The St. Marys Lions Club has concerns with the direction the proposed X-Park has been heading, due in large part to the involvement of the Town of St. Marys, both the elected Council and employees of the Town.
The Lions Club has contributed financially and with sweat equity to ensure the X-Park becomes a reality. We moved the shade shelter from its former location at Central School, to its current resting spot on the road allowance beside the St. Marys Fire Station. This was done because the Club was under the impression the X-Park would be permanently located on the road allowance.
This is the perfect location for the X-Park. There is a good solid base and the grading costs will fit in the budget to create the Park. The cost to build at this location can be accomplished with the money currently raised and sitting in the bank, and this would have no, or little, financial impact on the Town’s finances.
I guess the people opposed to the original proposal have safety concerns, namely parking and the possibility someone will trip over the skateboards and bicycles parked in the Fire Station parking lot. I do not know many pre-teens or teenagers that drive cars. Their transportation utilizes mostly bicycles, skateboards and running shoes.
The Town Council has now intervened with the proposal to open the closed road allowance, which has not been used as a viable road since the Town’s inception, in order to install a level/at grade crossing of the railway tracks. Why now, after all these years?
Of course, the owner of the tracks, Canadian National Railway, will support this high priority proposal, provided the Town meets all of the CN requirements and pays for all the work. This will take quite a few years and a very large sum of money, a commodity the Town seems to have in short supply. But I guess the taxpayer can bend from the waist and happily wait to be plundered once again by the Town.
The proposal to locate the X-Park at Cadzow Park is not very practical, due to this location being in the middle of a residential neighbourhood. I live close by and this is not what I envisage for Cadzow Park. The costs will be significant at this location because the existing two-storey building on site will probably be demolished, a large number of beautiful old trees destroyed to make room for the X-Park and the grading costs will also be quite high.
I guess this is how our Councillors gain the support and respect of the electorate to get re-elected.
The total cost to locate the proposed X-Park from the original location keeps climbing and climbing, and I guesstimate it will be close to seven figures before it is officially opened, if the vision of Town Council comes to pass.
I urge the Town’s Council to make the proper decision and keep the proposed X-Park at the original location, the road allowance adjacent to the Fire Station.
St. Marys Lions Club X-Park Committee