5,000 signatures reached
To: David Piccini, Ontario Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks
Sign now: Help Toronto save its green spaces from destruction by Metrolinx
With the clearcutting of the southern embankment of Small’s Creek earlier this year, the tree canopy was destroyed, leaving this once shaded wetland exposed. With only a rudimentary and piecemeal restoration plan in place, we don’t know what the impact will be on one of the remaining above ground creeks in Toronto. By building on expanding on this plan, we do believe that we can effect change in restoring this vital community resource.
We are asking for any further construction to only continue with these restoration goals in place:
1) a detailed and comprehensive stewardship plan and management agreement between Metrolinx and the City of Toronto that assigns responsibility for: managing the non-native species, designing safe and ecologically sensitive paths for travel and long term maintenance and monitoring that extends beyond the 2 to 3 warranty on the nursery-grown plants
2) meaningful engagement with our local Indigenous community
3) re-establishing the connectivity in the ravine by designing pathways, walkways, seating areas and bridges that allow nature and humanity to enjoy this space together.
4) creating a seed bank from the remanent native trees in Small’s Creek that represents the ecological legacy not just of the ravine but of neighborhood forests and trees.
5) preserving the last remaining open-air segment of a lost river in Toronto; part of our landscape that used to be common across Toronto.
6) responding proactively to climate change and extreme weather events using creative and scientifically proven methods.
Why is this important?
The plans for rail expansion in Toronto’s Lakeshore East corridor by Metrolinx will relieve congestion and improve public transportation, but can and should be done without the wholesale destruction of a community’s green spaces including the environmentally sensitive ecosystem of Smalls Creek Ravine and Williamson Park Ravine.
There remains an opportunity for Metrolinx to create a model for sustainable city building by working with the affected communities in finding ways to restore and revitalize these greenspaces as part of their construction work.
Help us send a message to Metrolinx that they cannot ignore the communities in which they operate.
Update - Feb 2022
Metrolinx has clear-cut and destroyed over 200 trees, the majority of which created a canopy that took over 100 years to establish. This will be replaced with a permanent concrete wall up to 10 ft tall and over 400 ft long in addition to a replacement concrete that is now 6 meters wide and above ground. As well, the path connecting the west and east sides
UPDATE January 7, 2021 - Since the launch of this petition Metrolinx has publicly responded, saying they have indeed conducted and continue to conduct community consultation. This is true. But it changes nothing about the content of this petition. To date, Metrolinx has only publicly released the same documents SmallsCreek.ca had to first obtain through a Freedom of Information request. Their Dec 24th blog post reiterated much of what they have said already, and while mentioned it is interested in further community consultation, takes the tone that this project - still slated to begin as early as the end of January 2021 - is a done deal. SmallsCreek.ca will continue our community outreach until Metrolinx recognizes the petition's requests and engages in a meaningful dialogue that takes our positions into active consideration. We want more trains & two way service. We want a 4th track, but ask our provincial transportation stakeholders to install the transit, without sacrificing an important community ecosystem. Learn More at www.smallscreek.ca