Sunday, 28 October 2018

Welland and West Lincoln

Welland and West Lincoln

On what might have been the last nice day of 2018, I took off with my pal, Tyler, to check out the new park in Welland and the just opened West Lincoln Skatepark in Smithville, ON.
Just getting into Welland.

Lincoln St across the canal from the Welland Community Wellness Complex.
Beautiful park down by the canal
Tyler floats over the box

Slappy rail

Small details. Big difference. 

Next we went over to West Lincoln Arena to check out the new park. 177 West St. Smithville, ON

Perfect community park integration

Friday, 5 October 2018

Opinion Letters to the Editor.

Support Skateparks

Second skate park needed in Pickering; June 9, 2014

Pickering 2018 Municipal Election

Pickering 2018 Municipal Election
Municipal elections take place in Pickering on October 22 with advanced polls starting on Oct. 14th. You can learn more HERE.

I reached out to all the candidates who are running for spots on the city council/executive committee. A full list with contact information can be found HERE.  Listed below are the names of the candidates with incumbents listed first, their past history with skateparks and highlights of their response to my letter. 

Here's the letter.

Hello Candidate
The Pickering skateboard park strategy was approved last January after great efforts by staff, hired consultants and the local skateboarding community. The strategy recommended a new skatepark in front of the Rec complex which was a concern for the non-skating public and council. An ‘Option B’ location was recommended in the rear of the rec complex as well as other locations for smaller parks and a plan for Seaton.
Since the approval of the strategy very little has been done to move it forward. Many skatepark users travel to other parks like Ajax to make use of its modern, lit park.
Do you believe that skateparks are an important part of the Parks & Rec plan and will you make a new skatepark in Pickering a priority?

Scott Loyst
Pickering Skatepark Advocate

All of the responses have been predictably positive but some have longer answers than others. I didn't tell candidates I would share their response so I'll just give the Cole's notes(paraphrased, not direct quotes). Here's what I've have gotten back so far.

Dave Ryan - Moved that Pickering create a skatepark strategy in 2015. The strategy was adopted in Jan 2018. Has not yet responded.
Bert Cortez - Plan to re-work Princess Di park and based off the success of the skatepark, begin building spots......I think that was what he ment.
Wesley Henry - Has a platform that includes building sports facilities. 
Eileen Higdon - Will help getting the project un-stuck from bureaucracy. Asks to be kept informed if she becomes mayor.

Regional Councillor - Ward 1
Kevin Ashe - Supports both a large skatepark and 'spots'. Has mentioned a spot in St Marys park in the past.
Usha Chahar - Has not yet responded.
Robert Jones - For the skate park & believes it should be in a central location in Pickering.
Musa Mansuar - Signed petition in support of spot at West Shore Community Center. Has friends who skate and believes skateparks bring people together.

Regional Councillor - Ward 2
Bill McLean - Absent from votes on Strategy. Has not yet responded.
Gary Strange - Has not yet responded.

Regional Councillor - Ward 3
David Pickles - Only council member that voted for the proposed skate spot at Petticoat Creek Community Center. Has instructed parks staff to work quickly to get approval and construction underway. 
Peter Rodrigues - Spoke in support of the strategy and Option B location. Front of the Rec Complex is not the best location.

City Councillor - Ward 1
Maurice Brenner - Intends to raise the matter for Budget 2019. Supports Option B and planning for Seaton from early on. Supports West Shore proposal.
Haidar Furozuni - This is a 'Must' for our youth. Dosen't like that family's travel to Ajax for a quality park.
Nancy Grandos - Has not yet responded.
Tony Harold - Pro-skatepark if it can be funded without an increase to property taxes. We pay too much taxes...etc.
Lisa Robinson - Important for every community to have a skatepark. Health and mental benefits. would move the project along in a timely manner.
Clyde Taffe - Supports anything that get people physically active & would like to see a modern park that attracts local and international skaters.

City Councillor - Ward 2
Ian Cumming - States the initiative will be brought back for Budget 2019. 
Dave Currie - Fully supports free public space for all ages. Will commit to getting skateparks.
Tanya Foster - Supports resources for youth such as skateparks and mentioned an indoor/outdoor facility. Supports more P&R facilities in subdivisions.
Sari Sarieddine - Has not yet responded.

City Councillor - Ward 3
Shaheen Butt - Asked several question at executive committee to parks staff. The answers were easily found on the summery of the strategyMaybe he was being thorough?  In his email response wrote 'state parks' and wants to have another study to find a park location.
Javed Akhtar - Repeated my question back in the form of a positive answer but did not change the possessive verb on the second part of the question.
Ali Naqvi - Has not yet responded. I met him in person. Weird Vibes.
Nadia Peerzada - Has not yet responded.
Damian Williams - Grew up skating Pickering. Skateboarding is great for youth and deters them from other "Activities". Believes that a skatepark is the cornerstone of a good parks plan.

So who should you vote for? I don't know but I'd say don't vote for a few people. The best answer I received from City - Ward 3 was from Damian Williams. Some candidates did not have the courtesy to respond to the email. 
Good luck and stay on them. They work for us!  

All members of council return following the election with had ~29% voter turnout. 

Sunday, 2 September 2018

Holland Landing

Holland Landing
Holland Landing Community Centre
19513 Yonge St
Park #343


Gnarly park with DIY added to the modular park, Barrier Bowl with doorway and a DIY Pool.
We got rained out.

St Hubert

St Hubert
Parc du Patriote Joseph Vincent
Fun park with a bunch of replicated street.