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LETTER: When it comes to the LPH - where there is a will, there is a way

Some interesting ideas have been offered, but many seem unaware of what is happening with this land.

To the editor,

In response to Mr. Shane Judge's letter about the former LPH grounds, as well as the many online comments that followed, I would like to offer the following: This is purely a personal statement, it does not reflect the opinion of any group or organization.

Some interesting ideas have been offered, but many seem unaware of what is happening with this land. It is privately owned by the province, it is not public land or 'crown' land. It has been designated as surplus and the province is readying it for eventual sale.

This is the same process that every piece of surplus property goes through. It involves many steps, one of which could be to offer it for sale to the city if no provincial ministry or federal department shows interest.

The city does not have the money or the resources to purchase the land or act as a developer, which is what would be required.

Following this, it would be offered to school boards or other groups. It then and only then goes for public sale.

This is government policy. By the way, no part of it has been designated to be saved at this time.

Although a previous city council did endorse the idea of saving some of the green space, this was overruled by the province.

Re-opening the building is a nice idea, and everyone knows we need more mental health beds, but this is a pipe dream.

As many have pointed out, the amount of work required makes this untenable, not to mention the amount of people hours required to run it.

That money would be much better spent in other areas of support.

What will happen if and when it is finally up for public sale, as the province wishes?

Likely a mix of housing, such as the 'highest/best' land use survey (mandated as per policy) indicated. This would include the mandated amount of 'affordable' housing as per current building guidelines on new sub-divisions.

I am not aware that the current policy has changed in that regard. Is there a certain amount of NIMBY-ism and blowback against development?

There always is.

Is there some legitimate concern about how development will affect the area, including existing infrastructure, recreational areas, and the neighborhood?


Hopefully, though, there will be enough room on the approximately 160 acres to allow for some of the green space/trail areas to be saved. Whatever happens, it is all dependent on political will. Whatever you feel should be done with this area, write to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing and tell them.

Politics, it is often said, is the art of compromise and I would like to believe that some in power will listen and offer a solution that meets several interests. If there is a will, there is a way.


Len Maki

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