Friday, December 18, 2020 - 12:30 PM

Neighbourhood Profiles Series: Rennie's River

The Loop Opening Day 2019

The Rennie's River neighbourhood contains what was the first planned garden community after the Second World War and remains a popular residential area. Rennie's River has tree-lined streets, parks, sport fields, schools, and shopping.
 
This neighbourhood contains many recognized historical, cultural, and social areas, including one of the City’s marquee municipal areas, Bannerman Park.

Named for Governor Alexander Bannerman who in 1864 donated land in the vicinity of Government House for a public park for the use and enjoyment of the citizens of St. John’s, Bannerman Park includes many significant monuments, a ballfield, open spaces, a playground, swimming pool and splash pad, walking trails and a winter treasure, The Loop.

The Loop at Bannerman Park first opened to the public in 2013 and has been offering hours of enjoyment to residents and visitors since opening day. The Loop was developed as part of the Bannerman Park Revitalization project, and the honour of naming the new skating rink fell to Freedom of the City recipient and philanthropist Elinor Gill Ratcliffe, patron donor to the revitalization fundraising campaign. In an interview with the Telegram in 2013, Ms. Ratcliffe said she wanted an easy name for the children she hopes will flock to the trail.

“…I said, why don’t you give me a list of suggestions, and let me pick? I knew that I wasn’t going to call it after an individual or a company, but … something that you see kids picking up their skates and saying, ‘Goodbye, Mom! I’m going to the …’”

Bannerman Park is an excellent example of 19th century public park design, reflecting the British parks of that time. 

For more on the history, features and amenities of the Rennie’s River neighbourhood, visit: https://map.stjohns.ca/neighbourhoods/index.html

(Photo: Kevin Nolan and Elinor Ratcliffe, naming ceremony, 2013.)