The historic First Parliament site holds the foundational elements of democracy and nation-building in Canada.
Located at the intersection of Front Street East and Parliament Street; bounded on the west by Berkeley Street and on the south by Parliament Square Park, this major site spans a full city block. Recognized as the territory of the Huron-Wendat and Petun First Nations, the Seneca, and most recently, the Mississaugas of the Credit, this site was the subject of the Dish With One Spoon Wampum Belt Covenant, an agreement between the Iroquois Confederacy (Haudenosaunee) and Confederacy of the Ojibwe (Anishinaabe) and allied nations to peaceably share and care for the resources around the Great Lakes.
As we’ve seen with other historical heritage sites, the First Parliament site is now expropriated by Metrolinx to facilitate the building of the Ontario Line and future development. Transit expansion is critical, but the site must recognize the existing cultural heritage of the City of Toronto. Residents and community leaders had been engaged in the assembly of land and the design of the First Parliament Master Plan for a number of years. Building complete communities is largely a local effort, working with impacted stakeholders, business owners, and residents to create a strong and vibrant neighbourhood master plan.
To ensure the community was represented in discussions with City Staff, Metrolinx and Infrastructure Ontario, I hosted a First Parliament Town Hall where all divisions were represented and responded to a series of questions posed by the community. Find the answers here. This virtual town hall hosted over 400 virtual guests, and was facilitated by my office who gathered questions in advance of the meeting and coordinated responses available on the First Parliament website.
If you missed the First Parliament Town Hall you can watch it again here. <link to townhall>
While the City of Toronto is a creature of the Province and consequently subject to its whims, I have consistently championed a transparent process wherein residents are active members in an effort to help shape and create complete communities, while supporting transit expansion. Learn more about my work around the First Parliament site at FirstParliament.To.