Special Report: By-Law Crawl

Hamilton, It's About Time We Had a Little Talk

What is the Future Fund for? What message does it send if we spend $100 million on football, while sites like these remain in this condition?

By Matt Jelly
Published July 20, 2010

Photos by Reg Moore

It's hot. It's humid. We're mad as hell and we're not going to take it anymore. Whatever it happens to be in your part of town. Let me tell you what it is in my part of town.

We're ripping ourselves apart as a City over a megaproject and a meta-argument. We have a gun to our head, and a deadline. We need to make a decision on the location of the Pan Am Stadium that will be the primary facility representing Hamilton's role in the Pan Am Games in 2015.

In the eyes of many, this is a legacy project, ready for us whenever we are. This entire debate has boiled down to two distinct and opposing philosophies of "city-building" - between using this opportunity to replace some severely neglected properties at the West Harbour, or to pave over a wheat field on the East Mountain, at the junction between the Red Hill Parkway and the Lincoln Alexander Parkway.

For seven years, it has been generally assumed that if Hamilton were to participate in either the Pan Am Games or the Commonwealth Games, that we would build a Stadium somewhere on the West Harbourfront.

At this point, the City has bought and expropriated 90-95% of the properties intended for use in a redevelopment at the West Harbour location for the purpose of building the Pan Am Stadium. So far, we've invested millions in acquiring some of these properties, whether by purchase or expropriation.

West Harbour lands, satellite view
West Harbour lands, satellite view

Let's take a look at what's currently on these sites. Junkyards, the empty Rheem Factory and an abandoned former industrial property, bounded by Hess Street North, Stuart Street, Queen Street North and Barton Street West. I've visited the West Harbour location many times in the past year, a couple times as a part of the By-Law initiative I took on earlier this year. I'll tell you this - in all the sites I've visited, the property at Hess and Stuart Street is among the most deplorable. Here's the Google Street View of this site: As you can see, the property is in extremely poor condition- partially collapsed buildings, debris, every window broken, the entire site left behind in this condition- the company is gone, but the mess remains. Not only was the site left open to trespass (which I reported), but as you can see, there are buildings on this site that are unsafe- if a kid, or a group of kids get curious and poke around this site, it's not too hard to see how they'd get hurt. But that's all just visible from the street. What, you might ask, is inside these buildings? I'll let the photos speak for themselves.
















The companies who left this mess behind are long gone. The City has not replied to several e-mails inquiring about the ownership of the property. What is in those barrels? Regardless, they are absolutely not the kind of thing that should be left unattended, in buildings without locks, never mind in buildings without walls.

This community was built on industry, and continues to be an industrial centre. It's something we take pride in as a City. As a part of that industry, however, we've left behind some parts of town that have absolutely no hope of revitalizing when some of the land is so contaminated and toxic that nobody in the private sector is willing to come in and do that remediation. Neighbourhoods surround these junkyards and abandoned industrial sites. This is a legacy of our industrial past that we cannot be proud of.

Nobody in the private sector is going to come along in the short term to remediate these properties. As a City, it's our responsibility to clean it up. The cost is estimated at $5 Million- and some of the opponents of a West Harbour Stadium have told us it's not worth the cost, from the very start of this debate. But yet it's worth $100 Million to build a Stadium 15 kilometres away on a wheat field. For a millionaire and his team. All for a game.

If Hamilton is the best place to raise a child, we can't go on thinking we live in a City of equality and opportunity when some citizens live in close proximity to these kind of abandoned industrial sites- the contents of which are unknown and unadvertised. It's irresponsible for us to ignore this. My heart and my gut sinks when I see this in my City, just four blocks from where I grew up, where my family continues to live.

There are homes less than 100 feet from this property.

The next generation does not deserve these sites to remain in this condition, well after the companies that left them behind are around to do us any good.

It may very well be that these properties are remediated in the end- I believe the City is legally obligated to follow through with a secondary plan for any properties they have expropriated. But what if there are other sites exactly like it in other parts of town? What then?

Why did we wait until we were all caught up in the possibility of a Stadium to consider cleaning these properties up? Have we lost our sense of priority, and our responsibilities to one another as citizens of one big happy amalgamated City?

