Yellow Creek near Heath Street East Erosion Control and Slope Stabilization Project

Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) has proposed to undertake remedial works near Heath Street East, in the City of Toronto, to protect private property from the hazards of slope instability and address erosion concerns within the creek channel below.

Project Location

The project is located in the City of Toronto, northeast of the intersection of Yonge Street and St Clair Avenue East within the Vale of Avoca ravine (also referred to as the Yellow Creek ravine).

The Yellow Creek Near Heath Street East Erosion Control and Slope Stabilization Project study area.

Learn More About the Project

Project Background

This site was first identified to TRCA in late 2015 by the City of Toronto. A slope failure was reported to have occurred following the July 8, 2013 storm event. Erosion and slope stability issues within the Vale of Avoca ravine are creating risk to private property located at the top of slope. Erosion and slope stability hazards within the project area also prompted the City of Toronto to close a pedestrian staircase located off of Heath Street East for the protection of public health and safety.

The pedestrian staircase and residential dwelling seen in this photo are at long-term risk. The staircase has been closed by the City of Toronto for the protection of public health and safety. Source: TRCA, 2016.

Due to the level of risk within the project area, TRCA will be completing slope stabilization and channel works to provide long-term, low maintenance protection to private property located at the top of slope.

This photo is taken of Yellow Creek below Heath Street East. Erosion within the creek has caused many of the bank protection structures to fail. Source: TRCA, 2016.

This project is being planned in accordance with Conservation Ontario’s Class Environmental Assessment for Remedial Flood and Erosion Control Projects (amended 2013) (Class EA). The Class EA process is the approved planning approach for this type of work. The following diagram provides an overview of the Class EA process.

An overview of the planning process for Conservation Ontario’s Class Environmental Assessment for Remedial Flood and Erosion Control Projects (amended 2013). Source: TRCA, 2018.

The following alternative solutions were developed and evaluated by TRCA as part of the Class EA process for the project:

Alternative 1 – ‘Do Nothing’ 

Alternative 2 – Pipe Yellow Creek, Rubble Fill Buttress 

Alternative 3 – Channel Realignment, Soil Nailing 

Alternative 4 – Channel Realignment, Selective Soil Nailing 

The results of the Class EA evaluation led to the identification of Alternative 3Channel Realignment, Soil Nailing as the preferred alternative solution to address erosion and slope stability hazards within the project area.

Scope of Work

The proposed scope of work for this project includes stabilizing the valley wall below Heath Crescent and Heath Street East and completing erosion control works within Yellow Creek.

Throughout 2021, TRCA intends to:

  1. File the Class EA Project Plan for a 60-day* public review period and address any concerns about the preferred alternative solution
  2. Develop detailed designs of the preferred alternative (Alternative 3) for slope and channel works
  3. Secure all necessary permits and approvals to proceed to construction

*Please note the public review period has been extended from 30 days to 60 days given the disruption to many sectors due to the COVID-19 pandemic. TRCA will make every effort to provide alternative means of distributing reports for public review given the closure of public libraries.

Construction Information

TRCA is currently in the planning stages for this project. Construction is tentatively planned to take place in 2021, pending receipt of all necessary permits and approvals, and to the availability of annual funding. Construction information will be posted following completion of all planning activities.

Public Notices

Notice of Intent (NOI)
TRCA formally initiated this project in 2018 through the issuance of a Notice of Intent (NOI).

The NOI included an invitation to the project’s first Community Liaison Committee (CLC) meeting and was delivered to homeowners in the vicinity of the project on June 8, 2018. The CLC meeting was held on June 25, 2018. The NOI and CLC invitation were also circulated to interested local community groups, indigenous communities, and government regulatory agencies including Conservation Ontario (CO), the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP), and the City of Toronto.

Notice of Public Information Centre (PIC)
TRCA held a Public Information Centre (PIC) meeting on December 12, 2019 to present TRCA’s preferred alternative solution for slope and channel works within the project area. A Notice of PIC was delivered to residents within the local community on December 5, 2019.

The purpose of the PIC was to provide an opportunity for interested stakeholders to learn more about the project, speak with project staff, and participate in the planning process by providing input on the presented alternative solutions.

Notice of Filing (NOF)
TRCA will publish a NOF to notify interested stakeholders that the Class EA Project Plan has been submitted for the 60-day public review period. TRCA intends to file the Project Plan in 2020.

Notice of Construction (NOC)
Following completion of planning activities, TRCA will distribute a Notice of Construction to notify the local community and project stakeholders of the project’s construction timeline.

Progress Updates

2018

  • TRCA hired an engineer to develop a range of alternative solutions to address slope stability hazards below Heath Crescent and Heath Street East
  • TRCA held a public meeting on April 23, 2018 to introduce the project, project objectives, and discuss the Class EA planning process. The meeting was held at the Toronto Public Library – Northern District Branch. Click here to view the presentation slides.
  • TRCA issued a Notice of Intent (NOI) on June 8, 2018. The NOI was distributed to the local community and other project stakeholders.
  • A Community Liaison Committee (CLC) meeting was held on June 25, 2018 to formally present the project, project objectives, and alternative solutions to interested members of the public. The CLC meeting was held at the Toronto Public Library – Northern District Branch. Click here to view the presentation slides.

2019

  • TRCA refined the scope of the project to include channel works and hired an engineer to develop a range of alternative solutions to address erosion issues within Yellow Creek
  • A Public Information Centre (PIC) meeting was held on December 12, 2019 to provide an overview of the project, present TRCA’s preferred alternative solution to address both slope instability and channel erosion within the project area, and receive public input on the preferred alternative solution. The PIC meeting was held at the Toronto Public Library – Deer Park Branch. Click here to view the presentation boards.

2020

  • TRCA completed evaluation of alternatives for slope stabilization and erosion control works through the Class EA process and drafted the Class EA Project Plan
  • TRCA issued a soft launch of the Class EA Project Plan to interested stakeholders to review and provide feedback
  • TRCA evaluated multiple access options to identify most viable construction access
  • TRCA determined that channel and slope works will be implemented in phases (Phase 1 – channel works; Phase 2 – slope stabilization works)

2021

  • TRCA is working with stakeholders to address their feedback related to the Class EA Project Plan

Contact Us

For more information regarding this project, please contact Jaya Soora, Project Manager:

Jaya Soora, Project Manager
Erosion Risk Management
Restoration & Infrastructure Division
9755 Canada Company Avenue, Vaughan L4H 0A3
(416) 661-6600 ext. 5533
jaya.soora@trca.ca