PHOTOS: A Look at a Stunning Waterside Oasis Coming to Mississauga
You might think Mississauga has been completely—or mostly—built out.
But that simply isn't true.
While Mississauga already boasts a healthy population of well over 700,000 people, it's still working to redevelop underused swaths of land in order to not only welcome more (a natural byproduct of development), but also give current and future residents more destination neighbourhoods.
Over the past couple of years, the city—and late city councillor Jim Tovey—has made significant progress on the massive and ambitious Inspiration Lakeview redevelopment project involving the substantial Lakeview Generating Station lands.
In fact, we recently found out that the The Four Sisters are officially a memory, as the massive 177-acre site which will transform Mississauga's waterfront has been been sold for roughly $275 million.
For those who are unaware, the Inspiration Lakeview Master Plan calls for the aforementioned 177-acre brownfield site to transform to a mixed-use community with a variety of residential building types, parkland, cultural and employment uses, with buildings featuring environmentally sustainable designs.
The soon-to-be-developed Lakeview Village will be interesting in the sense that will essentially go from being an abandoned coal-fired power plant to a "vibrant, sustainable and more connected community."
According to Lakeview Community Partners (LCP), Lakeview Village will offer a mix of residential units alongside a number of institutional, cultural, office and retail spaces.
According to a recent Bloomberg News article, the site could be worth about $6 billion.
If you can't place the area, Lakeview Village is located in southeast Mississauga on Lake Ontario, approximately 3.8 kilometres east of Port Credit, near the western limits of the City of Toronto.
The site has incredible potential, as it's well connected to major roads and highways, with Lakeshore Road East forming the north boundary of the site. It also offers convenient access to both the QEW and Highway 427.
Lakeview Village is located approximately 7 kilometres from the City Centre (Hurontario St. and Burnhamthorpe Rd.). To the west of the site, Hurontario Street provides a direct connection to the City Centre from Lakeshore Road.
It's also a hub that will be reasonably well-connected to existing transit systems, as regional transit in the vicinity of Lakeview Village includes Long Branch GO Station and Port Credit GO Station,
As of now, local transit includes bus services along Lakeshore Road via MiWay and TTC streetcar and bus service departing from the Long Branch loop.
"Lakeview Village will create a place where people can connect with Lake Ontario. Delivered by Lakeview Community Partners Limited, this new community for the City of Mississauga will be a model in green and sustainable urban living," an introduction to the master plan reads.
LCP says it intends to build unique spaces that will create a dynamic, walkable and connected place in the heart of Mississauga's waterfront. To do this, it will have to transform Mississauga's coastline by remediating 67 acres of waterfront land. The remediated land will be transferred back to the city, effectively giving Mississauga the prime waterfront real estate that's taken quite some time to materialize.
The mixed-use community will house between 15,000 and 17,000 people and create up to 4,500 new jobs.
It will also offer up to 8,000 new housing units and boast a mix of townhouse, mid-rise and high-rise buildings.
The brand new neighbourhood will also offer a ton of commercial space, boasting up to 130,000 sq. ft. of available retail space.
"Lakeview Village will breathe new life into Mississauga's waterfront, reconnecting the community back to the water’s edge with a diverse mix of residential offerings, as well as institutional, cultural, office and retail spaces," the master plan reads.
"Sustainability is the key foundation of this new community, both through its design, as well as the mix of uses, public spaces, and diverse programming that will be delivered at Lakeview Village. The project will support and contribute to local commerce, and will yield over 3,000 new jobs."
The new area will feature a number of districts and neighbourhoods, including Lakeview Square, Waterway Common, Inspiration Point, Serson Innovation Corridor, the Marina, Ogden Green and Lakeshore Gateway.
According to the master plan, Lakeview Square will be the heart of the area, offering above-grade residential and office space that will be enhanced by a "significant cultural hub." According to the master plan, this hub will reflect the diversity of the city and its residents by offering multicultural programs, specialty uses and waterfront attractions.
Earlier this year, the city said that two projects are underway - access to the western pier and the innovation corridor feasibility study - to support public access to the waterfront and to attract innovative industries to the area.
As far innovation goes, LCP says Mississauga's idea for the Serson Innovation Corridor will be "actively integrated into the heart of Lakeview Village." The campus will be designed to deliver a new innovation centre at the foot of the water and close to transit.
According to the plan, the Waterway Common will be the central gathering space for the community that links the existing park system to the west with the square.
This could be where you see more high-rise condos.
"Providing spaces for activity as well as quiet reprieve and defined by mid and high-rise development, Waterway Common will be a year-round public gathering place for residents and visitors alike," the plan reads.
"It will also provide a strong visual connection to Lake Ontario to the west and an important sense of arrival to the development in the early years of the project.
It will feature summer splash pads, spring orchards, winter skating rinks and seasonal markets.
Once a former industrial pier, Inspiration Point will become one of Lakeview Village's "most inviting and celebrated features," according to the document.
Extending more than 600 metres into Lake Ontario, this attraction will provide visitors with a public art, cultural pop-ups and views of Toronto, Mississauga and Lake Ontario.
The Marina will be designed to offer a unique waterfront experience.
"Offering lakefront living across from Mississauga's public marina with panoramic views of the lake, this neighbourhood will be defined by its iconic buildings, setback from the public park, and trail systems continued from Waterway Common and Inspiration Point," the plan says.
Those looking for a quieter life might prefer to the Ogden Green neighbourhood.
Predominantly residential in nature, the plan says Ogden Green will include a mix of townhomes and mid-rise dwellings surrounding a neighbourhood park.
According to the plan, the village will be visually represented by the Lakeshore Gateway.
"The signature entry into Lakeview Village, Lakeshore Gateway will be a signal to the region of the unique experiences offered at the Village," the plan says.
"Defined by a mixed-use landmark building on Lakeshore Road, designed to be a signature of world class architectural standard, this gateway district will offer daily amenities such as a grocery store, pharmacy, bank, and other goods-and services."
The massive parcel of land will also be home a conservation area named after the late Tovey himself.
One of the lasting legacy projects of the beloved councillor, who represented the Lakeview area in Ward 1 from 2010 until his sudden passing in 2018, was a conservation area called the Lakeview Waterfront Connection.
According to the Credit Valley Conservation Authority, the project will transform the currently degraded section of the shore into a beautiful naturalized conservation area, which is expected to become a hub for waterfront recreation and a hotspot for wildlife migration.
The area will boast 12 hectares of meadow, 5 hectares of forest, 8 hectares of wetland and a hectare of cobble beach. Together, these connected habitats make up a complete coastal ecosystem, capable of supporting a wide variety of local fish and wildlife, as well as migrating birds.
And while we won't see shovels in the ground until 2020—and probably won't see a complete village for some years after that—it's encouraging to see Mississauga move forward on a complete community that doesn't feature acres of cookie cutter lots cluttered with McMansions.
Mississauga is growing up gracefully, and it's exciting to watch it happen.
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