TORONTO – Stretching all the way from the Corktown Common and Toronto’s urban lakeshore to North York’s Bayview Woods neighbourhood, Toronto’s Don River Valley is home to one of the city’s most diverse ecosystems, as well as many of its most popular trails for cyclists and joggers.
As early as Spring 2019, City of Toronto residents can look forward to enjoying a brand-new outdoor experience along the Valley’s southernmost mile, thanks to a multitude of private donations towards Evergreen Canada’s Don River Valley Park campaign.
According to a release issued October 18 by the City of Toronto (the campaign’s public partner), major improvements slated for this winter include:
- A brand-new Pottery Road Bridge and Belleville Underpass
- “First-of-its-kind” park and trail signage
- New multi-use trail along Bayview Avenue
According to Andy Chisholm, chair of the Don River Valley Park campaign, 2017 will also see the launch of a new public art program within the ravine’s parklands.
“Together, we are creating a true legacy project,” Chisholm explained.
“Our shared vision will help restore and revitalize the ravines, creating distinctive spaces with improved ecology and access, while introducing cultural initiatives.”
Shortly after the park project was launched in 2015, Evergreen and the City of Toronto asked architects, designers, planners, conservation experts, artists, and students to share their visions for not just a park, but an integrated “Don Valley Neighbourhood.”
Subsequently, the plan was developed with a focus on accommodating 250,000 nearby residents, as well as welcoming 60,000 more that will soon move into new condos in the nearby West Don Lands, Central Waterfront, East Bayfront, and downtown core.
According to Evergreen Canada’s corporate release, the draft ravine strategy – which is currently proceeding through consultation – will next be reviewed by City Council in April of 2017. Going forward, additional planned improvements through 2019 will include:
- An accessible ramp, and new trails, at Riverdale Park
- A new staircase connecting Dundas Street to the Don Valley trail network
- A “contemporary art trail,” complemented by uniquely designed gateways at four entrance points: Evergreen Brick Works, Pottery Road, Riverdale, and the Don Landing
A complete look at all planned improvements, including those slated for 2020 and beyond, can be found at the official project website: www.donrivervalleypark.ca.