Hurricane Sandy motivated us to move a project that’s been lurking around for over a year to the front burner: mapping areas that would be at risk of flooding in a similar extreme storm in the GTA. The most obvious starting point is Hurricane Hazel, still Canada’s most lethal natural disaster and the basis of Ontario flood planning ever since. Our story/map package looked at the 42 areas thought to be at risk of destructive flooding in a similar extreme storm.
One typical problem area is the historic village cores of now-suburban, once-agricultural towns in the 905. Many were built around mills, which of course needed access to river water. The resulting communities, however picturesque, would never have been built today where they are.
A good example of the problem is downtown Brampton, focus of Mark McAllister’s story for TV last night (this was our other digital-to-TV story).