Scarborough Waterfront Project

Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA) has initiated a study under the Environmental Assessment Act to create a system of greenspaces along the Lake Ontario shoreline between Bluffer’s Park and East Point Park in Toronto, Ontario.

The vision of the Scarborough Waterfront Project is to create a system of greenspaces along the Lake Ontario shoreline which respect and protect the significant natural and cultural features of the Bluffs, enhance the terrestrial and aquatic habitat, and provide a safe and enjoyable waterfront experience.

Project Background

Project Vision

The vision of the Scarborough Waterfront Project is to create a system of greenspaces along the Lake Ontario shoreline which respect and protect the significant natural and cultural features of the Bluffs, enhance the terrestrial and aquatic habitat, and provide a safe and enjoyable waterfront experience.

Project Objectives

Protect and enhance terrestrial and aquatic natural features and linkages

Habitat type, health, and sensitivity vary in the study area. There are opportunities to enhance existing terrestrial and aquatic habitat and create new greenspace.

Manage public safety and property risk

There are varying levels of risk to the public and property in the study area. For example, risk of slope failure, loss of tableland, hazardous access routes, and risk from waves to users of the greenspace. Existing and future risks need to be identified and mitigated.

Provide an enjoyable waterfront experience

A number of factors contribute to an enjoyable waterfront experience. For example, diversity of experience, including, active/passive recreation; views and vistas; multi-season use; trail connections; and education/appreciation of the natural and cultural features of the bluffs.

Consistency and coordination with other initiatives

Significant community planning has occurred in this area. The project will be consistent with, and coordinate with other initiatives, including the Lake Ontario Greenway Strategy (WRT), Urban Fish Management Plan; Guild Park & Gardens Management Plan; and local community initiatives.

Achieve value for cost

Maximize the benefits achieved through the project in relation to the estimated project cost (capital and maintenance).

Study Area

The study area extends across the shoreline from Bluffer’s Park in the west to the mouth of the Highland Creek in the east. The northern boundary is Kingston Road and the southern boundary is Lake Ontario.

Scarborough Waterfront Project Study Area Map

Public Consultation

Members of the public, agencies, Aboriginal communities and other interested persons are encouraged to actively participate in the planning process by attending consultation opportunities, contacting project staff directly with comments or questions, and by attending Public Information Centres for the project.

Public consultation opportunities will be advertised on the project website, in local newspapers, and through the project mailing list.

Public Consultation for the Environmental Assessment

Public Information Centre #1 for the Environmental Assessment – January 28, 2016

The Project Team would like to thank everyone who attended the first Public Information Centre (PIC) for the Environmental Assessment (EA) phase of the project, held on January 28, 2016, and also to everyone that submitted comments after the PIC. The meeting was very well attended and the Project Team received valuable feedback from a variety of stakeholders.

The purpose of the meeting was to provide members of the public the following: a project overview, update on the study progress, present the draft Alternatives by Shoreline Segment and draft Evaluation Criteria, outline next steps, and offer an opportunity for meaningful discussion.

The meeting began with an information open house, where attendees had an opportunity to review information panels and speak with project staff about their thoughts, questions and concerns. Following the open house a presentation was delivered, followed by a facilitated open question period. The presentation provided a project overview, study update and review of the draft Alternatives by Shoreline Segment, Evaluation Criteria and Next Steps. Immediately after the presentation, and open Question and Answer (Q&A) period was held where attendees were able to ask questions about the project in a public forum. Following the presentation and Q&A, attendees had an opportunity to continue discussions with staff around the panels or at tables that were made available. Tables included maps illustrating Alternatives and workbooks with discussion activity questions about the Alternatives per Segment.

During and after the meeting, hundreds of comments were recorded through verbal conversation, sticky notes on panels, comments in the workbooks, during the facilitated Q&A and via the project email. Valuable comments, concerns and questions were received on specific details related to the Alternatives, the natural environment, erosion, safety, access points and type of access, Bluffer’s Park, trail locations and connections, park amenities, construction and a number of other general observations. The Project Team reviews and considers all comments and input made by the public throughout the Project.

Materials presented at PIC#1 are available for download:

Notice of Commencement of Environmental Assessment

On December 15, 2015, the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change approved the Terms of Reference for the Scarborough Waterfront Project.

Click here to view a copy of the Notice of Commencement of the EA.

Public Consultation for the Terms of Reference

Public Information Centre #2 for the Terms of Reference – February 24, 2015

The purpose of the second information centre was to present the revised Project Vision and Objectives, preliminary Evaluation Criteria and approach to developing Alternatives, and for the public to provide comments and insight on the project.

