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October 24, 2013

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The same name(s) behind this debacle are also responsible for the construction fiascos on Carden and Dublin and Speedvale and Victoria and who knows where else, and they get promoted instead of fired? Only in Guelph. And what is Bob Bell's reason for defending the indefensible? If he really hates the downtown so much why doesn't he just move?

They re-opened the bridge and the firetrucks STILL took the long way around! Why? In what universe would it possibly benefit anyone for them to take a longer slower route? The Chief says the bridge is safe but I hope his underlings have an extinguisher handy 'cause his pants are on fire.

I think a mistake was made at City Hall and they assigned a train driving engineer to this project.

This really is unbelievable.

How is it even possible in this day and age of computerized design that this problem was not addressed long before ground even broke on this project?

Ray, are you suggesting that there is indeed someone at City Hall responsible for this negligence and that they have actually been promoted? Please name names. Thanks.

$48,000 for new flashing lights and they made the problem even worse! All other signs have been removed so the driver will already be started down the incline before they see anything and by then it will be too late. Hope that I'm wrong, we'll just have to see.

Does anybody remember the old "Henry" comic strip. In one episode two old ladies come across a banana peel lying on the sidewalk while out for a stroll and they suggest Henry do something about it. He responds by throwing up barriers, warning lights and danger signs all around the banana peel.
This is considered funny or at least silly everywhere except Guelph. In Guelph it's considered an action plan.

The other thing they share with Henry is an inability to communicate as, despite their avowance at more transparency, they refused several requests to talk with the CTV reporter. Again, fire them all.

Keep in mind City staff speak "bureaucrateese". In Guelph we strive to be more transparent, in fact millions have been spent on it, but there is no way were going to tell you the truth.

Since Joanne seems to actually read the comments on this blog instead of just ignoring them like most "professional" journalists, I have a couple questions that I think could be answered with a couple phone calls.

First of all, as memory serves me, I don't recall any problems with the underpass until a couple, non-structural, protective girders were installed. Trucks and buses routinely went under it without any problem. It is those big steel beams that they hit, not the actual railway bridge.

Secondly, the bridge itself is not designed for a road, but rather a bridge. My understanding is that the rails are owned by a private company, not the city. If so, then who exactly paid for the bridge in the first place? Who made the decision to add the protective girders? I suspect that the engineering dept. had to sign off on the plans, but is the tax payer really "on the hook" for all of this? And who made the mistake? I could see a scenario where the city OK'd the plans and CN decided at the last minute to add the girders.

I'm not saying that this is the case, but I've never seen those questions raised and answered by the news media or anyone else.

Fred
You are suggesting the Merc do some investigative reporting that involves the City.
That is strictly forbidden in Guelph!

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Joanne

Joanne Shuttleworth is the newsroom lead in municipal affairs coverage for the Guelph Mercury. She is a former Guelph YWCA Woman of Distinction honouree and a past winner of an Ontario Newspapers Award for her work as an editor. You can reach her at jshuttleworth@guelphmercury.com

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About Chris

  • Chris Herhalt
    covers municipal affairs and politics for the Guelph Mercury. Prior to joining the Mercury he worked at The Record of Waterloo Region and at The Canadian Press. He can be reached at cherhalt@guelphmercury.com