New sports centre – Named in the memory of Olive Urquhart, first woman mayor of Pointe-Claire
The Mayor of Pointe-Claire, Tim Thomas, and the members of the City Council, at the regular meeting of March 8, announced the official naming of the new municipal sports centre (230 Brunswick Boulevard) in memory of the first woman mayor of Pointe-Claire, Olive Louise Urquhart (1907-1987).
“On this International Women’s Day, we pay tribute to an exceptional woman, a great visionary who contributed significantly and remarkably to our city’s development. Pointe-Claire’s first and only woman mayor and the second woman mayor of any city in Québec, Ms. Urquhart instilled Pointe-Claire with a dynamism resulting in truly great achievements we appreciate to this day,” said Mayor Tim Thomas.
From the time she took office as mayor in 1954, Ms. Urquhart was dedicated to the planning and development of the city, in full growth, with the construction of public utility services, new buildings, an elementary school (Lakeside Heights) and John Rennie High School. In 1955, she created the position of City Manager to ensure the coordination of the City’s departments.
At that time, there was a tradition that Anglophone and Francophone mayors alternated every two years. Ms. Urquhart’s first term therefore ended in 1956, at a time when Pointe-Claire was growing strongly. After serving as councillor between 1956 and 1958, she was reelected mayor by acclamation in 1958. She pursued her mandate by supervising the development of the northern part of the city, including the entire industrial park sector.
Ms. Urquhart also contributed to the construction of the water purification plant (1958) to meet the needs of the growing population and an industrial park in full expansion, while ensuring the fluoridation of drinking water. She also participated in the construction of the Lakeshore General Hospital, beginning in 1959, in addition to defining the vocation of Stewart Hall as a cultural centre, between 1959 and 1960.
“Our new sports centre, which is the gateway to our industrial park, is the ideal place to pay tribute to this pioneer, who contributed substantially to the City and quality of life that we know today. She is a model, a source of inspiration for all of us,” Mayor Thomas added.
A plaque will be erected in her memory in the sports centre, which is scheduled to open this spring.
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