Bluffer’s Park Southwest Headland and Beach Major Maintenance

Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA) has commenced a study to determine the preferred method of repairing and restoring the southwest headland and adjacent beach at Bluffer’s Park to provide long-term protection to Bluffer’s Park Marina and the park interior.

The southwest headland and adjacent beach were constructed in the late 1970s as part of the development of Bluffer’s Park. Over the past 45 years, these structures have deteriorated through the displacement of armourstone, the loss of beach material due to abrasion, the erosion of backshore material, wave overtopping and ice effects.

Project Background

Erosion control structures along the shoreline of Bluffer’s Park include a series of headlands, beaches and revetments. These structures have been monitored annually by TRCA’s Erosion Management Program since 2006. Based on TRCA monitoring records, the southwest headland and adjacent beach within Bluffer’s Park have been listed as in fair/poor condition and recommended for major maintenance since 2009.

Bluffer’s Park Southwest Headland and Beach Major Maintenance project area. Source: TRCA, 2017

A Shoreline Conditions Review undertaken by Shoreplan Engineering in 2010 stated that the instability of the headland was likely caused by a combination of toe instability, lack of consistent double layer placement of armour stone in various areas, lack of sufficient filter layering below the primary armour stone, an over steepened structure slope, and wave overtopping. Preliminary solutions identified were modification of the existing structure or a complete rebuild utilizing existing material when possible and supplementing with new material as required.

Bluffer's Park Headland
Condition of headland, showing displacement of stone material. Source: TRCA, 2017.

In 2016, TRCA undertook interim maintenance works to improve headland stability until the final solution is implemented.

images of state of Bluffer's Park Headland in 2016 and 2017
Comparison photo of Bluffer’s Park headland before interim maintenance works and after. (Source: TRCA, 2017.)

During the same Shoreline Conditions Review, the underwater portion of the beach was found to be approaching a stable alignment and a stable slope. Of primary concern is the erosion of sand material along the over-steepened portion of the bank, resulting from a lack of coarse material to provide stability and an appropriate beach width to dissipate waves before reaching the back portion of the bank.

In May of 2017, Lake Ontario experienced record high lake levels, impacting many areas of the shoreline and causing more erosion to occur along the backshore of the beach.

erosion on Bluffer's Park shoreline
Erosion along the backshore area of the beach. Source: TRCA, 2017.

Scope of Work

Shoreplan Engineering has recently been retained to develop design alternatives for maintenance of both the headland and the beach. TRCA will be seeking public input into the refinement and selection of the preferred alternatives.

Public Consultation

This project is being planned in accordance with Conservation Ontario’s Class Environmental Assessment for Remedial Flood and Erosion Control Projects (2002 – amended 2013). A Notice of Intent, officially announcing the project, was run in the October 26 issue of the Scarborough Mirror and the October 31 issue of the Bluffs Monitor. The EA process includes public and stakeholder consultation, evaluation of alternatives, and identification of measures to mitigate any adverse impacts.


If you would like to receive further information on this project, please use the contact details outline below.


Contact Us

Jet Taylor, Project Manager I
Engineering Projects
Restoration & Infrastructure Division

Jeffrey Glenen, Environmental Technician I
Engineering Projects
Restoration & Infrastructure Division

Current News

The Bluffer’s Park Southwest Headland and Beach Major Maintenance Project is currently in the design phase. This means design alternatives are being developed which will be presented for public and agency input. Please check back regularly or contact a member of the project team for information regarding public meetings.