Revitalization

Education Centre Site Evaluation Scoring Model

By RTH Staff
Published February 11, 2012

HWDSB Education Centre Site Evaluation Scoring Model
CriteriaSITE 1SITE 2SITE 3SITE 4SITE 5SITE 6SITE 7SITE 8SITE 9SITE 10SITE 11SITE 12SITE 13SITE 14SITE 15SITE 16SITE 17SITE 18
ChathamHighlandLA Pkwy & PritchardWindermereFlamboroughPritchard & Rymal UpperJames & RymalInnovation ParkCity HallKing & QueenWest Harbour LandsJeromeSheldonCrestwoodAncasterSir Alan McNabJackson SquareAberdeen
Accessibility0.410.490.480.330.250.290.330.450.410.410.320.390.430.480.340.360.380.46
Amenities0.090.150.120.050.000.090.130.130.220.190.130.100.100.170.090.130.220.13
Building Operating Costs0.090.090.090.090.090.090.090.090.140.090.090.090.090.090.090.090.150.09
Capital Costs0.170.200.170.080.140.170.200.160.140.130.180.210.170.270.270.250.290.15
Economic Impact0.070.100.070.050.040.070.070.070.150.130.120.060.050.110.040.080.140.07
Environmental Sustainability0.160.120.120.160.140.080.090.160.220.210.180.090.080.130.090.090.270.16
Location0.000.300.280.170.090.000.220.200.390.350.280.090.090.200.170.090.320.15
Parking0.110.150.070.070.070.070.070.260.210.190.260.110.110.150.110.110.210.11
Proximity0.260.320.330.210.100.330.260.280.190.190.140.330.330.360.140.390.210.26
Site Size, Configuration & Topography0.450.640.620.670.210.670.580.470.170.130.600.710.640.510.580.490.210.28
Site Zoning0.510.470.470.510.430.430.210.510.560.390.390.510.510.640.600.560.640.39
Timing0.430.340.340.300.340.340.300.430.340.300.340.510.470.560.470.510.600.39
Total Score2.753.363.162.691.902.632.553.213.132.703.053.203.083.673.003.163.652.62
77.4883.6581.6176.8869.0176.2875.4882.0981.3477.0480.4781.9580.7886.6980.0481.6386.4976.23

Here is the same table transposed to that the sites are rows and the criteria are the columns.

HWDSB Education Centre Site Evaluation Scoring Model
Site Accessibility Amenities Building Operating Costs Capital Costs Economic Impact Environmental Sustainability Location Parking Proximity Site Size, Configuration & Topography Site Zoning Timing Total Score
Chatham 0.41 0.09 0.09 0.17 0.07 0.16 0 0.11 0.26 0.45 0.51 0.43 2.75 77.48
Highland 0.49 0.15 0.09 0.2 0.1 0.12 0.3 0.15 0.32 0.64 0.47 0.34 3.36 83.65
LA Pkwy & Pritchard 0.48 0.12 0.09 0.17 0.07 0.12 0.28 0.07 0.33 0.62 0.47 0.34 3.16 81.61
Windermere 0.33 0.05 0.09 0.08 0.05 0.16 0.17 0.07 0.21 0.67 0.51 0.3 2.69 76.88
Flamborough 0.25 0 0.09 0.14 0.04 0.14 0.09 0.07 0.1 0.21 0.43 0.34 1.9 69.01
Pritchard & Rymal Upper 0.29 0.09 0.09 0.17 0.07 0.08 0 0.07 0.33 0.67 0.43 0.34 2.63 76.28
James & Rymal 0.33 0.13 0.09 0.2 0.07 0.09 0.22 0.07 0.26 0.58 0.21 0.3 2.55 75.48
Innovation Park 0.45 0.13 0.09 0.16 0.07 0.16 0.2 0.26 0.28 0.47 0.51 0.43 3.21 82.09
City Hall 0.41 0.22 0.14 0.14 0.15 0.22 0.39 0.21 0.19 0.17 0.56 0.34 3.13 81.34
King & Queen 0.41 0.19 0.09 0.13 0.13 0.21 0.35 0.19 0.19 0.13 0.39 0.3 2.7 77.04
West Harbour Lands 0.32 0.13 0.09 0.18 0.12 0.18 0.28 0.26 0.14 0.6 0.39 0.34 3.05 80.47
Jerome 0.39 0.1 0.09 0.21 0.06 0.09 0.09 0.11 0.33 0.71 0.51 0.51 3.2 81.95
Sheldon 0.43 0.1 0.09 0.17 0.05 0.08 0.09 0.11 0.33 0.64 0.51 0.47 3.08 80.78
Crestwood 0.48 0.17 0.09 0.27 0.11 0.13 0.2 0.15 0.36 0.51 0.64 0.56 3.67 86.69
Ancaster 0.34 0.09 0.09 0.27 0.04 0.09 0.17 0.11 0.14 0.58 0.6 0.47 3 80.04
Sir Alan McNab 0.36 0.13 0.09 0.25 0.08 0.09 0.09 0.11 0.39 0.49 0.56 0.51 3.16 81.63
Jackson Square 0.38 0.22 0.15 0.29 0.14 0.27 0.32 0.21 0.21 0.21 0.64 0.6 3.65 86.49
Aberdeen 0.46 0.13 0.09 0.15 0.07 0.16 0.15 0.11 0.26 0.28 0.39 0.39 2.62 76.23

