Wednesday, April 16, 2014

THE SAGA OF PORT PLACE CONTINUES

Just before the Bay Beach Issue, there was a planned development for Port Dalhousie that was causing angst within the lakefront tourist village that is now part of St. Catharines. The similarities between the Port Place development and the multiple-name project on public waterfront land in Crystal Beach. 

Opponents to the Port Dalhousie project went through the same process that was followed in the Bay Beach situation: OMB, citizen activism and a campaign to vote out those who supported the plan. Five years have passed since the OMB gave approval to the original developer to build a high rise containing a hotel, condos, a theatre and commercial businesses on the property where the Welland Canal meets lake Ontario. 

Port Dalhousie was once a thriving tourist location and party town. Although there were challenges surrounding the popular bar area, the other businesses in town enjoyed a steady trade of locals and tourists almost year 'round. The councillors who voted to allow the Port Place development to proceed either did not take the current business situation in to account or they were enthralled with the presentation by the developer who promised great things for the community when the project was completed. (Campaign donations by the developer may have helped as well.)

In the Comments section, Andrew Watts said it quite succinctly


"In Niagara Region the 'developer' is king!
Incompetent regional and municipal governments continue to listen to their staff, unelected planners and finance 'experts', who only want to build because they believe if you do 'they(and lots of additional taxes) will come'.
The developer(s)just sit back and waits to be 'bribed'...!!! Anyone listen to the increasing demands for breaks on development fees, breaks on property taxes, breaks on energy bills? All are part of the increasing 'corporate welfare' that politicians continue to approve. 
Any development application used to involve a 'business plan' to show a profit for the builder after all other application and development costs, after the construction is completed, after the properties are sold and including all other costs along the way....!!!!
Nowadays they just throw away the business plan knowing incompetent politicians, advised by incompetent unelected staff, will push badly thought out projects in order to show they know what they are doing and maybe even pick up a couple of votes in the process............... :-( :-( :-(
If a developer runs out of cash or sees his 'profit' declining he is quite likely to flip his share and walk away............. :-)
Follow the money, much of which is our tax dollars, and research the background to your 'local' developers, many of whom probably have ties to Toronto 'investors' and Bay Street law firms.............
Two that spring to mind are Lakewood Properties in Wainfleet and the PD Tower project in PD.
A few years back Lakewood ran into a cash problem and were bailed out by one of the PD developers. That same developer no longer has any financial interest in either PD or Lakewood.... :-) :-) :-)
And coincidentally, what is the address of Lakewood Properties now? I think you will find it is not only in PD but not a million miles away from the address of the original PD Tower project company?
Surprise! Surprise!
Don't just blame Andy P. All of our politicians continue to claim they are experts on everything and vote for a whole host of things they really know little if anything about!
But when you have the promise of big tax bucks, when you have unelected staff who work on a daily basis with those developers with the big ideas it doesn't take much to approve the wrong projects!!!!
And don't forget these planners put all their ducks in a row first. They get approval or at least no objections from the necessary provincial and regional agencies, plus from another agency we all hear so much about, the NPCA...!!!! :-)
Don't just blame a politician because he doesn't vote the way you do!
Few if any approvals are ever by just a single politician! And often time the majority do so because their staff have advised them they can't vote against................ :-)
Blame you elected Councilors for abdicating their responsibilities as the sole Planning Authority in their municipality!
The elected councilors should be the first ones to see any applications, particularly large projects, for them to first assess if they may be contentious!
Once the planners get hold of an application and go through the entire process before presenting them for approval it is far too late!"
Andrew Watts:

Couldn't have said it better myself. (I probably have. Just substitute Bay Beach for Port Dalhousie.)

TRACK UPDATE:  According to a published report, the Year of the Horse festivities at the Fort Erie Race Track have been put out to pasture. 

