TORONTO, May 27, 2019 - Hundreds of community members and city officials joined Downsview Park on Sunday May 26th for the dedication and official opening of the Sesquicentennial “Sesqui” Trail, a visually stunning new gateway to the Park that unites past, present and future.
Conceived in 2017 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Confederation the Sesqui Trail serves as a visual interpretation of the story of Downsview and the site's important history of the Indigenous Peoples in the area, agriculture, pioneering aviation innovation, military operations to today’s amazing park. Designed by Canadian artist John Dickson and Scott Torrance of FORREC, who handled the landscape design, the Sesqui Trail appropriately incorporates visuals and public art to create an immersive and engaging experience for pedestrians.
“With its rich past and promising future, Downsview Park is the ideal location for this impactful retelling of Canadian history as it intertwines with the legacy and influence of Indigenous Peoples. Every aspect of the Sesqui Trail has been meticulously designed to tell the story of the Downsview Lands, and we are incredibly pleased with the result. Now that the trail is officially open, we invite Park visitors to embark on a journey through time” – David Anselmi, Senior Director (Real Estate), Canada Lands Company.
“The land on which Downsview Park is now situated has been part of the Territory and Treaty Lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit for many generations. These lands helped to nourish our people physically, emotionally, and spiritually, and have seen many uses through the years, but now, in the 21st century, it is gratifying to know that they are now a place for the people of Toronto to slow down and reconnect with Mother Earth.”- Darin Wybenga, Traditional Knowledge and Land Use Coordinator, Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.
“As a unique urban park, Downsview Park is a jewel in our community’s green space that hold incredible potential for North York’s social and environmental development. Today’s opening of the sesquicentennial trail is another step towards achieving this vision for Downsview Park.” – Michael Levitt, Member of Parliament, York Centre.
"As one of the largest parks in our city, I'm pleased to see further environmental development of such an important piece of our city's social and economic fabric be celebrated with today's opening of the sesquicentennial trail. The designation of the Sesqui Trail is an important symbol of our commitment to working with our indigenous partners across the City of Toronto" – James Pasternak, City of Toronto Councillor
The Sesquicentennial Trail has been a truly unique and inspiring project for my team at FORREC to work on and be a part of. This trail commemorates the 150th anniversary of Confederation, as well as the intertwining history of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, the settlers’ cultures and Downsview’s aeronautical heritage. The layout of the trail, the art and its design were conceived based on the vital contributions made by many stakeholders. With this new trail, Downsview Park is proudly honouring the rich heritage of the area as we all enjoy it today.” – Scott Torrance, Senior Director - Landscape Architecture, FORREC
About Downsview Park
Downsview Park is a dynamic urban park that combines active and passive elements, reflecting the diverse nature of the surrounding Downsview community. Visitors from all over the Greater Toronto Area are attracted to the Park's various on-site uses, ranging from education, sports, nature, recreation and cultural events. Downsview Park is the heart of a new complete community in this key region of the city, integrated into five new planned neighbourhoods around it. www.downsviewpark.ca / @downsviewpark on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
About Canada Lands Company
Canada Lands Company is a self-financing federal commercial Crown corporation whose sole shareholder is the Government of Canada. Its role is to optimize the economic and community value obtained from former federal government properties. It is also a demonstrated leader in attractions management with its operations of the CN Tower, the Old Port of Montréal, the Montreal Science Centre and Downsview Park in Toronto. Learn more at www.clc.ca
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