Don Valley Brick WorksAddress: 550 BAYVIEW AVE Map It
District: Toronto East York
Once a former quarry, Don Valley Brick Works Park is now a City of Toronto flagship natural environment park. It is considered a model for urban ecosystem planning given its extensive landscape restoration, re-naturalization, wetland re-establishment, and adaptive management.
Come and explore the park!
We have guided tours on select Saturdays from May to September. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more. If you prefer going on your own pace, enjoy a self-guided tour and read about the park's past, present and future through educational signs. There is also an audio tour - call 416-39-BRICK to learn about the geological history of the area, before, during or after your trip.
Groups of 25 or more must book a gathering to visit the park. Help keep our natural environment parks healthy! Before your visit, please familiarize yourself with our Code of Conduct and help protect the ecosystem.
You can get involved with the Brick Works by donating your time to be a Don Valley Brick Works Ambassador or join the Community Stewardship Program to help maintain the beauty of the park.
- Eight accessible parking spots in the main parking lot
- Wheelchair accessible washrooms on the first floor of Evergreen's Welcome Centre.
- Wheelchair accessible access to the Welcome Deck and terrace pond lookouts
Trails and boardwalks located within the quarry garden are connected at-grade to Evergreen Brick Works and parking lots. The trails are granular surface trails and are affacted by the weather. These trails are also connected to the Belt Line Trail via a paved ramp. Trails connecting the quarry gardens to the quarry ridge lookout are steep, due to the natural landscape.
History and Ecological Restoration
From 1889 to 1989, Don Valley Brick Works Park was the site of a large-scale brick making and distribution operation. Bricks were forged using water from Mud Creek and clay from the Brick Works quarry. The bricks made at this site are used in buildings throughout Toronto, including Casa Loma, Massey Hall, the Ontario Legislature, parts of the University of Toronto’s St. George campus, and numerous private homes.
In 1989 the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) acquired the Don Valley Brick Works site from private development, and in 1995 the City of Toronto and TRCA began restoration work. A series of wetland environments have been constructed to provide habitats for aquatic plants and wildlife, as well as to bring water from nearby Mud Creek through the wetland to be filtered naturally before it flows into the Don River, and ultimately Lake Ontario. With the help of dedicated volunteers and strong partnerships, the City of Toronto has successfully introduced wetland, dry wildflower meadow, and forest plant communities to different parts of the Don Valley Brick Works site, creating a variety of ecosystem types.
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