Fabio Costante Windsor

Our West End is a blog dedicated for residents to share information regarding neighbourhood issues and developments with the primary intention of making West Windsor a better place to live, work and play. If you would like to post or share anything related to the west-end, please email Fabio Costante at fabiocostante@gmail.com.

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Please note that any opinions expressed are those of the author/resident and not of any organization, unless expressly stated.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Monday, June 18, 2012

West-End Parks


Please see an email below that I received this morning from a west-end resident who lives on Campbell Ave. 

"Hello Fabio,

Please share this with all of your readers:

What "tough times" are they referring to??? With the new bridge announcement last Friday, I thought everyone has been trumpeting about the impending "boom times", or am I missing something?

This parks issue is a moving target--first, they claim that we cannot afford to bring these parks into compliance with an accessibility law that is not yet in force. Then they call this "surplus" parkland, pointing to the 2010 OMBI report (attached) that indicates Windsor is above the median in the measurement "All parkland in municipality as a percent of total area of municipality" (Fig.17.1). Please note, however, that we are actually below the median respecting how much parkland is available per resident: Fig. 17.2 "Hectares of maintained and natural parkland per 100,000 population".

Now we seem focussed on our parkland operating costs ($68 per capita), which are 45 % higher than the median -$47 per capita. I expect that this difference can be accounted for in the very high percentage of what the report calls "high profile parks" (Fig. 17.4). At 39% of our maintained parkland, we have the highest ratio of "high profile" parkland of any of the communities listed--85% higher than the median of 21.1%. These properties, of course, cost a great deal more to maintain than other parkland.

Before one single park is put "on the chopping block", I think we need to look hard at how selling each property will in fact effect this budget. I doubt that we will be selling off the "high profile" /costly to maintain properties, so any savings to the maintenance budget for most properties would likely be minimal, unless we are going to sell a great many of them.

This drive to eliminate neighbourhood parks seems short-sighted in the extreme. A recent report by the medical Journal the Lancet (see attached article), clearly demonstrates the relationship between green space and our health. Instead of eliminating parks because council considers them "underutilized", perhaps we should be considering how to encourage the use of these green spaces within our community.

The comments that our community is aging and the parks are no longer needed will be self-fulfilling. The closure of grade schools in the West end is now leading to the closure of a high school (no feeder school in the area) and the west end community is not attractive to young families. The loss of local recreational facilities and parks will further kill our neighbourhoods.

Please make your voice heard on this issue and connect with City Council requesting more public input to this critical issue."
Source:  West-End Resident

If you would ilke a copy of the mentioned report and article, please send me an email and I will send them to you accordingly.

Subsidized Swimming for West-End Youth

Dear West-End Residents:

Please see an email below I received from a committee member of the Friends for Atkinson Organization:

"Registration for Subsidized Swimming Lessons for west end kids will be held June 23, 2012, 10 am to 2 pm at the Atkinson Park Pool.

Every year the Friends for Atkinson subsidizes the cost for children who cannot afford the lessons and whose parents meet certain income standards. For details, call Marilyn Woodison 519 254 8624.

We would like to get out as many kids who would like to learn to swim as possible."
Source:  West-End Resident

Saturday, June 16, 2012

With Vid: Tough times could mean selling some city parks

Dear Residents:

Council will be asked Monday to approve a recommendation “to begin the public process of surplus parkland disposition,” as well as agree to “undertake” the sale of South Tilston Park...with proceeds allocated to the removal and installation of playground equipment elsewhere.  

For those who may not know, South Tilston is located in the Bridgeview area, abutting Tilston Dr., Secord Ave. and Rankin Ave.  If you oppose this recommendation, please let your voices be heard.  Send me an email with your name and house address and please confirm your opposition in the same email.  I will then forward your concerns to our city councillor and the appropriate city authority.  
You can see the article and video by clicking on the link below.


Fabio Costante

With Vid: Tough times could mean selling some city parks