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Toronto is getting a new bridge. Here’s what it will look like | CBC News

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Toronto’s waterfront will be getting a new pedestrian bridge soon, after the city unveiled the chosen design on Monday.

The Equinox Bridge design, a suspended arch bridge, will connect downtown and emerging neighbourhoods like Quayside, with new housing and green space on Villiers Island, Toronto’s next waterfront community.

“The Equinox Bridge will provide passage to a new world of wonder and discovery,” said Waterfront Toronto chair Jack Winberg.

“It will open up the thousands of new market and affordable homes on ‘Villiers Island’, creating a link just minutes from downtown Toronto to the natural beauty at the Port Lands, where visitors and residents alike can find joy in new parks and harmony with the water.”

The new bridge design that will be built in the city’s Port Lands district is characterized by a signature S-shaped suspended “arch bridge” connected by a sculptural array of fanning cables, Waterfront Toronto said in a news release Monday. 

During the summer and winter solstice, sunsets will align exactly with the bridge’s arch, Waterfront Toronto said.

During the summer and winter solstice, sunsets will align exactly with the bridge’s arch, Waterfront Toronto said. (Courtesy of Waterfront Toronto)

The bridge is anticipated to provide a “vital” connection, for thousands of new residents and estimated millions of visitors, to a growing network of waterfront destinations and an expanded regional park system along the Don River, it said.

The selected design follows a competition that attracted submissions from leading local, national and international firms, Waterfront Toronto said.

The design was the work of a multi-disciplinary team, including UK-based firm WilkinsonEyre, local architect Zeidler Architecture and Indigenous consultants Two Row Architect.

Parliamentary Secretary and MP for Toronto-Danforth, Julie Dabrusin, announced $9 million in funding from the federal government toward the design and construction of the bridge, at a news conference Monday.

Dabrusin said projects like this bridge support an “affordable, inclusive and sustainable future for everyone.

“The Keating Channel pedestrian bridge will link residents with their communities, integrate nature and wildlife into our surroundings, and honour the relationship of Indigenous peoples with our city and history,” Dabrusin said.

An aerial shot of Keating Channel Pedestrian Bridge Rendering.
A rendering of the Equinox Bridge seen from an aerial point of view. The federal government is providing $9 million in funding for the design and construction of the bridge. (Courtesy of Waterfront Toronto)

Toronto Mayor Olivia Chow welcomed the federal investment Monday. 

“[The bridge] will create more access for the thousands of families who will live in this area in the future,” Chow said.

“On behalf of the future residents of these waterfront communities, I want to thank the federal government for their investment in building this critical piece of infrastructure.”

Crews have been working since 2017 to transform the Toronto Port Lands industrial area, including re-routing the Don River and building roads, bridges and parks.

Earlier this year, Waterfront Toronto said it’s on schedule to finish flood protection by the end of 2024, with parks opening in the spring and summer of 2025, and housing development to follow.

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