waterfront toronto

Here's what Toronto's new artificial island looks like right now

Toronto's Port Lands, previously a terribly underused industrial area, is gaining new life as an entirely novel island community that will include its own housing, roadways, jobs, parks and more, all built with the environment in mind.

The city's ambitious $1.25 billion endeavour includes fully redeveloping the portion of the waterfront just south of where the Gardiner meets the DVP, first and foremost for future flood protection, but also for vast public benefit.

The Don River will be rerouted through a new path through man-made wetlands into Lake Ontario, snaking around the new Villiers Island, a mixed-use public space with places to live, work, and play in 25 hectares of parkland and the biggest playground in the city.

Our animal residents are also sure to appreciate the additional marsh lands and greenery, while there will be room for 25,000 people to live in the new community and some snazzy new bridges connecting it to the rest of the city.

Though it's still in its early stages of construction — which is due to be completed in 2024 — things are starting to take shape, including the new route for the river and surrounding valley, and the manufactured wetlands in the Don Greenway that will absorb river overflow.

On Friday, Waterfront Toronto shared a photo updating residents on the excavations, including a new patch of land that will sit in the middle of the Don Greenway green space when waters are low.

Though it may just look like a patch of dirt on a construction site now, knowing the magnitude of the project and what it will offer the city once it's complete in a few years makes every update pretty darn exciting.

Lead photo by

Waterfront Toronto

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