Waterloo Region’s drained ponds


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Waterloo Region’s drained ponds

  1. 1. Waterloo Region’s Drained Ponds Louisette Lanteigne 700 Star Flower Ave. Waterloo Ontario N2V 2L2 June 5th 2009
  2. 2. Can you guess where this is?
  3. 3. Any ideas yet?
  4. 4. It’s the proposed Mega Mall: City of Kitchener & Waterloo
  5. 5. Ira Needles Mega Mall Pond draining #1• The GRCA reports stated there was no wetland on site for the Ira Needles mega mall in spite of video and aerial images that proved otherwise. I have the GRCA documents to prove this fact.• Both Waterloo City of Waterloo and the City of Kitchener councils were made aware of the concern.
  6. 6. Google Earth map shows the large vernal pond that waslocated by Ira Needles and University Ave. It’s gone now.
  7. 7. Videos of Ira Needles Pond being drained This is a video of the wetland soon after they drained it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z-J3WNysFu8This is a video of the pump used to drain the wetland, visit here:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QaIwvZxQ0kI&feature=related
  8. 8. Ira Needles pond habitat before:• This large vernal pond was home to beavers, migratory birds, raccoons, foxes, and turtles, etc.• A Blandings was found in Westvale during the pond removal phase. The MNR stated the turtle found was a pet Blandings because it was “tame.”• Other experts stated the turtle came from the wetlands “beside the dump”• Blandings are very docile and wild ones can be handled and viewed as tame. Blandings were found in previous years to the north in close proximity to this area. (Angie Schoen of Turtle Haven, a turtle rescue centre)
  9. 9. “The City of Waterloo is not responsible for Water Resource Protection”City of Waterloo Planner Ryan Mounsey to Louisette Lanteigne as per his correspondence dated July 27th 2009 re: the Ira Needles proposal.
  10. 10. OFFICIAL PLAN AMENDMENT 74 AND ZONE CHANGE for DS-09-34 June 22, 2009 Waterloo City CouncilAs the Zone Change was approved for the Ira Needles CommercialCentre, Waterloo City Council also agreed to remove this area fromthe Laurel Creek Watershed Policy to be relocated into the HenrySturm Subwatershed area.
  11. 11. This is the correspondence inspired the change of Subwatershed
  12. 12. Issues regarding the change of subwatershed• The City of Waterloo’s planners initiated the removal of the Ira Needles Commercial Centre area from one Subwatershed study to another in spite of the fact the lead planner wrote that water resource protection is not the City’s responsibility.• The stamp states the Stantec letter was received on May 4 2009 and the vote was on June 22 2009.• The letter sent from Stantec does not state it was directed to either GRCA or Regional Staff, but there was adequate time for the city to consult with these agencies prior to the rezoning of the proposal. If the lead planner wrote that the Region has the responsibility of water source protection, then why didn’t the city contact the Region’s Water Resources Staff to get them involved with the planning of this proposal prior to the rezoning and the Official Plan amendment?
  13. 13. Change of watershed cont.• The Henry Sturm subwatershed policy did not include the Laurel Creek Subwatershed data into the area of study so the report lacks site specific data regarding various natural features in the area. Why was a revised subwatershed study not recommended?• No data has been presented to indicate what ramifications this change would have upon the existing Watershed Studies.• By removing the property from the Laurel Creek Subwatershed Study there are now less ecological constraints for the property that was switched.
  14. 14. West Side Lands off Wilmot Line: Pond draining #2 • This pond was am established habitat for many years. • Water was over 5 feet deep in areas. • Migratory Birds, a muskrat and various amphibians lived in the pond. I’ve witnessed them for years.
  15. 15. The pond after. It was drained by culvert in 2006, the year of the EIS studies.
  16. 16. The West Side Lands Pond info:• A culvert was “replaced” which reversed flow in the pond and diverted water across the street from the City of Waterloo West Side Lands property to lands in the township of Wilmot. The new culvert completely drained the pond.• The culvert was “replaced” by Wilmot Township staff who stated no documents exist regarding this work.* *based on documents secured by Freedom of Information.
  17. 17. When sediment filled the culvert and water came back, thissiphon was used. I found a red wheelbarrow and shovel onsite too. The MNR, City and Region were informed of this.
  18. 18. Mr. Zister on Bisch in the City of Waterloo Pond draining #3
  19. 19. Mr.Zister lives just outside the ESL boundry line on a property that contains wetlands.
  20. 20. Mr Zister removed and uprooted mature trees and dumped some of the debris in the wetlands behind him and burned the rest.
  21. 21. The burn took place within the city of Waterloo without any firepermit. The piles exceeded the height limit for fires of this kind. Note the height of the tractor compared to the piles of debris.
  22. 22. Note the same tractor after the burn and thesmoldering ashes left behind. I spoke with Ron Ormson at the City of Waterloo about this.
  23. 23. Nothing was done• Complaints were issued to the GRCA, City, MNR staff member Mike Stone but for some reason, he was never charged.• His pond leads to an “unnamed creek” currently being studied as part of the North Waterloo Subwatershed Study.
  24. 24. Mr. Howald’s Pond In the City of Waterloo Pond #4
  25. 25. Mr. Howald’s Pond• Mr. Howald was a former developer and president of the Waterloo Regional Home Builder’s Association. He lives off Erbsville Road just next door to the Columbia Forest Subdivision in the City of Waterloo.• His pond was drained by the City of Waterloo.• When work crews drained the pond, amphibians escaped into the properties along Columbia Forest Subdivision with many frogs and salamanders as seen by residents. Many cried when they witnessed the pond being removed. They bought their homes believing it would be a permanent feature in the area.
  26. 26. Erosion issues appeared after the pond draining as evidentunder this newly installed sidewalk in front of his property. I used my sandals to show the length of the hole.
  27. 27. An area resident injured his ankle walking here. My sandal can be seen in the hole.
  28. 28. Mr. Howald’s pond was over top primary recharge.
  29. 29. Complaints led to pipe replacement• On behalf of the neighbourhood association, I proceeded to get the city of Waterloo to fix the sidewalk.• Work crews paid for by the City of Waterloo went to Mr. Howald’s pond to replace the pipe they already installed but it sank over 20 feet in the muck. They couldn’t find it.• Hours later the pipe was found and replaced. A new culvert was installed under the sidewalk.
  30. 30. A new culvert was installed
  31. 31. Prior to pond removal, The City of Waterloo knew of threatened and endangered species in the area. Acadian Flycatchers and Hooded Warblers were mentioned in thetender offer for the trails adjacent to Mr. Howald’s property.
  32. 32. PPS 2005 states:2.1.3 Development and site alteration shall not be permitted in:a) significant habitat of endangered species and threatened species;2.1.6 Development and site alteration shall not be permitted on adjacent lands to the natural heritage features and areas identified in policies 2.1.3, 2.1.4 and 2.1.5 unless the ecological function of the adjacent lands has been evaluated and it has been demonstrated that there will be no negative impacts on the natural features or on their ecological functions.
  33. 33. Time of water removal• Mr. Howald’s land was scheduled to be up for development but he has since delayed the process.• Mr. Howald stated the removal of water was to stop people from “swimming” in the pond but residents adjacent to the pond never spotted anyone attempting to do that. He stated it was a liability risk.• The city removed the pond without any EIS studies. Waterloo City council member Jim Bolger stated it was not needed because it was a “man made” pond.• Animals that frequented the pond included blue herons, a crane and many amphibians. They are gone now.