If the cost to remediate these lands are $5 Million, how far would $60 million or $100 million go towards cleaning up former industrial sites throughout the City? Is a Football team more important than this possible legacy?

What is the Future Fund for? What message does it send if we spend $100 million on football, while sites like these remain in this condition?

How can we say that Hamilton is the best place to raise a child when we still cannot or will not realistically guarantee that to every child in every home, in every one of our neighbourhoods? Does any child deserve to grow up in proximity to such pollution, without having any responsibility to the conditions that allow for these sites to remain?

We're caught up in quite the debate about this Stadium right now. The City is tearing itself in two. But let's put all that conflict aside and see eye-to-eye as Hamiltonians. Let's put all of our political sniping aside.

Look into your hearts. What is truly important? Who are we as a City?


Is this a place where any child should have to grow up?

How much longer do we have to wait?

This article was first published on Matt Jelly's personal website.

Jelly is a local artist, graphic designer and map maker living in Downtown Hamilton, Ontario in the Central Neighbourhood. Matt is an advocate for built heritage, toxic waste eradication and the revitalization of downtown Hamilton. www.mattjelly.com

50 Comments

View Comments: Nested | Flat

Read Comments

[ - ]

By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted July 20, 2010 at 18:59:23

Update: Matt's article quickly made it to the attention of city manager Chris Murray, who wrote the following in response:

David Adames will provide us with an update as to what is in the barrels and speak to the measures being taking to secure the properties we own.

Adames is the executive director of Tourism Hamilton and has been the city's representative during the mediation process between the City and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats over the location of the Pan Am stadium.

Comment edited by administrator Ryan on 2010-07-20 18:00:02

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Centrist (registered) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 19:10:16

Can't we just build the darn stadium without any involvement from the Tiger-Cats? Why do they get a say in this anyway?

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted July 20, 2010 at 19:29:06

According to the Ticats, Pan Am Hostco has made it clear that if the stadium does not have a long-term legacy tenant, the stadium will be built elsewhere.

For several days I've been attempting to get a straight answer - or any answer for that matter - on this from the City, from Hostco, and from the Province.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Outraged (anonymous) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 20:22:50

What an absolute outrage.

What a disgrace.

I haven't yet seen, this clearly, what a massive disaster this is turning out to be for Hamilton. And all because our elected officials can't decide that they ought to represent ORDINARY CITIZENS before MILLIONAIRES.

Seriously, look at this garbage - look at this pollution! Instead of cleaning this up and leaving a legacy for all Hamiltonians, we're going to spend $100 million turning a beautiful field into a massive parking lot with a stadium parked in one minuscule corner?

UNBELIEVABLE.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Kieran C. Dickson (anonymous) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 20:30:01

The City has found a much more economical way to address brownfield properties: define them out of existence.

http://www.raisethehammer.org/blog/1034

While the spotlight is for the moment on this relatively small block of land at West Harbour, now is the time for Hamiltonians to demand that their elected officials address the underutilized employment lands along our bayfront. We should not, as a City, even contemplate spending tens of millions of dollars on a greenfield stadium -- let alone spending over $350,000,000 on an aerotropolis! -- until we have remediated the former industrial lands within our urban boundary.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By BobInnes (registered) - website | Posted July 20, 2010 at 21:23:08

If the city can't go after the people who left the hazardous stuff behind, then i guess we'll have to suck it up, literally. But we all (city, province, feds) should learn a lesson and remove protections of corporate bankruptcy and go after prior owner's estates when barrels of hazmat are left behind (tho i'd hate to think someone would pour it into the soil to avoid the expense). Which then leads to the thought that all this hazmat, remediation and safety stuff has become a bit of a boondoggle. 30 years of trying to make the system bulletproof and Nimbyproof has made for an expensive system full of red tape and white suits. Which makes people hide stuff instead of taking responsibility. So to some degree, we bring this stuff on ourselves, so logically, its up to us to pay and i hope, to try to loosen up the system so its not quite so expensive. This is one case where greenies should adopt more reasonable/realistic attitudes.

So the logical use of the Future Fund, which itself was extracted from legacy assets, is to FIRST pay for legacy remediation before any is directed to future infrastructure (which should pay for itself on its own merits). But 100 million burning a hole in our pockets should not just be blown away, at least until the bloated bureaucratic boondoggle of hazmat makework is itself remediated.

