Queens Quay Revitalization
The Central Waterfront is one of the City of Toronto’s most valuable assets. Designed by West 8 + DTAH as a significant component of the Central Waterfront Innovative Design Competition, the space has been re-envisioned to create a defining landscape that serves as a linear park connecting the various precincts, WaveDecks and public spaces along the Waterfront.
The street is now configured to create an engaging pedestrian experience with a generous granite pedestrian promenade on the south side defined by a double row of trees that line the Martin Goodman Trail, a multi-use recreational trail that is now connected along the full length of the waterfront for the first time. The revised alignment of the dedicated Light Rail Transit (LRT) line adjacent to the promenade with two lanes of east-west traffic on the north side of the street has created the space to effectively rebalance the needs of its residential, business, recreational and visitor users.
The streetscape design features 232 street trees, thousands of metres of granite curbs, and over a million individual pieces of granite cobble, all laid by hand in a mosaic with details inspired by the iconic Canadian maple leaf. The promenade trees are planted within a soil cell corridor and supported by a passive irrigation system that will allow the trees to thrive and mature in difficult urban conditions. The unique storm water system is designed to collect surface runoff and divert it into the planting soil for the trees, thereby greatly reducing the volume of water entering the storm system. The streetscape design also includes custom street light standards and furniture. Craftsmanship and sustainability were guiding principles in implementing the promenade, and products were selected for their durability and longevity with preference given to Canadian suppliers.