The federal government has pledged $150 million for four flooding and storm mitigation projects in Toronto and York Region. Last summer many residents across the GTA endured water-filled basements and power outages following heavy rainstorms.
The initiatives include a new relief storm sewer under Memorial Park in mid-town Toronto that will cover an area of about 75 hectares. This will improve protection against basement flooding for some 2,400 residents.
Lou Di Geronimo, general manager of Toronto Water, said detailed design work for the project is set to get underway, and the city hopes to start construction within about two years. The entire project should be finished in five years, Toronto Mayor John Tory told reporters.
Tory said the new funding will help advance the city’s midtown relief storm sewer project, which is part of the city-wide basement flooding protection program.
In York-Durham, crews will “twin” the existing 35-year-old main sewage line to “minimize potential spills, particularly during storms,” according to a news release. The move will impact more than 133,000 residents in East Gwillimbury, Newmarket and Aurora.
That project will cost about $48 million.
In Markham, flood control measures will help protect “vulnerable areas” from flooding, including the Don Mills Employment Lands and West Thornhill. Some 18,000 residents will be impacted by this work.
More than $48 million will go to this project.
Stormwater flood mitigation projects in Vaughan is expected to reduce the impact of flooding” for more than 35,000 residents, to the tune of more than $16 million.
The funding will come out of the federal Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund, a $2-billion, 10-year program designed to build the infrastructure needed for communities to withstand natural disasters.
The flood protection projects will “improve flood resiliency and protect our neighbourhoods against the effects of climate change or extreme rainfall,” he said.
Insurance companies must heave a sigh of relief given the huge payouts they’ve been forced to make their clients. – CINEWS