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  #1401  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 4:32 AM
buzzg buzzg is offline
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My view hasn’t changed. The wall is cool but it’s not something anyone’s gonna go out of their way to come by and see - an extremely interpretive “show” that doesn’t explain any of the history it claims to. There’s almost no written info or displays in the park. Because they built all the old build spaces into raised planters, almost the whole park is useless for hosting any sort of events, but because it’s essentially on the side of a freeway, and open and windy – it’s not a great place to go relax or escape either.

Maybe one day if the parking lot behind gets developed into the interpretive centre it would be a bit more active, but I don’t think it’ll ever be anything more than an elaborate entrance to said centre. I’d rather the city take the lot and put a community centre of sorts there, maybe making the park more useful and tying it to the tennis courts on Assiniboine.

Also, considering the advanced lighting tech used on the wall, I’m blown away at how they could make such poor choices with the rest of the lighting design. It’s like they bough the cheapest thing they could find for the planter/bench under lighting – barely even visible at night, which is bad since it was relied on to produce most of the lighting.
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  #1402  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 1:10 PM
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^ Agreed. I find the park beautiful, but it's a complete dead zone. The way it's located and designed means that few people have any reason to walk through it as they go about their day-to-day business, which is the kiss of death for an urban park.

It brings nothing to downtown other than something pretty to see out the window as you drive by.
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  #1403  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 1:31 PM
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^Yup. It's become so obvious they had no real plan or idea what they were doing... When it first open there was only 8 "showtimes" per day (2 of each of the 4 stories), as they thought people were going to go out of their way to come down to these bizarre light shows – now it's on a fairly continuous loop (not sure if there's always sound still). They were also planning on making money ("for the interpretive centre") by hosting lots of events and renting out the park to weddings and the like – except they didn't realize that they left almost no usable space for events. Then, they didn't really have a maintenance plan, and the province's deal for funding stated they wouldn't do it, so they pretty much just dumped it on The Forks, who now takes care of it.

So essentially, a bunch of rich people didn't want some shade on their club patio, so they built and unusable park with zero business plan to cover maintenance costs and dumped it on a non-profit development & community organization that's already stretched thin to take care of it. Who knows if the centre will ever get built, so it's just a parking lot now. Cool.
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  #1404  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 1:45 PM
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This is going to sound familiar, but here goes anyway...

As a standalone piece of design it's great. But the location next to a stroad and situated well away from any busy pedestrian corridors that would draw people in means that it's doomed to feel like an empty void for the rest of the time. It's certainly not where I would have broken the bank on a beautiful garden.

And I still feel as though we missed an opportunity to have our cake and eat it too. A tower at the SW corner of the lot would have pushed the interpretive centre closer to the corner of Assiniboine and Main. Together they would have helped to hem the site in a bit and probably would have generated more foot traffic through the site. But we all know how that ended up.

The whole thing is a bit of a disappointment... it could have been better. But for whatever reason, Gary Doer decided to take his marching orders from Gordon Sinclair and his friends at the Manitoba Club, and this is what we got as a result.
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  #1405  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 2:28 PM
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Good lord, it's so good to have this opportunity over and over again to talk about the tower that wasn't and how fantastic it would have been. Because we all know that those kinds of developments always work out and when they do, they are always exactly as fantastic as the developer said the would be. They did a land swap and a building ended up being being built on Assinniboine. I've seen a number of wedding parties using the park for photos, but I guess they doing because they like non-relaxing places to do get the photos.
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  #1406  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 5:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ando View Post
Good lord, it's so good to have this opportunity over and over again to talk about the tower that wasn't and how fantastic it would have been. Because we all know that those kinds of developments always work out and when they do, they are always exactly as fantastic as the developer said the would be. They did a land swap and a building ended up being being built on Assinniboine. I've seen a number of wedding parties using the park for photos, but I guess they doing because they like non-relaxing places to do get the photos.
The resentment over the lost apartment building will take a long time to die down.
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  #1407  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 5:23 PM
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^ It's a nice park, but without any significant expense or imposition on anyone, it could have been better. You can't really blame people for not wanting to stand up and cheer for mediocre design.
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  #1408  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 5:36 PM
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^ it's not done yet. Let's wait until it (hopefully) gets finished with the interpretive centre. At that stage we can pass final judgement.

We got the park. And we got the building positioned about a block or so away from the original location.

win win IMO.
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  #1409  
Old Posted Jul 4, 2018, 7:25 PM
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People walking by to take wedding photos aren't generating any of the revenue that was supposed to go toward the interpretive centre. There's plenty of good photoshoot locations around.
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  #1410  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2018, 3:44 PM
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One of the things that frustrates me most about that park is how few places there are to sit right on Main. Lots of people wait for buses there, but there's nowhere to sit in the park that you can get up and catch your bus from. The little bus shelter is still the only place.

