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The Concerned Citizens of Quarry Lands Development

Fast Fact:
During the 1940's and early 1950's, the lands were owned by Toronto Brick Company and were used as a sand and gravel quarry.

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Nov. 30, 2005

Hi everyone,

I'd like to take this opportunity to update you on the progress of the community working group within the city's ongoing Quarry Lands land use study. The first two meetings of the working group were held on Nov. 7 and Nov. 28, with more planned for early in the New Year.

The working group's mandate is to help develop a vision for the Quarry Lands, a consensus of what we would like the Quarry Lands to be. The full 49 acres that compose the site are under consideration, including roughly 19 acres owned by the principal landowner, Gerrard-Clonmore, and some 17 acres owned by the city of Toronto. All options are open for discussion, from leaving the site as is to large-scale development to everything in between.

While there is no guarantee the community's vision will be embraced in its entirety at the end of the day, we believe the exercise is an important one. We need to be able to present a compelling and realistic alternative to the apartment tower proposal that led to the formation of our group more than two years ago. Concerned Citizens of Quarry Lands Development is not driving the working group process - this is a city initiative - but we believe it's important to participate, express our views and continue to become more informed.

At the Nov. 7 meeting, it was decided that the working group would concentrate on three basic areas: traffic and hard services; the environment; and land use. City planner Rod Hines and other officials gave brief overviews of each of these areas. The roughly 30 working group participants were asked to flag 'hot topics' to drive future discussion. Land use generated the most comments. Many people stressed the importance of mixed land use, including residential, recreational facilities, commercial and parkland uses, as a way to build a balanced community. Traffic comments reiterated the concern many have over the potential impact of increased traffic congestion through our already well-used streets and arteries. Some pointed out the development at Warden Woods is likely to affect our neighbourhood as well. The environmental concerns, naturally, focused on the seriousness of the contamination of Quarry Lands, and the need for public information about the condition of the lands and potential remediation plans.

The Nov. 28th meeting was originally scheduled to discuss these three areas in greater depth and perhaps break off into smaller working groups along those subject lines. Instead, city project manager Tracey Smith presented the group with a 15-page draft terms of reference for a detailed environmental study of the 17 city-owned acres on the Quarry site. This is a significant step; Smith and other city officials said it was the first time such an assessment has ever been shared with residents for the purpose of soliciting feedback. It's also important to note that the city has never undertaken an environmental study of these lands. (The Gerrard-Clonmore lands, by contrast, have been studied extensively and continue to be monitored, we are told, by the private landowner.)

City council could vote to go ahead with the environmental study as soon as January or February of 2006. Smith said the study would take between a year and 18 months, at an estimated cost to the city of between $300,000 and $500,000. Anyone wishing to see a copy of the study proposal, please let us know and we'll do our best to get a copy to you. The city is asking for feedback no later than the middle of December. Comments can be passed on to any CCQLD executive member and we'll make sure to get them to the appropriate party.

If you have any comments, questions or concerns on any aspect , please contact any of our executive at We'll keep you up to date on the working group and all else to do with the Quarry Lands as things progress.


Mark Brender
Communications Chair, Concerned Citizens of Quarry Lands Development


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