A case study of Fort Whyte Centre's rehabilitation of the Transcona Domtar wood preservative treatment site, lessons for non-government organization involvement in brownfield rehabilitation

Thumbnail Image
Holden, Paul
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Every day, Canadians discover that past practices, poor environmental controls, and gross mismanagement of hazardous substances have resulted in thousands of contaminated sites. The focus of this research paper has been placed on a subset of contaminated sites called brownfields. These sites exhibit good potential for other uses and are located in urban areas. Recently, non-government organizations (NGO) have begun to evaluate whether or not they can partner in the rehabilitation of brownfields. The Winnipeg-based Fort Whyte Centre felt that they had a role to play and partnered with Domtar Inc. in the rehabilitation of an old wood preservative treatment facility site in the community of Transcona, Winnipeg. Fort Whyte proposed and the community, government and Domtar accepted, turning the remediated site into a natural Bioreserve. While the partnership has provided a number of lessons for NGO involvement and can be replicated, it was unique in a number of ways. The Bioreserve provided the acceptable economic, environmental, and social/health solution to stakeholders. Government's decision to (a) ensure that the future end-use of the site remained compatible with the on-site management of the contaminated soil, as well as (b) their insistence that the existing parkland/recreational land use zoning remain in place, was a significant catalyst behind the success of this approach. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)