URGENT ACTION: Contact Ottawa City Council, Mayor, Domtar before October 8 rezoning decision on Chaudiere Islands

 

CALL TO ACTION FOLLOWS MAIN MESSAGE:

The Planning Committee hearing from one of the many people who spoke in opposition to the rezoning plans.
The Planning Committee hearing from one of the many people who spoke in opposition to the rezoning plans.

On Wednesday October 8th (meeting starts at 10:00am), Ottawa City Council will make their final decision on the rezoning application for Chaudiere and Albert Islands, giving the go ahead for condos, retail and office space to be built there by Windmill Development Group.

This follows the City Planning Committee meeting of October 2nd, where they heard from citizens who were overwhelmingly opposed to such a decision, who spoke of the sacredness of this to the Algonquin and other Anishinaabe peoples, and in support of Grandfather William Commanda’s vision for these islands, yet the committee unanimously went ahead and recommended the rezoning.

There will be no public input at Wednesday’s full council meeting, but you can contact your city councilor as well as the mayor in the lead-up to the meeting to voice your concerns.

As well, you can contact Domtar, who currently holds the land in question, and urge them facilitate its return to ensure the manifestation of the legacy vision of its rightful heir, late Alqonquin spiritual elder and leader Grandfather William Commanda.

The islands in question are envisioned to be public space, turned into parkland accessible to all, fitting with the sacred nature of the Chaudiere Falls / Asinabka site. This is part of William Commanda’s larger vision for the Chaudiere Falls and all the islands there.

Please consider voicing your support for Grandfather William Commanda’s vision, both to Ottawa City Council and to Domtar.

We note the historic and ongoing sacredness of this site for the Algonquin people, and all Anishinaabe peoples. It has been used for thousands of years as a place of prayer, and of coming together of peoples from many parts of this continent.

Now that the industry that has been built upon this site over the past 200 years is finished, why not return the site to its traditional spiritual use, honouring the ways of the First Peoples of this land?

Instead they are looking to give the go-ahead to private and commercial development at this site – is this truly the best way forward?

 
FOUR URGENT ACTIONS:

  • 2) Contact Domtar (President & CEO, Mr John D. Williams): information@domtar.com
  • 3) Public Consultation / workshop / site visit
    Tuesday October 7, between 4:30-8:00pm – click here for full details
    *Note: This is for other islands at Chaudiere Falls, not the two immediately under consideration for rezoning
  • 4) Invite your friends to the Facebook event to spread the word. Also share / email it or this post.
  • ALSO: if you would like to attend the Ottawa City Council meeting, it takes place Wednesday October 8th, starting at 10:00am, in Andrew S Haydon Hall at Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Ave W.

 
BACKGROUND INFO / RESOURCES:

 
MEDIA COVERAGE FROM THE PLANNING COMMITTEE HEARING:

 

URGENT: Chaudière Falls & Islands sacred site – Proposed condominium rezoning hearing, City of Ottawa

URGENT: 4pm Wed Oct 1st deadline to register to speak or submit to the City of Ottawa Planning Committee, that is meeting Thurs Oct 2nd 9:30am at City Hall to consider a rezoning proposal for two of the islands in order to allow the Windmill condominium development

Overview of planning vision for Indigenous & Peace Centres on sacred islands at Chaudiere Falls.
Overview of vision for Indigenous & Peace Centres on sacred islands at Chaudiere Falls.

Continue reading / scrolling for registration instructions & background information, along with compelling new 10-min video of renowned Aboriginal architect Douglas Cardinal.

The Planning Committee will decide upon a recommendation to put forward for voting on by the full City council on Oct 8th, but there will be no opportunity for public input at the Oct 8th meeting.

Giving the go-ahead to building condominiums on these islands would detrimentally impact the ability to achieve the full vision of the late Algonquin spiritual leader Grandfather William Commanda for this religious / sacred site.

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TO REGISTER: Contact Committee Coordinator, Christopher Zwierzchowski at 613-580-2424 extension 21359, in advance of the meeting, by at least 4:00 pm on Wednesday, to register to speak to the committee (presentations of 5 minutes maximum).

