Addressing the flood risk posed by the Don River in this area of the city was a fundamental requirement in planning for the West Don Lands community. Flood modelling shows that with a Hurricane Hazel type of storm, flooding from the Don River would extend well into downtown. The hill in Corktown Common is actually a highly engineered Flood Protection Landform (FPL) that protects the community and the downtown against severe flooding. There is no other structure like it in Toronto. The Canary District/West Don Lands community could not legally have been built without the FPL. If the FPL were to fail, then everything to the west of the park would be at risk.
The design of the FPL and preservation of its structural integrity was the foundation for the creation and design of the park. No interventions to the FPL are allowed that would compromise its integrity. These include ground penetrations (fence posts, light posts, trenches for utilities and services), and degradation of the vegetative surface (meadow). Any existing infrastructure on the east side of the hill is at the base of the FPL structure or else does not penetrate it in any significant way and does not impact the structure itself.