A thing of beauty

Longtime St. Boniface resident embraces Tache Promenade revitalization


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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 25/03/2019 (1236 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

When Louisa Ryz looks out of the window of her suite at 500 Tache Ave., the view just keeps getting better and better.  

Ryz, 79, was talking to The Lance about the Belvedere project — a 100-metre long walkway suspended in the river forest canopy off the Tache Promenade, which offers picture-postcard views across the river to landmarks such as The Forks and the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.  

According to winnipeg.ca, the project is part of the larger, now-completed Tache Promenade project that stabilized the riverbank area along Tache Avenue between Provencher Boulevard and Despins Street. The Tache Promenade project also features a widened promenade-style walkway and pedestrian belvédère, commonly known as a lookout, elevated into the riverbank that incorporates public art. These features will build on the success of the city’s core waterfront areas, improve connections to St. Boniface destinations, and enhance pedestrian and cycling opportunities.

Supplied photo by Louisa Ryz Michael Van Helden (left) and Ken Skatfeld of TREK Geotechnical are pictured on Tache Promenade.

“The lighthouse and belvedere, for me, represent a place of comfort, reflection and hope — a coming together for all peoples for dialogue, and also to commemorate and reflect upon the four Grey Nuns who in 1844 landed at this very location, and the significance of the work they accomplished here,” said Ryz, who has been the condominium board secretary at 500 Tache since the building’s inception in 2005, and who also volunteers at CMHR.

“There are beautiful benches of white oak along the promenade for visitors to sit, and I see the lighthouse from my window, which encourages me to start my day with hope and strength to carry forward during the day to the best of my ability. I see many people, children, and seniors walk over the promenade and stop and look, and it will be even more exciting when the warmer weather comes for all the various events that will occur. I can see from my window the meeting of the Red and Assiniboine rivers, and this marvellous lookout for this great community of St. Boniface.”

In her role as secretary, Ryz had been in constant contact as a liaison with Maureen Krauss from HTFC Planning and Design, and Michael Van Helden from TREK Geotechnical, as the construction of Tache Promenade had “an impact on our condominium due to the closing of Tache,” she said.

In other interesting local twists, the artist that designed the lighthouse is Marcel Gosselin, who was born in St. Boniface and currently lives in La Salle; and the owner of the company that fabricated the lighthouse — David MacRae of Stainless Steel Concepts, lives in the same building as Ryz. Ryz added that the engineering company responsible for the project is TREK Geotechnical.

The project included financial commitments from the City of Winnipeg, federal government, the Winnipeg Foundation, the Winnipeg Arts Council, and Entreprises Riel, Ryz said.

Simon Fuller

Simon Fuller
Community Journalist

Simon Fuller is a reporter/photographer for the Free Press Community Review. Email him at simon.fuller@canstarnews.com or call him at 204-697-7111.

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