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#1 2010-03-21 22:59:04

Steel
Member
Registered: 2008-02-16
Posts: 2521

RBC and New area

I drove down the short paved street off Erie that leads toward where the new RBC complex is to be built.

I was stunned.

The flood retension ponds are massive. These things are size of several football fields each and deep. I, to a degree, understand the concept of controlling run off....but is the issue really and truely that bad that we need to spend untolled millions of dollars for things that take care of a one in 200 year rain fall?

It seems this retension issue is one that like many is now running completely out of hand and controled by the likes of engineering departments that need a "project" to justify there ever increasing budgets.

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#2 2010-03-22 11:00:19

rankinfile
Moderator
Registered: 2007-12-28
Posts: 843

Re: RBC and New area

These "big rain events" tend to come a humongous down falls.  Is the existing buried infrastructure in any sense or form capable of trucking off these volumes of water in short periods--to take the stuff to these retention ponds in a time effective manner??  As I understand it, most of these ponds are to be dry most of the time, and only hold retention in big events, then release the water to the rive over a long period of time.  But it needs to get to the pond first.
Anyone ever seen any significant water in the big pond behind the Agriplex---even after a couple of days of heavy rian?  Perhaps we haven't had any 100 year events in he pas couple of years.

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#3 2010-03-22 11:11:41

Steel
Member
Registered: 2008-02-16
Posts: 2521

Re: RBC and New area

I guess my point is taken in looking at the "pond" at the agriplex and then the "ponds" they built in the south end.

There is no comparison. The agriplex is the size of a hockey rink....just one of the several "ponds" in the south end is the size of several football fields. They are frankly...emmense.

Of course then there is always the whol west nile thing...which never seems to get mentioned. Even a little water sitting in one of these is a perfect breading ground for mosquitos

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#4 2010-03-22 12:19:22

Printer
Member
Registered: 2008-03-05
Posts: 144

Re: RBC and New area

The ponds you speak of at the west end of Griffith Road are only part of the "BIG" storm water management project that is ongoing in the city. This summer they are digging a couple more of them on the farmland on the south side of Lorne Avenue and east of Downie Street.

Most of Griffith Road, west end starting today, east end starting a little later, will be torn up to install the trunk lines that will collect and feed all this rain water in and out of the ponds.

From what I have seen and had explained to me is the storm water from north of the western ponds and west of Downie will be controlled by these western ponds. Water east of Downie will run to the new eastern ponds. These ponds will also help control all the water that runs north into Stratford from the township south of the city.

During a heavy rainfall in the past all water had to make its way to the river directly. After completion of this project excess water from a heavy storm will flow back to the ponds to be held until after the storm ends at which point water can flow out as capacity allows.

Makes sense but I'm with Steel. Just how much water do these engineers think is going to fall from the sky.

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#5 2010-03-22 13:21:59

Steel
Member
Registered: 2008-02-16
Posts: 2521

Re: RBC and New area

Print...I agree with the general sense of it, but it seems now to be taken to an extreme. I had heard of the new "Ponds" south of Lorne and east of downie buit did not know they were lsated to be built now.

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#6 2010-03-22 13:30:30

Steel
Member
Registered: 2008-02-16
Posts: 2521

Re: RBC and New area

what will happen is similar to the shallow areas of Lake Hodges that goes undert he I-15 freeway in San Diego. (yeah I know you don't know what it looks like...but do a google earth and you'll get the idea)

Anyway...the lake is damed and is part of the water system for SoCal....during a long period of no rain fall the lake shrank and what was lake bottom began sprouting tress and bushes and all manner of foliage. Year past and the trees got substantial. The suggestion was that the trees and shrub be removed incase the lake actual did refill, leaving the vegatation to rot.

Of course the envormental folks raised a ruckus that this was now natural enviroment and home to many bits of wildlife and so on and needed to be left. As luck would have it..before the debate could really get going there was a particularly wet winter....the lake refilled, flooded the now tree and brush covered areas and guess what.....the stink of rotting vegatation started....

The enivo-nuts then disappeared. Tons of mosquitos (almost unknown in SoCal)...and freterade water was now the norm.

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#7 2010-03-22 14:44:43

Printer
Member
Registered: 2008-03-05
Posts: 144

Re: RBC and New area

I asked how long water would sit in the ponds before it drained back and they dried. I got a runaround answer depending on how much rain we received both during the current rain storm and when it last rained and how much, how saturated the ground might be, etc., etc.

Taken to the extreme is absolutely correct. Do we really need to be spending this kind of money to be totally prepared for the amount of rainfall that may or may not fall in a storm once every 200 years or so?

