An artists rendering of what the Olde Sandwich Towne arch would look like courtesy of citywindsor.ca.

Council Committee Approves Sandwich Arch Plan

A gateway to a historic Windsor neighbourhood is a step closer to reality.

City council’s planning, heritage and economic development committee approved a report on a proposed decorative arch for Sandwich Town. The arch, similar to one gracing the Ottawa St. area, will be in close proximity to a new roundabout and a statue honouring Chief Tecumseh. It would span Sandwich St. and connect Patterson and McKee parks.

Adam Coates, planner II urban design for the City of Windsor, says they will soon turn to the people of Sandwich Town for input as to how the arch should be presented.

“We’re going to reach out to the community in Sandwich Town, and ask for their input on heritage stories, and to basically come back with 14 stories that are relevant to the town of Sandwich,” says Coates.

Sandwich Town has been around longer than the City of Windsor. The area was settled in 1797 and boasts some of the area’s oldest surviving buildings. The town was annexed to the city in 1935.

The committee’s approval means that the report, with complete financial details, will now go to the full city council for approval. Coates says once that happens, he sees the arch taking shape quickly.

“Given how this report goes to council, and what they would like to do, the manufacturer is able to manufacture it off site and bring it and erect it on-site… once they get approval, but it’s whether or not council would like to pursue that,” says Coates.

The plan was not given universal approval in chambers on Tuesday. Sandwich Town resident and activist Terry Kennedy addressed the committee, giving opposition to the idea and criticizing the city for it.

“This archway, gateway, propaganda barrier is clearly cultural genocide,” Kennedy told committee members. “The prejudice and manipulation that the administration has authored here is criminal. It’s politically expedient and exposes the city’s incompetence when dealing with heritage matters.”

City council is expected to review the report and decide how to proceed as soon as its October 18 meeting.