I am delighted to present my Fall/Winter Newsletter and begin by thanking all of you for allowing me the privilege of working for you at City Hall and the Region of Peel. In many ways this Council represents the most dramatic change in decades with three new Mayors in the Region of Peel, a new Regional Chair, and almost half the Council being elected for the first time.
I was also grateful to these new colleagues for having honoured me as the new Chairman of the Credit Valley Conservation Authority. And change has also come to the Ward 7 Office where Carmen Mach-Fell now serves as my Acting Executive Assistant and Victoria Stefaniak has become our new Administrative Assistant.
In keeping with this theme of change, the most dramatic change in the history of the City and most certainly in the Ward 7 Cooksville community occurred on April 21 this year when the Ontario Government announced their commitment to fully fund the Hurontario Main Light Rail Transit system (HMLRT). This initiative goes all the way back to the 1990s when then Mayor Hazel McCallion and I acquired the lands to widen Hurontario Street to its current seven-lane cross section and in so doing secured the corridor for future higher order transit.
The simple explanation as to why all of this is necessary can be summed up as follows: With the Province of Ontario having declared Mississauga a growth node with accompanying provincial legislation related to Smart Growth, Places to Grow and Residential Intensification, the Greater metropolitan Toronto and Hamilton Area will be absorbing the population of Montreal and Vancouver over the next 40 to 50 years. As is the case with all other growing cities in history, you cannot accommodate that growth by building more roads and laying more asphalt. You must implement and embrace a higher order of transit such as a Light Rapid Transit or subway system to get cars off the road and to efficiently move people. This is also a necessity to protect our Environment.
Detailed design work is being done over the next two years so that we can engineer our new LRT; and just as important to me is creating a design and an urban built form that will be welcoming and inviting along the Hurontario corridor. We must get the function and the form right! This design and public consultation process will be followed by approximately four years of actually building the LRT with the first phase from Hurontario and the Queen Elizabeth Way to our northern city limits.
Another big piece of the puzzle will be how this development affects the historic four corners at Hurontario and Dundas. I am delighted to advise you that recognizing what the future will bring has prompted the creation of the “Vision Cooksville Project” to provide the roadmap for the rebirth that will take place in the heart of the City.
Nando Iannicca, Councillor Ward 7
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