If you’ve walked along the Toronto waterfront in recent years, there’s no doubt that you’ve noticed the various WaveDecks along it. These wooden structures along the waterfront serve more of a purpose than simply looking good. They appear in various places along the waterfront in the areas between Bathurst Street and Parliament Street, and while they look great along the water, they also help to provide a naturalized environment for the aquatic life in our waters.
These whimsical structures are far more complex than they appear. Waterfront Toronto and Aquatic Habitat Toronto worked together on this project to help protect the habitats along the most heavily used areas of Toronto’s shorelines. They knew that there would be an impact on the habitat below due to the shade produced by the decks on top of this area being so developed. A variety of structures were installed to help make this a safe space for plants and fish - river-stone shoals, boulders, small aggregate, root balls, and tree logs, all lie beneath these unique WaveDecks! Bet you never would have guessed that.
For example, take a look at what’s below the Spadina WaveDecks:
A lot more complex than you probably thought, right?
These structures actually help to provide more space for underwater plants to take root which results in more shelter and foraging opportunities for the fish along Toronto’s waterfront. It’s pretty fascinating to know that the WaveDecks were able to successfully incorporate such habitats into a project that looks like it could simply be some fun public art along the waterfront.