Toronto Through My Lens

Love Park

Earlier this year a new park opened in downtown Toronto. Dubbed Love Park, it is located at the southern foot of York Street and Queens Quay (96 Queen’s Quay West, to be exact). The 2-acre park responds to the need for flexible public space in the southern Financial District and Harbourfront neighbourhood.

Talk about making ugly turn beautiful: the former use of this space was the York-Bay-Yonge eastbound off-ramp of the Gardiner Expressway. During 2016-17, the ramp was removed and the space reclaimed for public use.

The project timeline went something like this:

  • June 2020: Design
  • July 2021: Construction starts
  • Spring 2023: Construction complete
  • June 23, 2023: Park opens with ribbon-cutting ceremony and community celebration

Here’s how Love Park looks from above:

Disclaimer: Not my image

Love Park is a deliberate departure from the hard surfaces dominating downtown Toronto, with healthy existing mature trees retained and dozens of new trees being planted. Tree-lined sidewalks outline the entire perimeter and internal pathways of the park site, marking the transition into a calm urban refuge. Rolling elevated grassy mounds provide further buffer from the adjacent roadways and offer space to relax and enjoy the park at different vantage points.

Love Park’s pond was designed and built as a natural pond, which mimics a wetland and uses a natural water filtration system, not chlorine. Foggy pond water with a green hue can occur for a few weeks while the water system balances its water chemistry. The pond water remains safe and is monitored and maintained as required. The changing water hue and clarity can be affected by fluctuating water temperatures, rainwater, sun and shade.

Plenty of little critters around the park…

If you’d like to learn more about the creation of Love Park, click here to go to the architect’s website, Claude Cormier & Associés.

1 Comment

  1. David

    Yes this is proof that Toronto can do things right if they put their mind to it . I truly like this park and it is a fabulous little space to rest, relax and view the surrounding downtown high rises.

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