By Jason Leach
Published October 16, 2007
What's with this city? Is it written in stone somewhere that we are not allowed to take three steps forward? Must it always be two forward and one back?
Why would the Hamilton Wentworth District School Board board be leaning towards moving out to the south mountain? It's bad enough that they've closed central city schools to build new schools in our 'high growth' suburbs, but the administrative offices should be downtown.
Are we really further ahead if we finally land one institution downtown (after years of them resisting) only to lose another?
To me the first choice would be to partner on a signature tower at Main and Bay. Unless McMaster is demanding that their new facility be built as a suburban office building like the entire Mac campus, I don't see why they can't work together and put up a new building downtown. It would draw attention and act as a symbol on the skyline that Hamilton is back in business.
Other cities do this all the time. Why must we continue with this ridiculous 'Hamilton Shuffle' that usually ends up with us right back where we started?
Let's hope that someone with some creativity and leadership is working behind the scenes at the school board. So far, the signs are less than encouraging.
Those in our community who believe in downtown Hamilton and have kids in the school system should also make your voices heard. This discussion is just beginning and there would appear to be a good chance for public involvement.
Kudos to the board for opening up their meeting to the public last night. Let's make sure that future meetings at the boards head office aren't in a remote location, essentially limiting access to tens of thousands of people who rely on transit and cycling to attend such meetings. A central, downtown location makes sense for everyone involved.