Also, while not generally being a supporter of Matt's Clipboard Cops idea, (I'm more live and let live) I have to admit that this a great piece of work. Kudos Matt.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By WRCU2 (registered) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 21:41:42

Shocking isn't IT? Here a local musician is an investigative journalist and professional photographer all rolled into one. Doesn't say much for the Hamilton Spectator does IT?

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By MattJelly (registered) - website | Posted July 20, 2010 at 21:50:51

I told you my clipboard would come in handy, Bob.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Robbie K (anonymous) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 22:01:10

You know, If Mr. Young wanted smooth things over, perhaps he can donate the money required to clean up these sites. I still favour the WH location, but you have to admit him cleaning up while getting his stadium on the mountain certainly would help..

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By UrbanRenaissance (registered) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 22:36:50

Well done Matt! I'm glad this disgrace has been exposed, though it makes me wonder about the journalists in this city. Despite all the hype about the WH location and its environmental issues, no one thought to actually look inside the property before now? Same goes for the city, why does a city owned property look like a toxic waste dump? Who is responsible for the up keep and oversight of these kinds of properties?

Score one for the Clip-board cops I suppose.

Comment edited by UrbanRenaissance on 2010-07-20 21:43:13

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By jason (registered) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 22:44:07

Hamilton truly is the Bizarro World. No question about it.

For several days I've been attempting to get a straight answer - or any answer for that matter - on this from the City, from Hostco, and from the Province.

Bring a 6 digit cheque with you to slide across the desk and maybe you'll get somewhere....everyone else does.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Roger Sterling (anonymous) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 23:01:01

I agree that we should clean up and redevelop the West Harbour, but is building a sports stadium the only option? I worry that we're spending too much time and energy debating where to put the stadium rather than whether or not we actually need the stadium. Should the city be spending tons of public funds on a new sports stadium to host a two week sporting event? Isn't that sort of a waste of our resources? Is there something better we could spend the money on?

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By BiIl (anonymous) | Posted July 20, 2010 at 23:14:04

Comments with a score below -5 are hidden by default.

You can change or disable this comment score threshold by registering an RTH user account.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By frank (registered) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 08:03:49

I need a rain barrel... I should make a visit to that place.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By H+H (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2010 at 08:41:02

From one "fat" guy to another, Matt, what a remarkable piece!

This is a disgrace, but it will be even worse if our Councillors continue to turn away and hope that these brownfield lands will somehow be remediated without significant investment from all three levels of government - just like the Pan Am Games promise(d) to do.

Take another look at Matt's pictures and repeat after me, "To be the best place in Canada to raise a child, promote innovation, engage citizens, and provide diverse economic opportunities."

Then, repeat, only this time use Bob Young's vision of a suburban stadium. Madness! And it's the very people who wrote that Vision statement who don't seem to know how to use it in a progressive way.

Keep writing Matt, even if Bob Bratina doesn't think you're up to the challenge.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By AnneMariePavlov (registered) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 10:06:00

Matt, your guerrilla journalism is unparalleled. Please do a series on other brownfields in the city, since the Spec journalists are asleep at the wheel and instead prefer to focus on the terrorists at the Skydragon. I hope someone at the Spec sees this. It is absolutely hair-raising. I'm five blocks from this shit. FAT-tastic work, brother!!

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2010 at 10:31:14

Is it time for a Fat Urbanists convention? If so, I'm in. Extra voting privileges if you also have a beard.

Comment edited by administrator Ryan on 2010-07-21 09:59:00

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By MattJelly (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2010 at 10:55:17

I'm so fat.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By AnneMariePavlov (registered) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 11:01:52

You're actually PHAT!

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2010 at 11:14:34

I love the idea of going after former owners of toxic brownfields. If the $5 million price tag on the West Harbour lands wasn't enough to show this, the $100+ million for Randle Reef does. The site is so toxic it's listed on national lists of toxic tourism sites.

If I went out and poisoned the lake, or a big field in the middle of a residential neighbourhood, I'd be (quite rightly) accused of being a cartoonish supervillian. You can't swim in the lake, ya can't eat the fish, and nobody really has a clue how much of the North End's soils are safe to grow food in.

