Answer from Metrolinx and Infrastructure Ontario: The Corktown site is required for subway construction of the Ontario Line and is also the site of a proposed transit-oriented communities (TOC) development that will support local transit needs. Metrolinx and the Province plan to work with the City of Toronto, Indigenous partners, and the local community to raise the profile of the site in downtown Toronto where Upper Canada’s first parliament buildings used to stand. While the site is now mostly occupied by a parking lot, a car rental dealership, and a car wash, we want to make sure that any history hidden under the surface is interpreted and commemorated as part of the Ontario Line design.
Archaeologists will investigate the site beginning in the Fall of 2021 before construction begins so that important features and artifacts can be documented and conserved. As archaeological work gets underway and we begin to understand what type of features and archaeological resources exist, the First Parliament Working Group will advise the Province on appropriate commemoration for the history and artifacts that may be uncovered at the site within the proposed Corktown Transit-Oriented Communities development.
Through the First Parliament Working Group, Metrolinx and Infrastructure Ontario will be working with representatives of the City, the Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries, Indigenous Nations including the Missisauagas of the Credit First Nation as treaty holder, and Infrastructure Ontario to guide the archaeological and commemorative process. This includes the development of a robust Heritage Interpretation and Commemoration Plan for this site which builds on the Heritage Interpretation Strategy and the Master Plan work led by the City and reflects the community’s input.
Infrastructure Ontario looks forward to receiving input from the Working Group on cultural heritage commemoration that could be incorporated into a future Transit-Oriented Communities (TOC) development.