The Toronto Waterfront is one of the largest in North America and covers an area of 800 ha. The waterfront pursues a complex urban design and planning which follow the policy of “design excellence.” Revitalization efforts of the Toronto waterfront include continuous assessment of the waterfront performance, the process will be led and implemented by the Toronto Waterfront Revitalization
Corporation (TWRC). Design and planning will as well be carried out by TWRC.
The government has allocated resources for the redevelopment of the waterfront. Urban design will improve on many aspects of the city (ecological factors, providing a clean environment, infrastructure, wildlife among others) and on the livelihoods of people who live in the urban setting by providing employment, public enjoyment, economic development. The redevelopment is based on the future of the city. The key factors that governed the urban design were: the funds available, definition by politicians, the 2008 Olympics, global competition, public spaces, public consultation. Urban design focus on the beauty of the urban setting for human use. Governance of the Toronto waterfront was contracted to TWRC; disjoint from the government and stakeholders led to financial challenges in the redevelopment process. However, TWRC was not given enough power to govern the development of the waterfront. To counter the financial challenges new designs and plans were introduced.
The developed waterfront did not quite meet the planned vision and urban design as lack of funds led to refining the waterfront goals and objectives. For successful waterfront redevelopment, there is need to have: proper financial planning, deliver the agreed design between the public and the contractor, encourage a large population to take part in public participation process, limited politics in the redevelopment process. However, the waterfront has achieved some of the set objectives. For future sustainability, proper bodies should be set by the government to maintain the waterfront, proper government audits of revenue generated by the waterfront.