The Central Neighbourhood Association just held its first public meeting in recent memory, bringing together a room full of people genuinely and energetically interested in using their talents to make things better.
By Theresa Nicholson
Published November 07, 2011
In advance of Thursday's Evening with Jason Farr at City Hall, Town Halls Hamilton has been working with local neighbourhood associations to highlight some of the issues important to them. These topics will inform the agenda for the event on November 10.
Central District, Downtown Hamilton, or how she's affectionately known by her residents - "The Core".
Hamilton was established in 1815 by George Hamilton. He founded the public square in what is now known as Gore Park, which to this day remains the centre of the city.
I remember, as a child, my mother taking me "downtown" to shop at Kresge's Five and Dime. The lopsided wooden floors, the smells, and the treasures that could be had for a nickel or a dime: all of these memories play vividly in my mind.
A couple of blocks west brought us to Eaton's department store and its caged elevator, operated by properly dressed ladies wearing white gloves. It didn't matter what floor we went to, as long as I got to ride on that elevator.
From there, a trip to the Hamilton Farmers Market located at the corner of York and and James Street for fresh fruit and vegetables brought to us by local farmers.
One hundred and seventy four years after its opening, our market still stands. Even though the downtown is a not a good iteration of what it's been in the past.
As the President of the Central Neighbourhood Association (CNA) for the past three years, I've mostly been working solo, struggling just to keep the lights on, as it were. This past week, we held the first CNA meeting in recent memory.
To have a room full of people genuinely and energetically interested in moving forward with not only addressing immediate concerns, but also using their sizable talents to imagine ways to return the Core to a state more reflective of what Hamiltonians deserve from their downtown... well, I can't describe how nice that was.
As a result, here's a quick list of hot topics, issues we feel deserve attention:
Even if we're not making comparisons with the past, we've got a lot of work to do in order to make things better in The Core. The CNA is looking at Thursday's event with Councillor Farr as a fresh start towards a new beginning.