What's on your mind?

The Hub would love to hear from you. Email your letters, articles, photos, drawings, cartoons, YouTube or Vimeo links to [email protected].


stoney orchardTo Mayor, City Councilors, Manager of Parks, Manager of Planning

There is some misinformation circulating regarding the use of that portion of the parkland immediately north of the proposed 23rd Ave. E extension or what is usually referred to as Stoney Orchard Park. Several members of the Owen Sound City Council, as well as the developer, have dismissed the road allowance as well as the parkland as having minimal recreational and natural value. Neither is accurate.

The fact that development is planned for the south side of the 23rd Ave. E extension does not negate the fact that the road allowance itself is publicly owned land that forms an integral part of a loop trail and the natural area that forms the park. Corridor parks such as a rail-trail do not provide the same opportunity for recreation and immersion in nature in the way this loop trail does.

The "improved" portion of the trail parallels the bluff above Bayshore Road, but it is only one segment of a larger loop. Another segment of the loop includes the 23rd Street E road allowance itself as well as other trails that the City refers to as goat paths.

The Owen Sound Recreational Trails Master Plan (August 21, 2012) Section 6.4.2 states:
... Stoney Orchard is a prime location for future trail development and promotion. This tract currently contains a mixed woodland. These lands are relatively flat, and goat paths are already established through the area.

Section 8.3 refers specifically to the Stoney Orchard Trail network which:
... provide[s] local school groups with an educational destination in terms of natural environments. This property provides the City of Owen Sound with a unique and valuable destination for an entire system of recreational trails.stoney orchard map

The reference to goat paths is misleading. These trails are not used by goats but described by a popular trails website:

Stoney Orchard Park Loop is a 1.4 kilometer lightly trafficked loop trail located near Owen Sound,
Ontario, Canada that features a great forest setting and is good for all skill levels. The trail is
primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips. Dogs are also able to use this trail.


These trails are used by adults and children alike, by neighbors as well as city residents who live in other parts of town. Unfortunately, the user survey recently conducted by the City was sent only to homes in the immediate area and did not address the true nature, frequency, or type of use by a larger population.stoney orchard loop

The residents of Owen Sound need and want our existing parks. While additional housing may be needed too, there are other potential development sites within the city that do not involve our parkland and in particular this unique naturalized area that provides opportunities for experiencing nature close to town. Moreover, by eroding the contiguous acreage within the park, the area will be less able to support the current diversity of wildlife including deer, rabbits, porcupine, birds including owls, and reptiles as well as an accessible natural area close to schools with prominent mature trees and rare native plants such as yellow ladies slipper.

Barry Kruisselbrink refers to our park as a thick bush, and incorrectly assumes that the only valuable parkland is developed parkland. This is a mistake that might be expected from a developer. We urge you, Mr. Mayor and City Council, not to make the same erroneous assumption. Keep our park intact.

Best Regards,

Lynne Marie Sullivan
Owen Sound


CopyRight ©2015, ©2016, ©2017 of Hub Content
is held by content creators