The town is located on the west bank of the Saint John River at the mouth of the Oromocto River, approximately 20 kilometres (12 mi) southeast of Fredericton. The town's name is derived from the name of the Oromocto River; "oromocto" is thought to have originated from the Maliseet word welamukotuk which means "deep water". It appears on early maps as Ramouctou and La Rivière du Kamouctou (Freneuse seigneurial grant, 1684).
The town was initially an Acadian village. During the Expulsion of the Acadians, it was burned in the St. John River Campaign (1758). During the American Revolution, Fort Hughes was built in the community after the rebellion at Maugerville, New Brunswick. (A replica of Fort Hughes was built at Sir Douglas Hazen Park.) In 1783, Oromocto saw a large influx of settlers with the arrival of United Empire Loyalists, with a steady stream of new blood arriving in the area. Many of the Loyalists also moved into surrounding areas, establishing smaller communities such as Lincoln and Geary.
Oromocto was originally a shipbuilding town in the 19th century, but went into decline after the industry closed. During its shipbuilding days, Oromocto produced about 22 ships. This was made possible by an abundance of timber and sawmills, which continued to provide economic stability to Oromocto, even after the shipbuilding business had died out. It remained a small hamlet until it was selected as the headquarters for a large military training area, in the early 1950s. The Gagetown Military Camp (Camp Gagetown) opened in 1955 as the largest military reservation in the Commonwealth of Nations at the time.
Oromocto underwent a transformation during this time as it was designed to be a "model town". It was considered to be at the forefront of such efforts in Canada. Today, Oromocto's entire economy is dominated by CFB Gagetown.
The town's location in the Saint John River valley provides lush vegetation and an attractive waterfront on both rivers. A small park and marina occupy an area on the Oromocto River waterfront near the downtown. The nightlife attraction is Griffon's Pub and Eatery. The town's shopping mall features a Pizza Delight, Tim Hortons, Dollarama, Shopper's Drug Mart, a barber shop as well as an Atlantic Superstore location. A business district in the area of Restigouche Road has become moderately successful, and the town features a small hospital, track and field facilities, and churches. The town is home to a distribution centre for Sobeys grocery stores, a funeral home, library and recreation centre. Where the town borders on CFB Gagetown, there is also a Canex with a salon and barbershop, hockey/squash arenas, swimming pool, and a credit union, along with military vehicles and aircraft on outdoor display.
Adjacent to the town on the eastern limits is the Oromocto First Nations reserve, a small Mi'kmaq/Maliseet community.
Canadian National Railway abandoned its railway line, which ran through the town to CFB Gagetown, in March 1996. This railway right-of-way has been developed as a recreational trail and is part of the "Sentier NB Trail" network. The section of the Sentier NB Trail between Fredericton-Oromocto-Burton also hosts the Trans Canada Trail.
There are two school districts in Oromoco, one providing education in English and one in French, and nine public schools.
· Anglophone West School District:
o Assiniboine Avenue Elementary School
o Gesner Street Elementary School
o Hubbard Avenue Elementary School
o Summerhill Street Elementary School
o Harold Peterson Middle School
o Ridgeview Middle School
· District scolaire francophone Sud:
o École Arc en Ciel
o École Saint-Anne
5th Canadian Division Support Base (5 CDSB) Gagetown, formerly known as and commonly referred to as CFB Gagetown, is a large Canadian Forces Base covering an area over 1,100 km2 (420 sq mi), located in southwestern New Brunswick.
At the beginning of the Cold War, Canadian defence planners recognized the need for providing the Canadian Army with a suitable training facility where brigade and division-sized armoured, infantry, and artillery units could exercise in preparation for their role in defending western Europe under Canada's obligations to the North Atlantic Treaty. The facility would need to be located relatively close to an all-season Atlantic port and have suitable railway connections.
Existing training facilities dating from the First and Second World Wars in eastern Canada were relatively small (Camp Debert, Camp Aldershot, Sussex Military Camp, Camp Valcartier, Camp Petawawa, Camp Utopia), thus a new facility was considered. At the same time, regional economic development planners saw an opportunity for a military base to benefit the economy of southwestern New Brunswick.
