​Leslie-Barns Street Improvements

Location: ​Toronto, Ontario

The Toronto Transit Commission recently undertook streetscape improvement schemes at several intersections in downtown Toronto due to required upgrades to the TTC’s Leslie-Barns Streetcar Storage Facility. The redevelopment encompasses 1 mile of Leslie Street and four key intersections on Queen Street East: Hastings Avenue, Curzon Street, Rushbrooke Avenue, and Leslie Street itself.

Brown + Storey Architects was responsible for the urban planning of the project and were looking forward to using the ArborSystem® range to introduce additional tree plantings into the various areas of the project. The modularity and structural capabilities of GreenBlue Urban’s Pavement Support Systems combined with the rest of the ArborSystem® range, such as root management, provided the techniques required to ensure healthy establishment of the trees on the project while protecting the surrounding built infrastructure.

Tree plantings and patterned paving were implemented at each intersection to upgrade these previously neglected corners and help distinguish the intersections.

There were several utility conflicts throughout the proposed tree planting area found during excavation, most of which were unknown with no locates due to the age of the existing infrastructure.

After the discovery of these unknown utility lines, the project was placed on hold by the various utility companies affected – including hydro, communications, and stormwater. After working with the utility companies to explain the features of RootStop and discuss other similar projects that RootStop has been utilize to keep services safe from tree root intrusion, the project was put back on track. Once the benefits of GBU’s root barrier systems were explained to the utility companies, including case study proof of the systems success over many years, they were satisfied with the ability of the root barrier systems and approved the use of RootStop wrapped around each service conduit, allowing work to commence as planned around the utilities.

Learn more about root management from these publications
Root Management Overview
Managing the Root of the Problem
Root Management Selector

Despite these utility challenges, the ArborSystem was able to be easily installed around the existing utilities. This type of application is a perfect testament to prove the versatility and modularity of GreenBlue Urban’s Pavement Support System.

Leslie-Barns 1 - 3000x2500
Excavation uncovered numerous unknown utilities, as seen here
Existing utilities wrapped with RootStop and GBU Pavement Support System installed around them
Leslie-Barns 3 - 3000x2500
Completion of project

This redevelopment – including Hastings, Curzon, Rushbrooke, and Leslie Street intersections – was a great revitalization project that has greatly improved the area.