Lakeview Waterfront Connection project: Nov. 16, 2015 Meeting Summary and Display Materials

Following message is from Credit Valley Conservation:

Meeting Summary and Display Materials

On behalf of the Lakeview Waterfront Connection (LWC) project team, thank you to those who attended the public meeting and open house on Monday, November 16, 2015 at Clarke Memorial Hall in Port Credit. In total, 75 residents were on hand to share their ideas for the new naturalized conservation area that will transform Mississauga’s Lakeview neighbourhood into a hub for passive waterfront recreation, a hotspot for wildlife migration and a green oasis in the heart of the city.

Attendees learned about a proposed update to the project’s construction access route and saw an updated conservation area detailed design.

To review the meeting summary and display materials, click here >

On behalf of the LWC project team, thank you for your continued interest and support!

Copyright © 2015 Credit Valley Conservation, All rights reserved.
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Our mailing address is:
Credit Valley Conservation
1255 Old Derry Rd.
Mississauga, Ontario L5N 6R4

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Comment (about the rhetoric & reality of community input)

I attended the meeting and, as has been the case in the past, I was very impressed. The meeting was organized in such a way that, following updates by presenters, groups worked at tables to go through a series of questions, and to offer input on the next stage of the planning process. People can also comment online, regarding each of  series of detailed, salient, and relevant questions.

From what I have been able to gather to date, my sense is that there is a high likelihood that input from the community will be closely taken into account, and will be retained in the final rollout, at the stage when the shovel hits the ground some years from now.

Lakeview stands in strong contrast to Etobicoke

In Etobicoke to the east of Lakeview, meanwhile, you can have extensive input from the community – or, at any rate, the appearance of it, at an early stage of the process, whatever the project may be.

But in Etobicoke community participation tends to a sham, in many cases, based on my attendance at many meetings over the years, as documented in previous posts at this website.

A good sense of the gap between rhetoric and reality, as it relates to community participation in Toronto, is provided by a  Nov. 17, 2015 Etobicoke Guardian article regarding the Mimico Secondary Plan:

OMB hears Shoreline Towers’ Mimico-by-the-Lake Secondary Plan appeal 

From what I can gather, based on my first-hand observation of meetings and outcomes over the past several years in both cities, the difference between rhetoric and reality at the City of Toronto as contrasted to the City of Mississauga – as it relates to the Waterfront – parallels the contrast between night and day.

I feel most fortunate to have the opportunity (I live close to the municipal boundary) to regularly compare the differences in approaches to urban planning – and just plain sense-making – between Mississauga and Toronto. If I were only aware of what goes in Toronto, I would feel acutely discouraged about what is possible. Fortunately, I live close to the Toronto-Mississiga border. When I need a lift in my spirits I look to the west.

What accounts for the wide and noticeable differences in outcomes for community participation in Lakeview as compared, by way of example, to Mimico in South Etobicoke?

The differences, that I refer to, are a source of interest for me. What accounts for the differences? Is it a difference in material circumstances and economic pressures? Is the difference accounted for my a different history as it related to civic engagement in the two municipalities? Is there a cultural difference? Is there a difference in political economy?

What evidence is available, with regard to these questions? What research is available, with regard to them?

If you have any suggestions, in particular with regard to solid research evidence, with regard to any of the questions, please let me know. The questions are of much interest to me.

Additional comment (about driving)

Mississauga is different from Toronto and it also has similarities. By way of example, a Nov. 21, 2015 CBC article is entitled: “Peel police under scrutiny for controversial carding practice: ‘Youth are very disillusioned by the police force,’ advocate tells conference.”

I can share an anecdote. I’ve done plenty of driving around South Etobicoke and Lakeview. I learned to drive in Montreal. If somebody is driving very slowly down the street, I tend to pull over into the opposing lane and pass the car and get on my way.

