Comment 41404

By Half Full or Empty? (anonymous) | Posted June 01, 2010 at 12:01:28

I like the old building, and have been frustrated by the current reno more by the pattern of decision-making that it revealed than the results. Generally, this city's few WOW factors are more the result of fortuitous accidents, or sometimes by the dedicated work of a few who toil without drawing the attentions of local bureaucrats and policy makers. Our West Harbour trails began as tainted landfill, for instance. Our abundant waterfalls are the result of local geography overcoming constructed efforts to divert them into sewers. Historically we are afraid to risk the expense and political currency on WOW enterprises. What if the decision proves wrong? How will we pay for the WOW? Better to be safe, make decisions time-tested in our own communities and others. Even if the project doesn't live up to expectations (Red Hill Valley Expressway) it will get enough use to justify in hindsight. Better to preserve our municipal potential than to exploit it.

City Hall forecourt, when originally constructed, was to bridge to the AGH court on the north side, which was to bridge to Jackson Square's upper deck, but only one bridge was ever built (and it is seldom open) due to familiar demands to economize. Better to have city council meet in Bell Tel's underground communications vault at Bay & Main than give those fancy political types with their grandiose visions an expensive canvas to display their skills.

Anyway, there's still potential to build a WOW location on Main St. if the fore-and-aft courts of city hall & the AGH are viewed as one, enhancing the sculpture courts with dancing lights and waters, and without a six-lane expressway running through the middle. And the Jackson Square upper deck is STILL a great festival and performance location. Oh yes, Hamilton still has its precious "potential."

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