You can see the original PDF version.

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47 Comments

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By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 09:16:33

Sorry for the horizontal scrolling.

I think it's very interesting that Trustee Judith Bishop said:

There were community consultations and the Board heard clearly that staying in the downtown core was seen as important.

But community consultations were not one of the criteria. Crestwood had a score of 86.69 and Jackson Square (I believe they mean the City Centre) was 86.49; I wonder what the score would be if the Board had taken community input into consideration.

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 10:50:13 in reply to Comment 74174

This is nuts.

The Jackson Square scoring beats the Crestwood scoring in 10 of the 12 categories!

The 2 categories in which Crestwood scored higher were "Accessibility" and "site size, configuration and topography".

What the hell is that? Crestwood is more accessible than Jackson Square?

Site size, configuration and topography? Jackson Sqaure and City Centre can pretty much be as big as you need, and topography? No idea.

I wish there were some explanations for the scoring.

However, what irks me most is the total score.

Crestwood 86.69
Downtown 86.49

That's a very close second, and as such, with all the public 'clamour' about leaving the downtown, relocating the HWDSB at 77 James St., N. is a no brainer.

Furthermore, with all the public clamour about the HWDSB's responsibility to the downtown, I'm sure it would have been easy enough to adjust the downtown site so as to score the highest especially since it was such a very close second.

Surely the city can use the boards own criteria to make sure the south tower proposal or even 77 James ST., N. can score at least 86.70.

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By Robert D (anonymous) | Posted February 12, 2012 at 23:13:23 in reply to Comment 74181

That's an insanely close "second" place.

Why are they, therefore, spending money to build a new facility at Crestwood when they could be renting at Jackson Square for what I imagine is significantly less.

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By Robert D (anonymous) | Posted February 13, 2012 at 10:05:49 in reply to Comment 74270

Anyone know what "proximity" refers to? It's one of the areas where Crestwood scored higher than Jackson Square, and Sir Allan McNab scored highest...so I'm kind of wondering what they're measuring proximity to...

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By highwater (registered) | Posted February 13, 2012 at 12:49:01 in reply to Comment 74274

This is all I could find:

Proximity – to key user groups, stakeholders, schools, admin staff, students

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By Pxtl (registered) - website | Posted February 13, 2012 at 15:55:04 in reply to Comment 74280

Proximity to where staff lives, and to where all the remaining schools are.

What, you think any of these people would ever live downtown?

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By Robert D (anonymous) | Posted February 13, 2012 at 13:01:12 in reply to Comment 74280

Thanks for that, but it seems I was mixing up Allan McNab and John A. McDonald...

Still not quite sure why McNab and Crestwood scored so high - unless Proximity is also somehow a proxy for highway access?

