St. Andrew’s Playground Improvements
The City is investing in improvements to St. Andrew’s Playground Park at 450 Adelaide St. W. Improvements include updated amenities and programming, increased connectivity to the surrounding area, and an expansion of the park to include the parking lot on the western edge of the site.
- September 18, 2019: Public Consultation
- Fall 2019: Final preferred design selected, one public meeting will take place
- Spring/Summer/Fall 2020: Anticipated construction of park improvements, park will be closed during this time
Project Team and Participants
The St. Andrew’s Playground Park Improvements project is led by the City of Toronto’s Parks, Forestry and Recreation Division. It is important that local community groups and the general public participate by providing feedback to inform the project.
- Design Lead – DTAH
- Public Engagement – LURA Consulting
St. Andrew’s Playground Park is a small park located in downtown Toronto. It is bordered by Brant Street to the east, Adelaide Street West to the south and Maud Street to the west. The north edge of the park is abutted by a large building complex that faces onto Richmond Street West to the north. The park is historically significant in that it was the site of the City’s first public playground for children; it is also located next to the site of the former St. Andrew’s Market, a public market hall which was built in 1850 but was demolished by 1932. A municipal water works building was constructed on the site of the market in the 1930s; this building was deemed to have heritage significance and is being redeveloped for mixed-use. Today, the park features a playground, surrounded by lawn areas with large mature trees, seating areas and a Dogs Off-Leash Area.
The surrounding neighbourhood is undergoing rapid growth and several new condominium buildings are being developed in the vicinity of the park. A new development will be constructed immediately north of the park repurposing the heritage water works building and building an addition. This mixed-use development will include affordable housing, a recreation facility, residential condominium units and a contemporary market hall at the south side, opening onto the adjacent park. To complement the changes occurring in this neighbourhood, the park will undergo a revitalization to provide updated amenities, improve programming and better connectivity to the surrounding area.
The parking lot currently located on the west side of the park will be converted from parking lot into parkland as part of this project.
If you are interested in this project and want to get involved with this process, you can attend a public meeting and/or provide email feedback.
October 24, 2019
Public Meeting 2
This meeting discussed the preferred concept plan.
October 9, 2019
Indigenous Place-making Opportunities Meeting
This meeting allowed invited stakeholders to discuss opportunities for indigenous place-making in the park concept design.
September 26, 30 and October 2, 2019
Public Information Drop-ins
These public information sessions provided a project update, presented draft concept plans, received public input, identified community preferences and discussed next steps.
All meetings took place at St. Andrew’s Playground at 450 Adelaide St. W.
September 24 and 26, 2019
Children and Youth Workshop
This workshop was conducted to understand how children and youth use downtown park spaces and to present concept options for St. Andrew’s Playground.
September 18, 2019
Public Workshop 1
Attendees learned more about proposed improvements to St. Andrew’s Playground Park. A project update along with draft concept plans was presented.
City-led public consultation events were held prior to the start of the design project with the consultation team. The following provides a summary of feedback received from past public consultations held on January 26, 2016, September 10, 2016, and June 4, 2019.
- Andrew’s Playground Park in the community:
- Andrew’s Playground Park serves as an oasis in the city. Participants value the park’s history as the City’s first publicly accessible playground for children.
- Participants are concerned about:
- Protecting existing and improving trees and vegetated areas throughout the park.
- Improving the Dogs Off-Leash Area to encourage its continued use.
- Improving safety through lighting, sightlines, ease of navigation through the park, and programming/activities that activate the park at different times and across all seasons.
- Pathways that provide direct but pleasant paths for people passing through the park.
- The current location of the playground, which separates children from the street edge.
- Providing flexible seating options to complement fixed seating
- Providing multi-use spaces that offer a variety of programming options while simultaneously working to preserve the distinction between active and passive spaces.
- Participants generally dislike and/or are concerned about:
- The small size of the Dogs Off-Leash Area and playground, which they feel results in underutilization of both spaces.
- Impact of the new Market Hall facing the north side of the park, including potential competition with existing park programming and increasing maintenance costs.
- Poor drainage leading to large puddles of water in various areas of the park. This reduces useable park space.