Comment 48467

By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted September 29, 2010 at 18:01:30

Hamilton's "Golden Age" happened because of our harbour. It was one of the most significant inland ports on this part of the continent. Businesses along the harbour thrived, and that spread to the rest of the (largely downtown) city.

While I support as much renewed use of the Harbour as possible, we need to recognize that it isn't the 1950s any more. The big industries are gone or going and not coming back. The employment they now generate is generally low-wage and precarious. The future of employment in this city, as mentioned above, will lie mostly in small firms and self employment.

The first step toward a new "Golden Age" is getting down to business. And unfortunately, very little of that "business" is glorious. Replacing sewer pipes, cleaning up toxic sites and rebuilding mental health treatment facilities is a "dirty" legacy, but it is the lack of these crucial basic actions which is tearing apart our town at the foundations (literally, and metaphorically). Our roads are torn up, our zoning and licensing laws are Kafka-esque. Worst of all, we're stuck in a cycle of underfunding social services (or opposing new ones), intending to rid ourselves of the poor, addicted or mentally ill which has in reality made the situation at street level much worse.

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