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 14, 2012 at 10:03:19 in reply to Comment 74281

[sarcasm] because 0.87 of a mile, or a 3 minute drive, is so far form the 403 to their current location. [/sarcasm]

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By highwater (registered) | Posted February 13, 2012 at 13:08:14 in reply to Comment 74281

I'm sure proximity to the large chain retailers and fine dining establishments of the food court at Limeridge were considered as well.

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By seancb (registered) - website | Posted February 14, 2012 at 09:48:54 in reply to Comment 74282

maybe the BoE can conduct business from the food court itself. Lots of tables and chairs there. Talk about accessible!

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By jason (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 13:03:50 in reply to Comment 74181

Crestwood is more accessible than Jackson Square?

You're thinking 'accessible' in terms of people from all walks of life and transportation modes. They mean 'car access'.

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By Comment24 (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 09:29:34

Very limited criteria: All pure building/engineering criteria; missing are not only community consultations, but other "social" factors, like history, social impact, city landscape et al

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By RenaissanceWatcher (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 09:47:55

Ryan:

Thanks for transforming the minuscule site ranking chart in the HWDSB reports into a larger, more easily readable format.

As a point of clarification, page 11 of the HWDSB Education Centre Project Report to the Committee of the Whole dated October 18, 2010 refers to "Jackson Square/Stelco Tower" rather than the City Centre as one of the 18 potential sites initially considered for their new headquarters but page 12 lists the site outside of its "10 Eligible Sites (Over 80 Mark)": http://www.hwdsb.on.ca/aboutus/education...

Comment edited by RenaissanceWatcher on 2012-02-11 09:50:05

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 11:01:33 in reply to Comment 74177

The HWDSB link shows the Stelco Tower/Jackson Sqaure site scoring under 80, while this Spec article shows Jackson Sqaure/ 77 Jamse St., N. ( which I believe is the City Centre) scoring a very close second at 86.49, only 0.2 behind Crestwood.

http://www.thespec.com/news/local/article/669141--city-hall-among-board-hq-options

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By Simon (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 10:06:54

This out of context table is useless without the accompanying report that explains how each criteria was specifically assessed and how the numbers were calculated.

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By H+H (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 10:53:38

Details of the evaluation criteria are included in a presentation made by the Board to COW on October 18, 2010. The link to slides is http://www.hwdsb.on.ca/aboutus/education...

The criteria are:

 Accessibility – transit, highways, arterials, pedestrian, bike, disabled  Amenities – business services, restaurants, meeting facilities, retail  Building Operating Costs – access to district energy, deep water cooling  Capital Costs – site acquisition, infrastructure, building, parking  Economic Impact – “best place to raise a child”, local economic benefits  Environmental Sustainability – CO2 footprint, building re-use, infill or not  Location – public visibility, land mark suitability, community connections  Parking – on-site capacity, off-site availability, daily / monthly parking rates  Proximity – to key user groups, stakeholders, schools, admin staff, students  Site Size, Configuration and Topography – sufficiency for building program, partner facilities, landmark gesture, parking needs, etc.  Site Zoning – suitable to EC use, building size / height  Timing – Acquisition, approval, construction, ARC process (if applicable)

It's interesting to note that the word "Parking" appears FOUR times, including in its own Criteria category. Also, have a look at the "Location" and "Proximity" descriptors.

@Comment24 is correct in pointing out that these criteria are limited. Perhaps even conveniently?

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By Simon (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 12:14:56 in reply to Comment 74182

That is just a presentation to the trustees - a set of powerpoint slides - Its not a comprehensive engineering / financial analysis report.

The real report will present detail about how the criteria were specifically assessed and applied to each site, how each criteria is weighted, including the mathematical method used, what specific factors at each site were assessed for each criteria, etc.

There will also be detailed cost estimates, financial analysis and a comprehensive sensitivity analysis that addresses possible fluctuations in the variables used.

