Marottta Development Group Abandons Rand Estate Court Challenge in Niagara-on-the-Lake

The Marotta group has abandoned its court challenge of the legality of the Town’s heritage designation bylaws for the Rand Estate, paying $170,000 in costs in order to walk away from the appeal

A News Release from SORE (Save Our Rand Estate), a citizen’s group in Niagara-on-the-Lake

Posted March 17th, 2021 on Niagara At Large

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario – SORE is pleased to report that the Marotta group has abandoned its court challenge of the legality of the Town’s heritage designation bylaws for the Rand Estate.

One of a number of rallies, held by SORE and its supporters over the past five or six years, in support of preserving the historic Rand Estate in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario as a heritage site for now and future generations.

 Our supporters will recall that in January of 2019, Benny Marotta’s new lawyers launched a court challenge to the legality of the Town’s August 2018 Notices of Intent to Designate the four Rand Estate properties under the Heritage Act.   The Marotta group lawyers first contested SORE’s application to be made a party to that court challenge.

We just can’t let predatory, corporate greed compromise the integrity of historic places like this – Doug Draper, Niagara At Large

After that was decided in favour of SORE, the application was finally heard last year by the Superior Court. As previously reported, the Court soundly rejected that challenge‎ on all grounds and awarded costs to both the Town and SORE.

The Marotta group then appealed further to the Court of Appeal. That appeal was scheduled to be heard on March 30.   The appeal was recently abandoned by the Marotta group.

The terms of that abandonment are not confidential. The Marotta group paid the Town and SORE a combined $170,000 in costs in order to walk away from the appeal.   In SORE’s view, the Marotta court challenge was always spurious and a thinly-veiled attempt to bully the Town and its residents. SORE is grateful for the able support of the Town in pushing back against these bully tactics.

The Town recently passed final designation bylaws for the 144 and 176 John Street ‎components of the Rand Estate.   The Marotta group is maintaining its challenge before the Conservation Review Board to the merits of the Town’s Notices of Intent to Designate 200 John and 588 Charlotte under the Heritage Act. ‎That challenge is currently scheduled to be heard in early July.

The above aerial photos of the property of the historic Randwood Estate in Niagara-on-the-Lake, taken for the citizens group SORE (Save Our Rand Estate), before and after trees on the property were cut down in, 2018

Further details will be forthcoming on that in due course.   As always, we thank you for your continued support and interest.   Read article on website


Visit SORE’s website at – ](

[Updates from SORE archive](

A Brief Footnote from Niagara At Large reporter and publisher  Doug Draper – 

How about getting enough of Niagara, Ontario’s municipal politicians to vote “YES” to honouring the Niagara River as one of the world’s great wetlands next under an international RAMSAR banner?

To paraphrase the late, great American anthropologist and human rights activist Margaret Mead; ‘Never doubt that a small (or in this case, not so small) group of thoughtful and committed citizens can change the world (or at least, help preserve the historic integrity of a heritage property in Niagara-on-the-Lake,Ontario). It is the only thing that every has.”

I witnessed that same kind of people  power in Niagara-on-the-Lake 40 years ago when, as a young environment reporter working for The St. Catharines Standard, I followed a group of citizens in that community, called Operation Clean, play a leading role in getting Canadian and American environmental agencies on both sides of the Niagara River together to launch a plan to reduce toxic polltion in that great river.

Hopefully now, we will see enough citizens come together to press municipal leaders on the Ontario side of the Niagara River to celebrate the Niagara River as a globally significant wetland under an international Ramsar  umbrella for recognizing the value of so many of our world’s great waterbodies.

For a related story posted on Niagara At Large on this issue, click on – .

NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.

“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders

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