Comment 5276

By Community (anonymous) | Posted February 10, 2007 at 01:19:32

The posts from Concerned Observer and Steel Town definitely add balance to this discussion.

I agree, the Hemson report did not say to abandon brownfield redevelopment. It simply stated that the absorption rate is typically quite low. This is true, brownfields are overlooked by many companys for a myriad of reasons including: land ownership fragmentation, environmental liability, potential for significant clean up costs if possible at all. Some properties are contaminated from off site sources making it pointless to clean-up until the source is cleaned up. Some companies hold on to their now defunct lands to control liability and unfortunately have no interest in remediation or sale.

R&D firms who employ "the creative class" are definitely not looking at lands down in North Hamilton to set up shop beside a steel mill.

I believe in a more balanced approach to allow the City to move forward and prosper. We shouldn't abandon brownfields and infill but we do need to open up additional employment lands with large parcel sizes and good transportation access.

We're missing a huge opportunity around the Airport which is owned by the City. The Province acknowledges it in their international award winning plan "Places to Grow" they even built a highway to it for direct access.

Look to our neighbours in Waterloo region, they established a 10,000 acre study area around their airport to study it for employment purposes in months not years. We can't let this pass us by.

A multi-faceted strategy is required, brownfield, intensification and new lands. The city's economic development department was the author of the first brownfield redevelopment plan in Canada (ERASE). We've seen great results, we need to keep working at it as well as opening up other lands to capture the market the new economy. Let's work together as one community.

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