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  #2021  
Old Posted Mar 4, 2014, 8:02 PM
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Was Michael J Fox holding the camera?
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  #2022  
Old Posted Mar 4, 2014, 8:10 PM
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Was Michael J Fox holding the camera?
i dont get it
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  #2023  
Old Posted Mar 4, 2014, 8:24 PM
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^I get the joke, but it was in terrible taste.
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  #2024  
Old Posted Mar 4, 2014, 9:01 PM
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If this is the wrong place to post this, please ignore it... But I wouldn't mind getting some people's opinion on a piece I wrote for the Manitoban, and possible opposition to the views expressed.

Anyone interested?
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  #2025  
Old Posted Mar 4, 2014, 9:48 PM
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Originally Posted by steveosnyder View Post
If this is the wrong place to post this, please ignore it... But I wouldn't mind getting some people's opinion on a piece I wrote for the Manitoban, and possible opposition to the views expressed.

Anyone interested?
go for it
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  #2026  
Old Posted Mar 4, 2014, 10:13 PM
steveosnyder steveosnyder is offline
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Originally Posted by 1ajs View Post
go for it
Feel free to ignore this post, but I respect all of your opinions, so I wouldn't mind some feedback.

Let’s say you are elected the director of a co-op that owns and operates a machine shop. In this machine shop you have the control, but operate under the recommendations of the General Manager. You have all sorts of machines; pretty much any machine people could want or need for any project.

In your co-op, people pay for their memberships yearly and the rate they pay is a portion of the value of the products they build with their machines. For brevity sake, we will call their membership dues a “tax”, the portion of the value of their products we will call the “mill rate”, and we will call the overall spending/operation of the shop and its members the “local economy”.

Now, let’s suppose your General Manager comes to you with a report on the current status of all your machines. Overall you are underfunded and your machines need about $360,000 to get back to full capacity. Along with this report, he brings you a recommendation to purchase a new drill press. The current one is over-capacity and hasn’t been overhauled in a while. The new drill press will be bigger and better for the local economy, and will only cost $6,389. In our current financial situation we can afford to pay around $1,389 and debt finance the rest – $5,000 – with the terms of the debt being $541 a year for 10 years.

After looking over the numbers you see that at the current mill rate the addition of the drill press would need to either add members or increase the value of the output of the current members by $85,000 to pay off the $541 a month. The problem is – your General Manager doesn’t even give you the predicted amount of growth you can expect from your new machine, so you are flying blind. You really have no way of gauging if you should purchase the new machine or not. So would you? Would you fly blind and approve the drill press without knowing if it will actually return money to you, or without the opportunity cost of investing in a different machine, or how long it will take to return that money, or even if it will return the money at all?

If you don’t understand this metaphor, please allow me to fill you in. Rename all the members as property owners with their projects being their property, the machines as streets, and the drill press in particular as the Molson Street/Panet Road widening project. You, as the director, represent the elected officials, your City Council, and the GM is the City Administration. Further, take all the numbers above and multiply them by 1,000.

The numbers say that with $5 Million of debt financing, the City will need to see an additional $85 Million of assessed residential value to break even as a direct result of the Molson/Panet widening, and that doesn’t include ongoing maintenance to the street nor growth that would have happened even without the proposed widening

While I have no problem with the City widening Molson/Panet, I drive that route at least once a week, I do have a problem with how they operate without thinking of the overall costs of these projects and if they will actually improve their ability to collect taxes. When we approve projects like this we can’t gauge how good (or bad) our investments actually are! How much will our Mill Rate have to go up if the project only adds $40 Million in assessed value instead of the $85 Million needed to break even?

It’s time to rethink how we measure our infrastructure investments. I, for one, would like to know that the investments I make in my City actually help it become more sustainable. When you don’t measure the results of your investment you have no idea if you made good choices or bad, and you will never learn from your mistakes. I also find it infuriating that the members of the City’s Committee for Infrastructure and Public Works approve these projects without any consideration of this kind. With a City that is currently sitting at a $360 Million dollar road infrastructure deficit, I would like them to look at the numbers a little more closely instead of approving projects they believe will get them reelected.

