Archaeological study at Allandale Station taking longer than planned: city

The archaeological study of the historic Allandale Station lands in Barrie is going to take longer than initially planned, city officials say.

According to a news release issued by the city of Barrie on Wednesday, the Stage 4 archaeological assessment which began in June will now extend into the spring of 2019, as a section of the site still needs to be investigated.

The city says to date, a large portion of the study has already been completed, but due to the historical disturbance of the site over many years, the lands are taking longer than planned to investigate.

“The purpose of the archaeological work is to better understand previous land use of this area over the last 700 or so years,” the release reads. “The area exhibits a complex archaeological history and has been disturbed on more than one occasion, including the construction of several 19th century structures, the flood of 1896 and the construction of the Allandale Train Station buildings in 1905.”

The study is being conducted by the city of Barrie in partnership with the Huron-Wendat Nation and the Williams Treaty First Nation.

“The City of Barrie is grateful for its partnership with the Huron-Wendat First Nation and Williams Treaty First Nation communities as it continues to follow the archaeological processes, applicable legislation and direction provided by the Province of Ontario to ensure protection of the archaeological potential of the site,” Barrie mayor, Jeff Lehman, said in the release.

According to the city, First Nation partners have been on site monitoring the work, participating in the decision making and have been providing guidance to ensure the process is culturally respectful.

“The Huron-Wendat Nation is fully engaged and committed to repair an historical injustice to our ancestors. This process of archaeological study is a top priority and we will continue to be involved and take action to ensure our heritage is protected,” said Huron-Wendat Nation Grand Chief Konrad Sioui, in the release.

Chippewas of Rama First Nation Chief, Rodney Noganosh, echoed Chief Sioui’s remarks, saying he and his council would continue to keep overseeing the project a priority.

“Rama First Nation is working with the City of Barrie and the Huron-Wendat Nation in ensuring that the Stage 4 Archaeological Assessment at the Allandale Station is being conducted thoroughly and with respect to our ancestors,” he said. “My Council and I visited the site in the summer to ensure that due diligence is being undertaken. On behalf of the Williams Treaties First Nations, we will continue to make this a priority.”

So far, the city says a large amount of archaeological material has been recovered and the foundation of the 1863 train station has been exposed.

The city says once the Stage 4 excavations are completed, the Archaeologist of Record will determine the affiliation of any remains recovered from the site in accordance with provincial regulations. The Registrar or Burials will then identify the next steps in any further processes.

More information about the study can be found on the city’s website.

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