Government of Canada and City of Toronto invest in Toronto’s tree canopy and waterfront shoreline to protect against future flooding and storm events

News release

Toronto, Ontario, August 19, 2019—Now more than ever, communities need help adapting to the frequent and intensifying weather events caused by climate change. Reducing the impact of natural disasters such as flooding and wildfires is critical to keeping Canadian families safe, protecting local businesses and supporting a strong economy and the middle class.

James Maloney, Member of Parliament for EtobicokeLakeshore, on behalf of the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities; Julie Dabrusin, Member of Parliament for Toronto-Danforth; John Tory, Mayor of Toronto; James Pasternak, Chair of the City’s Infrastructure and Environment Committee and Councillor for Ward 6, York Centre; and John MacKenzie, Chief Executive Officer of the Toronto Region Conservation Authority, today announced funding for the Toronto tree canopy and waterfront shoreline project which will protect this area against future flooding.

In recent years, the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events have caused significant erosion and damage to shoreline protection infrastructure along Toronto's waterfront, as well as substantial damage to the tree canopy. In response the City has proposed the rehabilitation of shoreline infrastructures, waterfront parks, beaches, embankments, trails and pathways.

This investment will improve the community capacity to mitigate further flooding, erosion, land loss, saturated soil and weakened trees and root systems. By improving the shoreline resiliency and integrating tree canopy, the resilience of 19,335 people across an area of 9 km2 exposed to flooding will be ensured. The project will reduce the number of residents without essential services and it is expected to save over $6 for every $1 invested in long-term savings on recovery and replacement costs.

The Government of Canada is contributing over $11.9 million to this project through the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund. The City of Toronto is contributing over $17.9 million to the remaining costs of the project.


“Taking measures to prevent erosion along the Toronto shoreline will help protect families and businesses in Etobicoke-Lakeshore the Greater Toronto area during storms and the spring thaw. Investing in natural infrastructure increases the quality of life of residents and their children. These investments create good, well-paying middle class jobs, and set the stage for long-term economic growth that benefits everyone.”

James Maloney, Member of Parliament for Etobicoke–Lakeshore

“Extreme weather is becoming more severe, more frequent, more damaging and more expensive because of climate change. By investing in the infrastructure that protects our neighbourhoods, businesses, and families, we are building communities that can withstand future natural disasters and thrive for generations to come.” 

The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety

“The City of Toronto is proud to invest with the Government of Canada in protecting our shoreline and growing our tree canopy. We know this work will help keep our communities safe and better prepared for extreme weather. This project is another example of what can be accomplished when governments work together for the good of our residents and our city." 

John Tory, Mayor of Toronto

"Toronto and Region Conservation Authority is committed to protecting people, property, and reducing the potential for costly flooding and erosion damage in our jurisdiction including recent damage caused by record setting lake levels.  The City of Toronto Tree Canopy Project will allow TRCA to work with the City to make repairs and shoreline enhancements to numerous waterfront parks and communities including the Toronto Islands to make them more resilient to erosion and flooding.  We look forward to working with the City and community partners to implement this important project thanks to the Government of Canada’s generous contribution.”

John MacKenzie, President of the Toronto Region Conservation Authority

Quick facts

  • The Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund (DMAF) is a $2-billion, 10-year program to help communities build the infrastructure they need to better withstand natural hazards such as floods, wildfires, earthquakes and droughts.

  • DMAF is part of the federal government’s Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, which is providing more than $180 billion over 12 years for public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and rural and northern communities.

  • Investing in green infrastructure that helps communities cope with the intensifying effects of climate change is an integral part of Canada’s transition to a more resilient, low-carbon economy, which is among the commitments made under the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change.

  • Budget 2019, Investing in the Middle Class, is the government’s plan to create more good well-paying jobs, put homeownership within reach of more Canadians, help working people get the training they need to succeed, support seniors, and lay the foundation for national pharmacare.

  • Announcements in Budget 2019 build on the Government’s Investing in Canada Plan, under which the Government is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years to build infrastructure in communities across the country.

  • With many municipalities across Canada facing serious infrastructure deficits, Budget 2019 proposes a one-time transfer of $2.2 billion through the federal Gas Tax Fund to address short-term priorities in municipalities and First Nations communities.

Associated links


Ann-Clara Vaillancourt
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

Lawvin Hadisi
Office of the Mayor

Shane Gerard
Strategic Communications
City of Toronto

Media Relations

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