceed with environmental assessment of partial removal of Gardiner Expressway



    TORONTO, July 15 /CNW/ - Toronto City Council has approved Waterfront
Toronto's proposal to undertake an individual environmental assessment on
removing part of the elevated Gardiner Expressway and replacing it with a
lakefront eight-lane boulevard.
    The results of the environmental assessment will determine the
feasibility and logistical requirements for removing the Gardiner from Jarvis
east to the Don Valley Parkway. The environmental assessment process, expected
to take several years to complete, will include a thorough public consultation
component and an extensive in-depth technical analysis.
    "We are delighted that City Council has approved our proposal to
undertake a comprehensive environmental assessment of removing the Gardiner
east of Jarvis," said Mark Wilson, Chair of Waterfront Toronto Board of
Directors. "Council's decision advances the momentum for waterfront
revitalization.
    "No final decisions will be made about the Gardiner until the
environmental assessment is completed and its recommendations considered by
both the Board of Waterfront Toronto and City Council," added Wilson.
    Part of the environmental assessment process will include examining all
alternative solutions. Development of an approved design, a construction
management plan and an environmental management plan are also expected to be
included in the process. A comprehensive study of both regional and local
traffic impacts is anticipated.
    The environmental assessment will also determine the cost of the proposed
removal of the Gardiner east of Jarvis and replacing it with a waterfront
boulevard.
    The environmental assessment will begin with a year-long examination to
determine its scope of work. The first step is for Waterfront Toronto to work
with the City to determine the parameters of the assessment and urban design
principals, and then undertake a request for proposal process to hire an
environmental consultant to lead the project. Terms of reference for the
assessment will be developed with input gained through public consultations.
City Council and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment approval of the terms
of reference for the environmental assessment are required.
    "Undertaking an environmental assessment of removing the Gardiner is a
first step towards reconnecting Toronto to its Lake, improving north-south
routes, and strengthening transit-first approaches," said John Campbell,
President and CEO of Waterfront Toronto. "It also moves us closer to enabling
the new communities and developments underway in East Bayfront and West Don
Lands to become true waterfront communities. And it means we are all working
towards making Toronto and its waterfront, more beautiful."
    After consideration and debate the board of Waterfront Toronto
unanimously decided in June to recommend removing the Gardiner from Jarvis
east to the Don Valley Parkway and replacing it with a great street similar to
University Avenue. City Council was asked to approve the recommended approach
and for the City to be a co-proponent with Waterfront Toronto in initiating an
individual environmental assessment.

    The Government of Canada, the Province of Ontario and the City of Toronto
created Waterfront Toronto to oversee and lead the renewal of Toronto's
waterfront. Public accessibility, design excellence, sustainable development,
economic development and fiscal sustainability are the key drivers of
waterfront revitalization.





For further information:

For further information: Media contact, Marisa Piattelli, Waterfront
Toronto, (416) 214-1476 (office), or (416) 561-1366 (mobile)


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