TORONTO - Any prospect of tearing down the Gardiner Expwy. died quietly almost two years ago.
Waterfront Toronto spent around $3 million in 2010 on the start of the Gardiner Expressway Environmental Assessment that would have looked at a number of options including tearing down the Gardiner east of Jarvis St.
But David Kusturin, Waterfront Toronto’s chief operating officer, said once the terms of reference for the EA were finished in the fall of 2010, the study was put on hold.
The remaining $4 million for the assessment was spent on other priority projects.
“At that time it was determined because there was no funding available and no real potential for funding for any of the potential solutions — tearing it down, rebuilding it, burying it — that the money would be reallocated to other Waterfront Toronto priority projects,” Kusturin told the Sun Wednesday.
He said the decision came during the budget process with the city, province and federal government. The EA remains “on hold” rather than scrapped entirely.
“At this moment the project is what we call unfunded, while it exists on our books there is no funding to complete it just yet,” Kusturin said.
Waterfront Toronto officials said the $3 million spent on the incomplete EA was not money lost.
“There would probably have to be a refreshing done of the terms of reference if the project is re energized,” he said.
Public Works chairman Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong called the proposal to look at tearing down the Gardiner “on the far back burner” for everyone involved.
Waterfront Toronto echoed that sentiment.
“I don’t think it is anyone’s priority right now,” Kusturin said.
“Waterfront Toronto has always said we can live with the Gardiner or live without the Gardiner, however it turns out,” he added.