Two meetings to report on
The good news meeting...
The May 31st neighbourhood meeting held at Yorkminster Baptist got a good turn out. There were lots of new faces and over a hundred names were added to our mailing list, that is now at 233.
If you know of others who should be on the list, let me know.
The first speaker was Ken Koson, manager of the Rehabilitation Project. Ken was asked to present the engineering aspects of the project, and to talk about the impact on the communities in terms of timing, traffic and pedestrian access. Ken and colleague Kate Nellicher were part of the Q&A at the end of the evening.
The Revised Plan was introduced by John van Nostrand and presented in detail by Landscape Architect Paul Rookwood.
The presentation showed the design of the park in layers; what trees were going, what trees would be left, where the widened walking and bike paths would go, where widened stairs would be, where the centennial module could be moved to, where the toilet house would be moved to, where new entrance water features could be located, where the Rosehill Garden would be, the long green plantings down the east side, the playground, widened lower perimeter paths, etc. etc.
The vision plan remains low key - the city requires that no weight be put on the top of the water containing areas - and those containing areas extend almost to all edges of the park top. The Rosehill Garden is right at the east edge - and it was a close call!
We got helpful feedback from the audience on the 31st - as we did at the Jackes meeting - feedback we take back to the City team. I'm thinking of sending the City a bill for doing the public consultation they should have been doing over the past two years.
The not-so-good news meeting...
On June 19th we had a 3 hour meeting with the City's much expanded Project team. At that meeting it became clear that there are some very real budget restraints facing the vision plan. Not from lack of good will by the Project team - but from the restraints of their budgets.
In June, July and August there are critical meetings scheduled between the two teams to drill down on the details of the plan. The RVC has to "sign off" on the final plan for the Rosehill Park before the public meeting in September. We have is a long way to go before that is going to happen unless some money can be found.
This morning we asked for a meeting with the Councillors to clarify the issue around funding of the Vision Plan. We've always understood from the Councillors that there was money available for the upgrading of Rosehill Park - as there was for Ramsden Park in Rosedale. We were given the challenge to consult with the communities that surround the Park, create a vision that reflected their needs and wants and bring that Plan to the City.
At Councillor Wong Tam's request, we are making a list of the items we feel are vulnerable. We are assuming that, with new towers going up around the Park, some Section 37 money would be allocated to the Park. But will it be available in time? Why are we finding about no Vision Plan funding now? Look back at the park design features I wrote about in paragraph 3 - I hate to say it, but don't count on anything quite yet.
Rosehill Vision Committee