Toronto's Waterfront Development Today

Burying the past...


The City of Toronto

The City of Toronto is planning to redevelop Toronto's waterfront. A report by the Toronto Waterfront Revitalization Corporation, John Campbell, president, recommends developing parts of the eastern bay front, including the Polson pier property. Part of that plan encompasses the lands between Leslie and Jameson Streets and (essentially) south of Front Street. This area includes archaeological sites that contain the physical remains of a proud and lengthy industrial history. Each site represent a fragile and non-renewable cultural legacy.

The Master Plan does not restrict development on sites of archaeological potential.

It is highly likely that archaeological deposits, including Canada's commercial maritime development has survived. These deposits represent significant archaeological value, and warrant conservation during any re-development along the central waterfront.

The Roller boat, is only one example, of a non renewable cultural object. It shows the imagination of Mr. Knapp, the skills of Polson Iron Works to both engineer and fabricate such an novel solution to water transportation. Many builders would have turned down such a challenging task but Polson Iron Works took on the job and all the engineering quandaries that it must have presented.

It is imperative that the heritage that Polson Iron Works represents be known within the context of today. It is essential to keep this kind of heritage visible and alive for today's entrepreneurs and public to be aware of. To have a condominium be the headstone on such rich and pertinent history would be to live only for today with no inkling of how the past supports the present.