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Niagara Falls
Thursday, June 20, 2024
Letter of the Week: Is Hummel hotel the right fit? Is parking garage even buildable?
A rendering of the proposed four-storey hotel at 228 Queen St. HUMMEL PROPERTIES INC.

Dear editor:

I understand that town councillors are elected by the residents on the basis that they will represent their best interests and opinions when voting on all local matters.

Last week, however, the majority of the council approved the rezoning of residential land surrounded by heritage homes for a large commercial hotel requested by developer Rainer Hummel, (“Council approves Hummel plan for four-storey hotel in Old Town,” The Lake Report, May 30).

Do they believe that the town will be improved by having more strangers on our sidewalks and even more visitors on our narrow streets rather than more permanent residents, which the current zoning allows?

Was it the beauty and compatibility of the contemporary design of the proposed hotel that was so compelling that they couldn’t resist?

I would have thought that having more residents, more homes and fewer outsiders was preferable to having another hotel.

For almost 50 years I have been involved in the design, ownership, operating and constructing of all of the existing hotels in the Old Town and I feel that I can speak with a reasonable degree of expertise when commenting on the proposed hotel design.

But anyone should be able to appreciate that the plan calling for construction of three storeys of underground parking 25 feet below the water table would be so complicated and expensive as to be unbuildable.

Therefore the majority of the council has approved a project that will probably never be built and will have to approve a different design that will have to be revised into who knows what by the next owners.

I would welcome an explanation from each councillor who voted in favour of this project outlining how they concluded that this was the best use of the property.

Wayne Murray
NOTL

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