With local development spreading like wildfire and an infrastructure that never planned for it, restoring the watershed with new green space couldn’t have come at a better time.

In our city alone, consequential damage has been caused already in 2005, 2014 and as recent as 2017.

A green approach, using unique engineering solutions, is being applied to flood control efforts. This includes the creation of a natural five acre infrastructure alongside Woodbine Avenue and Highway 404.

The Don Mills Channel before and after naturalization (pictured above) with MP Mary Ng and Mayor Frank Scarpitti posing inside a newly engineered flood tunnel piece.

The main purpose of the green space is to protect our ever expanding, developing and industrialized city from flooding. Connecting the Don River back into our municipality is the way the project is being engineered.

The Don Mills Channel was originally built in 1960 with local neighbourhoods having limited ability to handle flooding. This archaic and limited infrastructure is now being upgraded to save residents from annual damages to the tune of $1.5 million.

The federal Disaster Mitigation and Adaption Fund (DMAF), has allotted $48,640,000 to the city’s Stormwater Management Strategy and Flood Control Program, which includes the Don Mills Channel, West Thornhill and Thornhill Community Centre & Library projects.

Here are some quick facts:

  • Local storm infrastructure investments currently amount to about $367 million.
  • Our city is receiving a grant from the DMAF that equals 13% of the entire Flood Control Program costs.
  • These infrastructure upgrades will assist our most vulnerable communities, as follows:
    • West Thornhill project is aimed at reducing basement flooding risks in residential areas, while increasing their ability to navigate extreme weather without any structural damage
    • Thornhill Community Centre & Library project is going to reduce flooding there and a neighbouring retirement residence, while also increasing their wearability to extreme weather occurences.
  • Flood protection measures is continuing locally for the coming decade between 2020 to 2023, and 2021 to 2026.
  • The overall DMAF is a $2-billion, 10-year program safeguarding localities across Canada from floods, wildfires, earthquakes and droughts.

Download Flood Control Project Images

Click HERE for information on the DMAF.

(Pictured above: Ward 8 Councillor, Isa Lee learning about the program at the official launch ceremony, July 8th)