Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Goodbye old friends

We watched with sadness last week as the 75-year old poplar trees to the east of the Galt were cut down over three days. On April 22, the final branches and stumps were being cleaned up while the weekend's snowfall melted away.

The expansion to the neighbouring extended care facilities along with our own expansion led the overseeing city departments to determine that the trees would not be viable, that their age was a liability and that damage to the roots from the pending roadwork would mean they could pose a potential hazard to the senior residents and to visitors to the Galt - aka falling branches. The three evergreens were just plain in the way - we were told by a number of parties that they were too large to be moved effectively. I regret that I did not work hard enough at trying to have them moved to a better home...

The building is now more visible. It looks a lot like this Archives photo from 1911, taken a year after the Galt Hospital [the historic east-wing of the Galt Museum & Archives] was opened:


Today the 2006 museum expansion is adjacent to the north of the 1910 wing [which would be the right in the above photo]. An educational natural garden commemorating the Horticultural Society's centennial in 2009 is being created this year along the slope under the pedestrian bridge:

Once pending roadwork is completed, there will again be a circular garden in front of the 1910 wing, similar to but more elaborate than this photo from 1920:


And on the south [left] side of the 1910 building, a Galt School of Nursing Graduate bronze statue by local artist Don Toney will be located near the remaining wall of the very first hospital built in 1891 [below].

August 2, 1955 19752207077
There will also be seating and engraved bricks which have been sponsored by GSN graduates, Galt Babies [those born in the Galt Hospital until 1955], and others wishing to acknowledge special people. Roses and peonies, which would have been found in 1910 gardens, will also help create a place for relaxation.
Hopefully these plans, along with some replanted trees, will begin to fill the hole left by the removal of the big old trees... happy earth day.