1990, General Motors of Canada Limited celebrated the construction
of their new "green" Canadian Corporate Headquarters as well as
the creation of the McLaughlin Bay Wildlife Reserve. Named after
the automakers' founder, Col. Sam McLaughlin, the Reserve has become
a popular attraction for lovers of nature and peaceful surroundings.
The Reserve is situated on the north shore of Lake Ontario in south-east
Oshawa, Ontario. It is readily visible from Highway 401 (Toronto
to Montreal), and is located between the Second Marsh Wildlife Area
(a Provincially Significant Wetland) on the west and Darlington
Provincial Park (a heavily forested zone) on the east.
The Reserve occupies in excess of 41 ha (108 acres) of land owned
and operated by General Motors of Canada Limited. An additional
40 ha of the same tract has been set aside for the office complex,
parking and services, along with adequate buffer zones.
The abandoned field separating Col. Sam Drive and the east side
of Second Marsh will perhaps be developed someday as per the original
site plan agreement between General Motors of Canada Limited. and
the City of Oshawa. The plan calls for the development of a prestige
business park, and as these various parcels are leased, they will
be developed in adherence to a strict code designed to protect the
integrity of the Second Marsh. There will be no loss of wetlands
as a result.
Home to almost 400 different varieties of plants, trees, shrubs
and wildflowers, as well as a great number of native birds, mammals
and fish, the McLaughlin Bay Wildlife Reserve features a number
of walking trails, viewing platforms for photographers and birdwatchers
as well as the Dogwood Trail, for use by partially-sighted or visually-impaired
visitors. It is open to the public seven days a week, year-round,
free of charge, and is wheel-chair accessible.