Originally sent to all members of Council.
Re: the Wilson Farmhouse issue.
We’re still not in favour of severing and selling or of Councillor Findlay’s recent fantasy!
I live at x Kinlock St directly across from the park containing the remnant of the Wilson Farmhouse.
While grateful for the obvious work that some councillors and city staff have done and also the position that our Mayor took leading up to the September 30 Council meeting, it is more than a little baffling that some councilors could be so determined to ignore this prudent work and the overwhelming reasoning to support not severing and selling the property in question.
Four years ago my wife and myself purchased a home, which directly faces the old deteriorating farmhouse. As those facing the park would have done, we paid a lot premium to face the park – not a commercial or traffic- increasing property of any type.
We have tracked the process that has transpired over the past several years including the legal advice from lawyers such as Heritage-experienced Derek Smith, severing and rezoning- experienced Scott Galajda and others. We have observed credible information, misinformation, sentimental positions, legal opinions on difficulties of rezoning as well as drama especially generated by those who don’t even live in proximity of the park.
While appreciating history within reason, it is our desire that the part of the park that contains the old house NOT be severed and sold but be demolished. We want the park property to remain whole and NOT be reduced by the approximately 10% that a severance or anything other than park use would cause. Over the past few years a strong representation of the local neighborhood residents, especially those directly affected, have supported this decision. Most recently 132 out of 134 surveys (a 68% return) from the Northern Heights neighborhood clearly indicated not to sever and sell.
In addition, any use of the land other than what the park use would suggest, such as anything that would increase traffic, prohibit a passive section and reduce serenity or adversely affect property value of the neighboring residences will be vigorously opposed. Furthermore, if for some reason this part of the park were to be severed and sold, it would seem more than a little unethical if a buyer were to use the connection to the park as an asset for a personal or commercial use or benefit.
After 12 years of being in process, after studies and comparisons with other older properties, after criteria studies and significant engagement with the local tax paying neighborhood, I want to express my agreement with the recent proposal of the city’s Parks and Recreation that would keep the park whole and remove the dilapidated deteriorating remains of a house that is both an eye-sore and a safety hazard.
Having some idea of what it takes to get a lot of people agreeing on things that have to do with money and personal interests, Councillor Findlay’s most recent clearly-not-thought-through fantasy (published in the Tribune) would undoubtedly turn into a perpetual neighborhood nightmare of contention and chaos. To us, it is incredibly unrealistic and not the kind of neighborhood we thought we were buying into.
Let’s get it done! DB