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Windsor moves to closer to getting a National Urban Park

A sign for the Ojibway Park Nature Centre, pictured on May 14, 2022 (Sanjay Maru/CTV News Windsor) A sign for the Ojibway Park Nature Centre, pictured on May 14, 2022 (Sanjay Maru/CTV News Windsor)

New Democrat for Windsor West Brian Masse said his private members bill C-248, to establish Ojibway National Urban Park (ONUP), would receive full support from the other parties, including the Liberals.

“After negotiations with the federal Innovation Minister and the Government House Leader, the government has decided to vote for the bill,” he said.

Masse added the Conservatives, the Bloc, the Green Party and his own NDP have already supported the bill, and expects a united parliament when it is scheduled for a vote in the House of Commons on April 26.

Masse felt it was big step as a majority of Liberals wanted the bill to include amendments during second reading and it passed with 169 in favour and 147 against.

At the time, the bill had the support of the Bloc, Green Party Conservative party, the NDP and two liberal MPs.

Later, on Oct. 28, a House of Commons committee heard from Caldwell First Nation, the City of Windsor, Wildland League and Friends of Ojibway testified in favour of the bill.

“In a bizarre twist, the government’s amendments to the bill were ruled out of order by their own Liberal committee chair,” Masse said.

It is hopped full backing could speed up action in the Senate, where there already exists support, according to Masse.

“Parks Canada has begun to speed up the processes that need to be done such as finalizing the transfer agreements with the City of Windsor, Transport Canada, the Province, the co-management of agreement with Caldwell First Nations and the parks management plan,” he said.

The proposed ONUP would include Ojibway Park, Spring Garden Natural Area, Black Oak Heritage Park, the Tallgrass Prairie Park, Ojibway Prairie Provincial Nature Reserve and Ojibway Shores.

“It would include a 33-acre greenspace and the last remaining, undeveloped natural shoreline in Windsor-Detroit,” stated Masse.

The area is home to hundreds of endangered species, which rely on migration through surrounding local parks for survival.

“This is an essential step in making this park a reality. I want to thank my colleagues for their support,” stated Masse. “All those years of work by so many people across the city and country brought this about.” Top Stories

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