Whistler’s controversial Squaw Valley Crescent will soon have a new name.
At its July 6 meeting, council will consider renaming the road in Creekside to Chamonix Crescent.
The new name was one of three proposed to residents of the street last year by the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW), along with Cortina Crescent (site of the 1956 Winter Olympics and co-host of the 2026 Games) and Grenoble Crescent (site of the ’68 Games where three-time Olympian Nancy Greene-Raine won gold in giant slalom and silver in slalom).
Chamonix (site of the first Winter Olympics in 1924) received the most votes from residents of the street (16), followed by Cortina (10) and Grenoble (5).
If council approves the change on July 6, the RMOW will contact Canada Post, BC Assessment, ECOMM, BC Ambulance Service, BC Hydro, Fortis BC, Shaw Communications and Telus on behalf of residents (who will then be responsible for notifying any other agencies themselves).
The Lil’wat and Squamish First Nations were notified of the impending change in January, according to a report to council, and both nations will be engaged as the RMOW looks to revamp its Road Naming Procedure in the future.
“The aim of this process is for more Indigenous language to be incorporated into the Whistler community which is located on the shared, unceded territory of the Lil’wat People, known in their language as Lil̓wat7úl, and the Squamish People, known in their language as Sḵwx̱ wú7mesh,” reads the report to council.
While originally named in the ‘60s for the Squaw Valley Ski Resort (host of the 1960 Winter Games), Whistler’s mayor and council have had many requests to change the name over the years, with people pointing out the term squaw is an ethnic and sexual slur historically used to disparage First Nations women.
“Reconciliation isn’t something you just talk about, it’s something that you do, and this is certainly one step in that very long journey,” said Mayor Jack Crompton, prior to beginning the renaming process last summer.
“Naming says something about what we value, and making changes like this make a statement about our values, in my opinion.”
Council will also hear presentations on the 2020 Annual Report, an update to the noise control bylaw, a sewer corrosion repair project and more at the July 6 meeting.
Find the full agenda and a link to tune in live here.
Pick up Thursday’s Pique or head to piquenewsmagazine.com for more from council.