For more than three decades, the shadow of the proposed Pickering Airport has hung over Durham Region. Farmers have lost ownership of their lands, becoming tenants of the Federal Government. Once-sound buildings have been neglected by the landlords in Ottawa, leading to evictions of tenants and the demolition of the buildings.
Rural communities have been left to languish. Many in Durham had assumed that the airport project was a thing of the past, but it’s back with a vengeance. More than eighty rural buildings have recently been slated for demolition.
The Greater Toronto Airport Authority (GTAA) has published detailed plans for the Pickering Airport, showing flight paths over Claremont, Stouffville and other areas near Uxbridge.
Ajax-Pickering MP Mark Holland has had to resort to the Access to Information Act to get documents relating to Airport plans. "Transport Canada talks about transparency, but it’s obvious that they fear the people in the community," says Holland. "They are determined to push ahead with an airport, and to these bureaucrats the people of north Pickering are nothing more than an obstacle to be managed or eliminated." One document discussed the documentary film "Last Stand" by award-winning filmmaker Peter Shatalow.
The Sierra Club of Canada’s Uxbridge group wants the Federal government to drop its plans for this airport, and attach the lands to the Provincial Greenbelt.
To help inform the public on the issues, there will be a public screening of Last Stand at the Roxy Theatre in Uxbridge, on Sunday, March 25 at 4:00 p.m. After the film, there will be a question and answer period and discussion, led by local Sierra Club members and Mark Holland.
All tickets will be at the door and a charge of $8.00 each including taxes will help to cover some of the costs associated with this event.