17 comments:

  1. not for posting nor is my previous post. check out the ninja site regarding their poll John Hill for mayor. it is now 66% in John's favor. i voted at least 100 time to make the percentages "even" which means that the ninjas voted 100 times. i don't think there are enough supporters that visit the site to cast 100 votes in one day, so one has to assume that they ( the ninjas ) are placing multiple votes on their " we don’t play games here. It is an honest poll. Have at it! "

    and they stole that " have at it" ( an, old phrase in the english vocabulary ) from you, because you have used it a number of times.

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  2. Thought provoking ,intelligent and well researched article. Thank you Madam Editor.

    This is the kind of journalism we don't see much of here with it's far too often perverted local bias to what certain power mongers and their well established business cronies want.

    Nothing better today than having the tax payer pick up all your bills and then some by contorting the local press eh dougie n jimmie. ( I fully realize that you 2 are only the "face" of whats wrong here and that quite a few stand behind the curtain. Want me to name a few?)

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    1. I don't know who Andrew Watts is but he has hit the nail squarely on the head. I remember Rino Mostacci's brag to the Buffalo News where he said he envisions high rises all down the bay at Crystal Beach. Like Miami Beach which has a very long and wide oceanfront beach area, unlike our narrower Bay Beach.

      It is this symbiotic relationship between developers and staff that has to be examined. One well-known local developer bragged in front of a large group of real estate people that he could "get anything I want in Fort Erie as long as I pay for it." He merely said what many have known to be true for eons. Happens in many towns, as pointed out by Mr. Watts.

      I see that the Notice of Motion was withdrawn by Don Lubberts Monday night. He wants to run it past the town lawyer. It would have prohibited any residential development on the south side of the public Bay Beach Properties. This is what many of us want, but it needs to be done right. Good of Donnie to take his time.

      Delete
  3. To start this thread off, there is concern about staff's new requirements that are proposed with the smaller minimum lawn limits for houses that are included in the Town's new Housekeeping by-laws . I get that it is Urban Intensification. I don't have a problem if the developers are exhibiting some greed in cramming more builds on their property. Some new homeowners may not want a lot of outdoor upkeep. Those who don't like the property for sale can buy from another builder.

    Just don't allow Urban Intensification on our PUBLIC WATERFRONT!

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  4. Urban intensification , cramming as many houses along a sewer right of way is the dogma of this Province , I suspect this provides a lot more profit for a developer , this packing people in sardine like buildings makes sense in Toronto, We know these developers pour lots of cash into election campaigns during Provincial and Municipal Elections. Notice D Martin for Mayor recieved contributions from several developers, The one got Council permission to build and extend sewer lines in contravention of an OMB ruling that forbade that practise in the Stevensville area, until a sewage treatment plant is built.Paul Fell, Rick Shuler, Wayne Redekop, and D Martin voted to unilateraly overturn the OMB decision, OMB decisions are binding!!!

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  5. Part 1 of Post ....

    " I've been a Badddd Puddytat " said in the voice of Sylvester the Cat.

    It appears that I must have pooped in the ninjas sandbox because they are spinning around like a ballerina on a jewelry box. roflmao

    Hey ninjas ..... it's me. I posted 120 times onto your " we don’t play games here. It is an honest poll. Have at it! " poll. Why .... because i could, just as I was able to do on previous polls when I voted in YOUR favor. Only 2 or 3 times, but I was still able to. So, take your " As for how this happened, a simple mistake when the poll was set up. The feature that prevented this from happening was simply not turned on." and shove it up your Ninja Piehole. ;)

    Think about it readers ....... of the 120 votes that I submitted, it took me 100 votes to bring it to a 50/50 vote. That means that there were also 100 votes against John Hill. I don't know about you, but I find that dubious because at the time I submitted my votes the poll had only been up for 13 hours. I voted at approximately 1:00 pm EST. The thread and poll was presented on April 16th, so based on from 12:01 April 16th to 1:00 p.m. is 13 hours of which, say, 6 hours were not during peoples regular computer activity hours. So in 7 hours 100 votes were registered solely against John Hill, without any multiple votes cast other than mine.

