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. The landform has been used as a public park since its construction, 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). The ERMP has assessed the headland structure as at-risk since 2010, and in failing condition since 2015. The beach has been listed 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. The headland has been closed off to the public as it is a safety hazard in its current condition.

Damage to Bluffer’s Park south headland following April 14-15 2018 ice storm. Source: TRCA, 2018.
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 to temporarily stabilize the headland while a long-term solution can be developed is currently underway. The interim solution will be focused on the displaced portion of the headland and will utilize material that can be incorporated into the long-term solution. The long-term solution will include repair of the whole headland as well as the adjacent beach.

Scope of Work

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

  • Finalize designs for interim works
  • Obtain all required permits and approvals for implementation of interim works
  • Phase I Construction (Interim Works): October 2018-January 2019
  • Develop detailed designs for long term solution
  • Obtain all required permits and approvals for implementation of long term solution
  • Phase II Construction (Headland Long-term Works): Summer 2019
  • Phase III Construction (Beach Long-term Works): Summer 2020
      * Timelines are subject to change 

The scope of work for 2018 includes the implementation of interim works on the headland to stabilize the structure while a long-term solution is developed. Interim works will involve the placement of armourstones in the large failure section and in nearby voids. This will provide temporary protection to the parkland during the winter and spring months when ice and wave action place the structure at increased risk for further damage.

The long-term solution will be developed as interim works progress. Long-term designs will include repair of the headland and adjacent beach. Implementation of long-term works is tentatively scheduled for the Summer of 2019 and 2020, respectively.

Construction Information

Construction of the interim solution is scheduled to commence October 16, 2018, continuing to mid-to-late-January 2019. Please note, to ensure public safety, a portion of the park, including trails within the limits of construction, will be closed to the public for the duration of the work. Construction limits and access routes are shown in the map below; the following Notice of Construction will be posted at main access points within the project vicinity.

Public Notices

Notices will be published in local newspapers to inform the public of the project and construction timelines. The notice is scheduled to be printed in the October 18, 2018 edition of the Scarborough Mirror and the October 30, 2018 of the Bluffs Monitor. The notice appears as follows.

Progress Updates

Update: October 26, 2018

Construction fencing has been installed, restricting access to the headland and the access route as shown in the Notice of Construction. Materials have begun to be delivered to site.

Construction fencing at Bluffer’s Park South Headland. Source: TRCA, 2018.
New construction material delivered to site. Source: TRCA, 2018

Update: November 29, 2018

Armourstones have been placed in water and works have now begun above the water line.

Placement of armourstone above the water line.

Update: December 18, 2018

The second layer of armourstones has begun to be placed.

Placement of second layer of armourstone.

Update: January 14, 2019

Interim works are nearing completion, with the placement of the final armourstone tiers over the rip rap core.

Progress on interim works.
Progress on interim works.

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, Project Manager.

Jet Taylor, Project Manager 
Engineering Projects
Restoration & Infrastructure Division