ECM Podcast Episode 7: Site by Otonabee River Goes from Paved to Paradise

Peterborough becomes the first Canadian city to depave a city road

On October 27, 2018 community members gathered by the Otonabee River in downtown Peterborough. They donned hard hats and work boots—picked up pry bars and hammers—and they got to work removing layers of asphalt from a municipal roadway.

Depave crop

Carlotta James and Michael VanDerHerberg

It’s the first Depave Day of many to come, organized by GreenUp, as part of Green Communities Canada ‘Depave Paradise’ initiative and the DBIA’s Vibrancy Project—and it’s the first depave project in Canada to remove asphalt from a municipal roadway.

Depave Paradise is a project that aims to replace under-utilized built surfaces with porous rain gardens.

As hot political debates carry on about whether certain thoroughfares—like the Parkway—should be built, Electric City Magazine wanted to know more about this initiative to replace a road with greenspace.

Reporter Ayesha Barmania visited the depave site to speak with volunteers, and sat down with Dawn Pond, Depave Paradise project coordinator for GreenUp. Listen to their conversation in this podcast episode.

Music by Mahemingways.

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Ayesha Barmania

Ayesha Barmania

Ayesha Barmania is an independent journalist and media producer in Peterborough, Ontario. They make sound-rich and evocative stories. They are the founder of Peterborough Independent Podcasters, and on this network host such podcasts as Peterborough Currents and Sounds Like Life. Their work has been broadcast on CBC Radio shows like Metro Morning, Fresh Air, and Unreserved. Ayesha has also been published in Arthur Newspaper, TRENT Magazine, and now Electric City Magazine.