The format of the PIC included an open house session with panel display information, a formal presentation followed by a question and answer periods, and a facilitated round-table discussion activity. The round table discussion activity was led by several facilitators located at individual tables during the event. Facilitators are recorders were present to guide the group discussion. A facilitators’ workbook was used to summarize the discussion at each table. The five Project Objectives and related draft Evaluation Criteria, outlined in the workbook were used to organize the round table discussion. The event venue was divided into four areas and each area began by discussing a different set of evaluation criteria related to a Project Objective. Following the individual group discussions, each table elected a speaker to share a summary of the table discussion.

Attendees were also invited to provide their comments on the key themes and feedback received during PIC#1 for the Terms of Reference. At the close of the meeting, participants were also provided with a meeting evaluation form and invited to comment on the meeting format.

Materials presented at PIC#2 are available for download:

Public Information Centre #1 for the Terms of Reference – September 10, 2014

The purpose of this first public information centre was to introduce the project and the planning process. The format for the meeting included an open house session, a formal presentation and a breakout/feedback session. In the open house portion of the meeting, attendees had the opportunity to talk to TRCA and City of Toronto project staff. Attendees were invited to provide comments, insights, and concerns directly onto maps of the Study Area which were posted around the room. Another opportunity for informal discussion and feedback, including a worksheet, was provided after the presentation.

The presentation described the history of the Scarborough section of the Toronto shoreline and the planning and erosion protection works that have taken place over the last 40 years. A brief overview of the Scarborough Waterfront Project was provided, including a description of the preliminary Vision and Objectives. The environmental assessment process was described with particular focus on the public consultation process and the formation of a Stakeholder Committee. Next steps and contact information were also provided.

The Project Team received great feedback and local knowledge from 150 participants that attended the meeting. The community was asked to tell the team about the challenges and opportunities in the Scarborough Waterfront and collected comments using worksheets and study area maps posted around the room.

This input was used to develop a set of Alternatives for the Scarborough Waterfront as well as a set of Criteria that can be used to evaluate these Alternatives. Developing and evaluating Alternatives for the future of the Scarborough Waterfront is part of the Environmental Assessment process.

Materials presented at PIC #1 are available for download:

Resources

Photos

Video from the Shoreline Tour

On September 12, 2015 the Project Team hosted the Scarborough Waterfront Project Shoreline Tour, a free guided tour of the shoreline between the Guild Inn and Meadowcliffe in the Project Study Area. Participants rode in shuttle vans down to the shoreline to three stops where expert speakers on the area were stationed. The expert speakers discussed the history of the waterfront, highlights of the natural environment, geological features in the area and how these relate to the Scarborough Waterfront Project.

Videos from the Scarborough Wildlife Trail Camera

Environmental Assessment Info Sheets

The Project Team has developed a series of Information Sheets, titled EA Info Sheets, to help provide concise information about the project on a variety of topics.

Stakeholder Committee

The Stakeholder Committee for the Project is an important component of the overall consultation program for the Project. With a mix of voices and interests represented, the goal of the Stakeholder Committee is to help the Project Team better understand different perspectives and address the various opportunities and issues that arise. The Stakeholder Committee is a non-political advisory body.

Environmental Assessment Phase

Stakeholder Committee EA Meeting #1 – January 14, 2016

The first Stakeholder Committee meeting for the Scarborough Waterfront Project was held on January 14, 2015. This meeting was the first engagement with the Stakeholder Committee as part of the Environmental Assessment phase of the project.

The primary purpose of the meeting was to preview the materials and format for the first Public Information Centre (PIC) for the Environmental Assessment phase. Through this preview of draft panel displays, a dry-run of the presentation, and discussion of the meeting format for the PIC, Stakeholder Committee members were given an opportunity to provide feedback on the upcoming public session while providing their own input on Alternatives and Evaluation Criteria/Indicators.

Discussions with the Committee during the meeting yielded a number of comments on individual alternatives. Significant feedback was also received on the presentation and panel format and how best to communicate content to the public. The feedback from the Stakeholder Committee, as in prior meetings, was very helpful for the project team. Incorporation of this feedback led to improvements in how complex information was communicated to the public.

Stakeholder Committee Preliminary Alternatives Workshop – September 23, 2015

An optional Stakeholder Committee workshop for the Scarborough Waterfront Project was held on September 23, 2015. The meeting presented an opportunity for Committee members to learn about and provide feedback on the Preliminary Draft Alternatives for the Project. The goal of the meeting was to ensure that all reasonable alternatives were put forward for consideration.

The Alternatives presented included potential connections along the top, connections along the bottom and connection between the top and bottom of the bluffs.

Terms of Reference Phase

Stakeholder Committee Page-Turn Review of the Preliminary Draft Terms of Reference – March 25, 2015

An optional page-turn review of the preliminary draft ToR document was held with the Stakeholder Committee on March 25, 2015. The purpose of the meeting was to review sections of the preliminary draft ToR and obtain comments from participating Stakeholder Committee members. The page-turn review of the preliminary draft was held in advance of the draft submission so Stakeholder Committee members could assist the Project Team in identifying public points of interest in the document prior to its broader release.

