The City is co-creating the Toronto Island Park Master Plan with Indigenous rights holders, local communities and the general public! That means we’re collating thoughts, ideas and feedback in gradual stages and in a variety of ways to ensure your voices and ideas are reflected in the final Master Plan.
There are three phases in the engagement process, running from 2021 to 2022. We are in the third and final phase, called “confirming a path forward,” which runs until year-end 2022. In this phase, we are focusing on refining the Draft Master Plan. Summaries of the public engagements and what we have heard so far will be shared on Toronto Island Park Master Plan: In Progress.
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For thousands of years, the Toronto Islands have been a place for healing and ceremony for the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation and other diverse Indigenous communities. The Island, and Hanlan’s Point Beach, hold significant historic importance for 2S LGBTQ+ communities and continues to be an oasis for Torontonians from all walks of life today. In recent years, the park has faced pressures, such as increased demand, aging infrastructure and flooding.
Over the last two and a half years, the City has been engaging on the development of a Master Plan to guide long-term improvements to Toronto Island Park, including Hanlan’s Point Beach. Through this process, we’ve heard ideas from hundreds of beach users. Many of these ideas are reflected in the draft Master Plan.
We want to get this plan right, so we’re inviting Hanlan’s beach users to join us in a safe and collaborative environment to learn more about the draft plan and the ideas specific to Hanlan’s to discuss and refine them.
Share concerns and opportunities related to creating an event space on the lawn at Hanlan’s Point in an interactive thought exchange activity available until March 12, 2023.
Engagement is an important and valuable part of the Master Plan development. It makes up two of five key inputs that are influencing the Master Plan:
There are three phases in the engagement process. Each phase includes synchronous activities that engage multiple people at the same time (e.g. public meetings and workshops) and asynchronous activities that engage people individually in their own time (e.g. surveys and discussion guides).
From November 2020 to January 2021, the City completed several pre-engagement interviews and focus groups to get a preliminary understanding of the issues and opportunities that exist on Toronto Island. This feedback was used to guide the first phase of engagement.
The first round of engagement will focus on what the future of the park could be. This phase will result in a new Vision as well as a set of Values and Guiding Principles.
The second round of engagement will confirm the Vision, Values, and Guiding Principles and move onto developing Big Ideas and Concept Plans for Toronto Island Park.
The final phase, targeted for early 2022, will focus on putting the finishing touches on the draft Master Plan.
A celebration and launch, scheduled for summer 2022, will mark the completion of the Master Plan.
The engagement program is designed to reach both targeted audiences (through Advisory and Placekeeping Groups) and broad audiences (all island users, including and especially those communities for whom Toronto Island Park has special significance, including LGBTQ2S+ communities, Black communities, newcomers, youth, seniors, and people with disabilities).
The City is also committed to meaningful, Indigenous-led engagement. We are working closely with rights-bearing First Nations & Métis communities, Indigenous organizations, Urban Indigenous serving agencies, and grassroots First Nations, Métis and Inuit community members. The process includes both Indigenous placekeeping (discussions focused on how this Master Plan can help Toronto Island Park feel like an Indigenous place) and Indigenous engagement (discussions with Indigenous audiences – particularly First Nations, Métis, urban Indigenous organizations, 2-Spirit peoples, and Indigenous women and youth – about the broader Master Plan).
Guidance by elders is important to this work. Elders and traditional knowledge holders help us access valuable Indigenous traditional knowledge, providing teachings and guidance that help us to keep an Indigenous worldview front-of-mind.
The Indigenous Placekeeping and Advisory Groups include:
The Advisory and Placekeeping Groups include communities with interests or mandates that are directly connected to the Toronto Island Park Master Plan and who can provide insight to guide the development of the Master Plan. These groups include:
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