Filming in Cobourg

With Murdoch Mysteries once again filming in Cobourg on October 30, and Netflix filming twice recently, citizens are asking “How does Cobourg win from all this?”  Most of the filming takes place in Cobourg’s historic downtown so it’s not surprising that the DBIA (Downtown Business Improvement Area) asked the same question.  At their September 5th Board meeting, the Town’s Marketing and Events Manager, Kara Euale, was asked to make a presentation on the subject and I thought others would be interested in what she had to say.  Cobourg has policies on the subject, requires approval from multiple departments and has fees that must be paid.  Basically, filming is encouraged because the Town believes it can “provide both direct and indirect… Read complete articleFilming in Cobourg

Campground Decision

At the Committee of the Whole meeting on Tuesday, in addition to the discussion on the East Pier, Dean Hustwick, Director of Community Services also asked Council to give direction on what should be done with the Trailer Park – now called the Campground.  As with the East Pier, Councillor Emily Chorley made a motion to start discussion – see below. Mayor Henderson wondered if the proposal was too narrow and wanted to include the YMCA building (at Centennial Pool) which is nearing its end-of-life (2025).  He also thought that there are too few washrooms overall in the area and wanted an overall plan to be created. In addition, the campground office building could perhaps house public washrooms. Dean Hustwick agreed… Read complete articleCampground Decision

Council Decision on East Pier

The East Pier was closed to traffic a while back because of damage by high water and an engineering study was done.  At around the same time, the Waterfront plan was completed which recommended upgrades to the Pier and to the Campground.  Four options were proposed for the Pier which included both repairs and upgrades, and public comments on these were solicited.  In (another) marathon Council session on Tuesday (October 15), Council decided what to do.  They had to balance costs of possibly around $4M against preserving an asset well into the future.  To help with the decision, the Parks and Recreation Advisory committee made a recommendation to “implement Option 4 – a combination of pedestrian and light vehicle use… Read complete articleCouncil Decision on East Pier

Special Council Meeting on LUI loan payments

At a Council Committee of the Whole meeting on September 23, Ken Strauss represented the Cobourg Taxpayers Association (CTA) and criticized what he called Stealth taxes imposed by LUI (Lakeshore Utilities).  LUI is owned by Holdco which in turn is majority owned by the Town and pays both an annual dividend and interest on a loan to the Town set up in 2000. The loan is for $7M at 7.25% ($507K/year) and so far no payments have been made on the principal. Because of these payments by Holdco, Ken said that without them, electricity rates could be lower so in effect, the Town is taxing us via our LUI bills.  But the interest rate is higher than it need be (as set… Read complete articleSpecial Council Meeting on LUI loan payments

New Sidewalk Priority Plan

It all started in June 2017 with a Council decision to install a sidewalk on Abbott Boulevard.  But citizens there objected, so Council decided to ask staff to prepare a policy using agreed rules as to which sidewalks had priority. In April 2018, Laurie Wills created a complex plan based on rules and listed priorities for sidewalks for the next 20 years or so (see link below to Sidewalk Priority Plan).  This was then approved by Council but this meant that the sidewalk on Northwood drive was now number one and residents there suddenly realized what was happening.  On 25 June 2018 Donna Woods made a delegation to Council where she objected to the new plan.  Because of her objections,… Read complete articleNew Sidewalk Priority Plan

Multiple Street Projects Reviewed

Two streets are getting “urbanized” and one new one will be built.  Engineering on the work is well under way and plans were on display at a Public Information Centre at the CCC on Tuesday.  Both Albert Street (Hibernia to Third)  and Mathew Street are currently in bad shape and need curbs, repaving and new water mains as well as adjustment of some Hydro routes.  But the biggest project is the construction of Kerr Street between Division and D’Arcy with a spur West of Division.  This will cost $2M or more.  Traffic lights at Ewart will be taken out and new ones installed instead at the new intersection of Kerr and Division.  Northam Park’s West Street will also be extended… Read complete articleMultiple Street Projects Reviewed

Netflix Back in Town

In late August this year, a film production company was in Cobourg shooting an early episode of a new Netflix series, Ginny and Georgia (see link below) – and they were back again on Tuesday.  This time they shot a scene in front of Victoria Hall with a “Fall Festival” theme and they closed off King Street for the day. Lots of Cobourg passers-by stopped to look at what was happening but if you ventured past a sign (see text below), you could end up as a free extra in the film.   It’s flattering that film producers like what they see in Cobourg but also the crew needs to eat so they do bring business to the Town.  The Town… Read complete articleNetflix Back in Town

Final Cultural Plan presented to Council

At the Committee of the Whole Council Meeting on 15 October, Consultants MDB Insights will present the “final” Cultural Plan for approval (see link below).  A draft was presented to the public for comment online and at a meeting on 5 September and I estimated 42 citizens came out.  The presentation mostly talks about what was done to create the document with a limited number of recommendations.  As described in the Public meeting, 6 strategic Directions are suggested but most of the plan is about what the role is for the Town and how Cultural activities should be directed.  There were no recommendations on hard questions such as: “should the Park Theatre be purchased and restored?”; “exactly how much money… Read complete articleFinal Cultural Plan presented to Council