Thursday, February 18, 2010

Fw: Recent Developments at Dufferin Grove Park

Letter to:  Toronto ombudsperson; cc to Councillors Mihevc and Giambrone (isn't he in France right now???)
 
Read more background info here.
Dear Ms Crean:
 
It's come to my attention that one of our family's most beloved Toronto spaces, Dufferin Grove Park, is in danger of losing its autonomy, placing its lively and creative relationship with surrounding communities in jeopardy.
 
Dufferin Grove Park could perhaps be seen as almost a model of what an urban park ought to be:  in an ideal central location serving many regions of the city, it seeks to involve a highly participatory community while fostering great working relationships with local artistic production companies, organic food vendors.  This park pulls off so many diverse endeavours it sometimes boggles the mind.  As anyone who's been there can attest, visiting Dufferin Grove Park is a totally different experience every single time.
 
Yet while this park could serve as a role model, it is a model which I also believe could never be successfully applied in many areas around the GTA:  in a more suburban region, for example, or one with less desirable transit routes, an entirely different model should apply.
 
It is my fear that in standardizing parks within Toronto, the city will - let's face it; clumsily - remove key individuals who have helped to foster these essential community relationships and place leadership of the park in the hands of those who live elsewhere and do not understand fully its particular assets.
 
I truly believe we ought to strive to become the "City within a Park," as the Parks, Forestry and Recreation slogan claims.  And if that is the case, I believe the parks' needs - each park's unique and special requirements - must always come first.
 
Thanks for listening,
 
{moi}
 
p.s.  I have cc'd Joe Mihevc, our own hard-working city councillor, in the hopes that he will get involved to whatever extent he can in helping keep this park - an amazing free resource quite essential to many of his constituents - as free and amazing as possible.

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