Or, you can email him a written submission, by the same deadline (or possibly anytime before midnight on Wed Oct 1st), at: christopher.zwierzchowski@ottawa.ca – also cc: hieu.nguyen@ottawa.ca

OF NOTE: If a person or public body does not make oral submissions at the public meeting or make written submissions to the City of Ottawa before the proposed official plan amendment is adopted or the zoning by-law is passed, the person or public body is not entitled to appeal the decision of the Council of the City of Ottawa to the Ontario Municipal Board.

ALSO: Call or email your local councillor, especially if they are on the Planning Committee, to express your concern. Members of the Planning Committee are: Peter Hume, chair; Jan Harder, vice-chair; Stephen Blais; Rainer Bloess; Rick Chiarelli; Catherine Hobbs; Allan Hubley; Bob Monette; Shad Qadri; Tim Tierney. Contact information for councillors is at: http://ottawa.ca/en/city-council

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BACKGROUND INFORMATION on Grandfather William Commanda’s vision for the Sacred Chaudière Site, and on the City’s rezoning proposal:

VIDEO – Architect Douglas Cardinal explaining things (link to watch on youtube)

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Wed Dec 11 – Public consultation on future of Chaudiere Falls islands / Domtar property

Photo © The Ottawa Citizen
Photo © The Ottawa Citizen

The proposed sale and development of islands at Chaudiere Falls could impact the possibility of the creation of the Asinabka National Indigenous Centre envisioned by late Algonquin leader Grandfather William Commanda.

Windmill Development Group is holding a public consultation on Wed Dec 11 at the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Gatineau, with an open house from 5-9pm featuring bilingual presentations at 6pm and again at 7:30pm

You can attend to help put the Asinabka vision on the map!

The developers ask that you register in order to attend the consultation (which they are now also calling a ‘promo event’) at the bottom of this link: www.the-isles.ca

(Invite people on Facebook)

 

OFFICIAL NOTICE OF CONSULTATION FROM WINDMILL
http://www.windmilldevelopments.com/2013/12/windmill-hosts-community-consultation-for-domtar-lands/

 

INFO ON THE ASINABKA VISION
www.asinabka.com/
3min video: http://youtu.be/uFC6aSSmRs0
1-pg doublesided bilingual brochure for printing:
https://ipsmo.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/asinabka-bn-brochure-final-french-eng.pdf

Message from Romola, Grandfather Commanda’s assistant:
” I am also mindful of Grandfather’s words after he first met with Domtar in 2006/7 about freeing the dam, in face of their negative response: – ‘We are not going to fight with boxing gloves; we talk’ – and he ended by telling the dozen or so representatives, ‘I love you, my brothers.’
Thanks for your interest and support in this effort to protect the Sacred Chaudiere Falls for the public-at-large versus privatization interests. All the best.”

 

MEDIA ON WINDMILL DEVELOPMENT PLANS

[Kitigan Zibi Algonquin Chief Gilbert] Whiteduck told the Citizen on Monday that a long talked-about National Indigenous Centre on Victoria Island should be an integral part of redevelopment of the former Domtar lands.
“I don’t believe this project should go forward without the indigenous centre. It should be the jewel in the crown” of Ottawa riverfront redevelopment, he said.
http://www.ottawacitizen.com/Domtar+lands+proposal+must+miss+opportunity+Gatineau+mayor+says/9237977/story.html

An Ottawa development company is “days away” from a deal to buy and transform waterfront property that once housed the Domtar paper mill.
Windmill Developments said they’re very close to buying 37 acres of land on Chaudière Island, with a plan to build a sustainable community they’re calling Les Isles.
A letter of intent from July said Windmill’s plan is to “reinvent a historically rich industrial space into a vibrant, world-class, sustainable, pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use development” that’s sensitive to the island’s history.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/chaudière-waterfront-redevelopment-deal-days-away-1.2447035