Who is responsible for the mess we're making of the Gore? Where is the Mayor? Where is the Premier? Where is the leader rallying support to save the heart of the city?
By Chris Erskine
Published August 13, 2013
22 King Street East
(Image Credit: Chris Erskine)
I am now just waiting for the gap to appear.
The compromise solution to the historical Gore Park buildings is really not a solution. It reminds me of the famous 1968 Vietnam War quote, "it became necessary to destroy the town to save it."
The problem with demolishing the buildings and placing the historical facade elements in storage is that people will soon forget what they have lost and hence the will to restore them.
There is also the risk of things going missing, just like when the original fountain was removed from Gore Park and placed in storage.
Gore Park will look like a wasteland in a few years, particularly when the City starts cutting down the trees. As Molly Hayes reported in the Hamilton Spectator on July 18, 2013, the City plans to cut down 85 percent of the trees in Gore Park.
Who is to blame for this mess? Not Councillors Brian McHattie or Jason Farr! At least they are fighting for a better solution.
My question is: where is the Mayor and the Ontario Premier?
The Mayor is the only person on council whose job is to represent the whole city. Furthermore, prior to becoming Mayor, he was the councillor for Ward 2. Why is he not rallying the councillors to save the heart of the city?
And where is Kathleen Wynne, the Ontario Premier? It appears that her Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport, Michael Chan, has arbitrarily decided not to save the Gore Park Buildings.
Why is Kathleen Wynne not demanding that he seek expert advice from the Ontario Heritage Trust? Why is Kathleen Wynne not demanding that he publicly justify his decision not to act?
If the Premier can involve herself in Toronto governance concerns, she should certainly be willing to involve herself in Hamilton heritage concerns.
Maybe Andrea Horwath, Hamilton Centre MPP, can ask the Premier why she supports Michael Chan's inaction.
It seems to me that the Ontario Heritage Act was design to address these sorts of situations and to protect interests of the citizens of Ontario from special interests and misguided city councils.
Until we get more answers, I am afraid we will simply have to wait for the gap to appear.
Tell Council and the Province to designate the Gore and protect these buildings from demolition:
firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com>, Bob.Bratina@hamilton.ca, Brian.McHattie@hamilton.ca, Jason.Farr@hamilton.ca, Bernie.Morelli@hamilton.ca, Sam.Merulla@hamilton.ca, Chad.Collins@hamilton.ca, Tom.Jackson@hamilton.ca, Scott.Duvall@hamilton.ca, Terry.Whitehead@hamilton.ca, Brad.Clark@hamilton.ca, Maria.Pearson@hamilton.ca, Brenda.Johnson@hamilton.ca, Lloyd.Ferguson@hamilton.ca, Russ.Powers@hamilton.ca, Robert.Pasuta@hamilton.ca, Judi.Partridge@hamilton.ca, firstname.lastname@example.org, Peter.email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, tmcMeekin.email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
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