Is it any wonder why citizens are puzzled and angry?

Posted May 8, 2012

It was another proposal that came out of the woodwork.

The city leadership has decided this city needs another downtown park.

So, staff has been busy moving a new project along. It will result in about 40 businesses forced to move elsewhere because the southeast corner of Wellington and Gordon Street will become a new downtown park.

Uh, that’s in 2022.

At first blush, staff announced the cost of buying up two strip malls and a separate small animal clinic would be $9 million. This would eliminate the commercial corner and create a pristine park nestled along the shores of the Speed River.

Then the price was revised to cost between $12 and $16 million by 2022.

Let’s see, those on council voting for this foolish scheme will be the same ones who voted for the $16 million civic museum (less Coun. Todd Dennis). But then went off the rails to spend more than $50 million on a wet waste composting plant that has not met targeted production since start-up last September.

So, approving this parks plan, council is saying it will save enough money to pay for the project over the next ten years. I don’t know, but how much money has council saved in the past five and one half years?

How does this work into the announcement that a new $63 million downtown library will be open by 2017? Or how about the south-end recreation centre? Ask Farbridge team player Mr. Dennis about that.

Both these projects will bind the hands of future councils. Those councils may have other plans than to build monuments to the perceived genius of the Farbridge gang of eight.

Let’s drop the vision thing and the obsession with downtown Guelph. Let’s work on putting our financial house in order.

Let’s have good roads, responsible development, more commercial and industrial development to create jobs, more social housing, more recreational facilities with washroom walls that don’t collapse, fewer closed meetings, and more transparency.

It’s not complicated, All that’s required is critical thinking.

Come’on Madame Mayor, open the doors and windows and let the sunshine in.

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10 Comments

Filed under Between the Lines

10 responses to “Is it any wonder why citizens are puzzled and angry?

  1. paul phelan

    Is this woman playing with a full deck????? Guelph does have an excellent mental health facility….perhaps just maybe………

  2. Ruby

    As usual, Gerry you are RIGHT ON!
    As long as the greenies and “activists” who live off the public purse continue to be voted onto Council, nothing will change for Guelph.

    I live in Guelph because my family history dates back to the mid-1800’s here so there are family ties.
    However, we leave Guelph daily to commute to our middle-income, private sector jobs.

    Council never asks why because it helps them stay in their cushy, publicly funded jobs spending like drunken sailors and regulating and hiking taxes like crazy people.
    And obviously enough citizens in Guelph agree with that because they continue to vote for the greenie, activist crowd.

    Guelph is mirroring the current mind-set of too many Ontarions these days of
    “The government will take care of me.”

    As opposed to free-thinking citizens who want to prosper and develop.

    • paul phelan

      Well put Ruby!!!!!

    • Ruby: My objective is to alert and inform voters that change is needed. The current administration’s policies has placed the city in a serious financial bind. Yet they keep pushing millions of dollars worth of projects that, if executed, will cripple our city and future administrations.

  3. paul phelan

    The city appears to be crippled as I type this……

  4. turningthecurve

    Seems as though no one is saying $16 M in 2022 will actually give you a park. There’s a lot more to creating a park than knocking down a few buildings.

    BTW, will there be environmental assessments completed ahead of the work? It would be interesting to see what remediation is required.

    At any rate, that’s still a lot of money for a park you won’t be able to walk in for all the goose poop that you’ll have. The Province’s direction is for us to pursue intensification, towards preserving our natural spaces, our agricultural lands. And what do we say to those waiting for avoiding housing? Sorry — the geese need more space?

    • paul phelan

      Perhaps we could tear the mayors house down and some of her faithful councillors homes as well and turn them into miniparks…..

  5. turningthecurve

    Second cup of coffee: What about affordable housing for people?! Where does it stand in our priorities?

  6. turningthecurve

    Paul, there certainly seems to be some interest in de-urbanizing (?) our urban centre. In that vein, what’s wrong with a few houses as well? I think your point is, this move will be very disruptive for some livelihoods.

    • paul phelan

      It certainly would be disruptive for some livlihoods…a real shame to lose the two strip malls and the businesses there….there is lots of park land in that area…no need to disrupt the businesses…….seeing how the parking downtown sucks anyhow why not shut wydham street down to traffic and make it a green space ….trees and all walking…..I’m certain that there are enough tree huggers in the city that would volunteer and this could be done rather inexpensively….maybe even turn Farbridges home into a museum….kind of a nostalgic piece of property to reflect on the downfall of the city of guelph under her dictatorship.

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