Shoring Design For Pier 27 On The Shorelines Of Toronto, Ontario

Aaron Shaffer


Pier 27 is a world-class waterfront condominium development located right on the shoreline of Lake Ontario at the foot of Yonge Street in downtown Toronto. The original Lake Ontario shoreline was located approximately along Front Street. The area from Front Street to the current shorelines was backfilled with landfill in order to create new piers and industrial development. Toronto shorelines main uses were for waste disposal, fuel storage, and heavy manufacturing.
In 1972, Canadas Prime Minister, Pierre Trudeau announced the seizure of the south industrial lands from Bathurst Street to York Street West through the new Harbourfront Project. The project would convert the land into residential and cultural districts for Toronto including performance stages, art galleries, parks, and boating areas. In 1986, the Toronto Harbour Commission (now the Toronto Port Authority) sold the industrial property east of Yonge Street to private developers. The land has since been converted into Pier 27, a series of condominium towers, overlooking the Harbourfront Project and Lake Ontario.
During Phase 1 and 2 of the development, many costly setbacks were encountered during the shoring installation including water issues, drilling of lateral supports into the timber dock wall, and soil issues related to the backfilled landfill including the discovery of a military artillery cartridge.
The following paper will highlight the issues with developing the downtown Toronto shoreline, a brief history of the shoreline, the shoring design for Pier 27, the challenges encountered during below grade construction, and the recent and future developments.



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D. Crombie, “Shoreline Regeneration For The Greater Toronto Bioregion Report”, Z1-1988/1-41-13E, Shoreline Regeneration Work Group, Ottawa, ON., 1991

T. Chirnside, “Toronto, Ontario, Canada, About The Year 1867”, 1964

Isherwood Associates, “Pier 27: Project Archives”, 2011

F. Zhu, S. Bandukwala, “Geotechnical Investigation: Proposed Highrise Buildings, Pier 27, Queens Quay East At Yonge Street, Toronto, Ontario”, SP7823, Shaheen & Peaker Limited, March 26, 2008


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