Exploratory Concept for use of the Gardiner Footprint focused on 7 city building priorities, created in collaboration with Vineetha Sivathasan. May 2015
Based on the initial 2km study area and an average lot depth of 25m, the plan calls for adapting the Gardiner Expressway footprint to create:
(1) East-West Waterfront Subway
– Lengthy tunnel boring / EA process would be sidestepped by building subway into foundation excavation across waterfront, creating new high speed transit within years rather than decades.
– Subway line initially from Union to Don, expanding east Woodbine Beach on the surface, utilizing old rail beds and west to High Park / Ontario Food Terminal with full Gardiner removal.
– Transit pressures would be alleviated for all waterfront developments, facilitate eastern development opportunities and greatly accelerate creation of the Downtown Relief Line.
(2) Utility / Sewer Relief Trunk
– Utility and sewer line relief trunk for all downtown / waterfront towers added in excavation, stretching east to Woodbine Sewage facilities and west to the Humber Treatment Plant.
– Currently downtown utilities are close to breaking point due to development pressure.
(3) Underground Parking or Below Grade Roadway
– 250 000 sq. m (+/-) of parking space for additional City revenue or roadway with deeper excavation.
(4) Traffic Lanes Including Dedicated Commercial Lane
– 2-4 vehicle traffic lanes at ground level with at least 1 priority truck / commercial lane.
– Possibility of reverse flow depending on the time of day and green wall to filter noise and air pollution.
(5) Active Living Deck
– Elevated active living deck / bike highway facing waterfront, with patio space for stores below.
(6) Commercial / Retail / Non profit / Culture space
– Commercial / retail and non profit / art space for sale or rent, including waterfront views.
(7) Mixed Income Residential / Family Housing topped with Terraced Green Roof / Park
– 1 875 000 sq meters (+/-) of prime residential and commercial space for the City to sell with a focus on adding mixed income and family dwelling space to downtown.
– Full Gardiner demolition will add considerable value to all waterfront developments.
– 9 ha / 5km sq. (+/-) of public parkland would be added via terraced green roof.