Nearly all of the limestone here in Niagara-on-the-Lake, including that used in the construction of the old courthouse and the Brock Monument, was sourced right from the quarry of Queenston.
Dating back 400 million years, the quarry has a rich history of providing the Niagara region with limestone.
Now, it is in the process of a rebirth.
From the time the Queenston Quarry Reclamation Company took possession of the quarry in 2006, company president Frank Racioppo says site rehabilitation has been in the works.
“Our environmental horticultural and design team are working (on) the plan for the entire site,” he told The Lake Report.
Members of the Niagara-on-the-Lake Kid’s Rock Club visited the quarry this winter to explore its history and grab some of their own limestone and shale to take home.
With the success of the exploration in mind, Francesca Sorrenti, the club’s leader, spoke with Racioppo about the possibility of including a children’s learning space at the quarry, similar to something at the Ontario Science Centre.
It could be an open-air space without any structure, Sorrenti said.
“Other than just describing it as a learning opportunity, we haven’t gone into much further detail than that,” said Racioppo.
Despite it being in its beginning stages, Sorrenti and Racioppo said they feel excited about the potential opportunity.
“Possibly, there would be an opportunity to have an actual building, or gathering building, built for the purposes of actual community gathering,” Sorrenti said.
Until things get approved to move forward, Sorrenti said, she will need a committee of people who also see the value in the proposed education space.
“I need help from people who have the same vision, and I need to see if there are people who are willing to donate and start this new project,” she said.
Those interested can reach Sorrenti by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.