To the editor:
I read with interest the letter "Signs of the Times" by Jon Hutt about the Renew Thunder Bay signage at the waterfront. He raises a good point about the visibility of the signs. I have not noticed the signs at the end of Pearl Street and Red River Road nor the one north of the skate park, although I am a regular walker at the waterfront. I am sure most other citizens have not seen these signs either as they are not accessible, particularly the first two as access to the park has been severely curtailed.
Last Sunday during my now much-truncated walk at Marina Park, I decided to risk the icy paths (regular sanding would greatly help folks like me who walk at the Marina regardless of the weather) and go and look at the signage on the chain link fence closing off the construction area from the Veteran's Memorial.
I looked at each sign carefully. They depict what the new marina will look like, yet I noticed the hotel or condominium are not visible in any of them. Each of the colour photo-like signs depict citizen friendly activities and sites such as a new ice skating rink/wading pond, large stones for sitting on by the lakeshore, platforms for better viewing access and a market place for strolling.
If one peers closely, the two signs of the ice skating rink and wading pond show faint phantom buildings in the background. The people skating or enjoying the wading pond are oblivious to the ghost-like buildings behind them.
I thought it was telling that none of the many signs actually show the hotel or condominium. The cleansed-of-corporate commerce images suggest the goal of the Marina Park development to be increased public enjoyment of the waterfront.
The images wipe out any hint of corporate commercial development, the hotel and the condominium, which have been the prime reason for dissent of this type of development in the minds of many Thunder Bay residents.
Surely, a little honesty in portrayal would be less patronizing to citizens.
Taina Maki Chahal,