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February 2, 2009
Executive Committee endorses Toronto Beaches Plan
Today, the City’s Executive Committee endorsed the Toronto Beaches Plan − “Great City, Great Beaches.” The plan sets out a vision and an action plan to further enhance water quality, maintenance and operations, facilities and amenities, programming, and education and communications − with the goal of getting all Toronto swimming beaches to and beyond the international Blue Flag standard (open for swimming at least 80 per cent of the beach season).

Toronto is a great city on a Great Lake. Beaches are a key feature of Toronto's waterfront parks, which contribute significantly to the quality of life in the city.

“Revitalizing Toronto’s waterfront is a priority for all Torontonians,” said Toronto Mayor David Miller. “Our beaches are places for residents and visitors to play and enjoy nature; they contribute to and enhance the quality of life in Toronto. I’m proud that Toronto was the first community in Canada to certify its swimming beaches under the Blue Flag program, and that we’re taking steps to provide that same quality at all of our beaches. ”

The Toronto Beaches Plan was developed by Parks, Forestry and Recreation, Toronto Water and Toronto Public Health, in collaboration with the Toronto Police Service Marine Unit and Toronto and Region Conservation.

The staff report, which the Executive Committee endorsed, will be considered by Toronto City Council at its February meeting. It seeks direction to implement a number of key recommendations outlined in Great City, Great Beaches, including an action plan for 2009-2010 with short-term tasks, do-able within existing budget envelopes, which will effectively improve and enhance the City’s 11 swimming beaches. The report also identifies a number of steps to specifically target the water quality at three beaches (Sunnyside, Marie Curtis East and Rouge) with the poorest water quality.

Successful implementation of the plan will be indicated by fewer days that beaches are posted unsafe for swimming, the awarding of additional Blue Flags, and higher levels of user satisfaction at swimming beaches.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years, Toronto has won numerous awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contacts:
Stuart Green, Office of Mayor David Miller, 416-338-7119,
Toronto Parks, Forestry and Recreation Media Hotline, 416-560-8726,



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