Stadium or no stadium, this crap needs to be cleaned up.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By z jones (registered) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 11:26:26

If YOU did it you'd probably be up for criminal charges. But if your CORPORATION does it, it's limited liability all the way baby!

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Kiely (registered) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 12:36:28

But we all (city, province, feds) should learn a lesson and remove protections of corporate bankruptcy and go after prior owner's estates when barrels of hazmat are left behind - Bob Innes

Where does that rank in priority when compared to things like employee salaries and pensions though?

Currently, employees rank behind secured creditors on the priority chart. I would have no problem moving environmental impact costs above creditors but should those costs rank above the employees' back wages and pensions? Should employees continue to suffer so governments (who often allow this contamination to occur in the first place) can get their hands on money required to clean up a mess they are at least partially responsible for? That I'm not sure of.

Laws that stop this from happening in the first place (i.e., the ounce of prevention) are needed.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By MattJelly (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2010 at 13:39:06

More photos to take a look at here:

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=45...

Comment edited by MattJelly on 2010-07-21 12:40:57

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By HamiltonFan (registered) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 14:56:37

Look people, I'm a huge TigerCat fan but I agree the cleanup is more important than a sports stadium. It's up to everyone to tell their councillor not to spend a dime from the Future Fund on a stadium but to clean up this toxic mess that threatens the health of our children. I'm on board with that.

The TigerCats can go and make arrangements for a stadium elsewhere for all intents and purposes.

What a disgrace that companies were allowed to leave such a mess behind with no penalties, I don't get that.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By jason (registered) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 16:02:28

Please do a series on other brownfields in the city,

What brownfields??

http://www.raisethehammer.org/blog/1034

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By BobInnes (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2010 at 16:47:07

Where does that rank in priority when compared to things like employee salaries and pensions though?

Good question Kiely. I guess the idea is to modify the social contract between corporations and society, especially needed at a time when corporations are larger than many economies. I have no problem that the invention of the corporation was a boon to society by allowing business risk (debts) to die rather than hobble innovators with the spectre of personal ruin. Thus salaries, accounts payable and pensions remain necessarily as a business risk - offset as needed by the society that benefited by the business good (wealth) thus created. But i doubt the social contract intended to put criminality or environmental degradation behind the curtain of the corporate structure. Well, maybe that's a debatable point but regardless of original intent, it's time to ensure the people who run corporations are held personally responsible for such acts. For sure there is a fine line here since trying to make environmental perfection would simply make certain forms of economic activity near impossible such as most forms of mining, heap leaching, deep oil, etc. But as long as reasonable alternatives are available, such a requirement should not be a deterrent to doing business.

Policing the situation is another matter. As we see, businesses going bankrupt are a particular risk but how aggressive should a city become in delving into such private practices as where to store drums of chemicals/waste. Too aggressive and it may become the last straw that broke the business, a dicey situation. Plus it becomes a signal to others about how business friendly a city/province/nation is (not). But surely abandonment (or bankruptcy) is a good time/ good signal for the city to move in, before the trail goes cold. Maybe the lesson is that cities need to attend all bankruptcy/ chapter 11 hearings so we can demand proper shutdown & cleanup.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By MattJelly (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2010 at 17:24:14

Watch CH news at 6. The big nasty toxic shoe is about to drop.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Tartan Triton (anonymous) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 20:09:39

Not entirely surprising, sad to say. If you were to drill deep enough into Bayfront Park (a former industrial landfill that was at one time supposed to the the footing for an apartment tower), I'm sure you'd find some equally impressive wickedness.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By MattJelly (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2010 at 20:34:22

I know some folks will disagree, but we cannot in good conscience build a Stadium with Future Fund dollars. Not a single dime. Not while these sites exist- that should be the first priority. Spend the entire $60 Million on a City-wide remediation, identifying the worst offenders, and engage in a furious criminal investigation against the people who left this in my neighbourhood. I'm sorry if that position is disappointing, but it's what I feel in my heart. Let's all sleep on it and start again tomorrow.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By gerry (anonymous) | Posted July 21, 2010 at 21:06:33

I am sure there must be other major toxic areas in Hamilton in need of major cleansing. It would be nice to make all areas safe and not a danger to all. I hope measures will be taken immediately.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Wow (anonymous) | Posted July 22, 2010 at 08:24:26

Matt Jelly has done us a service. How awful and toxic looking. No wonder the cost of cleaning this site will be astronomical and no wonder the city is keeping quiet about what that cost will be?