    To the ninjas, I challenge you to submit the ENTIRE UNALTERED screenshot of the votes cast. I dare you ..... I double dog ....... no .... I'm going for the throat ..... I TRIPLE DOG DARE YOU.

    But you won't. Why? Because you feel that YOU don't have to answer to anyone. You are superior to every other resident in Fort Erie yet you promote yourselves a the saviors of Fort Erie.

    Now don't get me wrong. Like I said before, I voted in your polls supporting your attitude. And I am not a fan of Sharon Bowers. I WAS a fan of Redbull and for a short period the ninjas. But YOU changed that. You "Senseis" think that you are idolized, adorned, and respected. Welcome to the real world. Certainly by myself and I am sure others, YOU are considered a JOKE. Starting with your immature name. Are you little boys still playing make believe role model games. Grow up and grow some balls.

    Case and point. The Strand was able to post 2 demeaning pictures of Greg. One passed out in a bath tub and another grabbing two other men's groins. ( Gay or what .... not that there is anything wrong with that .... said in a Jerry Seinfeld voice). One would expect that at each of these occasions, Sharon was not invited to attend. I would expect that only close friends would be invited. Hmmm .... seems to me like you pissed off somebody to turn against you.

    In reality, you have pissed off a lot of people with your arrogant behavior and posts. You couldn't hold it together with Redbull, to which you were friends, then you went on a vicious attack against him. ( Let that be a warning to your current accomplices, and I suggest you don't take it lightly ).

    When your posters don't agree with you, what do you do? What do you do Sensei ? ......... You eliminate them.


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  6. Part 2 of Post .....

    You have for months promoted that the ninjas are NEVER wrong, yet in truth, you are never RIGHT.

    YOU said that the condos WILL be built. They will NOT.

    YOU polled which of the FOUR will resign first. NONE have.

    YOU said that the FOUR would be kicked off of council for their dubious campaign supporters. NONE DID.

    IN FACT ...... YOU have substantiated NONE of your allegations or, for lack of a better term, ..... LIES.

    Like I said before, I PREVIOUSLY supported the ninja/redbull philosophy. I was/am seriously concerned by the tactics by which the four were elected/re-elected particularly with the influence of Marcia Carlyn. I was/am seriously concerned with the manner and circumstances in the firing of Heather Salter. The judge will decide on the latter and the conscience of the four will decide on my first concern.

    So, yup, I am a TROLL. I have followed ALL of the blogs even before YOU Greggers stuck your little toes into the water.

    You want to expose me ninjas. That is your decision. You will find out that I am a nobody with no political affiliations. I don't know anybody, and don't want to. I have never talked to Sharon Bowers, nor know any of the posters on the Stand or the ninjas or redbull even when you exposed them. I did have one encounter with Sharon Bowers ( I believe ) when she was attending the Salvation Army Kettle at Joe's Valuemart. Even though I disagreed with her position on attacking Fort Erie, I placed money in the kettle. She said "Thank You" , I said "You're Welcome".

    I have never had any discussion with any ninja, and consider my life better for that.

    So again ...... expose me if you choose. Just be prepared for any legal ramifications. And that is not one of YOUR weak threats ..... that my friend is a REALITY. To you and all those associated with the administration of your site, and potentially, your posters.

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  7. To Stone Ninja ......

    " lol, caught red handed, some stuff just can’t be kept a secret. Fool, perfectly set up, joke is on you!!! 4 votes must have come from the 4 themselves, could it be? hahaha!!! "

    First of all ..... Stone .... you name certainly portrays your primary addiction in life.

    Secondly ..... " Fool, perfectly set up, joke is on you!!! " . So one ninja say oops .... it was a mistake, then the next fool say haha ... we set you up. Face it A$$holes .... you guys ain't got a clue what you are doing. You just sit behind your computers with your beer or doubbies ( don't know how to spell it 'cause that's not my thing ) and think you rule the world and know all the answers. Betcha you click off the site when your family enters the room. Why? Because you KNOW that you are addicted to your campaign of fault and don't know how to get off the train when you see that the bridge ahead has collapsed.

