Calgary, December 9, 2014
Your Worship and Members of Council
On behalf of the eight communities who were represented at Council yesterday, I would like to thank you for taking the time to hear our various community representatives.
Although we did not achieve our objective of having Council defer the sale of the MR Land until major TIAs and Transportation studies are completed, a number of positive commitments were made yesterday:
1. Council confirmed that the 3,400 Square Meters of MR Land being sold to Western Securities must be recreated 1 for 1 in interior green space, bringing the total interior green space to 3,900 square meters with the minimum 500 square meters already required in the Stadium ARP.
2. Councillor Sutherland tasked Mr. Logan with establishing a communication and consultation process that would take the form of quarterly meetings with interested communities on updates to transportation plans, the results of on going transportation studies, the specific plans and phases for upgrades and other possible changes to 16th Ave NW. On behalf of the eight communities, I will follow up with Mr. Logan to begin the establishment of the on-going consultation process.
On a personal note, I must admit I was a bit dismayed at your Worship’s comment in today’s Herald – assuming it is indeed an accurate quote – that our presentation yesterday was simply “another go “ at the Stadium ARP. Seven of the eight communities represented at Council yesterday were not involved with the ARP hearings in 2013. If as a group, we were all simply dismissed as anti-Stadium, that really brings into question the integrity of the public consultation process. The concerns regarding the future of 16th Ave spanned communities as far west as Crestmont and Valley Ridge as well as 16th Ave corridor communities such as Briar Hill and Banff Trail. Not a mention was made of the Stadium ARP, in fact to the contrary, the eight communities publicly endorsed the redevelopment of Stadium Shopping Centre. If our legitimate transportation concerns were effectively discounted through a totally mistaken lens of “anti Stadium development”, then a great disservice was done to all of the communities who supported the motion to delay the sale of the MR Land because of legitimate concerns about future transportation challenges on 16th Ave. NW.
Ultimately, as Councillor Chabot summed up the outcome of our deliberations ”the communities will simply have to trust Council and City Administration to do the right thing”. As you no doubt expect, we will certainly keep a very close eye on how all of the major projects around us progress and will make full use of the communication/consultation process to be established to stay informed and relay the communities’ perspective on issues of concern.
Best regards and best wishes to you and all of your staff for a wonderful holiday season and a healthy and successful 2015.
President, St Andrews Heights Community Association
Cc Parkdale Community Association
University Heights Community Association
Briar Hill-Hounsfield Heights Community Association
Crestmont Community Association
Bowness Community Association
Valley Ridge Community Association
Banff Trail Community Association