Steve Snyder is an urban design and municipal affairs enthusiast who writes on Winnipeg issues. Follow him on Twitter @steveosnyder.
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  #2027  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 4:29 AM
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Originally Posted by steveosnyder View Post
While I have no problem with the City widening Molson/Panet, I drive that route at least once a week,

How do you do that without a car?
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  #2028  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 5:43 AM
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some unnecessary, rude comments from Riverman and h0twired in this thread. you're not entertaining and if you're not going to post anything worthwhile here maybe go somewhere else to try out your acts.
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  #2029  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 5:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveosnyder View Post
Feel free to ignore this post, but I respect all of your opinions, so I wouldn't mind some feedback.

Let’s say you are elected the director of a co-op that owns and operates a machine shop. In this machine shop you have the control, but operate under the recommendations of the General Manager. You have all sorts of machines; pretty much any machine people could want or need for any project.

In your co-op, people pay for their memberships yearly and the rate they pay is a portion of the value of the products they build with their machines. For brevity sake, we will call their membership dues a “tax”, the portion of the value of their products we will call the “mill rate”, and we will call the overall spending/operation of the shop and its members the “local economy”.

Now, let’s suppose your General Manager comes to you with a report on the current status of all your machines. Overall you are underfunded and your machines need about $360,000 to get back to full capacity. Along with this report, he brings you a recommendation to purchase a new drill press. The current one is over-capacity and hasn’t been overhauled in a while. The new drill press will be bigger and better for the local economy, and will only cost $6,389. In our current financial situation we can afford to pay around $1,389 and debt finance the rest – $5,000 – with the terms of the debt being $541 a year for 10 years.

After looking over the numbers you see that at the current mill rate the addition of the drill press would need to either add members or increase the value of the output of the current members by $85,000 to pay off the $541 a month. The problem is – your General Manager doesn’t even give you the predicted amount of growth you can expect from your new machine, so you are flying blind. You really have no way of gauging if you should purchase the new machine or not. So would you? Would you fly blind and approve the drill press without knowing if it will actually return money to you, or without the opportunity cost of investing in a different machine, or how long it will take to return that money, or even if it will return the money at all?

If you don’t understand this metaphor, please allow me to fill you in. Rename all the members as property owners with their projects being their property, the machines as streets, and the drill press in particular as the Molson Street/Panet Road widening project. You, as the director, represent the elected officials, your City Council, and the GM is the City Administration. Further, take all the numbers above and multiply them by 1,000.

The numbers say that with $5 Million of debt financing, the City will need to see an additional $85 Million of assessed residential value to break even as a direct result of the Molson/Panet widening, and that doesn’t include ongoing maintenance to the street nor growth that would have happened even without the proposed widening

While I have no problem with the City widening Molson/Panet, I drive that route at least once a week, I do have a problem with how they operate without thinking of the overall costs of these projects and if they will actually improve their ability to collect taxes. When we approve projects like this we can’t gauge how good (or bad) our investments actually are! How much will our Mill Rate have to go up if the project only adds $40 Million in assessed value instead of the $85 Million needed to break even?

It’s time to rethink how we measure our infrastructure investments. I, for one, would like to know that the investments I make in my City actually help it become more sustainable. When you don’t measure the results of your investment you have no idea if you made good choices or bad, and you will never learn from your mistakes. I also find it infuriating that the members of the City’s Committee for Infrastructure and Public Works approve these projects without any consideration of this kind. With a City that is currently sitting at a $360 Million dollar road infrastructure deficit, I would like them to look at the numbers a little more closely instead of approving projects they believe will get them reelected.