These types of reports are fairly common and they all follow a pretty standard technical report style - executive summary, scope of report, description of analysis procedure, description of alternates, description of selection criteria, cost estimates of alternates and treatments, comprehensive discussion for each alternate, sensitivity analysis, conclusion, appendices with all applicable reference data and calculations.

You can't debate anything without that report.

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By ScreamingViking (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 12:49:15 in reply to Comment 74194

The real report will present detail about how the criteria were specifically assessed and applied to each site, how each criteria is weighted, including the mathematical method used, what specific factors at each site were assessed for each criteria, etc.

I'm curious to see how they were weighted too - because the scores in the tables are straight sums with a scale conversion.

It would not make sense for "Amenities" to be weighted the same as accessibility/location or cost measures, for example. And accessibility, location, and proximity are all very related measures depending how they were defined - meaning there is a possibility of some double-counting of those aspects.

What was the meaning of all these, and how were they measured. That's important.

Comment edited by ScreamingViking on 2012-02-11 12:57:33

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By Borrelli (registered) | Posted February 13, 2012 at 10:26:04 in reply to Comment 74196

I'm curious to see how they were weighted too - because the scores in the tables are straight sums with a scale conversion.

Interestingly, when the HWDSB posted the documents here, they included detailed evaluations of Crestwood and a few other sites, including weighting of factors.

More interesting: Those evaluations are now dead links on that media release website.

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By H+H (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 16:19:11 in reply to Comment 74196

@Simon and Screaming Viking Thanks for the added perspective. While I didn't mean to suggest this was the sum total of the analysis, Simon's points are very helpful. Clearly you've done this kind of analysis before. I have not.

The key point I wanted to make is that the numbers presented to Trustees for their consideration and their decision were likely these ones. While it's likely there was some explanation of the process, I'd be surprised, although pleasantly if wrong, if Trustees dug very deep into the weighting, rationale, and other factors.

When we do get more info, it would be really helpful to have people who have hands on experience with this level of assessment help the rest of us understand how we ended up with Crestwood as the #1 option, beyond simply a +.20 total rating.

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By ScreamingViking (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 17:46:51 in reply to Comment 74220

I too would be surprised if they dug deeply. It would be interesting to know what kind of conversations they had with their consultants when this was all presented.

Numbers are important and should be part of the conversation. But there's often a risk of getting caught up in them, without considering what they really mean (prime education example - the EQAO testing)

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By Simon (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 17:34:21 in reply to Comment 74220

My God - I hope thats not all they were presented with to make their decision!!!

As you pointed out - its pretty much irrelevant that one site is ranked marginally higher or lower than another - that is just looking at an arbitrary number.

Usually cost is weighted much higher than other factors - but cost estimates are estimates, and depend on a lot of assumptions. For example cost could be worth 50% of the final index - but the cost may only be accurate within plus or minus 20%. Therefore just with the sensitivity in cost the final index could swing 10% one way or the other.

Another critical factor that has been pointed out is how subjective ranking systems such as this are to manipulation. You are exactly correct that they should be a guideline only.

Its not uncommon to have a preconcieved notion going in of what you think is the preferred recommendation. Its pretty easy to tweak a factor here and there to make the numbers match your desired outcome.

Here is a common conversation - "Hey looks like Option C works out to be preferred". "Hmmmmm, we were really hoping for A or B - C really isn't going to work for us - I can't present that." "Well, Treatment X has the biggest impact between each Option - and it sounds like Treatment Y is more important to you than you thought - if I decrease the importance of X a bit and increase the importance of Y, Option A or B will probably come out on top." "Ya I think you are right, Treatment Y is a little bit more important than X, so that makes sense." "Ok, I'll make those revisions".

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 11:04:01 in reply to Comment 74182

The 77 James St. N., site actually scores higher (.21) in parking that does Crestwood (.15).

The downtown site beats Crestwood in 10 of the 12 categories!

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By H+H (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 10:58:03

Also, although this kind of rating system/process is very helpful in focusing group/team discussions, it isn't meant to be, nor is it, science.

Always, you have to then use judgement to make the final decision. A gap of .20 between Crestwood and downtown is a wash. No decision maker I've ever met would say that kind of spread makes the decision obvious.

