Comment 12476

By seancb (registered) - website | Posted October 05, 2007 at 13:08:49

sent to the spec just now:

I am starting to wonder if Mr. Dreschel ever spends time downtown? Whenever I pass through the core, there is a line up of pedestrians at the lights at King and James. During the daytime and in the evening, The Gore is well populated by people on foot. If Dreschel's cart is "pedestrianization" and his horse is "pedestrians", then his theory is clearly out of whack. Pedestrians are there right now, and anything we do to accommodate them better will result in more of them coming, and staying longer. In other words, the horse has already arrived. His criticism surrounding a lack of events in the core would be better aimed at the Downtown BIA. Why on earth would they pull out support for the Busker Festival when "by most accounts, it was a success"? One wonders whose interests the BIA serves when it turns away a crowd-drawing event in the area it is supposed to be promoting. If Dreschel wants to keep the cart where it belongs, he should be supportive of the concept of creating a useful public space downtown. A big reason that we do not have more events downtown is because we've built a car-centric core. On top of that, the city presents an attitude which tends to imply that any event which displaces traffic is unwelcome. A more accurate analysis would have a horse which represents "creating a public space for events" and a cart which represents "bringing more public events to the core". Creating a pedestrian-friendly space will attract events -- and only if the space is a permanent installation will it benefit local businesses 365 days a year. Cars do not go shopping. People do. Half-measures and temporary public spaces will not change the face of the core. If we do not build it, they will never come.

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