LETTER: Is it democracy or autocracy?

Why does a handful of councillors decide for thousands of the residents? a reader asks


Re: 77 rental units OK’d for new development in John Phillips Park (News, April 22)

Following its mission statement of reaching zero emissions but actions aiming at 100 per cent or more increase of those emissions, the district council approved building three-storey buildings with commercial space and parking for 156 vehicles for John Phillips Memorial Park.

Legally, the one-hectare area does not belong to the park, but it’s practically part of it.

Lured by the building of a municipal parking lot, the council pushed ahead with its defective vision of creating “a neighbourhood hub” in the park to make it “more usable.” Councillors consider the project an “awesome addition” to the neighbourhood.

Contrary to what the people living in the neighbourhood think, “a handful of residents” opposed to the project are the real people living near and around the park.

It might seem “a handful,” but these are the people who will be affected most. So were they asked? Was there a referendum? Please show us the numbers.

Can the council tell us how many more tons of emissions the development will result in? And of course, there will be the destruction of the park’s environment – with hundreds more people, cars and dogs in it. Plus the approved dog run, children’s playground, a concert stage, a food truck and whatnot. Will there be any trees or grass left? Hardly.

There are more than enough dogs barking and leaving excrements in the park, people littering around, smoking, and children yelling. People living in the neighbourhood hardly ever have peace and quiet.

The city should take better care of green spaces by enforcing its park bylaws and protecting green spaces instead of ending them.

Why does a handful of councillors decide for thousands of the residents? Is it democracy or autocracy?

Nina Leshinskaya



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