Scripturient: Taking credit for the work of others

A short while ago, I received an unsolicited email from the interim (and soon to be departing) CAO, John Brown, with the subject, “Ideas. Observations. Musings  . Opinions  . Facts ?” (yes, written just like that…). Although he says he never reads my blog, it inspired me to write this post. He wrote (copied in its ...

Scripturient: Another imaginary roadblock for the hospital

In the April 24 addendum to the agenda there is a report by the interim CAO about the hospital redevelopment you should read. It seems another council hissy fit is in the making. Your first question should be: why is the interim CAO writing and signing a report that ought to come from the planning ...

Scripturient: The Block torpedoes the hospital, again

When their sole-sourced consultant’s report failed to give The Block the high ground to oppose the Collingwood General & Marine Hospital’s redevelopment plan, the weasels on council and in the administration decided to undermine the hospital from a different direction. And they hired another consultant. That’s right: wasting $30,000 of your hard-earned tax dollars on ...

Things Are Good: Incremental Design to Address Housing Inequality

Basically every nation has basic housing problems that need to be addressed. Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena won this year’s Pritzker Architecture Prize because of his work on community housing. It wasn’t just the buildings that got him the prize, it’s the fact that he and his team worked with locals to bring change to the community in a new ...

Scripturient: The Swimmer

The swimmer stood on the dock, contemplating the lazy current in the river. The warm spring, followed by the sunny days of early summer, had warmed the water enough to make the crossing less a challenge than a few weeks back, when he had first done it. It was still early enough in the day that the ...

Scripturient: The Airport Mystery

What’s happening at Collingwood Airport? Or better yet: what’s NOT happening? And why isn’t it? Once touted as the role model for regional cooperation, and having the best potential for local economic development, it is now a topic for murmurings about a secret sale, and ugly rumours that this has become the worst regional relationship this town ...

Scripturient: The high cost of affordability

Affordable housing is crucial to the economic and social vitality of every municipality. Without it, people cannot afford to live here, which means they will look for jobs in places they can afford. Young people, especially, will move to places they can afford better. Collingwood is especially vulnerable to housing issues.* Given that the growth trend ...

Scripturient: Fortuna: Why Plans Fail

Niccolo Machiavelli used two words in his book, The Prince, to describe the factors that influenced events. In English these are virtue or character (virtu), fortune or chance (fortuna). Only virtue is internal – our nature – and although it manifests as voluntary action, it can only be somewhat, but not entirely controlled.* The other ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: What Next! What Best Laid Plans Fall Through

Sometimes, even the best laid plans fall apart.  And life feels very, very unfair.  Every caregiver has a story about a high school reunion or an anniversary dinner that had to be cancelled at the last minute because of a loved one’s illness or worse, bad weather.  Sometimes, the Gods just don’t want us to ...

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Rethinking Parking

Parking in Collingwood – especially downtown – has been a contentious issue since at least the mid-1980s. Numerous studies have been done advocating a variety of answers, none of them entirely satisfactory to everyone. The factions of free versus paid parking have been warring as long as I can recall. No council has managed to ...

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Gated Communities

I’m not a big fan of gated communities, but even if I don’t personally want to live in one myself, I understand the reason for them, and sympathize with homeowners in those zones. Apartments are basically gated towers that restrict access to residents or keyholders and no one complains that they isolate the residents. Few people ...

Political Eh-conomy: No thanks Uber, I’m not signing your petition

So the ride-sharing app Uber is urging Vancouverites to sign a petition on its site to put pressure on the City to allow Uber to operate. An ad for the petition invaded my Twitter feed and I decided to take a closer look. Here’s the petition with my commentary. Spoiler: no, I’m not signing. Uber ...

The Disaffected Lib: Hey, Think You’re Resilient?

“Resilience.”  It’s the new climate change buzz word.  It applies to individuals, communities, institutions, and infrastructure. Resilience is the ability to bounce back from repeated climate change impacts. It’s the ability to withstand repeated floods, for example.  That might require making your home resilient by having it mounted on stilts well above ground level.  It ...