The area under consideration was an expansive plateau west of the Saint John River between the cities of Saint John and Fredericton, measuring approximately 60 km (37 mi) in length and 40 km (25 mi) in width; more accurately it runs between Oromocto in the north to Welsford in the south, and between the Saint John River in the east and the south branch of the Oromocto River in the west.
Over 900 families inhabited the area primarily engaged in agriculture and forestry industries. The terrain was variable, providing mixed Acadian forest, swamp and marshland, as well as open farming areas similar to the North European Plain. The influence of the St. Croix Highlands, part of the Appalachian Mountain range, creates hilly terrain and valleys in the southern and western part of the region close to the Nerepis and Oromocto Rivers.
The expropriation of lands began in the early 1950s, much to the surprise of local residents who had been kept in the dark about the expropriation until the last minute. The base was surveyed so as to not affect some of the historic communities along the western bank of the Saint John River such as Gagetown, Hampstead, and Browns Flat; the expropriation began several kilometres west of the river and eliminated the communities of Petersville, Hibernia, New Jerusalem, North Clones and others. This remains the largest single land expropriation in the history of New Brunswick.
The base headquarters were chosen for the northern part of the base adjacent to the (then) small village of Oromocto. In preparation for the influx of service personnel, Oromocto was redesigned as a "planned" town, with buried electrical utilities and residential and commercial clustering typical of larger planned towns such as Richmond Hill, Ontario.
Construction of the base facilities in Oromocto benefited from convenient railway connections provided by Canadian National and Canadian Pacific Railways. A new alignment of the Trans-Canada Highway was built on the eastern bank of the Saint John River, opposite from Oromocto in the early 1960s (see Route 2) and a new highway bridge across the Saint John River connected the Trans-Canada Highway to the village of Burton, just south of Oromocto and near the east gate for the base.
The Gagetown Military Camp (or Camp Gagetown) opened in 1956 and was named after the village of Gagetown, although the base was located west of this historic village and was headquartered 25 km (16 mi) to its north in Oromocto. The base's territory measured 1,129 km2 (436 sq mi) and included numerous live-fire ranges for infantry, armoured, and artillery units, as well as aerial weapons ranges.
At the time of its opening in 1956, until the opening of Shoalwater Bay Military Training Area in Australia in 1965, Camp Gagetown was the largest military training facility in the Commonwealth of Nations. By comparison, CFB Suffield has 2,690 km2 (1,040 sq mi) with 2,270 km2 (880 sq mi) usable by the military, and 420 km2 (160 sq mi) designated as the Suffield National Wildlife Area.
The training area has been heavily "landscaped" over the years by military foresters and many woodlines have been sculpted to form shapes recognizable from the air, including:
· Scotty Dog Woods 45°39′18″N 066°14′07″W
· Square Woods
· Flag Woods
· The "CTC" cutting 45°43′30″N 066°11′33″W
· The "Maple Leaf" cutting 45°43′51″N 066°11′31″W
Initially, Camp Gagetown was the home base for many army regiments, including The Black Watch and The Royal Canadian Regiment; however, defence cutbacks in the 1960s saw a gradual reduction, and the demise of their parent formation, 3 Brigade Group. On February 1, 1968, the Canadian Army, the Royal Canadian Air Force, and the Royal Canadian Navy were merged to form the unified Canadian Forces. Following this unification, Camp Gagetown was renamed Canadian Forces Base Gagetown (CFB Gagetown).
In the post-unification armed forces, CFB Gagetown functioned as the primary combat training centre for Force Mobile Command (renamed Land Force Command in the 1990s). In the early 1970s Combat Training Centre Gagetown (CTC Gagetown) was established as a unit at CFB Gagetown comprising armour, artillery, and infantry training schools. In the 1990s the Canadian Forces School of Military Engineering was relocated to CFB Gagetown from CFB Chilliwack. The base is still widely referred to as Camp Gagetown.
Increased defence spending in the 1980s saw numerous new training facilities built and ranges modernized, and this continued into the 1990s as the Canadian Forces closed smaller bases in response to further defence budget cuts. A large training building housing much of CTC was opened in late 1992. CFB Gagetown continues to function as the army's primary training facility, although due to risk of forest fires in recent years, live-fire training has been pushed primarily to the fall-winter-spring seasons.
This content was copied from the Wikipedia article as of [2021/04/25]”
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