    Instead of promoting co-operation, you would rather promote attacks and separation.

    Think about it when you are straight or sober.

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  8. Marcia's grandparents bought a tiny cottage along the lake over 100 years ago. Her grandmother was Canadian. Marcia has spent more time at that cottage than any other residence. She pays taxes all year just like everyone else. She deals with statistics in her business, honest analysis. If Marcia has some helpful ideas to protect our Fort Erie waterfront, what is the matter with that?

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    1. Yeah, but...
      Marcia and I, among others, do not count because we were not born in Fort Erie and educated at or part of a clique from the local high school. Our parents (and her grandparents) paid taxes to Fort Erie for years. But that doesn't count either to certain people in this town - a town that has enjoyed a great deal of tax income from summertime residents.

      When we speak up about local issues, we are told to shut up because we are not "locals." Locals meaning what's left of the die-hard, prejudiced and jealous vestiges of an earlier century.

      Those of us against the tower condo on public beachfront property, whether we are Canadian or otherwise are doing so to protect the property for future generations to enjoy.

      What is wrong with that?

      Delete
  9. NOT FOR POSTING !!!!

    Thanks for supporting me Sharon ...... NOT !!!!

    You know damn well that Marcia crossed the line with her influence on the 2010 elections. I had received every one of her emails. You yourself even admitted that the American influence was too extreme involving the election and backed out of the discussion a couple of months before the election.

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  10. Just read the lovefest for Ricky and Doug over on the juvenile delinquents website and have to say they really have set a new bar for world class ass kissers.

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  11. All should take notice of the pride in which these dimly lit digital dirtbags pay homage to Doug Martin and Rick Shular.
    And don't forget their unwavering support for Ms Butler, Ms Zanko, and Ms McDermott.
    With such glowing praise from The Sesame Street Gang voters should have no problem in deciding which candidates are looking out for residents and those that are in it for themselves and their girlfriends.

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  12. CorruptionFighterApril 17, 2014 at 9:55 PM

    I am very glad that some people in this town are finally waking up to the screw job the ol boys club, the chamber of commerce and their supporters having been carrying out in this town, costing us not only massive tax $$ but now our collective public rights and property as well.

    SUPPORT THE FOUR END THE PANDEMIC OF CRONYISM for a few insider favorites.

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  13. I have spoken to several politicians from Niagara Falls , they tell me that they would never put up with strong arm tactics from their Chamber of Commerce, and I believe them, The Fort Erie Chamber has controlled our Town and money for ever, they feel ordained to run our town and to hell with the residents. If you have gotten your own way all of your life , and somebody says no, we want to do it our way, they really get angry. reading that other blog I think they are gnashing their teeth as their god Doug Martin is getting his nose shoved in poop for a change, they can hand it out but can't take it. looks good on 'em.

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  14. This quote was posted on "Niagara At Large" by a commenter. It is so true that we can't even get honest reporting let alone honest policticians. Thanks Sharon for providing this venue.

    “The freedom of the press is a flaming sword, that it may be a servant of all the people, Use it justly; hold it high; guard it well.”

    WHAT HAPPENED TO INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING, TRUTH AND HONESTY???

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    1. I was very much influenced by the Watergate story and the work of Woodward and Bernstein as represented in the movie All The President's Men. Today, there are very few true investigative reporters. I am not one, unfortunately. I consider myself a political commentator as I do have an agenda which is to save the Bay Beach Properties for the public. My forays into local politics are an offshoot of that quest. Once you overturn one rock, you are compelled to keep going as the story becomes much more complex as the connections and truth are uncovered.

      I believe that James Culic has the talent to be a good investigative reporter. He sometimes shows this. Then he turns around and writes a hit piece on the four councillors.

      I just wish that the conglomerate that owns most of the media in this area would allow its reporters and writers the chance to dig into what is really going on.

      Delete

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