City to fill in part of Lake at Essroc Quay Lake Filling and Naturalization, future reference for the Junction

Essroc Quay Lake Filling and Naturalization – City-Initiated Zoning By-law

Quick explainer, full details after the read more link




concert of complete area finished.



The city wants to fill in two parts of the lake water in the Port Lands.

The two areas referred to as lots by the city are in the Essroc Quay Lake Filling and Naturalization project area. The primary reason is for flood protection, Port Lands flood protection has been needed for some time in this area.

The lake filling around Essroc Quay will form part of Villiers Island in the future.

Why this is important to the Junctions

Understanding the choices and travils associated with this project are sure to be of use in thoughts and efforts regarding the lakes edge in the area directly south of the Junction. No meaningful though has been given to revitalizing the lakeshore parks and enjoyment usage of the lakefront south of High Park, in decades. Other than the swimming pool the area is simply a walk though area.

In prior decades the area was a place of great activity and people flocked to the area for a day out. Right now the Sunnyside area is greatly underestimated, unappreciated, and is great need of resident quided renewal.







click for full size


Amendment- Final ReportStatutory – Planning Act, RSO 1990Community Council RecommendationsThe Toronto and East York Community Council recommends that:

1. City Council amend Zoning By-law 438-86 for the water lots adjacent to Essroc Quay substantially in accordance with the draft Zoning By-law Amendment attached to the report (February 7, 2017) from the Director, Community Planning, Toronto and East York District.

2. City Council authorize the City Solicitor to make stylistic and technical changes to the draft Zoning By-law Amendment as may be required.Community Council Decision Advice and Other InformationThe Toronto and East York Community Council held a statutory public meeting on February 22, 2017, and notice was given in accordance with the Planning Act.


The purpose of this report is to zone two water lots surrounding Essroc Quay in the Port Lands that will be subject to lake filling as part of the Essroc Quay Lake Filling and Naturalization project which is component of the Port Lands Flood Protection project.

ISSUE BACKGROUNDThe need for flood protection in the Port Lands has been identified in City of Toronto planning documents since the 1980s. The 2003 Central Waterfront Secondary Plan included the naturalized Don River Mouth proposal and identified the priority environmental assessment work needed to address flood protection and naturalization.Work began in 2004 on the flood protection and naturalization solution, with a terms of reference completed in 2006 for the DMNP EA and initial completion of the DMNP EA in 2010. With the adoption of the 2012 PLAI report by City Council, amendments to the DMNP EA were initiated based on a modified preferred alternative identified through the PLAI. The DMNP EA was approved by the MOECC in January 2015. Significant public and stakeholder consultation occurred as part of the development and finalization of the DMNP EA, and through all the various initiatives since the DMNP EA’s initiation in 2004. The consultation included the identification of lake fill around Essroc Quay.The Essroc Quay lake filling project, while part of the proposed scope of work for the larger Port Lands Flood Protection project, is a self-contained and stand-alone project that will be advanced independently of the larger scope of work. The lake filling around Essroc Quay will form part of Villiers Island in the future. Once the new mouth of the Don River, Don Greenway, and other flood protection features are built, Villiers Island will be created. Additionally, it is expected that the Essroc Quay lake filling will take 18 months to complete, with the completion date for all of Villiers Island taking 6-7-years once the balance of provincial and federal funding is received. Villiers Island is currently the subject of Precinct Planning led by Waterfront Toronto.Site and Surrounding AreaEssroc Quay is located on the south side of the Keating Channel, where it meets Toronto’s Inner Harbour within the Lower Don Lands. The area subject to lake filling is comprised of two legal water lots and is outlined in Figure 1 below. The two water lots are owned by Ports Toronto.The Essroc Quay lands, around which the new land will be created, are currently vacant. Starting in 2013, the Toronto Port Lands Company (TPLC), Ports Toronto and Waterfront Toronto worked to re-locate Essroc Canada Inc. from its Cherry Street location to a new site just north of the Ship Channel in the East Port area.


The (former) City of Toronto Official Plan is the in force Plan for the Central Waterfront, including the Port Lands.

Former City of Toronto Official PlanThe (former) City of Toronto Official Plan is the in force Plan for the Central Waterfront, including the Port Lands. The lands subject to lake filling are not designated in the Official Plan. Surrounding lands are designed Port Industrial District.Section 2.74 of the Official Plan, Lake Fill Policies, states that creation of new lands in Lake Ontario or any bay, channel, slip or lagoon connected therewith shall only take place in accordance with the Provincial Fill Quality Guidelines, and where Council has indicated in the Zoning By-law, prior to the commencement of lake filling.Section 2.75, Considerations in Passing By-laws, states that before approving an amendment to the Zoning By-law to permit the proposed use of any area for lake fill, for any purpose other than conservation lands or a bathing station, and prior to any lake filling, Council shall be satisfied that:a) there is a clear public benefit in creating the land;b) in the circumstances of the proposal, this is the best location for the land for its proposed use;c) there will be a minimal negative impact on the water quality and circulation, and, in particular, the Hearn Generating Station plume, the dispersal of effluent from the Main Sewage Treatment Plant, or the exchange of water between Toronto Bay and Outer Harbour, and Lake Ontario will not be impeded;d) the lake filling has been subject of a formal environmental assessment where required by law or by directive, decision or order of the Government of Canada, the Government of Ontario, or a Minister thereof, and if this is not applicable, an appropriate written analysis of the environmental impact, undertaken by the proponent, shows that the environmental (social, natural and economic) effects are desirable; ande) except where water’s edge lands will be used for shipping or industries requiring direct access to the water:i. advantage has been taken of the new shoreline for public recreation and there will be no decrease in overall recreational opportunities;ii. existing recreational boating opportunities will not be reduced and new recreational boating facilities will be provided where appropriate;iii. the lake filling will be carried out in a manner which maximizes public access to existing lands that normal publicly accessible; andiv. the lake filling does not have a negative impact on fish habitat.


West Don Lands Omnitel support letter – click for full size

This report recommends approval of a City-initiated amendment to Zoning By-law 438-86 in accordance with the former City of Toronto Official Plan and consistent with Provincial Policy Statement.
Background Information (Community Council)
(February 7, 2017) Report and Attachment 1 from the Director, Community Planning, Toronto and East York District – Essroc Quay Lake Filling and Naturalization – City-Initiated Zoning By-law Amendment- Final Report
(February 16, 2017) Draft Zoning By-Law Amendment (By-law 438-86) – Essroc Quay Lake Filling and Naturalization – City-Initiated Zoning By-law Amendment – Final Report
Communications (Community Council)
(January 25, 2017) Letter from John Wilson and Cynthia Wilkey, Co-Chairs, West Don Lands Committee (TE.Supp.TE22.7.1)
(February 21, 2017) Letter from K.A. Lundy, Vice President, Infrastructure, Planning and Environment, Toronto Port Authority (TE.Supp.TE22.7.2)
(February 22, 2017) Letter from Michael Brewer, President, Gooderham & Worts Neighbourhood Association Inc. (TE.Supp.TE22.7.3)

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