Ottawa Citizen

Develop, just not on the islands

Re: Algonquins sign deal on culture, Aug 21; and Zibi project divides Algonquins in a clash of jobs vs. traditions, Aug. 18.


I know that many Algonquin people need work, and that Windmill can provide employment. Those opposing Windmill’s developmen­t of Chaudière and Albert Islands are not against developmen­t, but just not on those Islands. The area of the Chaudière Falls and Chaudière, Albert and Victoria Islands is Asinabka, the great Indigenous sacred and peaceful meeting place that has been used since time immemorial. The industrial use was but a moment in time which is now past. The area needs to be reclaimed for all people.

I have a little question: Will there be any fewer jobs if Windmill builds on LeBreton Flats instead?

The National Capital Commission wanted to re-naturalize the Islands as parkland in the 1980s under Jean Pigott. The National Capital Commission applied to purchase the industrial site from Domtar when they put it up for sale, but the Treasury Board refused to authorize it.

The federal government’s own Master Plan for the longterm developmen­t of the capital region, Jacques Gréber’s Plan for the National Capital, specifies on page 230 that “the most important improvemen­t will be the central park at the Chaudière Falls” once occupation by the “heavy and obnoxious industries” has ended. (The full text is available online.

According to pages 1 and 2 of the Introducti­on Gréber’s vision was dedicated by the federal government as Canada’s National War Memorial to the Second World War.) Let the NCC have the islands. If Windmill has their developmen­t surroundin­g a central park with a beautiful freed waterfall, it will only benefit them.

The Chaudière Falls were once Ottawa’s oldest and most beloved tourist attraction, and can be again. Tourism provides long-term employment. Lindsay Lambert, Ottawa

 ?? WILLIAM S. HUNTER, JR. ?? A sketch of a rescue at the Chaudière Falls in 1855.
WILLIAM S. HUNTER, JR. A sketch of a rescue at the Chaudière Falls in 1855.

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