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 11:10:56 in reply to Comment 74183

Especially when the only public deabte in regards to the new HWDSB location is its propsoed abandonment of the downtown.

Nothing else is being discussed, and I don't mean just here.... local radio, newspapers, other websites, water cooler talk at work...

Is there rally any other issue here?

Come on people! Wake up!

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By Kiely (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 13:54:13 in reply to Comment 74186

Especially when the only public deabte in regards to the new HWDSB location is its proposed abandonment of the downtown.

And you can't assume that has any relevance to the decision makers. It is no secret many Hamiltonians don't give a flying fig about downtown.

The lamenting about tearing down a perfectly good building and abandoning downtown is wasted on those that simply do not care about these things... and there seems to be quite a few of those folks.

Some people's entire mindsets need to change, not just their opinions on individual topics. It often seems the more progressive side of the (many) debates in this city is always trying to change the opinions of the other side on an ad-hoc basis, (e.g., why a west harbour stadium made sense, why LRT is a good thing, why this or that building should be saved, etc…) but what really needs to change is not just those opinions but the mindset that leads people to believe those opinions are correct in the first place.

More so than creating two way streets, building LRT or turning the tide on derelict buildings, the fundamental thing that needs to be transformed in this city is the way many Hamiltonians think.

We are trying to solve 21st century problems with mid-20th century thinking in this city and nothing is really going to change for the big picture until that transformation happens... If it happens at all. After all we do have a mayor who got elected by promising to tear the city apart. A definite negative harbinger of things to come.

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By highwater (registered) | Posted February 14, 2012 at 12:29:41 in reply to Comment 74203

And you can't assume that has any relevance to the decision makers.

But it should have. During the only meaningful public consultation that the board conducted on the future of the Ed Centre, they heard overwhelmingly that the public wanted them to stay downtown. That should have been a guiding principle, and enough to negate the .2% lower rating that the JS option received.

The lamenting about tearing down a perfectly good building and abandoning downtown is wasted on those that simply do not care about these things...

Which is why it's not being directed at those people. It is being directed at our elected representatives who should be far more open and accountable, and far better stewards of valuable public assets that were entrusted to them.

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 14:05:39 in reply to Comment 74203

Agreed, and I sense a shift.

More and more people not only care about downtown, but even suburbanites should recognize that urbanists acknowledge that suburbs are a reality.

And suburbanites should recognize that they need a strong urban core for suburbia to be affordable and sustainable.

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By jason (registered) | Posted February 12, 2012 at 15:15:44 in reply to Comment 74207

except their councillors keep lying to them and making them believe that they are somehow subsidizing downtown with all of their glorious riches.
The councillors know better, but when it comes to election time......

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By Kiely (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 14:22:57 in reply to Comment 74207

I sense a shift.

I sensed a (positive) shift too... then we elected Bob Bratina.

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By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 18:16:31 in reply to Comment 74209

I don't think that's entirely fair to voters. From his voting record, Bratina appeared to be a progressive councillor who voted consistently in support of the downtown core and urban revitalization. He seemed reasonable, spoke eloquently, and had the benefit (to many voters) of not being Larry Di Ianni or Fred Eisenberger.

Comment edited by administrator Ryan on 2012-02-11 18:16:41

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By Kiely (registered) | Posted February 14, 2012 at 10:17:11 in reply to Comment 74237

Bratina was and is an obvious charlatan. If you were duped Ryan, so be it. If you are simply making excuses for those that were, that is mighty charitable of you, but you can spare me the spiel.

He was elected for saying the "d" word… shame on any who voted for him.

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By banned user (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 18:27:53 in reply to Comment 74237

comment by banned user deleted

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 11:46:50

Further analysis shows the downtown sites score highest in " building, operating costs", "economic impact" and "capital costs"

Surely these count for more than "topography" in which Crestwood scores MUCH higher, giving it the number one ranking.

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By mrgrande (registered) | Posted February 12, 2012 at 17:19:13 in reply to Comment 74192

For a board that's considering closing seven schools, building & operating costs should be their #1 concern.

