The Meadoway, 200ha

Discussion in 'Transportation and Infrastructure' started by Northern Light, Apr 11, 2018.

  1. Northern Light

    Northern Light Senior Member

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    Today the City of Toronto and the TRCA announced the creation of The Meadoway.

    This is a re-naming and naturalization/amenitization project for the Gatineau Hydro Corridor in Scarborough.

    The corridor, which runs from the East Don Valley, in the south-west, to Rouge Park in the north-east, would encompass 200ha or 500 acres of park space.

    Principally the commitment is to take the mowed grass areas and replace them w/native wild flowers and shrubs.

    But continuous bike trail is also planned (much is in place already, more to come), as well as basic park amenities (benches, etc.)

    I expect there will be more, as they are inviting public comment and have a budget larger than they need for the naturalization and bike trail components. ($85m)

    From the Star:

    https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/20...ill-link-downtown-toronto-to-scarborough.html

    Plus the project website:

    https://themeadoway.ca/
     
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  2. hw621

    hw621 Active Member

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    Aren't hydro wires health and safety hazards?
     
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  3. 44 North

    44 North Senior Member

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    Hopefully underpasses/overpasses to cross intersections, and providing trees/shrubs that offer shade. Or will hydro cut everything down every few years? Also like the private donation aspect. Otherwise the City would likely drag its feet when it comes to offroad trails.
     
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  4. Northern Light

    Northern Light Senior Member

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    Hydro won't allow trees directly under or immediately adjacent too their wires, except where the height differential (in places like valleys and gullys) allows that the tree's maximum height is well clear of the wires.

    That's where the meadow idea came from, that it served a good purpose ecologically, its prettier than just grass, but also, it allows for complete mow down periodically with substantial to full regrowth in the ensuing season.

    There will likely be small numbers of trees where there are gullys/valleys as well as where there are abutting parklands or the odd section where the ROW is materially wider than where the current towers are sited.

    Hydro would consider larger trees but only on the proviso they can cut them down every six or so years, which rather defeats the point.
     
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  5. Northern Light

    Northern Light Senior Member

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    Not my area of expertise, but article and my comment below.

    http://www.bcmj.org/bc-centre-disease-control/living-near-power-lines-bad-our-health

    The long and short is that while there is no conclusive association of broader health concerns for the general population there appears to be some correlation between childhood leukemia in particular
    and living in close proximity to high voltage corridors.

    I would suggest, without further evidence, that the kind of exposure one may get from a brief bike ride, walk or picnic is not likely an issue. Ten or more hours per day??? I leave to the judgement of science and time.

    Would I personally buy a home in close proximity to a major corridor? Probably not.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2018
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  6. muller877

    muller877 Senior Member

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    So staghorn sumach trees and not much more (native to Toronto). Of course grasslands require burns every few years to maintain a healthy habitat. I wonder if this is in their plan (if it is not it will never become truly naturalized.
     
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  7. Northern Light

    Northern Light Senior Member

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    The previously complete section has some photos up here:

    https://trca.ca/conservation/restoration/meadows/

    From the TRCA: (above link)

    [​IMG]

    Wild Bergamot is the purple'ish flower, and Sweet Ox Eye is the yellow.
    [​IMG]

    Above you seen lots of Black-eyed Susans (shorter flower, brown center) and the tall one in the foreground is Tall Sunflower.
     
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  8. junctionist

    junctionist Senior Member

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    It's beautiful, but one can't help but think of the potential in burying the wires and selling off the land for development in other parts of the city.
     
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  9. 44 North

    44 North Senior Member

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    $80M seems like a decent chunk that could go far. Don't know if I'm being too optimistic, but I think grade-separations would be very beneficial. No having to stop every few hundred metres at busy roads, no having to keep close eyes on kids...those are the ultimate paths. And the up/down produces a dynamism rather than all flat (which is one thing that's a small knock on trails like Leslie Spit). Imagine going from the Don mouth to the Zoo with only a couple traffic lights between...would be awesome.

    And what's the deal with the connection from the forks of the Don to the Gatineau corridor? Feel like I've seen that promised for a decade. Judging from the map of this proposal, that's not included in this (tho likely will be expedited).
     
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  10. Northern Light

    Northern Light Senior Member

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    The East Don Trail, between the Forks and Gatineau Corridor is proceeding to construction this year.

    The Gatineau Trail segment from Vic Park to Eglinton is almost finished.

    The connection between Bermondsey and Eglinton is being discussed w/Metrolinx as the crossing of Eglinton was contemplated as a traffic light and needs to traverse the Crosstown LRT either way, which is due for construction in this area in the next year or so.

    ****

    As to how the 80M will be spent, I can't say.

    I can confirm based on what I know that that far exceeds what is required for the outstanding bike trail itself and the meadow plantings.

    I assume one major bridge/tunnel is required to get across the GO/SRT tracks east of Kennedy, not sure on the cost for that.

    Otherwise, I assume the surplus $$$ are available for other 'enhancements'.

    I find it unlikely that there will be many tunnels/bridges for crossing roads, but I'm not privy to that level of detail at this time.

    I will share if I find out.
     
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  11. robmausser

    robmausser Senior Member

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    What an incredibly detailed map

    [​IMG]

    For reference of bike path plans, and some more detail, here is the 2010 plan

    [​IMG]

    The 2012 bikeway plan

    Number 5, which is "Gatineau Hydro Corridor: Victoria Park to Bermondsey" is being built as mentioned above.

    [​IMG]

    Number 22, Gatineau Hydro Corridor Connection – Ellesmere/Military Trail to Conlins Rd, has been removed from the 2016 plans, but I am not even sure if it was intended to go on the Hydro corridor. It appears to dip below.

    Number 4, number 6 and number 12 would all contribute to the project, as it would create connections to the park.

    2016 Bike Network plan

    [​IMG]

    Not much changed within the "Meadoway". At least the connections below seem to still be on the books, and the connection above seems to have gotten an extension past the 401.

    Hopefully this Meadoway plan will fill in these gaps

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. 44 North

    44 North Senior Member

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    Interesting. Wasn't aware it was that far along, or that it was funded. It's actually quite a complex project involving numerous bridges and a few rail crossings. Thinking now, perhaps part of the cost for this Meadoway actually involves the East Don Trail connection. Could be ~$30M accounted for right there.
     
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  13. Northern Light

    Northern Light Senior Member

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    East Don is funded by PTIF funds, separate from the Meadoway.

    The project is only being done from Gatineau Trail south to the Forks.

    The remaining 'missing link' running north under Eglinton is deferred for the time being.

    Its more controversial environmentally, more problematic, and I think there is still some hope for a deal w/the Golf Course which would mitigate the above.

    The official reason for deferral , however, is unfunded.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
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  14. DSC

    DSC Senior Member

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    You are certainly not encouraged to LIVE under major hydro transmission lines but many hydro corridors are open for walking/biking in many places.
     
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  15. Goldie

    Goldie Senior Member

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    Is there any real radiation danger from these powerful electricity lines?
    The public will need to be reassured.
     
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