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#8 2010-03-22 18:48:30

rankinfile
Moderator
Registered: 2007-12-28
Posts: 843

Re: RBC and New area

If the next "event" might be 200 years from now, there is ample room to ignore the issue.  However,  It might well be this year, and then two years later.  There are what, $20 million in outstanding law suits the City has to barter with as a result of the storm we had, what 6 years ago?  This is the result of past inaction by our council.  And you know who those old boys are.  Some have admitted, there is no glamour cutting a ribbon over a man hole cover, vs, opening a library..  We all suffered because of inaction on storm water management, we will all pay thru court action because of these failures, and now we will all pay because of the engineering improvements to reduce it from happening again.  At least the south part of town should be protected.  Other parts--we can only hold our breath.

Printer is correct, much of the size is to include space for the water that comes from the rural community to the south of Stratford that just happens to run into our community before reaching the river.  But we just can't build a wall to keep it out--tell our neighbours to look after it themselves.  If it flows here naturally, we must continue to take it--and be responsible for managing it when it hits our fence line.

It is too bad that the "old boys" on council can't be held more responsible for these enormous costs--because they did not undertake proper planning in the paset!!

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#9 2010-03-23 21:44:50

rankinfile
Moderator
Registered: 2007-12-28
Posts: 843

Re: RBC and New area

Interesting thing--a follow up to my note above.  The City has announced a "settlement" with the $200 Million class action law suit over the 2002 flooding primarily in the south end of town.  They have already paid out $1.3M and now have agreed to disburse a further $7.7M of our tax funds!!!  Isn't that grand--for not doing a proper job of managing the storm and sanitary sewers in the past.  And I wonder how much they have spent to date on lawyers.  And because the 800 or so effective residents still have to argue their claims--more legal fees.  Can you say another $1Million.

Ah, legal fees---but we are never told what these cost are---they are sort of carte blanch---and because they are 'private' and 'confidential' they seem never to be released.  Ah, we know that the OMB process is costing us over $1M.  How much have we spent on the Cooper site to lawyers, since it was given away 15 or 20 years ago.  And we will spend more when Larry argues "market value" before the OMB next year.  These are just administrative costs--but we pay, we pay...

I will have to admit that I have only been here in town 6+ years---but I am still shocked that we still have these "old boys" on council who were responsible for the Cooper give away, responsible for the Cities actions in that fiasco, responsible for the failure to properly manage the sewer works---and yet they run each year, get re-elected, and continue to vote in favour of the continued increase in our tax fees, to pay for their questionable decisions in the past.  Sure, it is good to have experience, but...... continue to screw up....

Can someone please confirm who of these old timers I need to ensure do not get my "X" in the fall.  Names that ring a bell, include Culliton, Brown, Hunt, Mark....

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#10 2010-03-24 07:28:33

Steel
Member
Registered: 2008-02-16
Posts: 2521

Re: RBC and New area

rankinfile wrote:

Interesting thing--a follow up to my note above.  The City has announced a "settlement" with the $200 Million class action law suit over the 2002 flooding primarily in the south end of town.  They have already paid out $1.3M and now have agreed to disburse a further $7.7M of our tax funds!!!  Isn't that grand--for not doing a proper job of managing the storm and sanitary sewers in the past.  And I wonder how much they have spent to date on lawyers.  And because the 800 or so effective residents still have to argue their claims--more legal fees.  Can you say another $1Million.

Ah, legal fees---but we are never told what these cost are---they are sort of carte blanch---and because they are 'private' and 'confidential' they seem never to be released.  Ah, we know that the OMB process is costing us over $1M.  How much have we spent on the Cooper site to lawyers, since it was given away 15 or 20 years ago.  And we will spend more when Larry argues "market value" before the OMB next year.  These are just administrative costs--but we pay, we pay...

I will have to admit that I have only been here in town 6+ years---but I am still shocked that we still have these "old boys" on council who were responsible for the Cooper give away, responsible for the Cities actions in that fiasco, responsible for the failure to properly manage the sewer works---and yet they run each year, get re-elected, and continue to vote in favour of the continued increase in our tax fees, to pay for their questionable decisions in the past.  Sure, it is good to have experience, but...... continue to screw up....

Can someone please confirm who of these old timers I need to ensure do not get my "X" in the fall.  Names that ring a bell, include Culliton, Brown, Hunt, Mark....

Rank...I certainly agree with the premise of this post. However, the City can't "hide" disbursments. You can ask for a copy of the city's audits and the finance report at city hall. I agree that sometimes it is difficult to sort out what was paid for what and why within a multi-million dollar budget, but it is all there.

