City of Toronto Pilots Parks Wayfinding for Emergency Services

MultimediaCommunity Outreach, Emergency Services Cooperative Efforts, Training & Safety

Map of High Park

[ A+ ] / [ A- ]

The City of Toronto’s Parks, Forestry and Recreation division, in partnership with Toronto Police Service, Toronto Paramedic Services and Toronto Fire Services, is initiating an Emergency Services wayfinding pilot project in High Park and Centennial Park (Etobicoke) to improve the City’s capacity to respond to emergencies and non-emergency/incidents in its parks.

“The purpose of the pilot project is to implement a wayfinding approach to help Emergency Services locate the scene of an emergency or an incident within larger parks and on park trails,” said Councillor Michelle Berardinetti (Ward 35 Scarborough Southwest), Chair of the Parks and Environment Committee. “This is an inaugural pilot project for Toronto and, if successful, is expected to contribute to improving park quality, safety and accessibility.”

The Emergency Services wayfinding project includes the installation and mapping of physical location identification signs at various Park Location Points. Geospatial data for the Park Location Points will be stored in the City’s emergency services mapping systems through the Geospatial Competency Centre.

The yellow Park Location Point signs are highly visible and easy to read, with instructions to call 911 or 311 with the unique Park Location ID number. Park Location Point signs will be installed in areas of high use and along trails at intervals no greater than 500 metres throughout the park. A total of 72 of the signs will be mapped out and installed in High Park and Centennial Park (Etobicoke) on waste bin posts, life saving stations, light poles and one picnic area, with the potential for an additional seven signs to be installed.

Residents, visitors and staff who want to report a 911 emergency or 311 non-emergency incident can find and use the Park Location ID number to help identify their specific location.

Parks were selected for the pilot based on the following criteria: high volume of calls at the location, the park-terrain and size that may make it difficult for an individual to identify his/her location to 911/311, high use and permitting in the park, and past difficulties in locating incident scenes in areas where there is no street address.

Pilot Project Schedule:
• Park Location Point sign installations: April to May 2015
• Pilot to run until Labour Day 2015
• Pilot assessment and recommendations report to Parks and Environment Committee: fall 2015

High Park is located at 1873 Bloor St. W.
Centennial Park (Etobicoke) is located at 256 Centennial Park Rd.

More information about the pilot project is available here.