Laneway Puncture

The Laneway Puncture Demonstration Project is a community-centred greening project for two public laneways in the City of Toronto: Willowvale Lane and the laneway beside Fred Hamilton Park. The project demonstrates the viability of a unique landscape intervention strategy that reimagines the ecological and storm water management capabilities of public laneways.

“Laneway Punctures” are strategic incisions along the central drainage channels of paved laneways, which are repaved with open-celled pavers and planted with hardy, nursery-selected plant material.  In addition to beautifying the landscape and enhancing biodiversity, punctures increase ground permeability and divert storm water from the municipal sewage system by allowing it to percolate more slowly into the city’s soil.  

The Laneway Puncture Project Group worked with the Beautiful Streets division of Transportation Services to plan the infrastructural work at each demonstration site, and with two groups of local ‘laneway stewards’ to develop and implement a maintenance plan that will keep the Laneway Puncture in good health while passing on monitoring and stewardship skills to the two communities.

Partners: Beautiful Streets Public Realm Section, Transportation Services, City of Toronto; the David Suzuki Foundation; Victoria Taylor Landscape Architect; and Ecoman

Funding: Live Green Toronto; and Beautiful Streets, Public Realm Section, Transportation Services, City of Toronto

Image credit: Victoria Taylor Landscape Architecture