New measures in place to protect Toronto Island as summer ferry service begins
Chris Herhalt, CTV News Toronto
Published Friday, May 18, 2018 9:02AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, May 18, 2018 12:42PM EDT
The city says a number of new measures are in place to protect the Toronto Islands from flooding as summer ferry service began this week.
Record-high lake levels flooded significant parts of the islands last year, prompting the city to close the area to non-residents between May 4 and July 30.
As a result, city crews have installed new sump pumps, mobile “aqua dams,” dock restoration, and a new berm in front of Bayview Island that spans more than 100 metres.
“City staff has been working non-stop for the last 12 months restoring the islands from the flooding damage,” Mayor John Tory said in a news release. “If lake levels were to ever rise to the same level as they were last year, the City will not have to undertake similar closures."
The city says the lake level is 45 centimetres lower now than it was at the same time last year.
New stones have been placed on Ward’s Island to protect it against waves and 15,000 sandbags have been stockpiled on the island in case of future flooding.
On Wednesday, ferry service increased, with the first ferry departing Jack Layton Terminal for Hanlan’s Point at 6:30 a.m. and the first departure for Ward’s Island at 6:35 a.m.
The first Centre Island departure from Jack Layton Terminal is at 8 a.m.
Nearly 20,000 people arrive on the island each day during peak times in the summer season, including the May long weekend.