In a special meeting yesterday, Waterfront Toronto’s Board of Directors passed a resolution regarding the future of the Gardiner Expressway East, which is the subject of an Environmental Assessment (EA) being undertaken by Waterfront Toronto and the City of Toronto.
Waterfront Toronto’s management, in making a recommendation to the Board, made the following conclusions around the four EA study lenses:
- Transportation and Infrastructure – The technical analysis concludes that all options require transit to support downtown and waterfront growth and further concludes that the Remove option best balances regional transportation needs and local access to the downtown and growing waterfront communities. The analysis notes, after taking in to account expected population and transit growth, by 2031 the Remove option would result in a significant delay (greater than 7 minutes) to only one percent of the daily trips (17,500 of 1,600,000 daily trips- all modes).
- Urban Design – The technical analysis concludes that the Remove option best meets the objectives of the City of Toronto Official Plan and Central Waterfront Secondary Plan principles, as well as plans for the Don Mouth Naturalization and Flood Protection EA and the five emerging waterfront communities (Lower Yonge, East Bayfront, Keating, Port Lands and South Riverdale) and will create a signature boulevard to support waterfront revitalization.
- Environment – The technical analysis concludes that the Remove option results in the lowest noise levels, local and regional air quality impacts and regional greenhouse gas emissions.
- Economics – The technical analysis concludes that the Remove option is the least costly alternative from a capital and lifecycle costing basis and provides the greatest revenue potential for public lands owned by the City of Toronto.
During the special Board meeting, directors passed the following resolution:
Be it resolved that the Board:
a. supports and endorses the conclusions of the Gardiner Expressway & Lake Shore Boulevard Reconfiguration Environmental Assessment & Urban Design Study (the “Gardiner East EA”) and the identification of the Remove option as the preferred alternative;
b. supports Management’s recommendation that the Remove option is also the alternative that best supports and enhances the revitalization of the Toronto waterfront, consistent with the statutory objects of the Corporation; and
c. directs Management to contribute to a fact-based public debate on the issue and to continue to work with the City, as Co-Proponent, to finalize the Gardiner East EA based on the Remove option.
The presentation given to the Board on the four alternatives for the future of the Gardiner East and the technical evaluation can be found at: Presentation Link
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