On Monday night in Regina, I enjoyed an intellectual discussion of our economy, and Bitcoins (and other alternative currencies). Philosphy Cafe has one more installment this season, so watch the UofR for details.
Regina, Saskatchewan doesn’t have enough place names honouring First Nations people and culture. Wascana Parkway and Assiniboine Drive just don’t cut it. Where’s Sitting Bull Circle, or Sha-có-pay Street?
“Regina has had this really long-standing colonial messaging in terms of our street names and place names — just looking at Dewdney and Victoria,” said Shauneen Pete, executive lead of indigenization at the University of Regina. “The list goes on and on and on so it really maintains the unquestionable place of colonial narrative.”
She explained that Edgar Dewdney was superintendent general of Indian affairs until 1892 and played a significant role in creating a system of oppression designed to eradicate First Nations people by establishing reserves, the pass system, residential schools and ration distribution.
“That story, when understood, takes on a very different meaning and we can begin to question, ‘Why do we honour this person?’ ” said Pete.
University of Regina has already renamed several buildings to honour Indigenous cultures. It makes sense to, given that we are surrounded by Wascana Parkway on the west and south, and Wascana Lake on the north and east. Wascana is a reference to an Indigenous word meaning “pile of bones” (as anyone from Regina could probably tell you).
The Mayor is keeping a 2 year old report under wraps because the decision makers don’t want their decision process to be transparent to the public.
“This is a significant report that is huge for the future of Wascana Centre Authority and until we have that review done by the partners we won’t release it,” Fougere said. “But we’ll release it when we’re ready and that should be next year.”
“the $800,000 report was paid for by the government of Saskatchewan and the City of Regina.”
So, it takes 3 years for them to decide in private, while Design Regina which recently implemented the entire City of Regina Official Community Plan remained public and was implemented in less time.
“Fougere said it would not be fair to the partnership that pays for the park’s operations to release the information before decisions are made.”
It’s not fair to taxpayers, and users of the park to not have access to what other users said they want done in the Park. The public sending in ideas for the park are the ones who’ve made the decisions, it’s just up to the board, Province, and City (and UofR) to implement them.
There are shades of the Parking Study in this report disappearing.
That budget request says the independent review has noted the authority’s “infrastructure deficit is over $70 million.”
The CEO of the authority is asking for $2 million in “urgent” repair for next year, when Bernadette McIntyre appears before the city’s executive committee today.
One thing coming up is the UofR expanding on City land where some would assume the Park exists instead, which is adjacent to Darke Hall.
“A Q&A with yours truly about what made the @ourwascana project a success @IntFutures. Thanks @collabservinc http://ow.ly/2aYLLe”
Any time you propose a major design change to a civic jewel like the Wascana Centre, people are going to have very strong opinions. How did the ourWascana process ensure that every opinion was heard and considered?
ourWascana fed into the Comprehensive Review Project for Wascana Centre Authority, which will then lead to a review of the master plan for the space. Having said that, I have to give tremendous credit to the Strategic Planning Committee and Bernadette McIntyre, the Executive Director of Wascana Centre Authority. Throughout the process, they never wavered from our approach to have a completely honest, open conversation and to hold judgement and listen to what the community had to say. It was really remarkable to work with a group of people like that.
Wascana needs a lot of money to catch up on crumbling infrastructure. It doesn’t even have a bathroom available in the evening at the park beside the Legislature where tourists and gear-heads hang out in the Summer.
The Leader Post has a story about greywater research at our city’s university.
If the City puts out this latest water-fire, then they’ll have time to prevent such a water crisis in the future, if they act. Based on past (in)action, it’s going to take some public pressure to get Council to order action.
This is great news for Regina. It’s a good night, where students have become the largest single stakeholder in Regina Transit, and will contribute immensely to improving transit in our city. This of course helps the ~85% of people who drive themselves around the city, because it makes that activity possible without traffic jamming quite as much. Continue reading