Comment 76040

By Mahesh_P_Butani (registered) - website | Posted April 18, 2012 at 13:19:32 in reply to Comment 76015

We are in fact on the edge of an epochal something in Hamilton alright! But as someone inclined to reading tea leaves, I would hesitate to suggest that we are on the cusp of an "epochal migration".

As stated above, epochal migration is simply not going to happen in Hamilton until we are willing to fix the broken spirit of inclusion in our community.

What we are in fact witnessing is the rumblings of an "epochal explosion" which has a potential to destroy what was gained in our city over the last decade.

The current push for ward boundary change in my opinion is one of the most misguided and self-centered initiatives to have been unleashed by citizen activism in Hamilton. There will be enough time on hand very soon to truly experience first-hand the unintended consequences of city building via planning-by-rage.

Cities don't grow this way, neighborhoods most definitely do not come into being this way.

Further to the three links above: How Cities Grow, Ensuring Ontario’s Economic Potential, Planners stumped by demographic surprises, here is one more below, which looks at Canadian urban realities. Hopefully this may help some in our city to realign their repressed rage and channel their energies into something more constructive:

In more ways than one, our current citizen activism is mimicking the poor politics left behind by our past mayors. The rage one sees in the current push to redraw ward boundaries is more a reaction to the debilitating political legacy of the past two mayors, than it is a product of the free-will of citizens to rebuild the culture and economy of our city, our communities, our neighbourhoods.

We have an unique chance to rebuild our city into a community of thriving neighbourhoods defined by their character and driven by real citizen power. Instead, we are about to blow that opportunity big time by giving currency to an antiquated notion of a "ward". Reshuffled any which way, we will still be left with the same politics, just new faces. It is the geographic axis and the human spirit in Hamilton that needs realignment, not its ward boundaries. Epochal migration will only being then.

Mahesh P. Butani

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