News   Jun 18, 2024
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Leslie Street Spit


City Council request the General Manager, Parks Forestry and Recreation, to work with Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, to establish a Tommy Thompson Park Joint Management Committee in 2021, and to include representation from CreateTO, PortsToronto and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, for the purpose of integrated management of the three existing property components that comprise the Leslie Street Spit, and will be collectively known as the future Tommy Thompson Park, comprised of:

a. Tommy Thompson Park: currently owned by Toronto and Region Conservation Authority and managed in partnership with the Parks, Forestry and Recreation Division;

b. lands referred to as the "Outer Harbour East Headland and Endikement" currently owned by Ontario's Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and managed by PortsToronto; and

c. lands referred to as the "Baselands", currently owned by CreateTO, the City and PortsToronto.
 
Visited last weekend and it looks like they have completed/opened a new trail in the location below (or did I just miss it in previous years?).

Offers a nice connection to the south side since the bridge is still closed. And a couple great seating areas!

Pavilion is also still closed but looks great!

Capture.PNG

 
Visited last weekend and it looks like they have completed/opened a new trail in the location below (or did I just miss it in previous years?).

Offers a nice connection to the south side since the bridge is still closed. And a couple great seating areas!

Pavilion is also still closed but looks great!

View attachment 321204
There has been an informal trail there for many years, they built a bridge 2 0r 3 years ago - good to hear it may have been upgraded a bit - though I think PortsToronto are still doing work on the shoreline in that area. Esp to the east on east side of the 'construction road'
 
The main bridge is now back in service again. Maybe in the last day or two?
@GabrielHurl Paula fletcher post 8 days ago. I’m not sure what took so long. They got lost? Drifted back into place?[

The spit sure has been busier this past year. It seems busier than the downtown core.
I wonder how busy it will be post pandemic?

42183F85-3D3B-4E2C-9DB0-187D5CB3B6D3.jpeg
 
Supposedly these tiny raptors, American Kestrels, are quite common and have often been seen in Tommy Thompson Park, the nearby Leslie Street Allotment gardens, and in other parks around the city, and nest boxes have been put up for them in various places including there and at The Zoo. Yet I've only seen one once, several years ago when I saw it sitting on top of a fence from some distance away, and at first, before I got closer, mistakenly thought it must be a strange kind of pet parakeet that had escaped from its cage.
 
Mulling through the TRCA capital budget, it looks as though the plan is for the TRCA to finally have full control of the spit for Parks purposes in 2024.

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To make this clear to everyone who make not understand the current ownership web, it looks like this:

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Money for improvements is in the budget, but much less than TRCA would like.

Here's what funded: (first year is 2023 on the left)

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Here's what's unfunded (2023 is the 4th column from the left, marked 1.0 )

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So 7.6M funded, 17.2M unfunded over 10 years.
 
It is bizarre that the TRCA keep saying that access is now NOT 7 days a week (if not actually 24/7/365.) Of course, more people go on weekends but it is far from empty on weekdays and the TRCA staff just wave at you if they pass. I suppose they can pretend it's closed so if anyone gets run over by a dump truck they can deny responsibility.
 
Regular Spit goers will be familiar with the Cormorant issue in the park.

For those not familiar, Cormorants are moderately large birds that nest in large colonies, often in trees. They are native to the region.

The birds droppings are highly acidic and at the volume of a large colony often end up killing the trees in which the birds nest.

For the last many years, the TRCA has been engaged in assorted efforts to discourage tree nesting by the birds (they can also ground nest); and to manage colonial size.

That said, there are a few stubborn buggers in the colony that just don't like ground nesting. So the TRCA is trying something new:

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Image Credit: TRCA

Their explainer follows below:

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