Comment 46730

By H+H (registered) - website | Posted August 30, 2010 at 15:54:17

Clustering of assets is not a bad thing, so long as they're carefully integrated and not carelessly isolated. I'm not a huge fan of the MIP in its current location as I think it is too isolated from the heart of the city. On the other hand, I understand the land requirements such facilities often require as generally they involve research labs that are unsuitable for office towers. Some of the innovation and incubation businesses can work well in an office-style environment /campus, but the large scale equipment often employed in these centres makes that difficult. Our automotive and metalurgical fabrication focus of the labs we do have commitments from falls into this latter category.

Speaking of clustering, public recreation and entertainment is also a potential cluster. The west harbour, James North galleries, restaurants, retailers, Bayfront Park, a soccer and/or football stadium, and higher density residential could all be considered part of an integrated cluster. You go because of one thing, and you stay to enjoy another.

The MIP simply isn't working for me when I look at it as an integrated cluster. I suppose if you want to invent a new product, play a game of golf, and then catch a football game, all in an afternoon, it works. Otherwise, I don't see an integrated cluster on, or even near, the Longwood site. Not to mention the selling off of MIP's front yard so a whole bunch of business owners and politicians can "save face". This should never be about saving face. Like many of us have been saying for quite some time, it should be about building a city.

I'm all for compromise, so long as it's genuinely a middle-ground compromise and not just an example of "spin again" negotiations until we get the answer Bob Young and HostCo want.

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