The news is always quick to highlight complainers and negative reactions to whatever new is happening, or, if there is any sort of change in the air.
I prefer to promote the opposite, the positive side of things, this time with focus on two major projects.
Firstly, I suggest that a big thank you should be offered to the Stone Eagle Winery folks for increasing the tree canopy along the perimeter of their property.
About 50 or more relatively mature trees have been planted to help create a dramatic entranceway into the developing Garrison Village area when the trees are in full form.
Secondly, within close proximity to that new winery, hopefully the newly proposed 3.5-storey apartment building on Mary Street that looks absolutely stunning architecturally gets fast-tracked for development and site plan approval.
The design, massing and overall look of the apartment building is going to improve the gateway scenery at the Mary and Mississagua intersection over what currently exists and will provide some desperately needed affordable (and a different type of) housing stock in the heart of Old Town.
It is very encouraging to see some creative and responsible development, especially in some of the more high-profile areas of Niagara-on-the-Lake.
This type of positive development needs to be applauded and promoted for design excellence, and for setting an example of expected standards for future new developments.
It is inspiring to witness people working hard and investing in creative ways to make NOTL an even better place to live.
I hope the public meeting on Valentine’s Day is positive and the town provides the underlying support for the development of the apartment building.
Perhaps there is an opportunity to incorporate some interesting and creative benefits for the town in exchange for expediting the requisite development approvals and without having to rely on any decisions from the Ontario Land Tribunal.
This file should also prove to be a good example of just how effective this new council will be over the next term.