Toronto Island Park is the #1 attraction in Toronto and drawing more visitors ever season.

The Project

Toronto Island Park, the #1 attraction in Toronto according to TripAdvisor, is drawing more and more visitors, in all seasons. Indeed the number of tourists from Toronto, the rest of Canada and many other nations is increasing by leaps and bounds every year.

During the summer, City of Toronto ferries transport visitors to Centre, Hanlan’s and Ward’s Islands. But for over six months of the year, from mid-October to late April, the ferries travel only to Ward’s Island, the only “entrance” to the park while Centre and Hanlan’s Islands are shut down. Facilities at the Ward’s dock are extremely limited in the off-season: there is no heated shelter, limited access to washrooms, water and food, and virtually no information about the Island’s history, geography and environment, or the Island community.

A group of Toronto Island residents has initiated a project, under the auspices of the Toronto Island Community Association, with the following objectives:

  • To improve the facilities at Ward’s dock for everyone who comes to the Island
  • To create a more aesthetically pleasing “entrance” to Ward’s Island, the only gateway to Toronto Island in the off-season
  • To enhance the visitors’ experience by providing information about the park

This is a large project expected to take many years to complete, but the committee is now working in partnership with City of Toronto Parks on a very important mid-term goal: the restoration of the historical Waiting Shed, to provide a much-needed heated building in which visitors can wait for the ferry in the cold winter months. Used as a shelter since it was built in 1916 at Ward’s dock, the Waiting Shed now requires a complete overhaul. The plan is to insulate and heat the building while maintaining many of the lovely heritage aspects, such as the roofline, finials and wood siding. Wheelchair accessibility, opening windows, lighting and Wi-Fi are among the other anticipated improvements.

For more information, visit the project website: Or contact us at


The Impact

Your donation will help to restore and upgrade the 1916 Waiting Shed at Ward’s Island so that everyone who comes to the Island has a warm and welcoming place to wait for the ferry that will return him or her to the city.