The MRA submitted a letter on Feb.5, 2014 to Councillor Grimes regarding the plans for Amos Waites Park. Councillor Grimes responded as follows:
February 20, 2014
Thank you for your letter of February 5, 2014. Phase One of the Amos Waites project will transform the park, add a dynamic playground to the Village Heart and change the use of this area. The time and input towards Phase One by many of our stakeholders was appreciated.
Note that your comments on Trees and Shade were included in the current design. Lights were added along the pathway extension for the playground. We will address lighting again, in Phase Two of this project.
As for shade, the City Forestry Department has a Tree Planting Program that is very accessible.
Best practice includes the completion of construction before requesting additional plantings. At the same time, we will need to balance the request by the community to maintain clear views of the lake with the need for shaded areas. This is the only public lake view in Mimico.
The Tender Package for Phase One, Amos Waites playground, has been issued and includes procurement of a Contractor for Phase One. Construction should begin in Spring 2014, weather permitting.
In terms of considerations around safety, the consulting Landscape Architect for Phase One, has Full Membership in the Ontario Association of Landscape Architects (OALA) and the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects (CSLA), of key note here is his CPTED designation (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design).
Phase Two of this project will likely be focused on a proposed splash pad for the park; funding for Phase Two may or may not allow inclusion of other park features. Improvements for the remaining area will be part of a Phase Three as funding is secured. Existing structures will be considered within any proposed plans, including Storefront Humber, the pool, the stage and more.
In initiating changes to Amos Waites Park, my primary intent was to create a place that would bring the community together, not to divide it – and this remains my goal.
Thanks to you and the Association for your continued efforts in Mimico.
Councillor Mark Grimes
cc: Harrington McAvan Ltd., Markham