A few shade trees and benches facing out toward the street would have gone a long way to integrating the park with the street life around it.
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  #1411  
Old Posted Jul 5, 2018, 6:40 PM
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If Friends of Upper Fort Garry stepped in to kibosh the apartment building so they wouldn't have a bunch of plebeian renters living behind their fancy club, call me a conspiracy theorist but I'm starting to think they also intentionally designed the park to be basically unusable so they wouldn't have to deal with us commoners hanging around there either. Build a park to keep the apartment-dwellers out, then make the park useless to keep the general public out. They're just a wealthier version of the St B Nimbys
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  #1412  
Old Posted Jul 6, 2018, 12:01 AM
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My views of this park have not changed either, and a year later since I last commented into this thread, I STILL have not made my way to check out that park.

And there lies the problem. I have no reason to visit the park other than what I've learned from school, and this whole thing.

The Friends of Upper Fort Garry are nothing but cranky old plebs who squandered the idea of, and I said this before, killing two birds with one stone.

What a waste.

Quote:
Originally Posted by windypeg View Post
If Friends of Upper Fort Garry stepped in to kibosh the apartment building so they wouldn't have a bunch of plebeian renters living behind their fancy club, call me a conspiracy theorist but I'm starting to think they also intentionally designed the park to be basically unusable so they wouldn't have to deal with us commoners hanging around there either. Build a park to keep the apartment-dwellers out, then make the park useless to keep the general public out. They're just a wealthier version of the St B Nimbys
Bingo!
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  #1413  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2018, 2:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windypeg View Post
If Friends of Upper Fort Garry stepped in to kibosh the apartment building so they wouldn't have a bunch of plebeian renters living behind their fancy club, call me a conspiracy theorist but I'm starting to think they also intentionally designed the park to be basically unusable so they wouldn't have to deal with us commoners hanging around there either. Build a park to keep the apartment-dwellers out, then make the park useless to keep the general public out. They're just a wealthier version of the St B Nimbys
I recommend counselling.
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  #1414  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2018, 2:39 PM
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Originally Posted by buzzg View Post
People walking by to take wedding photos aren't generating any of the revenue that was supposed to go toward the interpretive centre. There's plenty of good photoshoot locations around.
What revenue are you talking about? It's a park.
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  #1415  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2018, 2:46 PM
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Originally Posted by The Jabroni View Post
My views of this park have not changed either, and a year later since I last commented into this thread, I STILL have not made my way to check out that park.

And there lies the problem. I have no reason to visit the park other than what I've learned from school, and this whole thing.

The Friends of Upper Fort Garry are nothing but cranky old plebs who squandered the idea of, and I said this before, killing two birds with one stone.

What a waste.



Bingo!
There was a land swap with the developer and the city, which resulted in 300 Assinniboine being developed. Is that a bad thing? There are lots of empty lots in Winnipeg that can be developed into buildings. Why would it have been necessary to build one the footprint of the founding building of the city of Winnipeg? Get over it.
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  #1416  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2018, 2:47 PM
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Originally Posted by buzzg View Post
People walking by to take wedding photos aren't generating any of the revenue that was supposed to go toward the interpretive centre. There's plenty of good photoshoot locations around.
The question raised was whether or not it is being used. I've been there. It is used by a lot of wedding parties in the spring/summer/fall for photos. It may not fit into your narrative but it does get used.
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  #1417  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2018, 2:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Ando View Post
There was a land swap with the developer and the city, which resulted in 300 Assinniboine being developed. Is that a bad thing? There are lots of empty lots in Winnipeg that can be developed into buildings. Why would it have been necessary to build one the footprint of the founding building of the city of Winnipeg? Get over it.
As I recall, they were going to build the apartment next to the footprint of Upper Fort Garry, but not on it. But even then, what's wrong with building on the footprint of a nonexistent building?
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  #1418  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2018, 3:06 PM
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I think you either understand the importance of history or you don't.
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  #1419  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2018, 3:08 PM
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Everyone keeps talking about the Manitoba Club conspiracy but I would point out that the Manitoba Metis Federation is heavily involved with and contributed to the project. There was this guy named Riel who set up a provisional government there and Canada's first bill of rights. Some of you may have heard of him, although judged by comments I suspect not.
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  #1420  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2018, 3:20 PM
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I think you either understand the importance of history or you don't.
The only way to honour history is to never build anything on or near where historic buildings once stood?

Many European city centres would just be vast swaths of emptiness if you followed that logic.
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