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Sudbury snaps up greenspace on Ramsey Lake

The City of Greater Sudbury has bought an island in Ramsey Lake for $80,000 and plans to continue shopping for waterfront property on Ramsey.

City's purchase is part of a Ramsey Lake improvement plan to protect and preserve area

The city of Sudbury recently bought an island on Ramsey Lake in keeping with the goal to protect wildlife habitat and keep city islands in their natural state. (Yvon Theriault/Radio-Canada)

The City of Greater Sudbury has bought an island in Ramsey Lake for $80,000 and plans to continue shopping for waterfront property on Ramsey.

Its latest purchase, Swansea Island, is a sloped rock, about the size of a soccer field, with a few pine trees, and is not far from Moonlight Beach.

It doesn't look like a hot piece of real estate, but one city councillor said he’s happy with the purchase.

"If I had $80,000, I would have bought it, I'll tell you that,” Terry Kett said. The island falls in his ward.

"I'd like to see a little sign that says City of Greater Sudbury parkland, use well or something like that. I think that'd be a wonderful idea."

Development unlikely

The city bought Swansea Island as part of a Ramsey Lake improvement plan, which calls for all islands in the lake to eventually move into public hands.

Greater Sudbury's manager of development approvals, Eric Taylor, said the goal is to protect wildlife habitat and keep the islands in their natural state.

But he said Swansea and the other privately owned Ramsey islands are already zoned parkland, so development is unlikely.

"With the zoning that is in place today, there is limited opportunity."

He said the move is part of a plan to eventually buy all of Ramsey Lake's 13 islands “for the protection of wildlife habitat, and also for use as stopover points for canoeing or sailing or swimming."

Taylor said the city also keeps a lookout for mainland shoreline on Ramsey Lake that it should preserve as greenspace.

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