Oshawa Harbour Background
In 1966, the City of Oshawa transferred about 61 acres of land to the Government of Canada (“Crown”) specifically for harbour purposes and the growth of the local economy. For some time, the City felt that the 61 acres were underutilized and did not contribute to the growth of the local economy as intended.
In April 2006, the Oshawa Harbour Commission (OHC) and CN proposed a rail spur on a part of the 61 acres. In response, the City initiated a lawsuit in July 2006 against 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 over the City’s objection; however, the lawsuit continued with respect to the return of the 61 acres.
In June 2009, in response to an offer by the Crown, City Council authorized confidential negotiations with the Crown and OHC to try and settle the lawsuit and move the harbour forward in an appropriate manner. Negotiations took place between June 2009 and May 2010 and a proposed settlement was prepared.
On April 22, 2010, Council adopted a resolution opposing the development of an ethanol plant on the Gifford Hill.
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. Read more
In late June 2011, the City received a letter stating that a review under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act was underway for a proposed ethanol refinery at the Oshawa Harbour. The public was notified of the Environmental Assessment through local newspaper advertisements and given 30 days to comment. On July 1, 2011, the City of Oshawa launched the "No Ethanol at our Harbour" campaign. As part of the campaign, the City requested that the comment period be extended. In response to public outcry and pressure from the City, the federal government extended the comment period to August 15, 2011 at which point the City hand delivered a 300-page comment submission to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Accompanying the submission were approximately 3,300 resident letters in opposition, as well as influential letters from the David Suzuki Foundation, Council of Canadians.
In February 2012, the federal government officially announced the creation of a Canada Port Authority (CPA) and issued Letters Patent to guide the development of a plan for the Harbour and to operate the Port of Oshawa.
The City has acquired approximately 27 acres of land located near the Oshawa Harbour as part of the Settlement Agreement. Approximately 23 acres are located on the east side of Simcoe Street, south from Harbour Road to about 140 metres south of the Oshawa Creek. Another parcel of land (approximately 4 acres) is located on the north side of Harbour Road. The City will prepare a development strategy, schedule and funding formula for the newly acquired lands and plans to open the new City lands on the east side of Simcoe Street for public uses. As a prerequisite, the City is undertaking the following: Screening level risk assessment to identify work that is required to advance some interim park/open space usage; structural assessment of the former OHC bridge over the Oshawa Creek (east of Simcoe Street South) to identify rehabilitation options and costs; and, a floodplain analysis.
The land acquired by the City to date does not include the former marina. Once the federal government has remediated the marina lands, the City will consider the acquisition of these lands. Assuming that the City is satisfied with the environmental condition, the lands could be transferred to the City later in 2013.
Furthermore, the re-creation and extension of the rail spur at the Oshawa Harbour is moving forward.
The City launched the "No Ethanol at our Harbour" campaign on July 1, 2011 in response to a letter received late June 2011 from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada notifying the City that an Environmental Assessment (EA) Review was underway for a proposed ethanol refinery to be located on Crown Land at the Oshawa Harbour.
As a result of the campaign, In August 2011, the City of Oshawa submitted to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada approximately 3,300 letters in opposition to the proposed construction and operation of a 210-million-litre ethanol refinery at the Oshawa Harbour (registry reference number 08-01-42395). The City also delivered its 300-page response along with the opposition letters. The comprehensive submission is based on an in-depth review of the Environmental Assessment (EA) Screening Report from a legal, land use planning and scientific perspective. The submission emphasizes that the Screening Report does not comply with the legal requirements of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, fails to address serious land-use compatibility issues, and does not provide the data and analysis necessary to evaluate the environmental effects of the ethanol facility. For details, read the Overview of the City ’s Comment Submission.
- Cover Page and Overview of the City's Comment Submission
- Table of Contents
- Part 1 – Legal Review
- Part 2 – City Planning Report
- Part 3 – Technical Peer Review
- Part 4 – Appendices A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X
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, the City held a public meeting on October 13, 2010. During the meeting, a presentation was made by City staff. Click here to download the presentation.
For additional information on the Oshawa Harbour and recent updates, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.oshawa.ca/harbour. For information on the Oshawa Waterfront Master Plan, visit the Oshawa Waterfront Master Plan webpage.