Or if somebody stops at a stop sign, on a quiet side street, so a passenger can disembark, and the process takes a long time, I am apt to drive around the car. These delightful events can happen in either municipality. It can happen as frequently in Mississauga as in Toronto. In such instances, the drivers that I pass invariably make a practice of directing a wide range of imprecations roughly in my direction. Maybe they’re trying to tell me something. I really don’t know. I like to attend to the road ahead. That’s what I focus upon when I’m behind the wheel.

If you learned to drive in Montreal in the 1960s, as I did, some habits are hard to break. I will say, in my favour, that I do not make a habit of driving along the sidewalk, with pedestrians jumping out of the way, as I recall seeing on one occasion in Montreal in the 1960s. The wheels on the driver side of the car were on the road, and the wheels on the passenger side were on the sidewalk. The driver was in a hurry to get somewhere. It was like something out of a comic book, or a cartoon.

With regard to driving in Quebec, a more recent anecdote comes to mind. Driving in the Laurentians, you often see three or more cars bunched up behind some car that is driving at the speed limit and refusing to exceed it, along a winding country road. I recall one summer a couple of years ago, seeing about four cars in a row. There was the lead car and each of the following cars was about one or two feet within the bumper of the car ahead.

Then half an hour later, I came across the same configuration of cars. One was in a ditch, one was turned over on its back, like a turtle with its legs up in the air, and I don’t know where the other cars were. I kept on driving; I didn’t stop to look. I assume the lead car had been involved in some collision and that the cars that followed had each smashed into whichever car was ahead of it. That’s the price, if you choose to tailgate, which is a habit I avoid. It was quite a sight. If I can generalize, riding the bumper in some parts of the world qualifies as a traditional cultural practice.


3 replies
  1. Jaan Pill
    Jaan Pill says:

    Lest I leave an overly pessimistic sense of what may be possible in South Etobicoke, I would add the following comments:

    Certainly, the challenges that South Etobicoke faces are daunting. That said, sometimes community participation wins the day.

    I got my start with community self-organizing when the TDSB was in the process of selling the Parkview School site. The residents in the area had the sense that the site would be sold to a developer who would build townhouses or condos on the site. We decided, “Let’s give it a try.”

    Many things came together – through networking, we found people who had extensive archival evidence to share about the archaeological features of the property; we worked together with the local TDSB school trustee and other people to put together a letter to send to the local MP, the minister of education, and the premier of Ontario.

    Hundreds of letters were sent out, in two stages of letter writing. We had no idea whether the effort would work or not. Before the 2011 provincial election, the local MP had a media event at the school. She said as a result of community input, the province had decided to release $5.2-million to enable the francophone public school board, Conseil scolaire Viamonde, to purchase the property:

    The 2011 Parkview School story remains a source of inspiration and celebration for local residents in south Etobicoke

    Thus occasionally there are good news stories.

    Work is also underway with regard to the wording of the Official Plan, at the City of Toronto level, with first-rate input from Long Branch residents among others. That is important work. Work is also underway aimed at changing the OMB. That work is at the provincial level, with key input from the current MP among others. One of the intended outcomes is that developers would no longer be able to go to OMB to change Secondary Plans developed by local communities, as is currently likely on the way to happening, with regard to the Mimico Secondary Plan, developed with extensive input from the local community.

    For these reasons, I think there is reason for some measure of optimism. At the same time, it’s a fact that the track record for community participation in South Etobicoke in recent years is indeed mixed at best. I see value in the launch of the Long Branch Neighbourhood Association. Even in the face of great odds, civic engagement has value and offers the promise that, on occasion, the voice of the community will be heard.

  2. graeme decarie
    graeme decarie says:

    In Montreal, the highest traffic death rate is among pedestrians who try to cross the street on a green light.

  3. Jaan Pill
    Jaan Pill says:

    Stepping off the curb would definitely be a concern for any pedestrian, anywhere.

    I’m reminded of a March 31, 2015 CBC article:

    “Quebec coroner recommends safer intersections after pedestrian death
    Report released on death of 77-year-old Huguette Bergeron last May”


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