Day 3 of campers’ efforts to draw more public awareness to controversial plans for urban development in this significant natural area in Niagara region
A Brief One from Doug Draper, reporter and publisher, Niagara At Large
Posted August 16th, 2017 on Niagara At Large
Niagara, Ontario – A group of Niagara citizens is continuing their camp out in Thundering Waters Forest and is urging as many other citizens across the region to visit them and support their efforts to spare this 484-acre tract of woodlands, wetlands and savannah grasses in the southwestern end of Niagara Falls from any invasion of bulldozers and buzz saws at the hands of developers.
The group is drawing a good deal of media coverage for their efforts too, including a CBC report this August 15th that included a call on politicians across the region from one of the campers, Owen Bjorgan, to visit them in Thundering Waters and “learn more about the incredible land that is there.”
Growing numbers of Niagara citizens, including members of the Indigenous community in the region, have been pressing municipal politicians on Niagara Falls city council and the regional government to say ‘no’ to plans by a China government backed group – GR Canada – to site residential and commercial buildings on a portion of the lands, which included provincially significant wetlands in a Niagara River watershed shared by Ontarians and their New York neighbours.
The campers intend to remain in the forest 24/7 for a full week and are asking others to consider visiting them, joining them for the camp-out if they like, and support them in other ways by spreading the word about the occupation of Thundering Waters Forest and the reasons for it on social media.
The rest of us can also support the camper’s efforts by contacting their municipal and provincial representatives and urging them to save this special place for development and work with the developers to find another site for their plans that does not risk what little is left of Niagara’s wetlands and forests in an important watershed in the lower Great Lakes.
For those who wish to visit the campers, here are some directions – From the Queen Elizabeth Highway take the McLeod St exit (exit 27), go east on McLeod. In approximately 550 metres turn right on Dorchester Blvd. Follow Dorchester until it appears to end (Y in the road) and turn to the right, you will still be on Dorchester Road, continue on Dorchester across the railway tracks, about 75 metres after crossing the tracks you will see a trail going into the woods. It will be marked.
To read the CBC story on the Thundering Waters campers, click on – http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/hamilton/protestors-camp-out-to-defend-thundering-waters-forest-from-niagara-falls-development-1.4246637 .
For a related story on Niagara At Large, click on – https://niagaraatlarge.com/2017/08/14/niagara-citizens-calling-themselves-land-and-water-defenders-have-set-up-occupation-camp-in-thundering-waters-forest/ .
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