The visual identity, seen above, reflects feedback from Indigenous and non-Indigenous people gathered through information sharing and public engagement earlier this year. It encompasses a sense of place, movement, history and the natural environment.
It is inspired by the shapes of the Waaban Crossing arches and its relationship to the water, the land and the people who will use it. The swooping shapes look like two birds flying together and light reflecting off water. The colours are reminiscent of a sunrise over water. The green on the far left represents the green wall on the west side of the Waaban Crossing.
What does the name mean?
Waaban: Waaban is an Anishnaabemowin (Ojibwe) word that has several meanings and interpretations relating to the eastern direction where the sun comes up, the dawn of a new day or the morning light. This word was put forward to represent both the natural environment that the bridge crosses, and as a hopeful metaphor, with Indigenous Peoples and all Canadians working together toward a better world for future generations.
The Waaban Crossing visual identity includes a tagline, “Reflect. Connect. Flow.”, that helps to tell the story of the bridge, the history of the land around us, the people and animals that are here now, those who have come before, and those who will come after us. Here’s a closer look at what it means:
Reflect: As we move along the crossing and take in its natural setting, whether on foot, by bike, by bus, or by car, we are reminded that many people share this land. We must also acknowledge our collective responsibility to care for it.
Connect: The crossing helps us come together on a deeper level as we learn a more complete version of our area’s history. It opens the door to understanding, respect, and stronger relationships – between communities, individuals and the environment.
Flow: Just as the water flows under the bridge and through our region, the crossing encourages us to move together. When we work together, we are powerful and healing. We can build a better, more sustainable future for everyone.
The visual identity will be used in the creation of interpretive and directional signage, planning for future artistic installations and continued development of educational, community-based programming.
“We want to extend our thanks to Nations, and Indigenous and non-Indigenous community members who shared their lived experience and offered guidance during the naming and visual identity processes," says Jennifer Campbell, Director, Heritage Services. “Your valuable input ensured that the name, meaning, and visual elements of the identity honour the bridge as a symbol of community connection, learning and the path of reconciliation. We are looking forward to reaching out to the community in 2023 to continue to gather stories and shared knowledge that will be represented in future interpretive signage and programming.”
Driving on the new bridge
We know there has been lots of excitement to drive across the Waaban Crossing! We anticipate it will take some time for 'normal' traffic patterns to become established on the bridge, especially with residents eager to visit it for the first time and the holiday season in full swing. We will continue to monitor traffic volumes over the coming months and make traffic signal timing adjustments that may be needed.
We appreciate your patience as everyone enjoys their first walk, ride or drive across the bridge in the coming days and weeks. Even though it is exciting to see new views of the city and the amazing Cataraqui River, please drive safely!