Steve Snyder is an urban design and municipal affairs enthusiast who writes on Winnipeg issues. Follow him on Twitter @steveosnyder.
It's good to see that you're writing critical pieces on urbanism in our city. It feels like there has been a bit of a gap since Galston stopped blogging (as well as a few others - One Great City?) I've thought a lot about how to clearly convey some of the issues with current planning in this city without people writing them off as hippie/eco freak/whatever else boring term they can come up with. It's probably one of the biggest issues I have when trying to write on urban issues but I think you did a good job of being clear and making it - rightfully so - about money and facts and policy and not just urban ideals. sorry if this was a bit rambling, but I've enjoyed reading this piece and others you wrote from this past.
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  #2030  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 5:50 AM
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slightly on topic, chrisallard hasn't been around in a while. if you read this, hope you're doing well. I miss your input around here.
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  #2031  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 2:04 PM
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some unnecessary, rude comments from Riverman and h0twired in this thread. you're not entertaining and if you're not going to post anything worthwhile here maybe go somewhere else to try out your acts.
Really? I thought the whold purpose of this thread was to provide a place for unnecessary, though not necessarily rude, comments. Lighten up.
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  #2032  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 2:09 PM
steveosnyder steveosnyder is offline
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How do you do that without a car?
I carpool with my brother to the bowling lanes -- it's hard to take the bus lugging 70lbs of bowling equipment.
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  #2033  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 2:22 PM
steveosnyder steveosnyder is offline
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Originally Posted by headhorse View Post
slightly on topic, chrisallard hasn't been around in a while. if you read this, hope you're doing well. I miss your input around here.
I noticed this same thing when the CMA population thread got bumpped to the top... He was one of the last posts there.
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  #2034  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 6:02 PM
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Originally Posted by steveosnyder View Post
I carpool with my brother to the bowling lanes -- it's hard to take the bus lugging 70lbs of bowling equipment.
So one can certainly have empathy then for others who drive for various reasons, including work, kids activities, shopping for certain items, etc. etc. etc.
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  #2035  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 7:01 PM
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Taxpayers group highlights provincial debt ahead of budget

by: Larry kusch
Winnipeg free press

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/loc...?device=mobile

Time to elect a new government.
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  #2036  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 7:11 PM
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Taxpayers group highlights provincial debt ahead of budget



Time to elect a new government.
Thx for the insight and revelation. I'm sure Manitoba voters will take the suggestion into consideration next time we vote.
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  #2037  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 7:41 PM
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So one can certainly have empathy then for others who drive for various reasons, including work, kids activities, shopping for certain items, etc. etc. etc.
Big difference between taking a car when you have no other choice (going out of town, hauling bulky items, travel with several small children, going at odd hours when transit isn't running) and living a lifestyle that demands driving for everything you do (living in places where you can't walk anywhere and transit service is lacklustre).

The problem is this city tends to cater to the latter group, at an enormous and unsustainable cost.
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  #2038  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2014, 8:05 PM
steveosnyder steveosnyder is offline
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So one can certainly have empathy then for others who drive for various reasons, including work, kids activities, shopping for certain items, etc. etc. etc.
Exactly as Esquire says -- I have never said I never drive, nor have I said that driving is by any means "fun" in this city, or can be done with any ease. I would just like the city to run in a sustainable fashion, one that actually takes into account all 3 pillars of sustainable development (social, environmental and economical). This project only addresses 2 of the 3 and it needs to be pointed out.
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  #2039  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2014, 5:29 PM
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Event at U of M taking place tonight -- Heather Dubbeldam is speaking about City Planning and Architecture.

Speaker info -- http://dubbeldam.ca/practice/principal
Event info -- http://events.umanitoba.ca/EventList...&type=&rss=rss
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  #2040  
Old Posted Mar 7, 2014, 1:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Crisis View Post
Really? I thought the whold purpose of this thread was to provide a place for unnecessary, though not necessarily rude, comments. Lighten up.
idea is for offtopic around the counter chit chat while sipping on an expresso and being relaxed
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