Comment 2836

By schmadrian (registered) | Posted January 08, 2007 at 06:51:46

I saw ths article yesterday and made a point of showing it to my Hammer-discussion-mate Anthony, expecially noting the author and making a mental note of the get in touch with him.

Part of what ensued was a suggestion of a kind of 'coffee klatch' get together; myself, Anthony and another ex-Hammerite, with Jason, Ryan, Adrian, and you, Ben. To informally toss around some perceptions and ideas and maybe formulate some long-term initiatives on the advocacy front. I'll be in touch with all of you presently.

I am saddened by the recurring suggestion...of any suggestions regarding Hamiltons 'steel heritage'. Because for the life of me, I can't understand why there's this insistence to cling on to the past. Steel is Hamilton's history. Its HISTORY. Not its future. Whatever happens in the city over the next 25 years is not going to be the result of any sort of resurgence in this sector, nor does 'honouring' this vital aspect of our past have anything to do with creating a new vision of our city.

Right here on this page is a reference that actually has under it the notion of somehow entrenching the steel-making heritage or creating a museum about it... "I've been banging on for awhile on the dangers of megaproject thinking - the idea that people will come downtown if only we had the right big, iconic, landmark signature amenity. You know, like Hamilton Place or Jackson Square or the AGH or the Convention Centre or ...

The simple, unavoidable fact is that a downtown will thrive if it is genuinely what you have called a "people place": pedestrian friendly, safe, and attractive, with a wide variety of useful and interesting micro-destinations in close proximity (I mean hardware stores as well as hip cafes) and convenient transit."

Maybe it's a blindspot with me, but seriously: why do you (all) look to the past like this? There is only a certain amount of energy available for 'making things happen' in a visionary sense, and it doesn't matter whose vision it is we're talking about. Why expend any energy on ruminating over memorials or temples or museums...reflecting on the past...when what this city (and its people) need, is to have a new future created?

More anon.

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