My wife and I recently took an apartment in the Holiday Towers on Hargrave Street downtown, and it has occurred to me as I've wandered about the neighbourhood that we may have inadvertently moved into the most perfectly designed block in Winnipeg.
Within this one city block there are two 26-storey apartment buildings, an 18-storey luxury hotel and a 20-storey office tower with a matching five-storey office building across the courtyard. There are no less than six restaurants of various prices and cuisines. For amenities there are two hair salons, a tobacconist, a massage therapist, an insurance broker; a convenience store and even a bartending school.
Add to all of this the fact there is a beautifully landscaped Japanese garden in the midst of these towers rather than an unsightly surface-level parking lot (of which there are far too many surrounding this little oasis).
Parking, incidentally, can be easily found in the multi-level underground parkade that services the many people who live in, work at, or visit this area. This parkade is connected to each building through a series of tunnels that connect, through the Delta Hotel, to the skywalk system and to the rest of downtown. I am very much looking forward to being able to walk to and from my office on Portage and Main all winter without having to wear a heavy jacket or cumbersome boots.
I'm not sure what person or company was behind the design of this block, but in light of the many announcements regarding the exciting new developments springing up all over downtown Winnipeg, I think it would be useful to developers to take a closer looking at the paradigm for successful urban planning this block represents.
Standing up for gays
I was enjoying Doug Speirs's Nov. 23 column about his opera experience, Guys, try tugging on some pantyhose, until near the end where he quotes William Jordan as saying he "felt like a gay Klingon."
Such comments are unacceptable. Shame on Jordan for saying it, and shame on the Free Press for publishing it. There is no place for gay-bashing in our society.
CATHIE MORGAN MATULA
Re: Stampeders' star Cornish pays tribute to lesbian mother (Nov. 23). Surely you can't think it is necessary to put the above headline on this story? The article itself is very interesting, touching and informative.
Cornish is an amazing athlete with an equally amazing mother. Certainly singling her out as his "lesbian" mother is an attention-getting headline unworthy of your newspaper. Don't you aspire to a higher standard?
Topping the mosaic
Kudos to Justin Trudeau for having the courage to clearly define his father's arcane political vision of Canada (Tories attack Trudeau, Nov. 23).
Since the Charter's adoption under Trudeau Sr., Canadians have assumed the country's multicultural heritage was to be interpreted as a horizontal mosaic, one where the "preservation and enhancement" of Canada's constituent cultural communities was to be universally and equally applied. In turn, it was believed this would produce sound government leadership based on merit, not ethnicity.
With his disclosure that Canada is better served when those from Quebec hold the reins of power, Trudeau Jr. has rotated that misperceived design 90 degrees and reintroduced sociologist John Porter's contention of an entitled, vertical power mosaic. In the revealed Trudeauvian version, those political aspirants from Quebec are naturally assumed to occupy the peak tile because, in his words, "This country -- Canada -- it belongs to us."
Coming as it does from a man who hopes to head the Liberal party and to one day become the prime minister, this is a nightmarish, politically divisive claim based on a myopic foundational delusion. Not the sort of vision most would see as worthy of serious consideration or support.
MARK S. RASH
For a few eggs more
The results of a recent newspaper survey revealed the majority of respondents were in favour of permitting chicken coops within city limits. Such a move would definitely make city life more interesting, all this for a few farm-fresh eggs.
Anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of farm life will be reminded of the pungent odour of chicken manure. Free range will make for cautious stepping out. Invariably, roosts will have the mandatory roosters, which usually begin their incessant morning serenade before sunrise, a great reminder of rustic life.
City driving will involve dodging errant chickens as well as potholes. Evenings will be quiet, since the coop doors will be have to be shut up to keep out the growing numbers of chicken predators, such as dogs, raccoons, skunks and rats.
Fall breezes will waft the sweet scent of singed pin feathers as the hens will be prepared for their special place in the family freezer. The neighbourhoods will be richer in so many ways and no longer will children have be taught where eggs come from.
Harvesting the deer
Here are some common-sense steps to solve the problem of overpopulation of deer in urban and high-traffic areas of Manitoba:
-- Provincial authorities determine problem areas and recommend numbers to be culled.
-- Archers and Bow Hunters Association of Manitoba is given permission to harvest the recommended number of animals within a prescribed season.
-- The deer killed are processed by licensed butcher shops who get the hides plus a reasonable cash payment.
-- The meat is given to the food banks.
Compensation to the butcher shops and transportation companies would be paid by Manitoba Public Insurance, which would gain many times its cost from the savings of reduced payouts for damage to vehicles and personal injuries.