Community groups have noticed the banks of the Vale of Avoca by Rosedale and Summerhill are deteriorating.
September 13, 2016
John Bossons, a member of the Summerhill Residents’ Association poses next to a damaged staircase in the ravine next to his home. Bossons and his neighbours say the sought after green space is being damaged by flooding.
Concerned Summerhill and Rosedale residents are ringing the ravine alarm bell.
Users of the Vale of Avoca ravine near Yonge Street and St. Clair say the sought after green space is being ruined by flooding and are calling on the city to take action.
John Bossons, a member of the Summerhill Residents’ Association said the narrow strip of nature is under threat from increased storm water draining into Yellow Creek and eroding its banks.
“Storm water surges have hugely increased thanks to global warming,” he said, noting flooding has already washed out walking paths, one of the ravine’s two bridges, and a pedestrian staircase.
Lewis Reford, president of the North Rosedale Residents’ Association, said the ravine has been reduced to “a jumble of broken concrete, twisted metal, dead trees and vegetation.”
“And that’s dangerous,” he said.
Councillors Josh Matlow and Kristyn Wong-Tam brought the issue to the city’s parks and environment committee on Friday.
The committee agreed to establish a master plan for the affected ravine, integrating the efforts of various city departments.
It’s the first step towards finding the funds and fixing the problem, Matlow said. He hopes the strategy could serve as a model as the city works on its comprehensive ravine strategy.
“It’s very unique to have this ravine system. We don’t celebrate it the way we should and we don’t care for it the way we should,” he said.
“I’ve often thought of our ravines as our inverted mountains.”
Bossons called the plan “a good first step” but said the city needs to act faster, especially when it comes to repairing the broken staircase.
“Basically the city has just abandoned the ravine,” he said.
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