Reusing Fill as a Resource to Bring Nature Back to the Waterfront

Reusing Fill as a Resource to Bring Nature Back to the Waterfront

The transformation on the waterfront is truly amazing and we’re well on our way towards creating a beautiful 26 hectare conservation area in Mississauga’s Lakeview community. We’re able to do this by responsibly reusing construction rubble and fill. We’re treating fill as a resource so the local community can benefit.

Local Fill

A large portion of the fill is generated from Region of Peel capital works projects. Excess soil from water and sewer projects must be disposed of. Contractors often have to travel long distances to dispose of fill. It can now be sustainably reused locally. Having a local destination for fill keeps thousands of trucks from making that long journey each year, which means a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions!

Some of the fill comes from private sources, such as housing, condo and office building developments. The project generates revenue through tipping fees from these private fill suppliers. By treating fill as a resource, we can create a beautiful conservation area in the heart of a heavily populated area and significantly offset the cost to residents.

Drone Flight Video Over the Future Conservation Area

Clean Fill

Fill material selected to create the new conservation area is clean and inert. This ensures that the lake is protected and that trees and shrubs planted in the new conservation area can thrive. Source sites for fill material are tested at a lab to make sure it’s clean and suitable for use onsite.  Observations are also made of each load when it first enters the site and before it’s placed to ensure that the material arriving matches the materials from the approved source site.

Restoring Natural Function

The new conservation area will bring back much of the natural habitat and function that was lost over time. This includes creating two new wetlands, resuscitating a buried creek and creating valuable meadow, forest and beach habitat. Underwater, just off shore, we’ll create habitat features like spawning shoals for fish.

We’re bringing nature back to the waterfront.

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5 Comment
  • Douglas Markoff says:

    Hi there,

    Can fill that is full of Phragmites be used for projects like these, or this particular project?
    Or, is this fill considered contaminated and must be disposed of in a landfill?

    • Hi Douglas. That’s a great question! Most of the fill we receive is from subgrade sources (below the topsoil layer). When placed in the new conservation area, the fill is used for the for subgrade layer. If some Phragmites seed is present it will likely not germinate (too buried). The topsoil layer for the new conservation area will be specially sourced as we are very mindful of introducing invasive species to the site.

  • Bruno Jurak says:

    Great, as long as the fill is clean.

  • Ruth Grier says:

    When the TRCA suggested using fill to create waterfront parks I was one of many who were very suspicious of this initiative. However, 40 years later Col. Sam Smith Park in Long Branch is just one example of what has been achieved in terms of new greenspace with no apparent impact over the long term in water quality.

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