I often hear people say “downtown Trail needs something new,” when talking about the upcoming referendum regarding the Trail Riverfront Centre.
I totally agree with that comment but would add that Trail needs something new that we haven’t already got. We already have a library and we already have a museum.
I am not sure about the museum but the library currently seems to be meeting our needs as it is. If there is a need to expand either of these facilities, why not expand into the vastly under-utilized Cominco Gym.
Parking at the current facility is very adequate and probably much better than if the facilities are moved into the downtown core where parking is usually very tight and sometimes non existent.
In an article in the Trail Times on Aug. 28, 2014 the Chair of the Trail and District Public Library is quoted as saying “people seem to be enthusiastic about moving the library because the access is worse now than it’s ever been.”
If this is the best reason that we can come up with to borrow 6.5 million dollars I would strongly suggest that a “NO” vote would be in order.
The City of Trail, just last year, spent hundreds of thousands of dollars changing the access to the Trail Memorial Centre.
If the access is that bad it would cost a lot less than 6.5 million to change or alter.
I have made many recent visits to the City of Calgary in recent months and have noticed that the City of Calgary is now placing libraries in current recreation facilities.
It appears as if their reason for doing this is that when one member of a family are playing sports or taking lessons etc. another member of the family could utilize the library. It sounds reasonable to me, but it looks like we are planning to do the opposite and move our library out of a current recreation facility. Is it possible that the proposed movement of our library will result in decreased usage?
The City of Trail has yet to be transparent and advise the taxpayers how much the operating costs will be in the new facility compared to the current operating costs nor have we been advised what will happen to the current library space if the library is re-located.
We have also not been advised how much rent revenue will be lost for the City if this referendum passes.
No one has bothered to advise the taxpayers what the cost of borrowing 6 or 6.5 million dollars will be. I would anticipate that the interest on this amount would in itself add several million dollars to the cost of the project.
As taxpayers we need to be given all the facts not just certain facts that would appear to justify the project.
I am not against borrowing money, but if we are going to borrow an enormous amount of money such as 6.5 million dollars, let’s borrow for something that we really need – something that will not only retain our diminishing population, but something that will provide an attraction or an incentive for people to relocate to Trail.
This referendum project will do neither of these in my opinion.