Toronto Design Guidelines for Greening Surface Parking Lots

Toronto (November 1, 2007)- The City of Toronto’s Design Guidelines for Greening Surface Parking Lots implement Built Environment and Natural Environment policies of the City’s Official Plan. This includes policies related to improving the public realm, enhancing pedestrian safety and comfort, increasing shade, enhancing the quality of landscaping, encouraging on-site stormwater management, and promoting the use of sustainable materials and technologies.


The Guidelines also provide design options and strategies to implement many environmental performance targets of the Toronto Green Development Standard (GDS). GDS performance targets relevant to the design of surface parking lots include measures for reducing the urban heat island effect, improving pedestrian and cycling infrastructure, using energy efficient fixtures and recycled materials, managing stormwater run-off on-site, and preserving and enhancing the urban forest.
The Design Guidelines for Greening Surface Parking Lots apply to the design, review and approval of all developments containing surface parking. The Guidelines have city-wide applicability and will normally apply to the evaluation of design alternatives in rezoning, official plan amendment and site plan applications. Owners of existing parking lots are not required, but are encouraged, to make alterations and improvements consistent with the Guidelines at the time of resurfacing or other appropriate phase in the development life-cycle. The Guidelines will also apply to the development of surface parking lots owned and/or operated by the City of Toronto or any Agency, Board or Commission of the City of Toronto. The Guidelines should be considered when opportunities arise to retrofit or enhance existing City parking lots.
Related Resource:
Toronto Design Guidelines for Greening Surface Parking Lots