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Working for a better waterfront

Waterfront trail named for local advocate

Larry Ladd, centre, has been advocating for an improved waterfront, including efforts to restore a public marina and boat launch to Oshawa’s piece of Lake Ontario for 16 years. As part of the city’s Canada Day celebrations, Ladd was honoured with a trail named after him.

By Dave Flaherty/The Oshawa Express

A connecting link of city’s Waterfront Trail is officially open to the public and bears the name of one of the area’s biggest advocates.

On Canada Day, Oshawa Mayor John Henry unveiled the recently completed pedestrian bridge and accompanying pathway as the newly-minted Larry Ladd Harbour Trail.

“The Larry Ladd Harbour Trail is key to realizing the city’s vision of a vibrant, active waterfront for all to enjoy,” he said.

Ladd, who can often be seen at city hall, has been a vocal supporter of the waterfront for years and a critic of the failed ethanol plant development.

Oshawa MPP Jennifer French says when she was first elected in 2014, it was Ladd who drove her around the area of the waterfront and explained some of the history and ongoing issues.

“It’s very special to know it will have your name,” French said.

Ladd says he is honoured to be recognized, but there were many others that have helped him along the way.

He thanked his family, friends, and supporters for motivating him to take on the cause.

“It was you people that got behind me, and created the spark,” he says.

He called the opening of the trail a “good first step towards the continued development of our waterfront,” but added he still wants to see a marina in Oshawa’s Harbour.

“If I win Lotto 649, I’ll be up to see Mr. (Ron) Diskey (the city’s commissioner of community services) and Mr. (Paul) Ralph (the city’s commissioner of development services),” he said with a laugh.

After unveiling a new trail sign along with Mayor Henry, Ladd and his family took a ceremonial walk across the new pedestrian bridge.

The new bridge, which replaces the older wooden structure, has an approximate price tag of $545,000 and is a large part of the nearly $1.3 million remediation and redevelopment work currently ongoing at the Oshawa Harbour Lands, which also includes the installation of a soil cap and erosion controls.

The city received $160,000 in federal monies and $272,000 in provincial funding towards the bridge.

Larry Ladd, centre, along with family members and representatives from Oshawa city council and other dignitaries cut the ribbon on the newly named Larry Ladd Harbour Trail, which was officially unveiled during the city’s Canada Day celebrations at Lakeview Park, marking the official opening of the city’s Harbour Lands for public use. (Photos by Dave Flaherty)