The Oshawa Harbour has a long history going back to use of the present harbour area by First Nations. The first European pioneers settled in the Oshawa Harbour area and the harbour played an important role in these settlements.
The Oshawa Harbour was officially opened by Transport Canada in 1930 and was operated by Transport Canada until the creation of the Oshawa Harbour Commission (OHC) in 1960. The OHC managed the Federal lands in the Oshawa Harbour area and operated the Port of Oshawa from then until early 2012 when the current Oshawa Port Authority was created.
In April 1966, the City of Oshawa transferred approximately 61 acres of lands to the Government of Canada (“Crown”) for harbour purposes and the growth of the local economy, under the administration of the OHC.
In April 2006, the OHC and CN proposed a rail spur on a part of the 61 acres. This was opposed by the City which initiated a lawsuit against the OHC, CN and the Crown to get the 61 acres back. In September 2007, the Canadian Transportation Agency approved the construction of the rail spur but the City’s lawsuit continued with respect to the 61 acres.
In July 2010, the City, Crown and OHC negotiated a Settlement Agreement for the Harbour area and signed legal agreements implementing the settlement.
The transfer of the former marina lands to the City was outlined in the Settlement Agreement. The federal government completed environmental remediation work on the former marina lands in fall 2013 and offered the lands to the City. Oshawa City Council approved the transfer and and the former marina lands have now been transferred to City. The former marina lands are 8.4 hectare (20.5) acres ) in size and are the last parcel of land to be transferred to the City.
Under the Settlement Agreement, the City has now acquired a total of approximately 19.4 hectares (48 acres) of land located near the Oshawa Harbour. The City earlier acquired approximately 1.8 hectares (4.5 acres) of land located on the north side of Harbour Road in 2010 and 9.3 hectares (27 acres) of land located on the east side of Simcoe Street South, south of Harbour Road to about 140 metres south of the Oshawa Creek, in 2012. The City has undertaken measures to enable portions of these lands to be used for special events at Lakeview Park and plans to open up all of these lands for public uses after further environmental work.
The City has also acquired approximately 0.8 hectare (2 acres) of land at 1609 Simcoe Street South from a private owner in December 2012. This site is to be integrated with adjacent City owned lands and opened up for public uses after further environmental work.
An ethanol plant has been proposed to be developed on the former Gifford Farm portion of the Port Crown lands. The City opposes the ethanol plant. Refer to the "No Ethanol at our Harbour" campaign webpage for more information about the City’s opposition to the ethanol plant.
In 2012, CN commenced construction of a rail spur line to the Oshawa Harbour. This rail spur line is currently under construction.
In February 2012, the federal government announced the creation of a Canada Port Authority and issued Letters Patent under the Canada Marine Act to continue the Oshawa Harbour Commission as a port authority under the name of the Oshawa Port Authority.
The Canada Marine Act requires that a new port authority create a land use plan within one year. Accordingly, the Oshawa Port Authority has prepared the Oshawa Port Authority Land Use Plan dated January 23, 2013 that is available at www.oshawaportauthority.ca.
The City is preparing the Oshawa Waterfront Master Plan. This Master Plan will include updated future plans for Oshawa’s waterfront, including City lands at the Oshawa Harbour.
In June 2010, the City, the Crown and OHC negotiated a settlement and two legal agreements implementing the settlement were signed by all three parties. For details about the Oshawa Harbour agreement announced in July 2010, please click on the links below.
- PowerPoint Presentation
- Map - Land Ownership
- Map - Potential Urban Design Option
- Information Pamphlet (graphic design layout)
- Information Pamphlet (text only layout)
- Federal Government Media Release
- Settlement Agreement
- Land Use, Development & Municipal Services Agreement
- In addition, City staff presentation delivered on October 13, 2010 during a public meeting