Talk:Northern Ontario

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As this area is rather sparsely populated, what exactly is the rationale for no less than three subregions in addition to numerous redlinks? Hobbitschuster (talk) 18:35, 2 July 2015 (UTC)

It appears somebody copied over the political administrative regions. However, they do make sense from a tourist's point of view - the regions have different characters. --Robkelk (talk) 00:17, 16 March 2018 (UTC)

Breaking up this region[edit]

@Robkelk: Now that there 47 articles for cities and other destinations, it is time to think about sub-dividing Northern Ontario. "Northwestern Ontario" and "Northeastern Ontario" are the traditional regions, with the dividing line running north from Superior just west of Wawa (i.e., the boundary between Algoma and Thunder Bay districts), but that doesn't seem to be enough. The 10 sub-regions listed in this article, on the other hand, would be too many. Tourism Ontario uses 3 sub-regions -- Northwest, Northeastern, and Sault Ste. Marie/Algoma -- but I don't know if that is useful for us given the distribution of our articles. Any thoughts?

Here are the sub-regions listed in the article, with the # of articles.

  • Rainy River -- 4
  • Kenora -- 7
  • Thunder Bay -- 10
  • Cochrane -- 5
  • Timiskaming -- 3
  • Algoma -- 8
  • Sudbury --4
  • Nipissing -- 3
  • Parry Sound District --2
  • Manitoulin District -- 1

Ground Zero (talk) 17:45, 28 August 2021 (UTC)

If I was setting the boundaries, I'd split them this way:
Cottage Country: Where Toronto goes to play in the summer time. Parry Sound District and Manitoulin District - small, but distinct. Maybe pull Algonquin Park into this group from Eastern Ontario.
Northeast: Bilingual English/French (more so the farther one goes east) with a history of mining operations. Sudbury, Timiskaming, Nipissing, and Cochrane.
Thunder Bay/Algoma: A transition zone between mining and living off the land, with a transportation corridor between the Canadian Prairies and the Windsor-Quebec City corridor (The Canadian and the Trans-Canada Highway both pass through here). Algoma and Thunder Bay.
Northwest: Less mining, more forestry and living off the land. Much of this is "fly-in country" and not really somewhere that Wikivoyage covers under its mandate. Stereotypically First Nations (indigenous) territory. Kenora and Rainy River.
This doesn't make for an even distribution of map markers between the groups, but it does group the locations in something resembling themes.
--Robkelk (talk) 19:12, 28 August 2021 (UTC)
Interesting approach. I've worked with thus a bit, and have the following suggestion. I'm not crazy about "Cottage Country". As a Torontonian, that phrase makes my think of Muskoka, the Kawarthas, and Haliburton, in that order. Parry Sound would be a bit further down this along with the Lake Huron shore. I've never heard of people having cottages on Manitoulin. Keeping the highway routes together makes sense, as many travellers will be taking either 11 or 17. I think we don't have to worry about keeping districts intact as they don't matter to travellers. How about this:
  • Northwestern Ontario-- 11
    • Rainy River
    • Kenora -
  • Lake Superior north shore --11
    • Highway 17 from Thunder Bay (the city) to Sault Ste. Marie (and other places accessible from Highway 17)
  • Northeastern Ontario (including places along Highway 11) -- 11
    • from Thunder Bay District: Geraldton, Longlac, and Hornepayne)
    • Cochrane
    • Timiskaming
  • Near North (Ontario) -- 13
    • the rest of Algoma
    • Sudbury
    • Nipissing
    • Parry Sound District
    • Manitoulin District
I think this makes sense from a traveller's perspective, but mixing up districts makes map-drawing more difficult, and that is out of my skillset anyway. Ground Zero (talk) 17:10, 29 August 2021 (UTC)
I guess "Far North" and "Near North" depend on where the traveller is leaving from. Driving from Ottawa, I can make Timiskaming in one day, so I think of it as "Near North", which is why I split off a Northeast in the first place. It's also a good place to rest for a night, refuel, and restock the snacks before heading farther north. Other than that, I like your divisions. (And there are a few cottages on Manitoulin - I know somebody who has one there - but I can see that it's a bit far for most people to go for a cottage.) --Robkelk (talk) 18:57, 29 August 2021 (UTC)
I'm not attached to the names of the subregions. They definitely need some more thought. I don't like "Near North", but nothing else seems to fit. Let's think some more about it. "Northeastern" is probably better than "Far North", but if we include Geraldton, Longlac, and Hornepayne to keep the Highway 11 communities together, it seems a bit odd. Ground Zero (talk) 20:24, 29 August 2021 (UTC)
I've adjusted the proposed region names to reflect this discussion, and in preparation for implementing the proposal if there is no further discussion over the next week. Ground Zero (talk) 22:36, 6 September 2021 (UTC)
When the regions are complete, I may be able to draw a static map, if I can find the time. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 22:49, 6 September 2021 (UTC)
Yeah I'm not a huge fan of "Far North" since that might be confused with the Northern three territories. SHB2000 (talk | contribs | meta.wikimedia) 23:16, 8 September 2021 (UTC)

