Press-Republican

Columns

December 16, 2011

Henri's dream and the freeway

Every day, tens of thousands of motorists in Quebec City take the "Henri IV."

That's the major autoroute (freeway) that starts from the bridges spanning the St. Lawrence River then cuts northward across the city some 10 miles and ends at the gates to the sprawling Canadian Forces Garrison Valcartier.

Quebecers perhaps being more up on their history than other North Americans, many of those motorists might know a bit about this Henri IV. The basics are that Henri was the king of France who made it possible for Samuel de Champlain to establish la nouvelle France and open up North America to European exploration and settlement.

Chances are people would have continued to give Henri IV scant notice were it not for the recent controversy over a proposal to rename Autoroute Henri IV.

Suddenly, 401 years after he died — assassinated by a religious fanatic, as was the fashion back then — this remarkable king, the last Henri and the first Bourbon, is back in the spotlight.

A member of Quebec's National Assembly, Gerard Deltell, has been lobbying since 2009 for the Henri IV to be changed to the Autoroute de la Bravoure (Freeway of Bravery) as a tribute to the soldiers from the Valcartier garrison who risked or sacrificed their lives in Afghanistan. The garrison happens to be in Deltell's constituency.

The renamed highway would be the Quebec equivalent of a stretch of the largest freeway in Ontario, which leads to a major army base. Crowds would gather on overpasses when a convoy passed transporting the patriated bodies of soldiers who died back in Afghanistan.

In 2007, the Ontario government designated the section of the freeway the Highway of Heroes, although the artery in its entirety is still called the Macdonald-Cartier Freeway.

Deltell says the Autoroute de la Bravoure would be a constant and perpetual reminder to motorists of the price paid by Canada's military in the cause of freedom.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • Tobias_Sue_012914.jpg World in palm of our hands

    A newsroom workshop made writer Susan Tobias realize how far technology has come since she started working at the Press-Republican.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mulholland_Jonathan.jpg Running tips to get you in top form

    Different limb lengths, tighter muscles, stiffer joints, prior injuries all play role in determining your running style, Jonathan Mulholland writes.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • clute_cropped.jpg When children are put at risk

    Adults who deal drugs, commit domestic violence and other crimes with kids present are guilty of yet another crime, writes columnist Penny Clute.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Walace_Jolene 7-12_cropped.jpg Let these tips on planting trees take root

    You may think that digging a hole and plopping the tree in will suffice, and it will if you only want the tree to live a short time, columnist Jolene Wallace writes.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • ouellette.jpg Web doctor always gets it right

    I have access to the collected medical knowledge of all recorded history at my fingertips, columnist Steve Ouellette writes.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • colin_read.jpg Airport projects can benefit local economy

    Using a local workforce keeps wages and spending in the community if it can be done in a cost-effective manner, according to columnist Colin Read.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gast_Richard.jpg Producers can recycle tubing

    Project allows maple-syrup makers to conveniently dispose of their used tubing in an environmentally friendly way, according to columnist Richard Gast.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Terry_Mattingly.jpg Easter with doubters and the 'nones'

    Should more pastors ask this blunt question: "Do you really believe Jesus was raised from the dead?" wonders religion columnist Terry Mattingly.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Black_Peter_2014_cropped.jpg Canadiens are Canada's team

    The National Hockey League playoffs are underway, and for Canadiens fans, many of whom likely reside in the Montreal "suburb" of Plattsburgh, it is a time of hope and joy.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • amy_ivy.jpg Is it time to plant? Not yet

    All we can do is wait and see how things get through, columnist Amy Ivy writes.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

Peter Black: Canadian Dispatch

Lois Clermont, Editor

Cornell Cooperative Extension

Richard Gast: Cornell Ag Extension

Bob Grady

Guest Columns

Peter Hagar: Cornell Ag Connection

Health Advice

Ray Johnson: Climate Science
Gordie Little: Small Talk

Terry Mattingly: On Religion

Steve Ouellette: You Had To Ask

Colin Read: Everybody's Business

Pinch of Time