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Twenty years of strategic planning

Twenty years ago – May, 1994 – the Town of Collingwood started a community-based strategic plan. That report was released in October, 1995. Then in October, 2000, Vision 2020 released its Blueprint Collingwood. These two documents are generally forgotten by the general public today, but they have been the basis of planning, of policy and strategic ...

Melissa Fong: Planning the Metropolitan #Vancouver Region: A Critical Perspective

Here is a review of the Planning the Metropolitan Vancouver Region: A Critical Perspective- Thank you to AY for inviting me- great catching up with SCARP people and making new connections. […]

Melissa Fong: Electronic music, raves & Toronto’s moral panic on drugs

…they do the work because they want to re-produce the type of city they want to live- the type of city that is worth living in. … …not all entertainment is built the same- some of these very worth while performers and promotors can’t jump through your hoops, or will grow tired doing so. These ...

Things Are Good: A Scientific Approach to Better Urban Design

Urban design is not an easy activity because of the multitude of variables that impact the overall urban experience. There are buildings, traffic (foot and vehicular), landmarks, natural occurrences like rivers, and abstracted economic forces. Space Syntax is a company has set out to make better urban design by using science to calculate the probability ...

Bill Given: City Moves Forward With Annexation

Last night council formally approved moving the annexation process forward by approving a final set of information sessions for the public. As the City’s media release below details it’s been a long process to get to this point, and there is still more to go before annexation is actually complete.  Although the City “officially” initiated ...

Bill Given: City Moves Forward With Annexation

Last night council formally approved moving the annexation process forward by approving a final set of information sessions for the public. As the City’s media release below details it’s been a long process to get to this point, and there is still more to go before annexation is actually complete.  Although the City “officially” initiated ...

Bill Given: City Moves Forward With Annexation

Last night council formally approved moving the annexation process forward by approving a final set of information sessions for the public. As the City’s media release below details it’s been a long process to get to this point, and there is still more to go before annexation is actually complete.  Although the City “officially” initiated ...

Melissa Fong: Eliminating clubland: Planning for the right dance & social spaces in the city

Eliminating clubland: Planning for the right dance & social spaces in the city I’m going to respond to this article from an Urban Planning point of view, but also from a Feminist and “dance-positive” point of view [2]. This month I have been dreading my move back to Vancouver – for many reasons- one of ...

openalex: EcoDistricts: All Green, All in One Place

[I was in Portland when the EcoDistrict project was launched and have been following it ever since.  It’s still in its early days, but I think it’s a great approach to speed the evolution of our cities. Originally posted  @SustainableCitiesCanada.] You’ve probably seen pictures of London’s BedZED , or Malmo’s Western Harbour redevelopment. Showpiece green ...

openalex: EcoDistricts: All Green, All in One Place

[I was in Portland when the EcoDistrict project was launched and have been following it ever since.  It’s still in its early days, but I think it’s a great approach to speed the evolution of our cities. Originally posted  @SustainableCitiesCanada.] You’ve probably seen pictures of London’s BedZED , or Malmo’s Western Harbour redevelopment. Showpiece green ...

openalex: EcoDistricts: All Green, All in One Place

[I was in Portland when the EcoDistrict project was launched and have been following it ever since.  It’s still in its early days, but I think it’s a great approach to speed the evolution of our cities. Originally posted  @SustainableCitiesCanada.] You’ve probably seen pictures of London’s BedZED , or Malmo’s Western Harbour redevelopment. Showpiece green ...

Trashy's World: Kanata… O the surprises

We dropped our daughter #2 off at a Brownie camp yesterday north of Kanata close to Dunrobin. We took March Road off the Queensway and I completely expected that, shortly after exiting, we’d be zooming past farms and trailer parks as we traveled toward the river. Boy, was I wrong! Much to my amazement, there ...