Update from the Project Team - Thoughts for Beginning

The project team has been listening to your comments over the past few weeks. You’ve been sharing amazing ideas, aspirations and inspiring thoughts for the future. We heard from you at the launch event at the Fire Hall, at a follow-up meeting at the Library, and online input continues to arrive steadily. We’ll be analyzing the Phase 1 results with rigour after March 31, but this update shares some of the major themes we’re hearing so far. Thank you for entering this process with open minds and thoughtful input!

 There are lots of themes you all seem to be clear about:

  • At the risk of stating the obvious - you love this town! A lot. So many of you have sincerely described your connections to the landscape and the people, and how much you care about the future. 

  • Arts and culture are a big part of your life, and you’re excited about the spaces, groups and events that bring you together – both what exists today, and what the future holds.

  • The built heritage is sacred. It defines your shared identity and brings delight. Many of you are excited to enhance streetscapes and enjoy this built heritage in new ways.

  • The waterfront, the Harbour and Back Harbour are assets you want to care for and enjoy as gathering places. You’re also thinking a lot about the impacts of climate change and sea level rise.

 

There are important issues and questions that you are trying to make sense of:

  • There are divergent opinions about the best future use of Blockhouse Hill. Meaningful discussions are needed, with an ear to understanding all the possibilities and trade-offs.

  • Many of you are wondering what the seasonality and tourism-focus of your community means. The questions of how to thrive as a tourist destination are on the minds of many.

  • There is an increasing worry about the capacity of the town to be a viable place to live for young people, low-income households, and seniors.

  • Many of you are deeply concerned about housing access and affordability. The challenges you describe are layered and interconnected. There are sparks of potential and a sense that your solutions will be clever, caring and bold. 

 

There are also things you need from the project team to help guide you through this process:

  • Some of you want ways to be involved more deeply. If you feel this way, please get in touch! We’re thinking a lot about this too.

  • You want to know who we are, and how we’re approaching this work. So, we’re in the process of updating our website with more details about the approach we are working with and who we are.

  • You want to talk with each other about big ideas and take ownership of the future. You want to figure out these important things together. We want to help with that, and will do our best to guide you through a process that gives space for these conversations to happen.

Bruce Mans