A fortuitous urban miracle, Tommy Thompson Park is an oasis of "accidental wilderness" on Toronto’s lakeshore.
Initially created as a landfill site on the city’s rapidly developing waterfront, the Leslie Street Spit, as the park is affectionately known, has seen its physical and ecological footprint grow dramatically over recent decades. Forests, grasslands, and wildlife now thrive – all within a stone’s throw of some of the most densely populated areas of North America’s fourth-largest city/
Accidental Wilderness is a rich and lyrical collection of essays curated by internationally recognized landscape architect and original designer of Tommy Thompson Park, Walter H. Kehm. A stunning collection of photographs by renowned landscape photographer Robert Burley complements these essays, which explore the city’s port origins; the principles and design of the park’s master plan; the native-plant succession process; the park’s unique flora and fauna; public advocacy efforts; and public recreation in the park and its effect on mental, physical, and spiritual health.
In an era when the dangers of climate change have begun to affect daily life, Tommy Thompson Park offers a hopeful narrative about how nature can flourish in, and contribute to, the well-being of twenty-first-century cities.