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Letters Aug. 11: Broad Street look criticized; hydrogen a smarter fuel than batteries

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A letter-writer suggests that the use of street space for outdoor patios on Broad Street gives an unwelcoming appearance to downtown visitors. DARREN STONE, TIMES COLONIST

Broad Street sidewalks are tacky and depressing

Does anyone understand the City of Victoria’s intention in blocking off the sidewalks on Broad Street?

It seems that the city has closed the sidewalks in order to create “café space” for all of the businesses along the street — most without any need for them.

There are only two restaurants that make use of the outdoor territory assigned to them, and yet it appears each business has been granted a sidewalk frontage to develop.

Each has also been provided with a silly narrow corridor as the new entranceway to their establishments. The material used to erect the cheap-looking barriers that make up this odd installation is similar to what might be found on a construction site.

The overall appearance is tacky, empty and depressing. Is this what we call informed, progressive urban design?

John Boswell
Victoria

Forget electric cars, go for hydrogen cells

I believe the electric-car story will ultimately fail on so many fronts. Completely impractical for general use — except the politically correct few travelling within warm climate cities for short trips.

I believe the eventual replacement for gasoline car engines will be a hydrogen cell.

Not going to happen in my lifetime, but there it is. Easy fill up, massive available energy source. Most abundant source of energy in the universe, actually. Clean.

We already have some prototypes running here in Victoria.

John L. Krysa
Oak Bay

Missing middle housing? Follow the plan instead

David Eby’s idea of municipalities automatically allowing zoning as per the Official Community Plan is a much better solution for creating housing that the ‘missing middle” solution that the City of Victoria has come up with. Eby’s solution still provides a modicum of control through the development permit process while providing the developer with properties to build more multifamily housing on.

The OCP was developed through discussion with all the neighbourhoods. The “missing middle” solution is clearly not supported by a majority.

Many people who do not support it worked hard and saved to buy a home and now pay property taxes that support the city. The support for the “missing middle” seems to emanate from those who seek a solution to our housing crisis that can better be achieved by Eby’s OCP idea.

Mayor Lisa Helps has indicated that neighbourhoods were not affected by the change in rules that allowed the division of larger buildings into apartments. I can assure you that the Rockland area was negatively affected and Victoria’s version of the “Uplands” was no longer. Property values went down.

If it is truly more housing they are attempting to create and not just their legacy, they should pass a bylaw requiring the OCP to be followed.

It would save a developer about $250,000 to provide all the plans and consultants reports required to apply for a rezoning — and about two years.

Douglas Foord
Victoria

That feeling of gratitude for the deflated tire

Re: “Expect more protests if we do not act on climate,” letter, Aug. 6.

It saddens me greatly to see only detractors responding to the actions of the fine people kind enough to Deflate Tyres for the Planet.

It grieves me that they are viewed merely as vandals, when they have the courage to sneak into the driveways of others, under the cover of darkness, to deflate their tires.

I am hoping to see responses from their supporters, those many who have stood in the grey morning light, now late for an appointment, but whose heart has swelled with gratitude for the good this simple act has done for the planet.

Those who willingly shelled out $60-$70 for cab fare, to arrive late, at a business or doctor, but filled with the joy of having taken one for the planet.

Those who have gratefully taken the message warmly to heart, and joined the ranks of the brave, but anonymous souls, to creep undaunted into the dark. Those are the ones I hope to hear from.

Anyone? Hello?

Hmm, perhaps I am wrong. Perhaps they are just vandals, stupidly inflicting damage on the lives of others without concern for their victims.

Terry McAlister
Colwood

Fantastic treatment at Royal Jubilee

Having just spent five days at the Royal Jubilee Hospital, I want to echo the sentiments of those patients who wrote about their experiences at RJH: The professionalism, the skilled physicians and surgeons, dedicated nursing staff, the cheery housing and food staff, the occupational therapist who brought laughter and her expertise to my room, encouraging each of my efforts with “you’re a rock star” and when I managed to put on my sock with a long handled device I knew that I was a “sock star,” the kind doctor with caring eyes.

To all of you, thank you from the bottom of my heart.

We need to take care of our precious health-care system if we want it to take care of us.

Mae Williams
Victoria

Transport committee could figure it out

Re: “Commons transport committee will investigate airport delays,” Aug. 9.

I can’t believe we pay these schmucks called MPs to sit around a table and try to figure out what caused the “ongoing chaos and cancellations for air travellers.”

As a frequent international traveller (until March 2020 when they themselves initiated the problem), I have to ask: Have they no other way to waste the money we pay them for jobs not well done (not to mention the benefits and pensions)? And to summon the minister in charge to testify to their own stupidity is beyond inane.

T.L. Pedneault-Peasland
Saanich

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