(Re)Engaging Greenspace: The Growing Stewardship Strategy

The Oak Ridges Corridor Conservation Reserve (ORCCR) is a linear greenspace located in the Town of Richmond Hill. The site holds significant ecological and cultural importance as the point of origin for what we know today as the Oak Ridges Moraine. The site was assembled through land swap between the Government of Ontario and private landowners in order to protect the area’s ecological integrity from development. Today, the ORCCR suffers from a fragmented ownership structure between the Provincial government and the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), with the TRCA retaining responsibility for the integrated management of the site.

Over the past 10 years, the park has become surrounded by new residential development which has substantially changed the composition and form of the local community. Residents that were originally involved in the protection of the ORCCR may no longer live in the area, and new residents may not be aware of the ecological and cultural significance of the ORCCR. The TRCA has given us the task of determining innovative ways to re-engage the surrounding community, with a specific focus on youth, in order to grow a new generation of greenspace stewards invested in the recreational use and environmental protection of the Oak Ridges Corridor Conservation Reserve.

We have developed the Growing Stewardship Strategy to address this changing reality.

The final report can be viewed here: (Re)Engaging Greenspace: The Growing Stewardship Strategy.

Students: Marika Franko, Brandon Kashin, Jacky Li, Kelsey Prentice, Jahnavi Ramakrishnan, Graham Wilson, Erin Windross