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Saturday, April 7 • 12:30pm - 5:00pm
Tour 2: SOLD OUT--Shaping and Reshaping Toronto's Waterfront (12:30pm-5:00pm)

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Tour Leaders: Gene Desfor, York University; and Jennefer Laidley
Toronto’s waves of waterfront development have had an enormous impact not only on the landscape at the water’s edge, but also on the growth of the entire city. Our van and walking tour, highlights the history of those waves of change in the central waterfront, from Bathurst Quay and the Island Airport on the west to the Port Lands and the Leslie Street Spit on the east. The tour focuses on the intertwined political, economic, and ecological forces that have shaped and reshaped the waterfront over the past 100 years.

The tour will proceed in two parts. First, we’ll set the context for the tour with a short overview of waterfront development during the 20th century, illustrated with historical lantern slides. Then we’ll board a large van to visit sites that embody processes of change. We’ll see where new landforms have been produced; a river straightened and shackled, but soon to be “re-naturalized;” manufacturing plants established and demolished; streets built and rebuilt; an airport constructed; , commercial and office buildings sprouted; city parks and beaches appeared and disappeared; residential condominiums erected, and cultural and entertainment venues fabricated.

Some of the particular sites we’ll visit are:
  • Eireann Quay, Ireland Park and the Island Airport
  • Harbourfront and the new Queens Quay Boulevard
  • Queens Quay Terminal Building
  • The East Bayfront and Sugar Beach
  • The Port Lands and the Leslie Street Spit
  • The mouth of the Don River and the Keating Channel
  • Corktown Commons and the West Don Lands
  • The Distillery District
Tips: Spring weather in Toronto may be wintery, so be prepared for cold winds. Wear comfortable clothing and walking shoes--we'll be getting on and off the van several times for walks.

Special NoteThe tour will start with a slide presentation at the Sheraton from 12:30 to 1:00pm.  The location of the pre-tour presentation will in the Elgin Room located on the second floor of the Sheraton.
Maximum capacity: 20 persons
Method of travel: Walking and Shuttle Van

Date: Saturday, April 7
Approximate time period: 12:30pm—4:30pm or 5:00pm
**Meeting time: 12:30pm in Sheraton Hotel –Elgin Room on 2nd Floor
Ticket Price: $26.00 USD

Click here to purchase tickets for Tour 2: Shaping and Reshaping Toronto's Waterfront!

avatar for Jennefer Laidley

Jennefer Laidley

Hi! Welcome to our Toronto waterfront tour! Gene and I are co-editors of Reshaping Toronto's Waterfront (2011, University of Toronto Press) and Transforming Urban Waterfronts (2011, Routledge, with Q. Stevens and D. Schubert). I studied with Gene at York University and received my... Read More →
avatar for Gene Desfor, York University

Gene Desfor, York University

Gene Desfor has been actively involved in waterfront development issues since the 1980s both as an academic and concerned citizen. He is a Professor Emeritus at York University's, Faculty of Environmental Studies where he taught graduate courses on urban development processes for... Read More →

Saturday April 7, 2018 12:30pm - 5:00pm EDT
Sheraton Hotel – Meet in Elgin Room on 2nd Floor