The state of the East Don River has been a steadily growing concern among Bayview Village residents, especially after discovering in February that the footbridge at Newtonbrook Creek at the north end of the East Don River had been closed by the City of Toronto.
“One of the steel abutments on the east side [of the footbridge] has literally, because of erosion and flooding, fallen into the creek.” said Sharon Jones from the Bayview Village Association (BVA).
However, the Newtonbrook Creek footbridge closure is only the latest incident in an ongoing community push toward ravine remediation, since a sinkhole opened up at Finch Avenue East and Bayview Avenue in 2013, which the BVA alleges is linked to flooding in the ravines. Moreover, residents are concerned about bank erosion, fallen trees and fallen river banks, leading to flooding.
Jones and the rest of the resident association members allege little work has been done, even after multiple walk throughs of the creek with Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) and city staff.
In a statement to Post City, Matt Johnson, manager of erosion risk management with TRCA, wrote, “TRCA has 16 erosion control structures in this area that are overall in good condition with some being impacted by bank erosion.”
He went on to confirm that there were several projects ongoing related to the creek area.
According to Jane Arbour with City of Toronto Parks, Forestry & Recreation, “The footbridge is scheduled to undergo work to address these safety concerns and will be reopened as soon as possible following the completion of this work.”