04/11/13 — Park move: Really? All you have to do is tell city employees 'no'?

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Park move: Really? All you have to do is tell city employees 'no'?

Set aside the arguments over where the best place is to locate a restroom in Stoney Creek Park.

Acknowledge that perhaps there could be a debate about whether such a structure might not be the best addition to a residential area.

Consider that perhaps there could even be a discussion about whether there should be money invested in this park when there are others in need of help around the city.

There is room for some discussion about all those points -- and perhaps there should be some, even though many meetings have taken place concerning these very issues.

But what is surprising about the city's decision to stop work on a plan for a restroom in the park is not that there is a controversy about its location, but that it is possible for a citizen -- any citizen -- to walk out and stop a city project and force a change that could cost taxpayers $3,000 in additional dollars.

One has to wonder if this tactic would work anywhere else. Don't like the fact that the city is developing a park in a flood zone or a bike path along an area that could encourage miscreants in your neighborhood? OK, all you have to do is walk out and tell the workers to move them somewhere else. Not sure you like the placement of your street sign -- or think that perhaps the roses at Herman Park are the wrong color? Well, just pick up the phone.

We exaggerate to make a point.

The truth is, a restroom at a park does carry with it some downsides -- and it is understandable that local residents might have a few concerns. But that is the sacrifice you make to add a park on your doorstep.

The decision on where to put the restrooms should be made based on cost, convenience and what is best for the community.

Not on whether the neighbors are happy.

Published in Editorials on April 11, 2013 10:38 AM