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Kiely (registered) | Posted July 22, 2010 at 08:52:38

Good question Kiely. - Bob Innes

And a tough one to answer Bob. I had a good argument with myself about it : )

The facts that bankrupt businesses can basically ditch their employees and simply abandon toxic sites both leave me pissed off and frustrated. Having to assign priority to solving one or the other is difficult. You could say that the environmental impact is the bigger priority because it will have a lasting affect on a larger portion of the population (i.e., we all suffer when our land is polluted), while the employees are a smaller group suffering a one-time injustice... although losing your pension would have a lasting effect too.

I really need to think about it some more.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By WRCU2 (registered) | Posted July 22, 2010 at 08:58:55

Sometimes when we tell IT like IT is, we get results.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By HamiltonFan (registered) | Posted July 22, 2010 at 12:01:24

The article says the city doesn't own the property therefore it's difficult to know how the investigation into what's in there will proceed. What a crock of shiite. If it was suspected marijuana plants the police could go in there in a second, I guess all they would need is a court order. But potentially lethal toxic chemicals all of a sudden "we don't own the property, not sure what we should do." Meanwhile children are right in the area! Unreal.

I can appreciate you don't just go in there with such chemicals but honestly, shouldn't someone from the city and Ministry of the Environment be in there like pronto after a story like this breaks?

Excellent work Matt!

Comment edited by HamiltonFan on 2010-07-22 11:01:55

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By jonathan dalton (registered) | Posted July 22, 2010 at 16:56:55

One of those photos looks like a dip tank for metal plating. If that's the kind of shit they were doing in the factory, that's about as toxic as it gets.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By adrian (registered) | Posted July 22, 2010 at 18:35:39

No wonder the cost of cleaning this site will be astronomical and no wonder the city is keeping quiet about what that cost will be?

Actually, the cost of remediation is $5 million.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted July 22, 2010 at 21:07:57

Since when have city budget projections been realistic?

And the fact that Bayfront park was built over a toxic waste dump proves how successful this kind of thing can be.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By UrbanRenaissance (registered) | Posted July 22, 2010 at 22:56:57

Kiely:

The facts that bankrupt businesses can basically ditch their employees and simply abandon toxic sites both leave me pissed off and frustrated. Having to assign priority to solving one or the other is difficult. You could say that the environmental impact is the bigger priority because it will have a lasting affect on a larger portion of the population (i.e., we all suffer when our land is polluted), while the employees are a smaller group suffering a one-time injustice... although losing your pension would have a lasting effect too.

At least for the workers there's the Wage Earner Protection Program that the feds set up. Basically it guarantees a certain amount of unpaid wages owed to the employees of businesses that have entered bankruptcy or receivership. Unfortunately that amount is currently only $3250, but its better than nothing.

The government could easily set up a similar program to take money from business tax revenue, or even from a new fee for companies using toxic materials, and set it aside to cover clean up costs in the case of bankruptcy or receivership. At least that way it would spread around the costs on business (and not taxpayers) and encourage companies to use less toxic methods.

Comment edited by UrbanRenaissance on 2010-07-22 21:57:20

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By frank (registered) | Posted July 23, 2010 at 08:38:51

Undustrial it's actually a very good practice to build parks and rec centres over former landfills provided the containment systems are in place to ensure no leachate comes out. They're not full of heavy structures and therefore don't require big mat footings or piles and it creates green space. Not sure what you're so angry about.

I'm not clear on where that claim comes from either. I can't find any information on it being a former waste site...

