A compromise has been made. Well done to all involved!
I’ll share the email sent to me below, but before I do that I want to take the time to thank as many people I can think of who have helped with this issue:
- The community
- The ward 5 councillors – Cathy Downer and Leanne Piper
- The “ring leaders” (Jennifer, Tom, Lisa & more) of Pacific Place who stepped up and took on leadership roles to help be the voice of the community
- City of Guelph staff who were thrown a curve-ball and still hit a home run
- Hydro One for compromising on the buffer allowance, working with our city and landscaping professionals and giving funds to the rehabilitation of the land
- Professionals such as landscapers, lawyers, environmental experts and more that took the time to give of their advice and guided everyone involved
Thank you all for being so patient and accommodating throughout this process. I know that your backyards aren’t going to look the same starting tomorrow, but the compromised position is obviously better than a total clear-cut. You should all be very proud of what you’ve accomplished. As usual I’m here to help further if need be!
Here’s the email:
Hello Mayor Guthrie,
Hope you are enjoying the weekend. I know that Councillors Downer and Piper have been keeping you up to date on the Hydro One file, but just wanted to send you a quick update. Since our initial notification of work and the subsequent community information meeting on October 22, several very positive interactions have taken place between members of our team, city staff and representatives of the community. With Councillor Downer’s facilitation, there has been some consensus building around what Hydro One is trying to accomplish on the transmission corridor behind Pacific Place and why. While the new landscape will be different, we are pleased that many in the community are now looking forward to redefining this public space. It will not happen overnight, but will be a work in progress over the next few years. Hydro One has been able to commit to a wider buffer zone along the Pacific Place side of the corridor (15 feet instead) and has increased the amount of funding it will provide to the City to assist with the replanting of compatible species in the buffer zone and in other designated locations on the transmission corridor. We are very grateful for the assistance of Temia Filer and Martin Neumann from the City’s Parks Operations and Forestry department, and also Councillors Downer and Piper for helping us recover from a rough start due to a flawed communication process. We are also overwhelmingly impressed and appreciative of the patience and collaboration of the designated community representatives who brought their concerns and ideas to the table. We now have these valued relationships in the community and will keep these lines of communication open as we move forward. Hydro One will be moving equipment to the site on Monday, November 16, and our crews will begin working on Tuesday morning. City communications staff have posted a public notice on the City’s website about Hydro One’s work and advising of the closure of Silvercreek Trail on weekdays for the duration of the project. We have sent out the same notice via the community spokespersons, several local stakeholder groups, and the media.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.
Hydro One Networks