@SelfieCity: thank you for the offer. This will take some time to implement. Will it help if I provide you the Wikidata numbers for the municipalities in each sub-region?
@Robkelk: the Near North School Board covers much of what I've described above (but not Sudbury and Manitoulin), so I think that Near North (Ontario) is a good name. Ground Zero (talk) 22:50, 8 September 2021 (UTC)

@Ground Zero: I don't think that will be necessary. Importantly, will the new boundaries between Wikivoyage follow political boundaries? If so, a Commons .svg map of counties can be used, but if not, the regions will need to be clearly defined beforehand so I can create the map manually using OpenStreetMap data. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 00:16, 9 September 2021 (UTC)
Unfortunately, what makes sense for travellers does not follow the arbitrary district borders that run through the region. Most districts would be kept whole; others would be split. Large parts are sparsely inhabited, which means the borders don't have to be very precise, though. Ground Zero (talk) 00:52, 9 September 2021 (UTC)
In that case, I'd say Northern Ontario starts at and includes a line that roughly goes through Elliot Lake, Sudbury, and North Bay. Anything south of that - including Parry Sound - isn't really "north", IMHO. --Robkelk (talk) 15:12, 9 September 2021 (UTC)
Given that the provincial and federal governments have adopted a standard definition of NO to include Parry Sound for everything from tourism to health to regional development, I would not be in favour of changing it here. Ground Zero (talk) 03:08, 10 September 2021 (UTC)
I would do a lot of work before publishing it fully, but I'd like to make sure the regions are accurate. As it's on a 3-D projection while OSM is on the Mercator Projection, correlation to the OSM map was impossible. Therefore I had to guess where cities would lie on the static map, and I don't want to leave any destinations buried in the wrong region. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 16:28, 15 September 2021 (UTC)
  • @Robkelk, Ground Zero: Regarding the static map, I'm not familiar with this region, so if my mapmaking hasn't followed the goals of discussion in this thread, it's likely because I'm not familiar with geographical terms. At this stage, adjusting the region outlines isn't difficult so feel free to suggest movements of the boundary lines. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 16:44, 15 September 2021 (UTC)
    • @SelfieCity:, there aren't really a lot of terms to use - we're extrapolating from how the places are grouped from a tourism point of view. I like your map. I think we have a good set of subsections now for a split. Given these divisions, I support this proposal. --Robkelk (talk) 16:51, 15 September 2021 (UTC)
Following the support expressed in the discussion, I will go ahead and implement the region structure. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 18:28, 15 September 2021 (UTC)
I've implemented the region changes shown on the map, although I see that the Elliot Lake could be a point to discuss. I included it and its surroundings in Northeastern Ontario but the earlier proposal placed it in Near North. Is there a consensus among our Canadian editors regarding to which region the Elliot Lake area belongs? I can still adjust the map, of course. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 19:56, 15 September 2021 (UTC)
SelfieCity: I think the map looks broadly like what I imagine the breakdown to be. When I have time, I'll take a closer look. Greetings from New Iceland. 🇮🇸 Ground Zero (talk) 20:29, 15 September 2021 (UTC)
SC, map looks good to me. Which program did you use to get that map? SHB2000 (talk | contribs | meta.wikimedia) 22:54, 15 September 2021 (UTC)
Thanks for the further responses. I used Inkscape for the map. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 23:49, 15 September 2021 (UTC)
Thanks for doing that. That has been bothering me. The Noryh Chanbel communities don't belong with NE Ontario. I wasvthink of moving them to Lake Superior NS, but then it would fe inaccuracy named. I think Near North works well. Ground Zero (talk) 00:00, 19 September 2021 (UTC)
Yes. I realized it when I viewed the Northeastern Ontario dynamic map and saw the distance between three of the articles and all the others. It's hard to understand the geography of regions via lists of cities, but now the static map is in existence I think the region boundaries are far clearer. I'm coming toward the conclusion that static maps are better in region articles, while dynamic maps are better in city articles. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 00:20, 19 September 2021 (UTC)