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By jason (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 13:05:40 in reply to Comment 74192

'topography'? What does that even mean? Are there snow-capped mountains and salmon springs running through the Crestwood site??

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By seancb (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 12:00:47

Am I missing something? Their current property is not listed (unless they used a term that is not apparently obvious). So was it never ever considered a possibility? They wanted to move that badly?

Did anyone ever do the math in regards to them staying at the current site?

Or is all of this only possible if McMaster buys the current property - with our money? And if so, shouldn't that raise some eyebrows?

With so many vacant lots in this city, none of our educators, representing kindergarten all the way up to post doctorate can figure out how to make this work without creating another vacant lot?

What a sad state of affairs.

Another question - if they are going to close Sir John A, why don't they look at that site?

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By Maestro*F (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 13:35:27 in reply to Comment 74193

"With so many vacant lots in this city, none of our educators, representing kindergarten all the way up to post doctorate can figure out how to make this work without creating another vacant lot?"

You need to understand that decisions like these haven't anything to do with what the board's employees, the "educators," think or want. They're simply members of the public like you and me are and no more privy to the trustee's (and, I suppose Executive Council's) reasoning than the rest of us.

Indeed, over time, the HWDSB's organization has become more and more stratified and hierarchic so that it's difficult for teachers to communicate directly with, for example, superintendents who only want to talk to principals.
The board's view is that decisions like this (and many others more directly related to educational strategies, materials and professional growth) are not part of a teacher's duties and teacher's opinions are neither sought nor valued.

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By seancb (registered) - website | Posted February 11, 2012 at 14:53:42 in reply to Comment 74202

Those at the top are still educators even if they do not interact directly with students!

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 12:20:43

In Howard Elliott's op ed piece in the Spec, he wrote, "If everything else is equal, there’s a case to be made for choosing downtown because of secondary benefits, but if the best value is Crestwood, it should and no doubt will remain the board’s choice."

http://www.thespec.com/opinion/editorial/article/669358--the-bottom-line-on-public-board-hq-debate

Wonder what he thinks of the scoring criteria.

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By highwater (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 14:53:26 in reply to Comment 74195

I doubt he looked at the report before spewing the usual middle of the road bs. I'd like to think no one who understands how razor thin the better 'value' of Crestwood is would make such a mealy-mouthed argument. When so much is at stake, anyone with the public interest in mind should be demanding a far more definitive case than the one we have before us.

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By no school (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 13:04:56

Does it really matter where the board locates its offices that are rarely visited by parents compared to making all lower city high schools difficult to access not only to parents but students as well

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By CaptainKirk (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 13:23:23 in reply to Comment 74198

I would day both matter.

Certainly having hundreds of public employees downtown is important, especailly when they've been there for decades, based on gifted public lands for that expressed purpose, and they propose to sell that land and abandon the downtown and their moral and public obligation.

This article discusses the HWDSB site selection criteria. Not sure why you'd bring up another topic here.

Perhaps you'd care to submit an article about the issue you bring up. I'd like to comment on that too.

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By Quietus (anonymous) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 16:46:48

The loss of hundreds of highly paid public sector employees is unfortunate, but taxpayers have been propping up downtown demographics for decades and it hasn't done much except atrophy the private sector. Losing the Board would push the median downtown salary into a nosedive but it might be motivational to the city to watch so many plum jobs drain out at once.

Barring that, here's a nonsensical compromise: mandate that HWDSB brass must live in the core even if they work at Crestwood.

Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board BAIN KENNETH Associate Director of Education $180,653.10
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board CORCORAN VICKI Superintendent, Leadership & Learning $156,795.38
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board CROXALL KRYSTYNA Superintendent, Student Achievement $157,383.77
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board FORBECK JOHN Superintendent, Human Resources $111,790.31
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board GRANT DONALD Superintendent, Business & Treasurer $154,441.95
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board JOSHUA PETER Superintendent, Leadership & Learning $151,229.65
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board LAVERTY JOHN Superintendent, Student Achievement $157,383.77
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board MALLOY JOHN Director of Education & Secretary of the Board $231,180.84
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board REINHOLDT PAMELA Superintendent, Student Achievement $157,383.77
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board ROCCO PATRICK Superintendent, Student Achievement $153,168.38
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board SINCERBOX SCOTT Superintendent, Human Resources $157,383.77
Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board STEPHANIAN SHARON Superintendent, Leadership & Learning $156,207.03

http://www.fin.gov.on.ca/en/publications/salarydisclosure/2011/schbd11.html

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By Goin'Downtown (registered) | Posted February 11, 2012 at 19:37:42

I’d also like to know why the existing Board of Ed building is on not included in this comparison table.

“That building needs a wrecker’s ball” doesn’t spring to mind when I think of the existing Board of Ed building. In fact, I consider it a permanent part of the downtown landscape. When one thinks of interesting and memorable cities, it’s usually the cities with the most history and architectural diversity that spring to mind – not the cities with the cookie cutter or concrete village stylings.

Why couldn’t the downtown Board of Ed building be renovated/retrofitted? $55 million? Maybe…but I doubt it. Most likely an inflated figure to promote a new build. How many bids/estimates were received? Why is it in such a state of dire, expensive disrepair to begin with? If our Board let that happen to that building, what’s to say that isn’t happening to all its capital, including future builds? Who is ensuring that this isn't the case?

Judith Bishop’s RTH post denotes “The business plan for this requires the sale of the Education Centre and another administrative site, and using operational savings, calculated at $1.3 million a year, to finance the remaining portion of a $31.6 million, 113 square foot building.” Really? Selling off the existing Board of Ed building will save $1.3 million PER YEAR? Holy hannah.

Why is selling, demolishing and building anew such an attractive option to the Board? I’ve always thought that when a building is demolished, it’s because it has to be, not because someone wants something new or different in its place. Are they loaded? I can think of better ways to blow money, within the public education sector.

The comparison table denotes “economic impact” and according to the related report that is “the best place to raise a child, local economic benefits." According to who/what criteria? The Board's finance department and/or economists? Input from the City? Input from local economic experts like Marvin Ryder, et al?

And where are the schools that are about to be “ closed” on the comparison table or at least considered a potential site in their report? Someone please tell me that Delta isn’t going to also be assigned a demolition permit.

And this is where my head spins...the City, usually referred to as the " taxpayers," is set to contribute $47 million to the McMaster demolition/construction. But the remainder of the money that McMaster is using for this project is primarily taxpayers' dollars, too. And the Board's anticipated, shiny new 113,000 sq.ft. building is also footed by taxpayers' dollars. So...taxpayer-wise...isn't the least expensive option to renovate the existing Board building? And lease and/or purchase other existing City of Hamilton properties? And locate the new McMaster project in a different downtown location? Hmmmmm, where could that possibly be...cough Rheem.

As for the "why does downtown get so much attention" mantra, I observe that it's a majority of people that don't understand why a healthy, economically robust downtown is essential to a city's viability. And in addition to five municipalities who are still stinging from forced amalgamation, we've now got a second generation of mountain residents who could give a crap about what happens down the mountain; they perceive that they've never had any need to leave the mountain for anything. So a large contingency of "Hamiltonians" think that the lower city should just shrivel up and go away. Does anyone know of a website or case study illustrating that very occurrence? It would be great if The Spec would do a series on that topic - maybe a "what if" series of different scenarios, based upon input from local economic experts.

Sorry so wordy. And probably redundant (but hopefully not).

And at the risk of being reeeeally superfluous...Matt, you're just awesome. "Let's add without subtracting" is brilliant.

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By mystoneycreek (registered) - website | Posted February 13, 2012 at 07:25:26 in reply to Comment 74240

It would be great if The Spec would do a series on that topic - maybe a "what if" series of different scenarios, based upon input from local economic experts.

I love this.

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By Robert D (anonymous) | Posted February 13, 2012 at 10:02:15

Wait...they considered a site in Flamborough? That makes about as much sense as locating in Aldershot...and scored appropriately of course.

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