Ontario Place transformation begins with opening of new waterfront park and trail
Former theme park being turned into a 'modern, vibrant, year-round waterfront destination'
A grey, drab staff parking lot located at the eastern end of Ontario Place has been transformed into a new public waterfront park and trail that is made up of three hectares of green space.
The transformation is part of the rejuvenation of Ontario Place, which was closed to the public five years ago due to dwindling admissions.
"This park and trail brings the beauty and serenity of Ontario's landscapes to the heart of downtown Toronto," said Eleanor McMahon, Ontario's Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport.
The new Trillium Park is connected to the city by the William G. Davis recreational trail, which is named after Ontario's premier in 1971, the year when Ontario Place first opened.
"We're transforming Ontario Place so that a new generation can continue to build memories, and can see the beauty of our capital city from a new perspective," said Premier Kathleen Wynne, who cut a ribbon to officially open the new park on Monday morning.
The government says there are more changes to come on the west island, occupied by venues for public exhibitions known as pods.
Ontario Place will be back to its original vision of a public space people can enjoy for free, according to McMahon, rather than an amusement park where you pay admission.
Good morning Ontario! View from the summit at the new park and trail at <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/OntarioPlace?src=hash">#OntarioPlace</a>. Opening this June. <a href="https://t.co/StW9NhapTh">pic.twitter.com/StW9NhapTh</a>—@ExploreON
"It will now remain open and accessible to all Ontarians," said McMahon.
The government says it's taking steps to turn the site into a "modern, vibrant, year-round waterfront destination."
"It's absolutely spectacular they've done a fabulous job basically resurrecting Ontario Place," said Rick Vyrostko, who was walking along the new trail. "They have really spent proper time to build out the infrastructure around the grass. The views, the sights, the stones, it's absolutely amazing."
The new waterfront park and trail are both currently open to the public.
With files from Canadian Press