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LETTER: City should take parking lot decision seriously

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Dear Editor:

The proposal to declare the Victoria Street parking lot to be surplus has been out in the public domain since June 6.

Why have Sarnia Planning and Engineering departments not publicly commented to Council on this proposal?

Why is it that the City Council, surprisingly, did not request a report from staff on the impact of this before it declared, on July 10, some, yet to be determined, part of the Victoria Street parking lot to be surplus?

I see from item ‘S’ on the agenda for the September 11 meeting of City Council that Lambton County Council is leaving it to Sarnia to define what portion of the Victoria Street parking lot is to be declared surplus.

For this reason, it is imperative that City staff produce a strategic plan showing parking needs for downtown both now and in the future. This should require formal input from all downtown businesses and property owners. 

I am happy to see that “County staff are currently engaging with a consultant to determine suitable properties within Lambton County, including the Victoria Street parking lot,” for their needs.

I hope that the Vendome and Charlotte parking lots as well as the surplus 11.5 acres in the Research Park are also included. These should be considered to be fully or partly surplus long before any part of the main Victoria Street parking lot is finally declared surplus.

In my opinion, such a significant decision that could determine the city’s future should be taken more seriously than it has been to date.

Saorgus McGinley

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