Thursday, October 19, 2006

Brick Works Petitions

Evergreen's plan for the Don Valley Brick Works seems to have as many supporters as it does detractors. One of the more prominent detractors is Tim Trow who is currently head of the Toronto Humane Society. He has started a petition to raise support to stop the Evergreen plan from proceeding. What he plans to do with the petition or who he is going to deliver it to is unknown.

Trow may have his own private agenda here. He happens to be a local resident and is likely part of the group of Rosedalers who would like to keep the Brick Works as their own private doggie park. He views the plan as bringing an unwanted level of activity that would disrupt his enjoyment of the site.

Trow also has own set of detractors. Not everyone is happy with the way things are being run at the THS. There is some perception that the place isn't being run with the animal's best interests in mind. To that end there is another petition that seeks to get rid of Tim Trow as head of the THS.

It's unlikely that anything will come of either of these. Both petitions will probably end up in the electronic trash bin.


Al said...

The hilarious part is that Mr. Trow, quoted in the Town Crier article on the Toronto Humane Society's website, suggests that the remediation of the site is a waste of money because it's a natural or nature area that should not be developed. I'm sorry if I fail to understand why the maintenance of various industrial toxins on the site enhances the 'natural' character of the Brick Works and the sorrounding area. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the remediation of the site; in fact, if Mr. Trow is for the site's natural character and nature areas, he should support the removal of industrial toxins. To do anything else would be completely contradictory on his part if he is concerned with the environment of the Brick Works.

Evergreen also seems to be known for their environmental agenda. They are an organization that promotes the 'natural' environment. Surely Evergreen would not build a complex that is unsustainable environmentally that would seriously harm the site? One would think that sustainability and a minimal ecological footprint would be on the top of their agenda. Moreover, the site and its environs aren't 'natural', if we define that which is natural as being free, or relatively free, of human modification (ignoring that humans are a part of nature, albeit a parasitic part). It was an intensively used industrial site for around 100 years. So, to suggest that the site shouldn't be developed, because it is in his words "a nature area", is absurd. As far as I can tell the Evergreen proposal doesn't actually involve that much additional development anyhow. Most of the site plan is simply a reusage of the existing infrastructure on site. I would, however, have serious issues if Evergreen tried to deny public access to the site and started banning dog walkers and cyclists.

Donwatcher said...

Thanks for your comments Al. Just to clarify a couple of points, the $100,000 was an initial estimate, After doing some more investigation the city realized that they needed to do more cleanup of some materials they didn't know about, that's why the cost ballooned to $840,000. So yes it is high but I totally agree with you that the toxic waste shouldn't be left in situ and should be cleaned up regardless of the Evergreen plan.

The other thing is that the Evergreen plan only covers the 'industrial pad' area of the Brick Works, ie. the buildings and the surrounding pavement. Everything to the north of the buildings will remain as a city managed park which Evergreen does not have control over. The only impact to park users is that they may charge for parking out front.