Monday, June 29, 2009

SKATING TRAIL

In spite of requests from the community for a public meeting on the revised skating trail design, the Councillor's office is making it clear that there will be no more public discussion about this project. Below is a response from the Councillor Grime' executive assistant to such a request from a local resident. It explains the City's position.
Given that this new design is totally different from the concept designs already presented and encroaches on the meadow south of the Power House that was so hotly defended by the community when it was under threat from a skateboarding facility, it is surely advisable to allow the communuty a final say before it goes to tender and construction begins.

As you are no doubt aware the vision for an ice skating trail arises from the Moore George Report which was the master plan for the Lakeshore Grounds. This was more than a decade ago. In accordance with requirements for an environmental assessment , the City
of Toronto has held two public meetings in the last year in regards to the Proposed Ice Skating Trail.
The purpose of these meetings is for a community consultation to have input from the local residents regarding suggestions or concerns they may have for the proposal. Everyone in the Ward were invited to attend the public meetings, including those who had concerns regarding a previous proposal a skateboard park
During the first meeting the topic of discussion was a proposed location at the south end of the Power House in Colonel Sam Smith Park.
Following that meeting, where suggestions were made regarding the location, a second meeting was convened to suggest the location of the trail in the Woodlot to the North end of the Power House.
Once the public meetings had been convened the suggestions and information from the community input is considered in the final plans. The Project has been reviewed by the Provincial Ministry of the Environment, the TRCA and the community has had input. The majority of individuals who contacted staff or the councillors office were in favour of an ice skating trail in Colonel Sam Smith Park.
The project has been through all stages of the assessment process and has been approved by City Council
The Councillor has also taken the time to have staff meet with additional representatives of the community to hear their concerns and address the relevant issues wherever possible.
It is as a result of these many community meetings and the input from the consultation process that the final plan was shaped. Councillor Grimes has made every effort to exceed the city 's basic his legal obligations on this project. Many steps have been taken to concerns raised, such as the re-use of areas that are already paved, the movement of a large portion of the trail to the area south west of the power house, community involvement in the re-planting of the meadow etc.
The Councillor appreciates the input and suggestions that has arisen from the dialogue with the community, and many of them have been incorporated into the final plan.


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