On the Backs of Children and Afforable Housing

On May 28th, the Spectator published a review of two of the major planning issues in the North End neighbourhood written by HWN member Herman Turkstra.  With the City operating as both land use regulator and as the largest landowner and developer in the neighbourhood, children and affordable housing are at serious risk.

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Just What does neighbourhood participation mean

Hamilton claims to be the best place in Canada to engage citizens.  It used to be called public participation.  But when the invitation from City Hall goes out to the neighbours to attend a meeting and you show up to find the consultants already in the room, the drawings complete, the pictures mounted on the standard board, are you being engaged or manipulated?

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Negotiating with the City - Again

With six planning initiatives in the neighbourhood in 2014, its time for the City apr_08_2015_Arnstein_one_inch_square.gifand the neighbours to take a serious look at the role the neighbourhood should have in decisions being made in City Hall. Shelley Arnstein got it right in 1967.  She created a ladder of public participation, making it easy to see how much power a government permitted its citizens to share.  Hamilton should be a leader in public participation.  Its mission statement, found everywhere in City activities is clear: To be the best place in Canada to engage citizens.  HWN would like to help Hamilton residents move up the ladder but first we have to see where what rung we stand on.

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April 8th @ Mills Hardware

BARC, the people who normally worry about the quality of the Bay and Cootes Paradise gave the City a great forum last night to pitch the current VISION for the North End neighbourhood.  Primary Speaker was Chris Phillips, the City person responsible to carry the West Harbour vision forward.  The other two speakers spoke about earlier VISIONs and VISIONs in other Cities.  Chris Phillips is an outstanding advocate of the current West Harbour VISION.  It all sounded so great.   Hamilton can overcome its "bad image" as a place where people go to work in Dofasco and National Steel Car and Bunge and a host of other places on Burlington Street if only we would replicate downtown Chicago or downtown Toronto or downtown Burlington at the foot of James Street.

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