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April 14, 2003
Controlled burn to temporarily close High Park
  
Parks and Recreation ---Toronto Urban Forestry Services will undertake a
prescribed or "controlled" burn in High Park and South Humber Park on Tuesday,
April 15, 2003. A media briefing will be held at 11:30 a.m. in High Park's
Grenadier Restaurant parking lot. It is expected that the burn in High Park
will be initiated before noon.

Notices advising users of the temporary closure of High Park will be placed at
park entrances at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow. Media vehicles will be given access to
High Park until 11:30 a.m., after which time their entry will be limited and
dependent on the progress of the burn.

"Prescribed burns, executed in the past by Urban Forestry Services, are part of
Toronto's long-term urban forest management plan. This prescribed burn serves
to restore and sustain the rare black oak woodlands and savannahs in High
Park," says Richard Ubbens, City Forester, Toronto Parks and Recreation. "These
rare vegetation communities are at risk of extinction in Toronto and throughout
North America."

Under ideal weather conditions, the smoke from the prescribed burns will lift
and not affect surrounding neighbourhoods. It is possible, however, that some
smoke will reach residential areas near the parks. Individuals with asthma or
high sensitivity to poison ivy are advised to limit their exposure to smoke by
keeping windows closed or leaving the area on the afternoon of the burn.

A Fire Boss has written the approved burn plan. "Fire Boss" is a Province of
Ontario designation for a certified individual, who has full responsibility for
planning and carrying out the burn with a qualified crew. City staff from
Toronto Parks and Recreation will assist with the burn and Toronto Fire and
Police Services will assist as required by the Fire Boss.

During the months to follow, City staff, scientists and volunteers from the
community, including members of the High Park Citizens' Advisory Committee,
will monitor and analyse the beneficial effects of the burn and implement
additional forest management measures.


Media Contact
City Forester, Toronto Parks and Recreation
416-392-1894

 

 

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