I certainly hope you have had a happy summer. We have had a lot of rain, but at least it was summer. As I know you do, please continue to watch out for students back at school. We want everyone to stay safe. I want to say how beautifully you all care for your properties. Lovely gardens and lawns. Marklanders are house proud, and the community benefits.
Over our summer break, important developments affecting the quality of our lives have continued to unfold. As you are aware over the last few months residents have sent to me written concerns about the effects on their property of the work done to bury power lines by Toronto Hydro and its subcontractor Entera. A formal ‘without prejudice’ letter of concern was sent to Toronto Hydro on August 12, 2017. The names, addresses and brief descriptions of the concerns for each property were included. All residents listed provided written permission to include their identities and their concerns. We also asked for repaving of those driveways damaged by construction. Councillor Stephen Holyday has been made aware of our concerns and actions. We will keep you informed of what transpires.
We have been very busy with the Toronto Pearson/GTAA/Federal Liberal Government and the north-south runway use issue. Meetings have been held with our MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj to get updates on what he has been doing here and in Ottawa to further the concerns of Marklanders and its allied communities, all affected by the issue of use of north-south runways. Borys has agreed with our request to provide our Marklander with regular reports of his efforts, and new information (see this issue). Also, through the significant efforts of our MWHA GTAA subcommittee, working with other communities affected by any change to the use of the north-south runways, a ‘coalition’ has been formed involving the Fleetwood Homeowners Association (FHA), Rockwood Homeowners Association (RHA), Sherway Homeowners & Recreation Association (SHORA) and the Alderwood Residents Association (ARA), with more hopefully to come. The name of the coalition is the Community Alliance for Air Safety (CAAS). See the report on the purpose and activities of CAAS in this edition of The Markander. This larger body is very important to our cause. Representing more federal ridings than just Etobicoke Centre where we live, it speaks louder and will wield greatly enhanced political power when directed toward the MPs of those ridings and toward Marc Garneau, the Minister of Transportation, the Liberal Government and the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), who foremost are all worried about retaining seats in the House of Commons, and hence power as the Government. The Prime Minister and his office (PMO), the Liberal Cabinet and their policy makers are the real and ultimate targets of our efforts and the keepers of the keys in the acceptance or rejection of the HELIOS study recommendations, stopping the expansion plans of the GTAA, building Pickering, reducing night flights, and any change in the use of north-south runways. As President, I welcome those from the other resident associations who are working so hard with us in this new larger coalition.
The seven year long push back to submitted plans for a new condo at 240 Markland Dr. continues. Meetings have been held during the summer with Councillor Holyday and our own urban planning consultant Peter Swinton of PMG Consultants to make sure we are up-to-date on what is happening in the City Planning Department and with the developer and his team. As you know in the Spring, the MWHA submitted to the developer a list of 3 main amendments to the current iteration of the proposed project. We and our urban planning consultant were to meet with the developer’s team, along with our Councillor Stephen Holyday on September 5 to discuss their reaction to these required amendments, but the developer cancelled. We still await their reaction to these changes to the building.
Our MWHA Annual General Meeting (AGM) is on Monday, October 30 at Markland Wood Golf Club starting at 7 pm. The first part of the program is an information session on developments around the Toronto Pearson/GTAA runways & operations issue. Present to give updates on what they have been doing to defend our community will be our MP Borys Wrzesneweskyj’s Parliamentary Assistant Melisa Tica, Yvan Baker our MPP and Stephen Holyday our City Councillor. There will be a question and answer opportunity after their remarks. You also get a chance after the break to elect your MWHA Board members for 2017-2018. It is important that you come out and participate. See you there. Over the past months many more of you have stepped forward to join social media pages to express your points of view, sent letters to politicians and City officials, and attended MWHA information evenings and others put on by the GTAA/NAVCanada and our local politicians.
I myself am leaving the Board and Presidency after October 2017. It has been a long and rewarding experience, on and off since 1979. Being the President of the MWHA these days requires someone present much more often, not away enjoying retirement. I will be speaking more of this in my last President’s Update in October, but let me say now how grateful I am for all the supportive emails, texts, phone calls and comments on the street or at your house door when I have had the pleasure of talking with you. They have meant a lot. We have a wonderful community here and I have always been proud to be a member of it since 1971.
Bye for now,
Dr. Donald Beggs, President