Stakeholder Committee Meeting #3 for the Terms of Reference – February 5, 2015

A third Stakeholder Committee meeting was held on February 5, 2015. This meeting was a “dry-run” for PIC #2. Stakeholder Committee members were able to see how the presentation, panel displays and discussion materials were revised following their feedback at meeting #2 and provide comment on further revisions prior to the public presentation.

In general Stakeholder Committee members were very positive about the changes to the presentation and felt that TRCA had done a good job at simplifying the presentation and the discussion session. They expressed that the presentation provided listeners with a good understanding of the project and why it was being undertaken and that it was much easier to understand as most of the EA jargon had been removed. They also expressed the importance of making sure that there was time at the PIC for both a question and answer session and small group discussions. This meeting was a collaborative effort between Stakeholder Committee members and the team to continue to improve the materials for the PIC and a number of additional comments were raised.

Stakeholder Committee Meeting #2 for the Terms of Reference – December 10, 2014

A second Stakeholder Committee meeting was held on December 10, 2014, where discussion focused on the revised project vision and objectives, the proposed approach for developing alternatives and input into establishing draft evaluation criteria. A presentation was delivered on these components, followed by breakout table discussions.

The Stakeholder Committee provided invaluable input at meeting #2 on the content and assisted the team in determining ways to modify the information to make it easier to understand. General themes that were raised at this meeting included:

  • Keep it Simple – For ongoing work with the Stakeholder Committee, and especially for communications and consultation with the general public, it is essential to keep the information presented simple, clear and concise.
  • Prioritize Nature – The fundamental and most important goal of this project, for many Stakeholder Committee members, is the protection of the natural environment and preservation of the unique natural character of the Bluffs.
  • Watch the Use of Jargon – Much of the information presented was of a technical EA planning nature. Terms like “natural and cultural heritage” and “objectives based criteria” are not immediately understood or can be open to interpretation. Jargon should be avoided. Where it is required, an explanation or a glossary of terms should be included.
  • Demonstrate How You are Listening – The Stakeholder Committee as well as members of the public will want to see examples of how the project team is listening to their concerns and incorporating feedback into the study process.

The Project Team refined the materials based on the input received and a third Stakeholder Committee meeting has been scheduled for Feb. 5, 2015 to review the refinement in advance of its presentation to the public at Public Information Centre #2.

Stakeholder Committee Meeting #1 for the Terms of Reference – October 8, 2014

The Stakeholder Committee held its first meeting on October 8, 2014. The meeting provided the group with an opportunity to get to know each other, to learn about the Scarborough Waterfront Project, gain an understanding of the function of the Committee and its role, and to discuss opportunities and concerns within the community related to the project, including a discussion of feedback from the first Public Information Centre.

Terms of Reference

Environmental Assessment Terms of Reference Document:

The Terms of Reference and Record of Consultation can be accessed through the following links:

Draft Environmental Assessment Terms of Reference Document:

The draft ToR, including the Record of Consultation and Appendices can be accessed through the following link:

The draft ToR and appendices can be accessed separately through the following links:

Notice of Submission of Terms of Reference (ToR)

On June 4, 2015 the Terms of Reference was submitted to the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change for its review and approval decision as required by the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act. Click here to view a copy of the Notice of Submission of the ToR.

Notice of Submission of Draft Terms of Reference (ToR)

On April 2, 2015 the Draft Terms of Reference was made available for public review. Click here to view a copy of the Notice of Submission of the Draft ToR.

Notice of Commencement of the Terms of Reference (ToR)

On July 17, 2014 the Notice of Commencement for the Scarborough Waterfront Project was submitted. Click here to view a copy of the Notice of Commencement of the ToR.

E-Newsletter

Please complete the form below to subscribe to Scarborough Waterfront Project E-Newsletter, managed by Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA). You will be able to unsubscribe at any time by using the link at the bottom of every email, or by contacting TRCA at waterfront@trca.on.ca, 416.661.6600, or mailing 5 Shoreham Drive, Toronto, ON M3N 1S4.

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Contact Us

Members of the public, agencies, Aboriginal communities and other interested persons are encouraged to actively participate in the planning process by attending consultation opportunities, contacting project staff directly with comments or questions, and by attending Public Information Centres for the project.

Public consultation opportunities will be advertised on the project website, in local newspapers, and through the project mailing list.

Lindsay Clapp, Project Coordinator – Waterfront
Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA), 5 Shoreham Drive, Toronto, ON M3N 1S4
Phone: 416.661.6600 ext. 5305
Fax: 416.667.6278
E-mail: waterfront@trca.on.ca