Don Mouth Naturalization and Flood Protection Project (DMNP Project)

Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA), Waterfront Toronto and the City of Toronto are finalizing amendments to the Don Mouth Naturalization and Port Lands Flood Protection Project (DMNP Project). This project will transform the existing mouth of the Don River including the Keating Channel, into a healthier, more naturalized river outlet to the lake, while at the same time, removing the risk of flooding to 240 hectares (593 acres) of urban land to the east and south of the river.

This project is subject to the requirements of the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act (EA Act) as an Individual Environmental Assessment (EA). The Terms of Reference (ToR), the first step of an Individual EA, sets out TRCA's work plan for preparing the EA and carrying out the required public consultation. The ToR for the DMNP was approved by the Ministry of the Environment on August 17, 2006.

The goal of the DMNP Project is to establish and sustain the form, features, and functions of a natural river mouth within the context of a revitalized city environment while providing flood protection up to the Regulatory Flood.
The objectives are to:

  • Naturalize and rehabilitate the mouth of the Don River utilizing an ecosystem based approach
  • Provide flood protection for Spill Zones 1 and 2
  • Maintain the provision for navigation and existing flood protection through sediment, debris and ice management
  • Integrate existing infrastructure functions that could not be reasonably moved or removed (including road, rails, utilities, trails, and power)
  • Encourage additional compatible recreation, cultural heritage opportunities and public/handicap accessibility
  • Contribute to the revitalization and sustainability of the waterfront and coordinate with and inform other planning and development efforts and associated certain and foreseeable infrastructure
  • Design and implement this project in a manner consistent with Waterfront Toronto's Sustainability Framework and applicable provincial legislation.

First completed and submitted to the Ministry of Environment for approvals in December 2010, the DMNP EA was placed on hold in July 2011 at the request of the City of Toronto. The request to hold was due in part:

  • To allow the cIty to re-evaluate their priorities for the Port Lands
  • To reconfirm the selection of the Preferred Alternatives for the DMNP EA
  • To explore cost efficiencies; and
  • To develop a process that would involve funding from private interests to help fund project implementation.

This hold resulted in the City of Toronto, Waterfront Toronto and TRCA undertaking a comprehensive study that was ultimately called the Port Lands Acceleration Initiative (PLAI). The conclusions of the PLAI were presented to and approved by City Council in October 2012: City of Toronto Council Resolution #EX22.1.

Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), Waterfront Toronto, and the City of Toronto, are amending the Don Mouth Naturalization and Port Lands Flood Protection Project (DMNP). The DMNP is subject to the requirements of the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act (EA Act) as an Individual Environmental Assessment (EA).

In December 2010, the DMNP EA Report was submitted to the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) for review and approval. In September 2011, Toronto City Council approved a protocol known as the Port Lands Acceleration Initiative (PLAI) to develop a business and implementation plan with the objective of accelerating development opportunities in the Port Lands. As part of the PLAI process, the DMNP EA was put on hold as the co-proponents (TRCA, Waterfront Toronto, and the City of Toronto) undertook a number of technical studies. The purpose of the studies was to re-examine the short list of alternative methods developed during the initial DMNP EA process within the context of City Council’s direction. The analysis undertaken during the PLAI confirmed the fundamental conclusions of the DMNP EA; however, certain modifications to the previous design, technically described as Alternative 4WS (2010), were proposed. The DMNP EA (2013) has been amended accordingly.

The co-proponents are releasing the draft EA report for stakeholder and agency review and comment in advance of the formal submission to the Ministry of the Environment. It is anticipated that the final EA will be submitted to the MOE for review and approval in early 2014. The Notice of Pre-Submission is enclosed for your reference. The complete draft DMNP EA Report (2013), including all appendices, can be accessed online at www.trca.on.ca/dmnpea.

As per the Code of Practice, we are requesting that your review be completed within the period ending on February 7, 2014. Please send your comments, or direct any questions about the review or draft DMNP EA Report (2013), to:

Marc Rose, MES, MCIP, RPP
Consultant Project Manager
AECOM Canada Ltd
105 Commerce Valley Dr. West, 7th Floor
Markham, ON L3T 7W3
Phone: 905-747-7793
E-mail: marc.rose@aecom.com

Mr. Kenneth Dion, MSc
Special Projects Manager
Toronto and Region Conservation Authority
5 Shoreham Drive
Downsview, ON M3N 1S4
Phone: 416-661-6600 x 5230
E-mail: kdion@trca.on.ca

Comments and Responses to the DMNP EA (March 2014)

The initial seven week public review and comment period for the DMNP EA (March 2014) has now concluded. Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), on behalf of and in cooperation with Waterfront Toronto and the City of Toronto would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to participate in the development of the DMNP EA, and for reviewing and providing comments on the final report. A disposition table has been prepared outlining all the comments received and how we have addressed those comments. A link of that disposition table is available here.

The DMNP EA is now undergoing Phase 2 of the EA review process whereby the Ontario Ministry of the Environment is conducting a thorough review of the document in consideration of all comments received during the initial review period. At the conclusion of the Ministry's review period, Phase 3 is anticipated to commence with the submission of a Notice of Completion. Copies of the Ministry's review and recommendations will then be made available at a number of venues and on TRCA’s website. Phase 4 is associated with the five week public review and comment period of the Ministry's review and recommendations.

Related Documents

For more information, please email info@waterfrontoronto.ca
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