Friday, June 11, 2010

Saving Beaver Pond Forest in Kanata, Ontario

Beaver Pond Woods - Just thought you should know by Gord Stephen

My family and I have always felt incredibly fortunate to have this old growth forest in our "backyard".  It's horrible to think that 182 hectacres of it will soon be cleared for a subdivision of 3,200 homes.  Too sad to think about the fate of  the 17 at risk species that currently make their home here, not to mention the other 637 species and 164 species of birds.  Too sad to think that the nature paths we've walked, biked, skied and snowshowed will be no more.

It was zoned for development in 1981 pre-dating the Endangered Species Act of 1998 which apparently does not void its zoning.  Developers Urbandale and Richcraft are looking at a start date of mid-July to begin cutting.  How could this have happened?

The Kanata Kourier-Standard just published Community takes last stand on its front page.  Its Editorial, Memories at the Beaver Pond, sums up the situation:
Saturday, June 5, over 400 residents gathered at the Beaver Pond to show the city they don't want a new subdivision choking out a precious natural sanctuary.
Hopefully, the developers and the city will take notice, the way they did back in 1999.  It's not impossible.

So get out there and make some memories.  In a few months, it may be all you have left.
Efforts are still being made to save this land.  You can join the Facebook group at:
I want to save the land North of Beaver Pond Park in Kanata Ontario .

New Post: The South March Highlands: Ottawa's Fragile Urban Wilderness is an excellent summary of the situation.


  1. tatiana, that is sad and must be so frustrating for all the residents. it seems development is everywhere and it's on such a large scale, it's overwhelming. i'm not on fb, but if there is an online petition, let us know!

  2. Thanks so much for your concern & comments, ana. I don't believe that there is an online petition right now but, as you suggest, I will keep you informed.

    In the meantime, I am including email text & addresses as suggested by the Facebook group:

    NCC – Email: "Attention: Marie LeMay"
    Ottawa Mayor’s Office
    Member of Parliament:
    Minister of Environment:
    Councillor Kanata North:


    This is an issue of national significance. I am pleading with you to save the Beaver Pond forest in Ottawa, just north of the lake as the impending clear cutting and construction of a subdivision in the middle of this forest will destroy the surrounding sugar maple forest and eliminate the last area of the South March Highlands. This area is a jewel, and a solution can be found to save it. I would like to see your office, the NCC, the City of Ottawa and the Developers who own this land, put their heart and soul into finding a solution to swap these forested lands north of the Beaver Pond in Kanata with lands more properly suited for building. Do not allow the last part of the South March Highlands to be destroyed. Who builds a subdivision in the middle of protected lands? Just because the developers have had a subdivision approval for decades does not mean that our values have not changed in these same decades. Something can be done and you are in power to make that happen. Please help. This subdivision would be in the middle of the last part of the natural escarpment in the March Highlights – so please protect this Beaver Pond north forest for future generations – and for the enjoyment of all residents.

  3. This sucks. Unfortunately though, if our experience in our neighbourhood is any indication, developers always manage to find a way to "win." I hope the Beaver Pond forest will be an exception!

    My question is: where are all these people coming from to buy all these new houses in Ottawa?

  4. Thanks for your comments, Julie. It does suck and I have no idea where all the people would come from to buy the new homes.

    The movement to save this land is still gaining momentum. I've got a new post at with some updates.

  5. Great Blog!

    I'm also doing everything I can to help stop this.
    It's at the point where I'm very tempted to get violent on behalf of the endangered species and ecosystem. These developers MUST pay for the damage they're about to inflict in this area!

  6. Glad you liked the blog! I'm also glad that you are helping to stop this.

    On that note, I honestly believe that endangered species and ecosystems are best served by individuals working hard & directing their energy in a positive manner. There are many such initiatives on the go right now where people of all ages are coming together. Parents are encouraging their children to become active, teaching them how to deal with this type of situation in a constructive manner.

    Violence has no place in this and is definitely NOT the way to go. Please don't consider it.