Listen to the allegations of corruption made by the South Osborne Residents' Group about the City of Winnipeg planning department, and how officials let developers ruin their neighborhood with BRT condos no one wants to buy.
This week the podcast turns to voters raising serious concerns that Winnipeg needs to have fixed. The message from the South Osborne Residents' Group to those vying to win the Mayor's chair is clear:
South Osborne 'is being treated like the North End of the South End', and that has to stop.
Long-suffering homeowners of South Osborne say
- "Transit Oriented Development" construction has brought nothing but disruptive, ruinous results (and "Transit Oriented Crime')
- BRT housing developers break construction rules, and wreck their streets City planners and enforcement officials look the other way and act as if they're on the take, and
- Mayor Brian Bowman has ignored their complaints about the BRT mess from Day 1
The show starts off with a brief discussion between Marty and Spirited Kenny about the sparring between former Mayor Glen Murray and Coun. Scott Gillingham in the press and on Twitter last week, over the Executive Policy Committee and overall civic governance - lots of heat but not a lot of light, in our estimation.
Then Marty tells about deciding to follow up on a raft of email blasts sent for years to City Hall and the media from the Lord Roberts neighborhood. He took a Sunday drive through the area, saw evidence backing their complaints, and spoke with a prototypical senior citizen tending to her garden, who confirmed the area is deteriorating.
At 24.00 Marty interviews Bev Pike, coordinator of SORG. What you will hear is a clear warning - this abuse of power and process can happen to other residential areas in our city.
"There needs to be a massive rehaul of the planning department" as SORG and other community groups that have dealt with city staff and appeared at city meetings and hearings "perceive corruption. When we share stories we see the developer community controls the planners."
"They don’t obey city laws“ is at the root of the problem. Development rules in Our Winnipeg/complete communities (like 'not building towers at the end of an old street in a mature neighborhood') have been tossed aside. The heavy truck traffic for the massive condo builds has resulted in “the blocks closest to the pretend transitway have suffered foundation damage that’s very serious, so people are moving away.“ (And the Parking Authority is adding to thire grief.)
"This was a developer scam to build here", made worse by the Inspection division scandal - so now dangerous substandard buildings have slipped through in the name of density.
Hear Bev describe the response from Mayor Brian Bowman - "NOTHING". And wait till you hear how many emails he was sent!
Her message is his successor must step up and "be brave" and "Get rid of all the planners at City Hall- they all seem to be corrupted by the developers." and claims Ottawa has learned "BRT is obsolete." Bev points to the 4000 condos already sitting on the market due to overdevelopment in the city as reason to put on the brakes.
"The developers have been very rigourous in all kinds of pursuasive tactics to enable them to build this much extra."
At 37.00 we review how this is one neighborhood, already challenged by increasing property crime, car thefts and break-ins, their crisis compounded by the BRT fiasco. How will a new Mayor turn that around?
To close the show we also talk about how dangerous taking a bus is; and plug the new morning hosts at CITI-FM and Power 97.
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* More election interviews coming soon! *