Ward 1 Councillor in Aldershot, Burlington

Why am I running for re-election?

I am very thankful to you, my constituents for supporting me to serve you for the past term of council. We accomplished many great initiatives in the City of Burlington but have much more work to do. Ward 1 is one of the busiest wards in the city with many great features such as:

  • Joseph Brant Hospital

  • Burlingtons beach strip community

  • Tyandaga Golf course - our only city owned course

  • Royal Botanical Gardens

  • Aldershot Go MTSA

  • City View park - Burlington’s largest park

  • La Salle Park Community Marina

  • Mapleview Mall

 

BUSINESSES

My passion for the success of Ward 1 is long standing both from my personal roots in this community to my now extended family who resides here. I have served in many volunteer positions prior to my term on council. Serving as chair of the Aldershot BIA for 11 years helped me understand the changing environment of our local business community. Our businesses are part of the fabric our local community and they can really help socialize and serve our local constituents. The pandemic has accelerated what was slowly happening with the push to online shopping and the lack of interest of many businesses to have physical presence on main streets. Food operations have had perhaps the most challenging times during Covid19 but have pivoted to providing many options for service and take out offerings. We need to protect the businesses that we have and encourage developers to build larger spaces to house the businesses that this community needs. Restaurants and food operations are desired around our MTSA lands and Aldershot’s west end.

 

Much work on the MTSA planning has been completed which includes many of these features but it will take more work to encourage developers to attract the businesses that we so desire. I plan on continuing this advocacy work with our development community so that we can shop and dine close to home.

GREEN SPACE

With many new developments being proposed in Ward 1, parks and open space will become more important in the future. I will continue to advocate for investment in our already existing parks to allow many users of various demographics. Ward 1 already has some of the greatest parks and open spaces in Burlington including LaSalle park, Hidden Valley park, Aldershot park, City View Park, Tyandaga park and we are also home to the Royal Botanical Gardens.

TYANDAGA

Tyandaga golf course has been my home course since I was very young. I supported a staff direction to have the course moved to a tax supported model as opposed to the existing model that did not allow for any investment in its infrastructure. This new model will ensure the long term viability of the course and make it more competitive with the local golfing community.

 

Aldershot quarry/Meridian Brick - I have worked with local residents over my term on council to research the many issues that the community has with residing beside an active quarry. Many of the issues are not easily solved and oversight for all quarry related issues does not lie with local municipal governments but with the provincial ministry organizations. We have achieved good communication with the local quarry and have continued to advocate for open dialogue on environmental issues.

 

City View park is Burlington’s largest park in terms of area and has received a large investment in a new clubhouse complex that is opening very soon. An investment of over $6 million dollars which is also a net zero building and completely off the grid. This park in norther Tyandaga will continue to receive investment in the future with the additions of new amenities that the community desires.

DEVELOPMENT

Development in Ward 1 is always a tough issue to discuss. Burlington is growing and we have been assigned growth from the Region of Halton and the Province which is almost 70 000 people. We need to plan to accommodate this amount by the year 2051. Burlington is also a city that has no remaining green spaces left for housing development so we must grow from within. We have created an official plan that directs growth to the right places for our city to function well into the future. We have 3 Major Transit Area Go stations in Burlington which the Province has identified as major population growth area’s. In addition, we will see growth along our major arteries and our downtown. None of this will happen fast but we are seeing most of the activity in Wards 1 and 2 at the moment. We cannot say no to these developments but need to work with them to get the best possible outcome that will work with our community. Better retail, grocery and food operations need to be included in these developments and surrounding areas. Locating around transit hubs does attract people that will depend on the transit and less on the personal vehicle which should not contribute much to our traffic issues. We need to ensure there is enough open space and parkland close to new developments for new people to enjoy. A variety of housing options is needed in terms of condo ownership and rental units.

TRAFFIC

Traffic issues have been increasing as our city grows. Now that we are returning to pre-pandemic traffic levels we can start to re-evaluate decisions that were made when the majority of the workforce commuted to the office. Local speeding complaints have certainly increased during the pandemic but was likely a reflection of more people home and walking the streets that noticed the ongoing problem of local speeding much more. Having safe streets is important to everyone and I have been and advocate for safety measures, better signage and police presence over the course of my term.