I wasn’t able to attend the meeting last night that was held at the High school and was in regards of the new domed soccer fields that will have 3 fields and will be built right behind the MasterCard Centre for Hockey Excellence.
I was not there but my mother was and she reported to me this morning that our community will be losing its baseball diamond, a place where many youngsters go to play during the summer months as well as the possible revenue it can generate by renting it out to child/youth leagues. We will be losing our leash free dog park, the only one that’s close enough to walk to for most residents, and this will not be fair to our four legged friends and their owners. They say they will be proposing another area for a leash free, but what are we to do with our dogs in the meantime? We’ll be fined if we take them anywhere else and let them run and lets be honest here people, dogs need to run! We’ll lose our green space, a large field where as children we played football, horsed around and enjoyed many a lazy day picnic.
Now all of that is bad enough, but to add insult to injury there is no proposition put forward to increase the amount of parking facilities that will accommodate the rise in traffic flow.
On top of this 3 field soccer dome, the old Lakeshore Lions Arena has been turned over to Humber College to turn it into a arts/community centre and it will need extra parking also. Take into account the fact that already the available parking is being used by the brand new MasterCard Centre for Hockey Excellence and you’ve got the foundation for a parking war to happen in our fair community.
It’s happened before and it got really ugly!
Years ago, the Lakeshore Lions Arena rented out what used to be their banquet facilities (two floors) to a Bingo Operation. Suddenly all the parking, all the side streets were overflowing with cars. When residents had guests over you had to fight to get a parking spot for them. Residents fought with people who had illegally parked in front of their driveways. Signs began to clutter what used to be a nice looking neighbourhood, all of them reading ‘Do Not Block Driveway’. Residents in the neighbourhood hated that Bingo, they hated all the people who attended it. It was a war, the Bingo players screaming that they had a right to park there and the residents screaming that the traffic congestion and lack of parking made it a miserable place to live.
I remember trying to time our arrivals or departures home so that it would be just ahead of the Bingo player arrivals. It was hellish, inconvenient and downright annoying and frustrating.
And now this new soccer dome thing has folks thinking back to those days and already their backs are bristling. It’s ridiculous to remove our green spaces. It’s wrong to take away the leash free and baseball diamond areas. But to consider not adding in parking to accommodate the increased need for such, well that’s just downright ignorant!
When residents raised their concerns they were told that the parking situation was being monitored closely and that the side streets will be able to accomodate the parking demands.
When residents said that they weren’t happy about losing their green space and maybe it might be better to just dome over the existing field and track that idea was almost completely ignored. Now this is just my opinion but perhaps the company that’s agreed to come and run the dome wouldn’t be able to make any money off of the single field and would therefore lose interest. Perhaps it’s because one single field wouldn’t generate enough revenue to cover the costs of running the dome. Of course that’s another issue, the noise made by these machines necessary to keep the domes up. It will be just another thing that residents have to live with.
There is a company that will be running these soccer fields and some of the residents got the feeling that it will be this company and their money that will be listened to and not the people who will have to live and deal with all of this on a daily basis.