On Saturday, August 10 at 2:00pm on the southwest end of Ontario Place a few people interested in water access in Toronto are gathering to view and discuss the potential for a new swimming access point at Ontario Place. This is a fun, informal gathering for the people and organizations who want to dream together about restoring swimming access to Ontario Place.
Lake Ontario Waterkeeper has been sampling the area and posting results to Swim Guide each week this summer. We'll be meeting at the location you see in Swim Guide, so if you want to join us open the app or visit the website, find the Ontario Place beach, and follow Directions to find us. We'll also provide a demonstration of our sampling process, for those who are interested.
This area is a beautiful spot, with a feeling that you're miles away from the city. Paddleboards, canoes, and kayaks can pull up right on the shore. Our sampling results this summer show that this is some of the cleanest water in Toronto.
The site has so much potential, but it doesn't meet the criteria for an official beach in Toronto (yet!). The water is not as accessible as it should be and some debris/ fill may make water entry and exit hazardous for swimmers. Ontario Place is discouraging people from swimming there, even though increasing numbers of people are flocking to their new favourite "secret beach."
Imagine what it could be in the future. With re-engineered water access, like the Pier we helped to create in Kingston, this could be an iconic destination for people seeking nature in the heart of our city.
The goal of the discussion is to bring to life the imaginations of Toronto and Ontario residents to see what this location could become. We saw this happen in Kingston last summer with Breakwater Park and we know it can happen here.
Your attendance will make a difference. Join me and other interested waterfront lovers, if you can.