The City has completed the Master Plan Update for Centennial Park to provide a new vision, objectives and action items to guide changes in the park over the next 20 years.
The timeline is subject to change.
Download the Centennial Park Master Plan Update:
The Centennial Park Master Plan Update seeks to find a new balance between the natural environment and recreational facilities, addressing the existing fragmentation of the site and revealing unique features that should be cherished and preserved. The document outlines strategies that will be implemented over the course of 20 years. The implementation of Phase 1 will begin in fall 2021, in an area identified as “heart of the park”. This will include tree planting, improvements to pathways and accessibility, and a new playground and water play area. The City will engage the public and Indigenous communities to help develop the design of this area.
The Facilities and Service Planning Assessment identifies recommendations intended to inform the development of a Park Master Plan Update for Centennial Park. Specifically, this assessment examines and prioritizes recreation facility needs for Centennial Park, guided by the City’s Parks and Recreation Facilities Master Plan, including the current thinking around emerging recreation needs.
Centennial Park is Toronto’s second-largest park, located in the west end, near the border of Mississauga. Centennial Park serves both the local community and the region, attracting an estimated 1.5 million people from across the Greater Toronto Area. The park contains many sports facilities, public gathering spaces and natural areas.
In 2008, the City developed a Master Plan for Centennial Park that was not presented to City Council and therefore was not implemented. A lot has changed since 2008. The park itself has evolved with the addition of a BMX Bike Park, a frisbee golf course and other minor changes. The City has also created new policies and frameworks, including the Parkland Strategy and the Facilities Master Plan. In 2018, the City set out to review the 2008 Centennial Park Master Plan and create an updated plan.
A Master Plan is a dynamic and long-term planning document that provides a vision, objectives and action items to guide decision making for the ongoing improvements and management of parks. Master Plans are created using community and stakeholder feedback, expert advice and research. They are typically updated every 10 years. The City has retained the following consultants to help develop the Centennial Park Master Plan update: PMA Landscape Architects, PROCESS (a public engagement, research and placemaking studio), Dougan + Associates (Ecologists), Marshall & Murray (Cost Consultants) and Bronte Engineering (Civil Engineer).
The Centennial Master Plan update will address the impacts of climate change (e.g. building and park operations, impacts of severe storms) and focus on serving a diverse set of both local and citywide residents. The project team is focusing on four major themes to help guide conversations around experiences in the park and opportunities for improvement. The four themes are Water, Ecology, Movement and Culture.
How we think about water at Centennial Park involves the entire water cycle – how and where it lands on the site, how it moves through the site, and how it is absorbed by the site. Water is a natural resource and it is also a source of play, beauty and contemplation within the park. The Master Plan will take into consideration the many ways water exists in the park.
The Ecology of Centennial Park includes the natural environment – the trees, habitats, animals – and the system that links all of these together. The Master Plan will take into consideration the delicate balance of the park’s ecosystem, including how to reduce human impacts and prepare the park for the changing climate.
Movement in Centennial Park is all about how people travel and find their way to and around the site. It is also about equal access for all, whether you are walking, biking, driving or taking the bus, and if you need to take breaks often or need a smooth surface to travel on.
Culture reflects everything that contributes to the way of life in Centennial Park. It includes sportsfields and playgrounds, picnicking by the pond or visiting the Conservatory on a rainy day. It captures the community at Centennial Park, and how it can be created, maintained and enhanced.
Centennial Park has a long and diverse history. For at least 13,000 years Indigenous peoples have been stewards of the land that Centennial Park is situated on. These are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples and are now home to many diverse First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.
The Centennial Park Master Plan update process includes intentional engagement with the Indigenous community and public education. In the project team, an Indigenous practitioner is dedicated to conversations with Indigenous community leaders to help review the Master Plan updates. The project team also integrated Indigenous Cultural Competency training opportunities at the Stakeholder Advisory Committee, Public Workshops and Youth Workshops.
Over 200 participants joined the virtual Open House to learn more about the vision that will shape the future of the park. The online event began with a short presentation and opening remarks, followed by breakout sessions where participants reviewed site-wide strategies and demonstration plans and asked questions to the project team.
Download the Virtual Open House presentation.
A second meeting with Indigenous Community Leaders took place over Zoom and was led by Indigenous Consultant, Trina Moyan Bell. A summary report of that meeting will be posted here when it becomes available.
Based on feedback received through engagement done up until this date, the City developed a series of preliminary designs. These designs were shared for further feedback through a survey that ran from September 25 to October 11, 2020. The survey received 1,000 responses.
Download the Preferred Option Survey Summary Report.
The digital workshop took place over Zoom and was led by Indigenous Consultant, Trina Moyan Bell. Indigenous Elder, Catherine Tammaro, opened and closed the workshop with a prayer. There were an estimated 15 participants including community leaders, elders, knowledge keepers, families and entrepreneurs.
Download the Indigenous community leaders summary report.
Building off of the Public Visioning Workshop findings, PROCESS and PMA led two virtual workshops to refine a park concept.
PROCESS and PMA led a virtual Stakeholder Advisory Committee meeting attended by six Centennial Park Stakeholders including local organizations, park permit holders, agencies, environmental groups, local schools and interested residents.
Download the Stakeholder Advisory Committee Meeting 2 Summary Report.
From June 21 to July 28 we used Social Pinpoint, an online interactive map platform, to collect specific feedback about the park from the community and park users. The platform allowed users to drop pins in specific locations as well as fill in a visioning survey on four themes: water, ecology, movement and culture.
A Public Life Study began in February 2020 to help the project team understand how people use Centennial Park. The study was paused in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The remaining Public Life Study data was collected through stakeholder and park user interviews from May to June 2020.
Held at Etobicoke Olympium, this public workshop allowed for an opportunity to learn more about the master planning process and to help create a community vision for the park. The workshop included a project presentation and visioning activities with the aim to discuss the opportunities and challenges of the Master Plan update.
PROCESS and PMA led an in-person Stakeholder Advisory Committee meeting at Etobicoke Olympium, which was attended by 25 Centennial Park stakeholders including, local organizations, park permit holders, agencies, environmental groups, school boards and interested residents, plus the consultant team and City staff.
Download the Stakeholder Advisory Committee Meeting 1 Summary Report.
The meeting began with a presentation of the 2008 Master Plan and what we heard from prior internal and permit holder consultations. This was followed by a question and answer period.
After the presentation, smaller discussions were held around thematic displays for additional input and comments.
Following the Open House, there were two separate hike-shops led by City staff and PROCESS. These hikes focused on connecting participants with both natural and recreation areas in the park creating dynamic discussions about real park amenities.
Download Public Consultation Presentation
Discussions included a review of the strengths, challenges and opportunities within the park.
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