Bluffer’s Park South Headland and Beach Major Maintenance Project

Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), in partnership with the City of Toronto, is undertaking maintenance works on existing shoreline erosion control structures along Lake Ontario within Bluffer’s Park in order to protect against the hazards of shoreline erosion and address public safety concerns.

Project Location

The project area is located in Bluffer’s Park, at 1 Brimley Road South, at the base of Brimley Road in Scarborough, City of Toronto. The area of concern includes the southernmost headland and adjacent beach, located at the southwest limits of the park on the north shore of Lake Ontario.

Project area, including location of the headland and beach within Bluffer’s Park. Source: TRCA, 2018.

Learn More About the Project

Project Background

Bluffer’s Park was built as part of a large lakefilling operation from the early 1960s to mid 1970s, and includes a series of armourstone headlands, beaches, and revetments for erosion control protection. Since its construction, the landform has been used as a public park, and features formal walking trails, public beaches, marinas, and open green spaces that overlook Lake Ontario. The project area includes the southernmost headland and its adjacent beach; the headland is lined by an armourstone revetment and the beach is constructed of a mix of cobble, gravel, and concrete rubble material.

Aerial view of the south headland located in the project area at Bluffer’s Park. Source: TRCA, 2017.
View of the cobble, gravel, and concrete rubble beach within the project area at Bluffer’s Park. Source: TRCA, 2017.

In 2006, TRCA began conducting annual inspections of the structures within Bluffer’s Park as a part of the Erosion Risk Management Program (ERMP). Following routine inspections, the ERMP identified the headland structure and prioritized it as at-risk since 2010, and in failing condition since 2015. The ERMP categorized the beach as a failing structure since 2010. In 2017, a weak spot was identified at the southern tip of the headland, where continued wave action resulted in the loss of much of the structure material.

Weakened area of Bluffer’s Park south headland where rock material was lost from continued wave action. Source: TRCA, 2017.

On April 14-15 2018, the Toronto Region experienced a severe ice storm which caused extreme wave action in Lake Ontario. The waves caused significant damage to the headland and beach, washing large amounts of stone material into the lake and onto the park tableland, and scouring the shoreline. The wave activity from the storm resulted in the complete collapse of the weakened portion of the headland.

Damage to Bluffer’s Park south headland following April 14-15 2018 ice storm. Source: TRCA, 2018.
Rubble material washed ashore from the beach during the April 14-15 2018 ice storm. Source: TRCA, 2018.

In the spring of 2018, TRCA retained Riggs Engineering Limited to develop engineered design solutions for repair of the damaged structures. An interim design was developed and implemented to temporarily stabilize the headland while a long-term solution was in development. Interim works were completed in January 2019 and involved the placement of armourstone in the large failure section of the headland.

The interim works were designed to provide temporary protection to the parkland for the winter and spring months when ice and wave action place the structure at increased risk for further damage. The interim solution is intended to prevent further damage to the park until the long-term solution can be implemented. The long-term solution includes repair of the remainder of the headland as well as the adjacent beach, and will be implemented in two phases.

Completed interim works. Source: TRCA, 2019.

Recently, the project has been updated to include a fourth phase (Phase IV: West Beach Long-Term Works) which includes the maintenance/repair of the beach west of the headland. Along with the headland and beach, the west beach has continued to experience degradation from wave action and severe weather events. Detailed designs for this portion of the project has not begun.

Scope of Work

The general scope of work for the Project includes the following items:

Completed steps:

  • Phase I: Interim Works – completed in January 2019

Next steps include:

  • Obtain all required permits and approvals for implementation of long term solution
  • Phase II: Headland Long-term Works – Summer 2019
  • Phase III: Beach Long-term Works – Summer 2020*
  • Phase IV: West Beach Long-Term Works – Spring 2021*

*Timelines are subject to change

The scope of work for 2020 includes the completion of Phase II: Headland Long-Term Works, and the implementation of Phase III: Beach Long-Term Works during Summer 2020. All necessary permits and approvals will be obtained for the implementation of works prior to construction.

Construction Information

Construction of Phase II: Headland Long-term Works commenced in June 18, 2019 and is anticipated to be complete by July 2020. Phase III: Beach Long-Term Works is anticipated to begin in Summer 2020. Phase IV: West Beach Long-Term Works is anticipated to begin following the completion of Phase III.

To ensure public safety, the headland area will be closed for the duration of the work. Other areas of the park required for construction access, including trails within the limits of construction and the beach, will be closed on weekdays and reopened on the weekend throughout the duration of the work. For your safety, please respect all posted construction signs and stay clear of the work areas and equipment. Your cooperation and patience with this undertaking is appreciated. Please see the map below for details.

Construction details for Phase II: Headland Long-term Works. Source: TRCA, 2019.

Public Notices

A Notice of Construction was published in the June 13, 2019 edition of the Scarborough Mirror to inform the public of the project and construction timelines. The notice is available for viewing at the link below.

Notice of Construction – Phase II: Headland Long-Term Works

Notices of Construction signs have been installed at all applicable trail entrances, available for viewing at the link below.

Notice of Project Commencement – Phase II: Headland Long-Term Works

Progress Updates

Update: July 5, 2019

Site setup has commenced. The work area has been fenced off and erosion and sediment control measures have been installed. Tree hoarding measures have also been completed.

Example of tree hoarding measures within the project area. Source: TRCA, 2019.

Update: July 11, 2019

With site setup completed and erosion and sediment control measures in place, the replacement of the headland’s revetment has commenced.

Replacement of the armourstone revetment of the headland. Source: TRCA, 2019.

Update: October 7, 2019

Construction continues on the revetment. Crews are replacing the armourstone along the revetment with new and suitable reusable materials. A second layer of armourstone will be added to the headland for added protection against wave action.

Replacement of the revetment on the western portion of the headland. Source: TRCA, 2019.

Update: December 23, 2019

Construction continues along the revetment. Crews are working to complete treatment along the toe of the revetment with new and suitable reusable materials.

Replacement of the armourstone revetment of the headland. Source: TRCA, 2019.

Update: February 10, 2020

Construction continues along the revetment with movement towards the eastern, and final section of the headland.

Crews to begin works on the eastern, and final section of the headland, as shown. Source: TRCA, 2020.

Update: April 13, 2020

Construction crews working on completing the crest of the eastern section of the headland.

Crews placing armourstone on the crest of eastern section of headland. Source: TRCA, 2020.

Update: May 26, 2020

Construction crews finalizing the crest at the eastern section of the headland.

Crews placing armourstone on the crest and splash pad at the eastern section of the headland. Source: TRCA, 2020.

Update: June 26, 2020

Construction crews working on the splash pad at the western portion of the headland with armourstone material.

Crews working on the splash pad at the western portion of the headland. Source: TRCA, 2020.

Contact Us

The Planning Team is located at TRCA’s Boyd Field Centre in Vaughan:

Restoration & Infrastructure Division, Engineering Projects
9755 Canada Company Avenue
Vaughan, Ontario
L4H 0A3

For more information regarding this project, please contact Jet Taylor, Senior Project Manager.

Jet Taylor, Senior Project Manager 
Engineering Projects
Restoration & Infrastructure Division
jet.taylor@trca.ca
416-990-7432