The Craigleith Depot’s name will not change.
At its committee of the whole meeting on Nov. 27, The Blue Mountains council rejected a request to change the name of the museum and library branch from Craigleith Depot to Craigleith Station.
A resolution to approve a name change was defeated in a 2-4 vote with councillors Shawn McKinlay and Paula Hope in favour, with Mayor Andrea Matrosovs absent. Subsequently, council passed a resolution to deny the name change resolution. The second resolution passed in a 5-1 vote with just McKinlay opposed.
The Blue Mountains Public Library Board had requested the change in name to reflect that the Depot’s original and legal name is Craigleith Station. After the building ceased to function as a railway station, it was the home of a restaurant called The Depot.
The potential name change was controversial in the community with many differing viewpoints being expressed since the request was first made to council. Council also heard plenty of support for the idea at a public meeting held on Oct. 31.
In the end, council decided to keep the Depot name in place.
“The people who have been here for decades will still refer to it as the Depot,” said Coun. Gail Ardiel, who admitted to being conflicted on the matter. “I’m torn on this decision.”
Coun. Alex Maxwell expressed concern that approving the name change could set a precedent and open the floodgates for many more name change requests. In response, CAO Shawn Everitt said the town has a formal process for name changes and any requests would have to adhere to the rules in place.
“That’s why we have a policy. Every request will go through that policy,” said Everitt.
Deputy Mayor Peter Bordignon said he had heard a lot of opposition to the potential name change from the community.
“The people I’ve spoken to have been adamantly against it,” he said, adding that he felt the idea was creating a division in the community. “Why create a problem that’s not there?”
In support of the resolution, McKinlay said the library board had looked into the history of the Depot and felt Craigleith Station was the right name for the facility.
“They researched it. They have done their due diligence,” he said.
The committee's decisions will have to be ratified by a vote at the next full council meeting.