Photographs of the Changing Port Lands

Artists Vid Ingelevics and Ryan Walker have spent the last few years documenting the ongoing transformation of the Port Lands. Their work captures the complexities of this seven-year construction project. Through their lens, you can see all the big and small moments that are leading us from blank, post industrial land to a restored river valley.


The Changing Port Lands

The 100-hectare construction site is a place where hundreds of crew members spend long days and nights. These photos capture day-to-day activities, large and small.


image of panorama photos


Watch the expansive construction site transform.



Here is your chance to get to know people who work on site.

© Waterfront Toronto. All rights reserved. To request permission to replicate these images, please contact us.

Panorama of new river valley, September 2020


Construction on this major infrastructure project started in 2017 and will continue through 2024. Over the next five years, our construction will occupy an area the size of 100 football fields. Work will range from delicate underwater planting to major excavation with machinery often used in mining operations.

Artists Vid Ingelevics and Ryan Walker will spend five years on site during construction to  document changes to the Port Lands. Their work captures the complexities of this large construction project and will serve as an archive of this moment in Toronto’s history.

About the artists

Ryan Walker is a Toronto-based photographer, specializing in documentary, editorial photography, and visual advocacy. Having graduated in 2013, Walker holds an MFA in Documentary Media from Toronto Metropolitan University. He is also an educator for the BFA Photography Programs at Toronto Metropolitan University and Sheridan College.

Vid Ingelevics is a Toronto-based photographer/artist, independent curator, writer and educator. He holds the position of Associate Professor Emeritus in the School of Image Arts, Toronto Metropolitan University.

Other Work by the Artists

Toronto based photographers Vid Ingelevics and Ryan Walker reflect on their ongoing photographic investigation of Waterfront Toronto’s Port Lands Flood Protection project with the CONTACT Photography Festival 2020.

In July 2019, the two began photographing one of the largest infrastructure projects in Toronto’s history, Waterfront Toronto’s Port Lands Flood Protection project.

A selection of images captured as part of this project are being featured in the annual CONTACT Photography Festival. This second series of photographs installed on utilitarian wooden structures built for their CONTACT 2020 exhibition, Framework, focuses on the complexities of excavating a post-industrial site and the resulting environmental cleanup.

A Mobile Landscape offers views of the vast, dynamic waterfront landscape lying behind the construction hoardings, and therefore unseen by the general public. The outdoor installation, takes viewers on a journey from the ESSROC Silos at Cherry and Commissioners Streets east along Villiers Street. Be sure to look for it next time you walk, bike or drive through the Port Lands. You can also check out their online exhibition.

CONTACT 2021 Core Outdoor Installation

Since 2019, Toronto-based artists Vid Ingelevics and Ryan Walker have photographically documented the Port Lands Flood Protection Project, one of the most ambitious civil works programs in North America. Presented along Toronto’s Villiers Street median, Greenwork, the series of images in their fourth documentation, focuses on the social nature of labour and the greening process, as well as the juxtaposition between manual labour and heavy machinery.

Photographed throughout 2022, the images in Greenwork reveal the sheer scale of planting initiated by the Port Lands Flood Protection Project. It also marks a substantial shift in labour strategies, from the heavily-mechanized operation of the project’s early years to a more intimate, manual labour approach in recent phases of the massive undertaking.