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Dundas BRT

Dundas BRT - Toronto

Existing Environmental Conditions – Key Findings

The following key findings outlined in the slides below have been determined based on environmental existing conditions studies conducted to-date. These findings will be used to help inform the development of the preferred design and the completion of the environmental impact assessment.  

Separate TPAPs will be completed for the following study areas:  

Toronto

Toronto 

Kipling Transit Hub to Etobicoke Creek   

Mississauga East

Mississauga East  

Etobicoke Creek to Confederation Parkway

Mississauga West

Mississauga West  

Confederation Parkway to Ninth Line

TPAP: next steps

Toronto and Mississauga West

Following this round of engagement, Metrolinx will:

  • Use feedback from the public and information gathered through the existing environmental conditions studies to continue detailed analysis required to identify the preferred design and proposed stop locations in Toronto and Mississauga West;
  • Present the analysis of pinch point alternatives and preferred options during a future round of engagement in 2022;
  • Commence the TPAPs for Toronto and Mississauga West; and
  • Identify potential impacts of the project and proposed mitigation measures to present in the Draft EPRs for Toronto and Mississauga West, to share with the public in 2022.

Existing environmental conditions – Toronto

Air Quality

  • Background air quality levels are predominately below respective provincial and federal ambient air quality criteria and standards; however, some levels show significant exceedances, including:
    • Benzo(a)pyrene;
    • Benzene; and
    • Nitrogen dioxide.
  • Contaminants showing higher levels of background concentration above 80% of the federal standards include nitrogen dioxide and fine particulate matter (PM2.5).
  • Meteorological data from the Toronto Pearson Airport over a five-year period (2016 – 2020) shows predominant wind direction blowing from northwest, west and southwest, and low-speed wind predominance from the southeast.

Archaeology

  • Three registered archaeological sites were identified within one km of the current project area boundaries.
  • A visual inspection to confirm areas of archaeological potential versus areas of urban disturbance found that the project area consists primarily of residential and commercial development along Dundas Street West from the Toronto/Mississauga boundary at Etobicoke Creek to just west of Highway 427. The inspection also found that some areas may retain archaeological potential, requiring a Stage 2 archaeological assessment to confirm disturbance or search for archaeological materials.
  • Results of the Stage 1 background research and field review, including mapping and determination of archaeological potential will be summarized in the Stage 1 archaeological assessment report.

Natural Environment

  • The only natural vegetation community within the study area was identified along the forested banks of Etobicoke Creek. The forested ravines of Etobicoke Creek likely act as important wildlife corridors, allowing for the movement of wildlife between areas to seek food, shelter and mates within the City of Toronto’s Natural Heritage System.
  • No vegetation communities were identified as, or anticipated to be, provincially significant.
  • The fish community that inhabits Etobicoke Creek is primarily cool-warm water species that are tolerant of disturbances.
  • The majority of the wildlife are common in the City of Toronto and are tolerant to disturbances, while a small proportion is comprised of sensitive or rare species.

TorontoRecreational trail in Toronto. Source: AECOM, 2021.

Socio-Economic & Land Use

  • The Toronto corridor is consistent with provincial and municipal plans and policies as it is anticipated to enhance public transit connections and support economic development objectives.
  • Directly fronting Dundas Street in Toronto, much of the study area consists of low-rise to high-rise commercial and residential uses, with low-rise residential and commercial behind. High-rise development in the eastern end of the study area is clustered near the Kipling Transit Hub.
  • A range of community amenities (including institutional and recreational uses, and community resources) are present within the study area. Most community amenities are clustered throughout the eastern end of the study area.
  • A number of development applications are either in progress or recently approved within the study area. They primarily consist of new residential development.
  • The demographic profile within the study area is relatively consistent with the Toronto city-wide average.

Noise & Vibration

  • The Toronto segment is generally a mix between commercial and residential uses in a busy suburban environment.
  • Dundas Street is an arterial roadway that is intersected by other major corridors (e.g., Kipling Ave and Highway 427) and minor residential or commercial access roads.
  • The ambient sound levels at the most impacted noise sensitive locations (e.g., dwellings) are dominated by a combination of existing Dundas Street and the intersecting roads.
  • Kipling station and the existing rail line is within approximately 300 m of sensitive locations but significant shielding from existing buildings lessen the noise contribution to the ambient sound level at sensitive locations.
  • Currently, no known existing vibration concerns due to road traffic.

Cultural Heritage

  • There are no built heritage resources or cultural heritage landscapes within or adjacent to the study area and therefore, there are no adverse impacts to cultural heritage resources anticipated from the project.

Kipling GO and Subway StationKipling GO and Subway Station.
Source: AECOM, 2021

Condominium construction on south side of Dundas Street West at Wilmar RoadCondominium construction on south side of Dundas Street West at Wilmar Road.
Source: AECOM, 2021

Traffic & Transportation

  • Within Toronto, Dundas Street has a six-lane cross-section with a centre two-way left-turn lane providing access to many side streets and private driveways. The curbside traffic lane is designated as a high occupancy vehicle lane in both directions, permitting only transit vehicles, taxis and personal vehicles with occupancy of three persons or more for designated time periods.
  • Sidewalks are provided on either side of Dundas Street, with no dedicated cycling facilities provided.
  • Generally heavier volumes during the afternoon peak hours as compared to those in the morning peak hours. The largest directional traffic volumes along Dundas Street are 1,900 vehicles in the morning peak hour and 2,100 vehicles in the afternoon peak hour.
  • All intersections with major arterial roads operate at acceptable levels of service in both the morning and afternoon peak hours.
  • In both the morning and afternoon peak hours, the most congestion occurs at intersections near the Highway 427 interchange and near Kipling Transit Hub due to high volumes of local buses accessing the terminal.

Climate Change & Sustainability

  • A Greenhouse Gas Inventory is being developed that incorporates the emissions during construction and operations and will include the resulting mode shift as a result of the entire Dundas BRT.
  • Within Toronto, Dundas Street is subjected to riverine flooding at Etobicoke Creek, which will be included in the Risk Assessment.
  • The application of Metrolinx’s broader sustainability initiatives currently underway will be included in the design, construction and operation of the Dundas BRT with the goal of improving environmental and social outcomes. In addition, recommendations will be made to reduce greenhouse gas emissions along the corridor.

Vehicular traffic travelling eastbound on Dundas Street at the Aukland Road intersection in TorontoVehicular traffic travelling eastbound on Dundas Street at the Aukland Road intersection in Toronto.
Source: AECOM, 2021

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