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By MattJelly (registered) - website | Posted July 23, 2010 at 08:44:21

There's a huge new development- I've seen concept drawings for yet another new proposal for a Stadium. The East Mountain site will be receiving a high-profile endorsement today that just about nobody will see coming. This is quite significant. I can't say anything about it right now, but a possible "game-changer" is afoot. Stay tuned to www.mattjelly.com at 10:01 am for an important announcement.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Saywhat??? (anonymous) | Posted July 23, 2010 at 09:30:55

"Actually, the cost of remediation is $5 million."
And if you believe that, you will believe that the TiCats will play in the West Harbour and contribute $100M happy dollars to the construction project! Dream on...the cost is closer to $25M according to industry insiders.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted July 23, 2010 at 09:43:53

It was mentioned above, I don't know what was being dumped there, but there was a great exibit on the art crawl years back (I believe at the You Me) where a photographer (Cees van Gemerden) had snuck into the old site and chronicled all the barrels and tires covering the site, from the broken fence with a no-trespassing sign right up to a big tree growing out of a hill of barrels and garbage. Unfortunately I can't find any of it online.

And I don't know why you think I'm angry about it, but I happen to love Bayfront. It's probably the most successful thing the city's done in the area by far. I'm just annoyed that this kind of thing hasn't been done elsewhere.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By MattJelly (registered) - website | Posted July 23, 2010 at 13:00:57

So you're saying Bryce and Cees did a show of the photos of this site and didn't report it? Maybe they did and nobody listened? Interesting.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Cityjoe (anonymous) | Posted July 23, 2010 at 17:50:28

That mess has been there for years. How does Hamilton ever expect people/corporations to invest here with all those vacant messes in the heart of the City.
Put the Stadium where it can be reached by public transit, Go service & LRT! It needs to be Downtown! Nobody need another 2000 car parking lot.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By highwater (registered) | Posted July 23, 2010 at 22:37:58

2,000 car parking lot, Cityjoe? If only. Bob wants a 7,000 car parking lot.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Cityjoe (anonymous) | Posted July 24, 2010 at 11:14:07

Thanks Highwater! I forgot the exact number when I wrote that.
Remember that proposal to charge malls, & other facilities with huge areas of paved water runoff. The Great idea that got dumped. I wish that it had gotten the 'nod'.
Didn't he also quote that a U.S. stadium had something like 17,000 parking spaces? He seemed to think that was a good idea, too. ?????
Somebody has to find that DeLorean from "Back to the Future", & transport these people from 1955 to the present.
(Put them in a DeLorean, & they'd Never suspect a thing! Bwaahaahaa!)

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Undustrial (registered) - website | Posted July 24, 2010 at 12:35:19

BAY CLASSICS (May 11- June 23) Seminal artworks about the environment produced in 1992 as part of the Reading the Water project. Robert Yates' 18 ft. painting Macassa, Hamilton Harbour, Burlington Bay . Cees & Annerie van Gemerden's black & white photo-projects, More trespassing anyone? and The post industrial family takes a bath in Lake Ontario. http://www.youmegallery.ca/2007.html

That was the show, there's even a picture of Annerie just can't find the pictures online. None of this would be hard to source with a bike ride to Special Collections, just (like way too much of Hamilton), not yet well catalogued on google.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By MattJelly (registered) - website | Posted July 24, 2010 at 14:08:34

This was in the spec?

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By TreyS (registered) | Posted July 25, 2010 at 15:54:21

Matt thanks for exposing this.

Those barrels would otherwise still be sitting there with gawd knows what inside them.

Understand that someone originally got paid to supposedly get rid of this waste, probably using government money and now it will cost government money again to remove the waste. Welcome to Hamilton.

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
[ - ]

By Rick123 (anonymous) | Posted July 27, 2010 at 15:32:48

No one has talked about the toxic waste under the rail lines

For 100 years steam locomotives/now diesel have sat idling in that yard.
They are pigs when talking leaks.
Never mind leaking tank cars that we were never told about.

Years ago when a gear box had to have the oil changed they drained it ....... ( PERIOD )

The environmental clean-up of the the west harbour site will take a year.
That alone will nix the stadium/games

Reply | Permalink | Context

You must be logged in to vote on this comment.
View Comments: Nested | Flat

Post a Comment

Comment Anonymously
Screen Name
What do you get if you divide 12 by 3?
Leave This Field Blank
Comment

Events Calendar

Recent Articles

Article Archives

Blog Archives

Site Tools

Feeds