Giche-name-wiikwedong Bridge Dedication
Today, the City of Owen Sound officially dedicated the Giche-name-wiikwedong Bridge and unveiled a commemorative and an interpretive plaque.
In September 2019, the 110-year-old Bridge was closed for complete reconstruction and infrastructure replacement. The contract was awarded to Looby Builders (Dublin) Limited. The project focused on creating a wide accessible sidewalk and multi-use trail connecting East to West across the Sydenham River, strengthening the pedestrian connection with the Downtown River Precinct project.
On September 14, 2020, Susan Staves Schank who has been a great leader in this community on reconciliation made a formal request to Council to dedicate the new bridge on 10th Street as the Giche-name-wiikwedong Bridge which means Great Sturgeon Bay.
The interpretive plaque is an important symbol as it is a reminder of Owen Sound’s Indigenous history and evidence of our commitment to be a ‘Safe City’, one that supports inclusivity and diversity and looks to build a strong cohesive, vibrant, participatory community. The commemorative plaque signifies a meaningful and important step in truth and reconciliation.
Mayor and Council were joined by Chief Lester Anoquot from Saugeen First Nation, Chief Greg Nadjiwon from Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation, Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Walker, the City Manager, and staff.
For more information, please contact Dennis Kefalas at 519-376-4440 ext. 1201 or email at email@example.com.
"The dedication and naming of the Giche-name-wiikwedong Bridge today is one small but meaningful step to bridge our communities and recognize the Indigenous heritage on these lands that we all share. These plaques will serve as a lasting reminder of the history, spirituality, and culture of the Anishinabek peoples." - Mayor Ian Boddy
- On October 9, 2020, Council voted unanimously to dedicate the bridge on 10th Street as the Giche-name-wiikwedong Bridge.
- Great Sturgeon Bay was Owen Sound’s name before contact by European settlers.
- June 21 is National Indigenous People’s Day.
- The City of Owen Sound received $3M in grant funding from the Province of Ontario through MTO’s Connecting Links Funding Program.
- The official ribbon-cutting ceremony for the bridge was held on December 11, 2020.
- Both plaques are planned to be installed within the next month.