Having said that, do I think a sort of sarbines-oxly style of accounting is necessary in municipal government?...NO.....that has proven a disaster in the private sector. Publicly traded US companies now figure that they spend a full 10% of their annualized budgets just on reporting what they are reporting.

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#11 2010-03-26 17:19:04

Printer
Member
Registered: 2008-03-05
Posts: 144

Re: RBC and New area

Rank, I don't want to sound like I don't care about the many homes that were flooded in the south end of the city because I do. I know I would have been plenty pissed off if I had been one of these homeowners.

I am very happy that they are to be compensated for the actual costs of clean up to their homes and even more happy that it sounds like some rational thought seems to have gone into this settlement and everyone is not going to receive tens of thousands of dollars just because they were there.

My comments on the excessive size and quantity of the cities new storm management ponds comes from my increasing contempt for our ever growing need to over due everything, cost be damned, in this greedy insurance driven world in which we all live.

We human beings really are the dumbest animals on this planet!

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#12 2010-03-26 23:15:13

Miss Manners
Guest

Re: RBC and New area

rankinfile wrote:

Interesting thing--a follow up to my note above.  The City has announced a "settlement" with the $200 Million class action law suit over the 2002 flooding primarily in the south end of town.  They have already paid out $1.3M and now have agreed to disburse a further $7.7M of our tax funds!!!  Isn't that grand--for not doing a proper job of managing the storm and sanitary sewers in the past.  And I wonder how much they have spent to date on lawyers.  And because the 800 or so effective residents still have to argue their claims--more legal fees.  Can you say another $1Million.

Ah, legal fees---but we are never told what these cost are---they are sort of carte blanch---and because they are 'private' and 'confidential' they seem never to be released.  Ah, we know that the OMB process is costing us over $1M.  How much have we spent on the Cooper site to lawyers, since it was given away 15 or 20 years ago.  And we will spend more when Larry argues "market value" before the OMB next year.  These are just administrative costs--but we pay, we pay...

I will have to admit that I have only been here in town 6+ years---but I am still shocked that we still have these "old boys" on council who were responsible for the Cooper give away, responsible for the Cities actions in that fiasco, responsible for the failure to properly manage the sewer works---and yet they run each year, get re-elected, and continue to vote in favour of the continued increase in our tax fees, to pay for their questionable decisions in the past.  Sure, it is good to have experience, but...... continue to screw up....

Can someone please confirm who of these old timers I need to ensure do not get my "X" in the fall.  Names that ring a bell, include Culliton, Brown, Hunt, Mark....

If you go back to 1991 ,  you can review who was in favour for the Cooper giveaway. Hunt  was in favour of selling the  boondoggle... and who was his campaign manager ... Dan Matheson.

Democracy ain't easy and isn't fun... I'm not sure the first past the post system of electing 10 at large councillors is the best electoral system for Stratford.

Last edited by Miss Manners (2010-03-26 23:15:38)

 

#13 2010-03-27 08:14:40

Jones
Member
Registered: 2008-01-24
Posts: 70

Re: RBC and New area

I am gonna have to call bullshit on the Dave Hunt 1990 Campaign Manager comment.  Dan Matheson was not involved, my parents worked to help Tony Lazos who ran against Hunt and he had 2 guys from the rotary club (one of them owned a garden center) and his son Dave Hunt Jr.  Matheson would have been 19 or 20 in 1991.  Nice try on trying to make it one big conspiracy theory.

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#14 2010-03-27 08:47:08

Miss Manners
Guest

Re: RBC and New area

Matheson has been involved in Hunt campaigns for years. Matheson ran for council in his early 20's so the whole theory that he couldn't have been involved is phooey.Fer crists sakes, I was active in that council race and completely remember who was in favour of what issue... and I was a wee bit older than our present Mayor. No conspiracy theory...
Staff backed council and council wannabes on the issue... buying the cooper site was supposed to be the greatest thing since.. you know.

Let's not veer from the point that first past the post electing 10 councillors at large is an ineffective system.

 

#15 2010-03-27 09:45:28

rankinfile
Moderator
Registered: 2007-12-28
Posts: 843

Re: RBC and New area

Two points:

I don't mind that the City PURCHASED the Cooper site.  I do think the management of the sale and the following "control" issues regarding development sucked.   And it sounds like Hunt was in this up to his......
(I realize that Larry was and active participant in the problems---but so was the City)

Re, first past the post--....well, we will have to live with this system yet again--I wouldn't hold my breath to see it changed.  I'm more concerned about the old boys that screwed up in the past, continuing their involvement because us relative newcomers don't know where the skeletons are buried.

Please highlight the guilty..we'll listen to the arguments pro and con and sift out the hidden agendas in the trash talk/truth...and hopefully vote in an enlighten manner.

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