Comment 70598

By RenaissanceWatcher (registered) | Posted October 15, 2011 at 09:10:02

This opinion letter titled "Pan Am Games legacy has been squandered" by Hamiltonian Doug Farraway, who is one of the on-air personalities on TheFan 590 sports radio and was a former editor of the news department at 1150 CKOC radio back when it actually broadcast some news and commentary, was published in today's Hamilton Spectator:

"Our Pan Am Games legacy can be described with one work: zilch.

I agree with Councillor Brad Clark that only the Tiger-Cats benefited from 18 months of debate and indecision. What has Hamilton obtained through this process?

The answer: A new but smaller stadium on a tired and still divisive site in the middle of a residential neighbourhood. We were supposed to get a renovated/rebuilt stadium at Ivor Wynne but, arbitrarily in someone's back room, a decision was made to tear everything down and start afresh. There are no collateral benefits for the neighbourhood and the city as a whole by rebuilding at Ivor Wynne. No new businesses will be created because we are using the same old footprint as before. Fewer people will be attending Ticat games so even the people who park cars on their lawns will have fewer dollars in their pockets.

Bob Young is a beneficiary. By stamping his foot and threatening to move to anywhere but the west harbour, he got his way.

We don't get a new stadium in a west harbour location that would have linked our needy downtown to our green harbour. We don't get industrial revolution lands cleared and cleaned. We don't get any ripple economic effect for the money to be spent by three levels of government. We don't get any urban renewal momentum.

Now there is no velodrome. What sporting infrastructure and legacy will there be from the Pan Am Games in Hamilton? Zilch.

There is one thing we've accrued after this testy and sometimes acrimonious debate- a reputation elsewhere in the country that we haven't got a clue what we're doing going forward. There was another way. Sadly that way has passed us by."

Comment edited by RenaissanceWatcher on 2011-10-15 09:13:12

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