Letters Oct. 19: Oak Bay wall, cruise-ship shore power

Wall destruction a sorry day for Oak Bay

I live on York Place in Oak Bay, and have watched with trepidation over the past three years as Abstract Developments bought 1561 York Place, a nearly 1.5-acre property that was part of the old Annandale estate.

Historic and beautiful stone walls that are more than 120 years old encircle the estate on York Place and Prospect Place.

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These stone walls help make our neighbourhood a heritage one.

To my dismay, starting at 7 a.m. on Oct. 17, a construction crew hired by Abstract destroyed large sections of the walls, including the old main entranceway on York Place as well as openings on the Prospect Place wall.

This destruction appears to be Abstract’s answer to the neighbours trying to save this majestic site.

A sorry day for Oak Bay and for heritage supporters in Greater Victoria.

John Tiffany
Oak Bay

Shore-power talk a long time coming

Apart from a recently estimated 19 per cent increase in carbon emissions, one wonders what has changed materially since 2012, when the cost of installing shore power for cruise ships in Victoria was estimated by the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority at $13 million.

A back-of-the-envelope calculation suggests that, with today’s cost (estimated at $15 million), a 15-year life span for the equipment and a reported 640,000 cruise-ship visitors (in 2018), each visitor would need to be charged an incremental $1.56 to cover the costs.

In a worst-case situation, with the installation costs ballooning to $25 million and a service life of only 10 years, the per-visitor cost would rise to $3.91.

Does this sound like a death knell for the cruise-ship industry in Victoria? The biggest surprise is that it has taken six years (and counting) just talking about this.

Roger Purdue

Tsunami warning would be nice, too

Earthquake exercises and reminders to stock up on things are all well and good, but it sure would be nice to have clear, concise tsunami warnings near all the oceanside communities in Greater Victoria so we might have a chance to seek higher ground.

We live next to the base in Esquimalt and they tested their warning system on Thursday, but it’s impossible to make out what they are saying and I doubt anyone who lives around here actually knows what the noise means.

Hilo, Hawaii, was badly damaged by a tsunami in 1960 after a 9.5 earthquake, and now Hawaii has a regularly tested system that is recognized by all.

Victoria could use some good old-fashioned loudspeakers on poles with a clear warning tested on the first day of every month. That would make things clear, and every citizen would quickly understand what they meant.

C. Scott Stofer

Think of young people when you vote

Re: “Let young people tell us how to vote,” letter, Oct. 16.

Regarding the suggestion about voting on behalf of young people: My wife and I did precisely this in Victoria at the advance poll on Saturday.

The climate crisis is real and we owe those it will affect most the chance to at least express their wishes through our ballots.

Tina and Zeke Livingston

Voting is a privilege denied to many

I am saddened by the complaints of voters who had to wait to cast ballots in a free, safe democratic election.

This is a privilege that millions around the world aspire to. I embrace the opportunity to participate in my government, however long it takes.

Barbara Knight

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