Comment 9966

By jason (registered) | Posted July 26, 2007 at 07:52:43

actually, the Good Shepherd case was simply residents trying to get city council to uphold their own rules....our city would be a much better place if council simply followed the plans and proceedures already laid out.

Council had spent the previous year drawing up new regulations dealing with how large shelters can be and how close they can locate to existing social services. As we all know, downtown Hamilton carries the majority of facilities in this sector. The goal was to 'share the love' with other parts of the city. The first application to come across council's desk was this one. It needed all sorts of ammendments due to the fact that it broke these freshly established rules. As this isn't Westdale or Ancaster it came as no surprise when council was willing to allow the project to proceed. Again, I attended the meetings about this project and dont' remember anyone being upset about the womens shelter portion of the project. It was the specter of more shelter space being added and the unknown with respect to the high rise buildings - would they end up like the buildings on Ferguson North run by Wesley? And of course, folks whose back yards face the site weren't too happy about 4 buildings ranging from 3-10 stories being built. The height has since been knocked down to 8.

This was appropriate neighbourhood involvement, not NIMBYism. Several months ago word got out that Options for Homes was looking to partner in the project. Most folks were excited about this. That idea fell through and the whole project has stalled, not because of residents, but because of lack of funds at the Good Shepherd. Finally, track record came into play. These were the same guys who mere months earlier were making presentations down in International Village to build a new 'apartment/office' building there with tons of removable walls and big empty rooms on the main floors. Board rooms they said. The neighbourhood knew better and council blocked the project, just as they should have in Strathcona.

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