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Socio-Economic & Land Use Characteristics

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Key Findings

  • Provincial and municipal policies for managing growth (e.g., Ontario’s Provincial Policy Statement and Growth Plan, and Toronto’s Official Plan) have a shared objective of strengthening connections and access to economic opportunities through improved transit networks
  • The study area is within an established urban centre containing mixed use, commercial, employment, industrial, institutional, residential, and natural land uses
  • The study area contains notable landmarks, including:
    • In OLW, Exhibition/Ontario Place and Fort York National Historic Site
    • In OLS, Nathan Phillips Square, the Don River Valley and Jimmie Simpson Park
    • In OLN, the Ontario Science Centre
  • Numerous community amenities are present in the study area, including schools, places of worship, libraries, a major hospital, emergency services, community centres and various parks and open spaces. Other community resources include daycares, housing cooperatives, community groups and various non-profit organizations and business associations
  • The Study Area overlaps with 17 Census neighbourhoods in Toronto. According to 2016 Census data, 14 of these neighbourhoods experienced a population increase from 2011, notably 47 per cent in Niagara and 50 per cent in Waterfront Communities-The Island
  • There are approximately 100 active development applications within the study area for residential and commercial use

Spotlight Case

Employment Areas support business and employment growth by maintaining the land for business and economic activities. These lands are intended to be able to accommodate substantial job growth and meet the needs of the City’s key economic clusters. Transit use is encouraged in Employment Areas through investment in improved levels of service and transit-supportive development densities and forms. The Ontario Line will provide service to a number of major Employment Areas where transit use is encouraged and intended to help support high employment densities.

image of the Don River Valley

Eastern Avenue Employment Area (OLS)

Methods

Built form and socio-economic features within the study area were identified and characterized. A desktop review was conducted using provincial and municipal documents and policies, online data sources such as the City of Toronto Open Data Portal and associated databases/mapping tools. The background research was supplemented with site visits. The features examined include:

  • Physical neighbourhood composition – land use and built form patterns, transportation network, and public realm characteristics
  • Community amenities – institutional uses, parks and recreational uses, community groups and resources
  • Neighbourhood demographics
  • Future development

Preliminary Potential Impacts & Mitigation Measures for Further Study

Construction

Potential Impacts

  • Access disruption to adjacent lands during construction
  • Visual effects from construction areas/activities

Potential Mitigation Measures

  • Clearly marked pedestrian and cyclist detours, where required
  • Temporary lighting and wayfinding signage around construction sites
  • Maintained access to businesses during working hours
  • Temporary walkways with a pedestrian clearway of 2.1 metres in accordance with City guidelines
  • Screened enclosures and temporary landscaping along construction site boundaries, where necessary

Operations

Potential Impacts

  • Visual effects from permanent public-facing structures and/or operations activities

Potential Mitigation Measures

  • Minimize the visual effects of project structures (e.g., elevated guideways, support structures, retaining walls) by considering their location, building materials, architectural design, and surrounding landscape treatments

Future Studies

  • Additional socio-economic features will be examined, if required, and a socio-economic impact assessment will be undertaken

 

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