The Council resolutions of September 2019 specified that Council was to ‘consider’ reclassifying part or all of the Bath Street site to community land.Council documents state that a Park is a parcel of community land that Council manages and maintains as parkland for the benefit of residents and visitors.
Because the Bath Street site (4 Bath Street and 1B Victory Row) is classified operational land, Council has now confirmed that it is not part of Toronto’s Foreshore Park, even though it is part of the Foreshore Master Plan (FMP) area.
Council officers are insisting that keeping the Bath Street site as operational is consistent with the resolution, but has given no formal reasons.
It seems that the ‘consideration’ of reclassification by Council officers has been superficial and they are trying to avoid public scrutiny.
This is not good enough. As long as the status of the land remains ‘operational’, it is possible for Council to revive a high-rise development or sell off this waterfront land.
And there are still some Victory Row lots that have yet to be reclassified, although Council has agreed to do so, so they also lie outside the boundary of the Foreshore Park.
With the delayed Council elections now to be held in December, it is time that the Mayor and West Ward Councillors tell us their position on the boundaries of the Foreshore Park. This is particularly important given that Council’s own planning documents identify that, given the rapid population growth, Toronto is in need of additional parkland.
This Council has wasted a ridiculous amount of time and resources trying to foist an unwanted high-rise development onto our precious strip of foreshore. The Master Plan offers a way forward but it won’t integrate all of the foreshore into a park whilst the Bath Street site remains operational land.
As they say, it’s a loophole big enough to drive a tank through it.
Will Council act in good faith or not?