Thoughts and Opinions On Today's Important Issues

Monday, June 29, 2009

West End Activists And Politicos Strike Again

No, not that kind of strike. It should be more like strike out again.

I just cannot believe that these people are serious in what they are saying. Their comments are years out of date, as if nothing has happened. It is as if they have just awoken from a coma and not realized the world has changed.

Michigan's Rep. Rashida Tlaib held a press conference with the usual anti-Bridge Company theme, attended by our Canadian heroes Ron Jones and Brian Masse:
  • "International Coalition Will Fight Illegal Construction of Second Ambassador Bridge...

    The unique cross-border alliance will help ensure the people impacted by the many negative actions of the Ambassador Bridge Company have a voice."

Gosh, I wonder who is speaking for the residents of Delray with respect to the destruction that would be caused by a DRIC bridge and plaza. Perhaps the Representative does not understand the consequences of Environmental Justice. Add in the Detroit Intermodal Freight Terminal and the DRTP proposed rail tunnel and SW Detroit will disappear off the face of the earth for people!

Gee the Reperesntative does not seem to be too concerned that all of these projects are not being looked at all together but separately. She just likes focusing on the Bridge Company.

She can make claims against the Bridge Company but I do not hear her saying that MDOT

  • "has deliberately broken up [these three projects--DRIC, DIFT, DRTP] into separate segments in order to avoid conducting an Environmental Impact Statement, which would protect our children from irreparable harm that [these projects] will surely cause."

Her constituents ought to be asking her why not!

How they can say this with a straight face boggles my mind. And some Southwest Detroiters want them as allies? Unbelievable!

  • "Protesters, politicians condemn twin bridge plan

    By Donald McArthur, The Windsor Star, June 26, 2009 11:01 PM

    DETROIT -- Politicians and neighbourhood groups from both sides of the border stood united in the shadow of the Ambassador Bridge in southwest Detroit Friday and condemned as destructive a proposal to construct a twin span.

    “We have so many things in common and we will fight this fight together,” Ward 2 Coun. Ron Jones told a crowd of about 50 people outside St. Anne Church. “I’m going to say to you hold on and don’t get tired. Walk that final mile together. Don’t allow them to divide and separate your community...

    On the Canadian side, our problems are the same as your problems. We’re all in this together, ” said Sandwich Towne activist and bakery shop owner Mary Ann Cuderman...

    NDP MP Brian Masse attended the news conference and assured U.S. residents that the bridge company had miles to go to secure the necessary approvals in Canada.

    “A border shouldn’t be a burden in your community,” said Masse.

    “We have two vulnerable communities that should be enhanced by a border crossing, not decimated by it.”

    Jones told the crowd a twin span would cut Sandwich towne in half and “we’re not going to allow it to happen.”

DUH... Delray has a new burden, it will be decimated and cut in half. But do your jobs heroes, don't let them know that Sandwich has been spared. Delray's problems are certainly not like Sandwich's.

Why it was almost exactly three years ago when similar words were spoken by Sandwichers:

  • "Activists and politicians from the west-end community of Sandwich are vowing to work hand-in-hand with their southwest Detroit counterparts in Delray following a bus tour of the historic industrial community across the river.

    The two communities are hoping if they have a common voice on a preferred location for the next Windsor-Detroit border crossing, they will influence a binational government team assigned to select the best option.

    "We've said time and again to people over here, we consider this family," said Mary Ann Cuderman, leader of residents' truck watchdog group in Sandwich."

Are the Americans that unaware of what is going on? I say this with with no disrespect intended. Sandwich has virtually escaped unscathed so far with the DRIC bridge. Only a handful of homes will be taken. Is the Representative this out of touch with reality? Perhaps she does not subscribe to the Windsor Star.

In Delray, hundreds of homes and businesses will be taken for the new crossing. As for the promises of a better future in Delray:

  • "You'd leaders would be dead set against funneling thousands of semis spewing diesel fumes through their neighborhood every day. But the promise of development dollars has helped win them over..."

The reality is a lot different:

  • "Joe Corradino introduced the topic of Delray land use concepts. He noted that the work is based on a series of workshops with the community, from December 2005 through August 2006 that defined Planning Priorities. That work addressed Delray land uses with and without a new bridge. He explained that MDOT is a transportation agency, not a land use planning agency, but, realizing that transportation changes would affect land use, helped formulate the concepts shown in the meeting room.

    Joe Corradino asked those in attendance use the comment forms to write down their ideas about what they like or do not like in the alternative land use concepts shown. He suggested that of about 200 single-family occupied dwelling units that could be would be affected by the plaza, MDOT can help relocate the residents (and the businesses) to the areas in Delray selected for redevelopment, if they choose to stay. This can be a catalyst for other redevelopment. There are things like this that MDOT can do. This can complement activities by others. But, as time goes on, a partnership will have to be built with the City of Detroit and others to accomplish the redevelopment ideas shown."

As I wrote before:

  • "We can huff and puff about saving the heritage of Sandwich but I don't see anyone trying to save the heritage of Delray from our side.

    Someone needs to explain as well frankly why Sandwich should be saved and not Delray. After all wasn't the Ambassador Bridge proposal kicked out of the DRIC process because no one side of the river was supposed to be hurt more than the other.

    Of course, both Sandwich and Delray could be saved if the Enhancement Project was built since it does not require any more land in either community. For some reason however, that isn't accepted as a viable solution. I can't figure this one out either."