Port Stanley Villager March 2020

The “Greta effect” may have a hand in the greening of Port Stanley’s harbourfront. Kettle Creek Public School (KCPS) student Carter Moyes channeled the renowned Swedish environmental activist, Greta Thunberg, at a recent public meeting on the Port Stanley Harbour Secondary Plan. While the impact of Thunberg’s straightforward rhetoric, and her students’ climate strikemovement – Fridays for Future – is heralded around the world as the “Greta effect,” the local equivalent was championed by a 13-year-old, Grade 8 scholar. Sitting near the front of the public meeting, accompanied by his grandmother Elaine, Moyes stood out in the crowd made up entirely of adults. His attentive gaze and no-nonsense question, however, helped frame the evening’s discourse. When he asked whether the man-made Port Stanley Berm, comprised mostly of Lake Erie dredge material, is stable enough to sustain development of a waterfront neighborhood, the adults at the front of the room responded with affirmations of geotechnical terms. Yet Moyes remains a sceptic on a level that Thunberg would be proud. “I was still upset,” Moyes said in a post-meeting interview, accompanied by Jayna Basson, a Grades 7 and 8 teacher at KCPS. “They’ve changed their plan, but it’s still not good enough.” The Port Stanley Harbour Plan – widely known as the “Dillon Report,” prepared by Dillon Consulting, Watson Associates, and RCI Consulting – now retains 70 per cent of the east and west harbour lands for public uses, such as waterfront parks, a pedestrian promenade and parking. As presented at the January 30, 2020 public meeting attended by Moyes and about 150 concerned citizens, the plan now restricts commercial-residential development on the east harbour lands – more popularly known as the Berm – to a southerly extension of Main Street toward Lake Erie. Dillon’s first public report on a Port Stanley Harbour Plan, presented in June 25, 2018, was widely criticized, particularly by the Port Stanley Village Association (PSVA), for blanketing a much larger portion of the Berm with development. “If they develop the Berm, you’re taking away the last green space on Lake Erie,” said Moyes. “That is a big loss. They need to get the public more involved.” Moyes’ interest in harbourfront development was stimulated by Basson’s Eco class. Students were monitoring the “Greta effect” Port StanleyHarbour Secondary Plan

Kettle Creek Public School student Carter Moyes (also on the front page) and Grades 7 and 8 Eco class teacher Jayna Basson look out over Port Stanley Harbour.

in the news when PSVA member Nancy Moore addressed the Eco class in September, informing students about harbourfront planning. Moore also invited students to participate in the PSVA Kite Festival on the Berm last summer “So, we looked at these protests globally and we looked at how we could express ourselves appropriately,” said Basson. At least a dozen classes were opened to discussions on the subject and students learned how to “appropriately and politely express themselves. “Part of our goal this year was to pass our knowledge forward and share it with the community,” said Basson. “Our concern was how would people even see the Berm if there are all these buildings down there. It just didn’t seem to fit. “We’ve all been to the Berm and have this passion that this is an important piece of land and it has to be used appropriately,” she added. In fact, Basson’s 26 students prepared letters of concern and sent them to Central Elgin Mayor Sally Martyn and the councilors. “We had a very passionate conversation in

“Events like the Railway City Road Races see tremendous success because our community places great importance on OUR Hospital and patient care excellence. From the generosity of our sponsors, donors and participants, it is wonderful to see how everyone comes together to support a cause that is important to them. ”

Railway City Road Races Committee Members

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