East Pier – Public Meeting (Virtual)

The next step in Cobourg’s plan to re-vitalize the waterfront is to fix and enhance the East Pier.  This requires extensive public consultation and this started last year (see links below) and now there is another consultation although this time it’s virtual and hosted on Engage Cobourg. This includes a presentation in two versions – a pdf and/or a video – a survey with the first question “have you watched the presentation?” and a forum for free form comments.  The presentation starts with some background information then divides the area into zones and discusses options.  Then the discussion moves into three “design approaches” then finally talks about design palettes  – Contemporary, Heritage or hybrid.  The survey opened Sept 4 and runs to September 18.  Below is a summary but all Cobourg residents are encouraged to take the survey – go here.

Summary of Presentation

Zones

At the start of the presentation and in the survey questions, the area is divided into three zones:

  1. Waterfront Gateway – includes the entrance near the Esplanade parking area and the parking area before the Coast Guard area.
  2. Pier Promenade Connection – from the Coast Guard area through the narrower width section.
  3. Pier Community Space – the wider area towards the South end.

Different treatments are proposed for each although these are consolidated when the different “approaches” are discussed.  This zoning does allow for some questions that are particular to them – e.g. should there be a “gateway feature”.  But in the interest of brevity, let’s focus on the three “approaches”.

Approaches

  1. Original Design Adjustment Ground truth (sic) proposed components and update areas with new information. (as originally proposed – see this article – 17 May 2018)
  2. Expand the Green Reduce the amount of open hardscape and introduce more trees, soft landscaping and pedestrian-only space.
  3. Venue + Urban park Balance hardscape and soft landscape areas to provide central gathering areas for events and celebrations.

Here are the three ideas illustrated (click to enlarge and scroll through):

The final section of the survey asks about palettes – that is whether benches, signs, lights, bike racks etc should be heritage, contemporary or hybrid style.

East Pier Presentation (in a pdf)

Presentation via Video

It’s recommended that you view the video (embedded above), possibly view the pdf version in addition or instead, then participate in the survey (go here)

The Final design and costing is scheduled for February 2021.  Implementation would be 2021-22.

Links

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Gerinator
12 September 2020 2:03 pm
  • Just finished the survey. At the conclusion of the Survey you are introduced to the Team and revisit the dates I noticed the following: Final Design Costing February 2021 and East Pier Revitalization Construction January 2021. A construction start BEFORE the completion of costing suggests that Council will approve the start of construction before the numbers are in – have I misinterpreted? If correct then this timeline represents a risk to overall cost (to taxpayers) and represents a risk to the overall scope of the project.
Jones
7 September 2020 9:04 pm

Proposal number one without the trees or anything that blocks the view of the lake

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Jones
8 September 2020 12:50 pm

There are trees on the west pier; why no complaint about them blocking the view?

Sandpiper
Reply to  Wally Keeler
9 September 2020 8:10 am

Go take a real close look at what can survive there and the condition also keep in mind that trying to keep maintenance and replacement cost down over the long haul

Susie-Q
7 September 2020 8:24 pm

It’s a pretty big project given that we are only starting to see the impact of Covid-19. Maybe this plan should be put on hold for the time being. Sensible spending should be a priority. Also, whatever happened to that good old saying “live within your means”. Bigger doesn’t always mean better. Everyone must look at prioritizing given the recent circumstances (especially governments at all levels).

CiW
7 September 2020 3:05 pm

I don’t care what you do, just make The Esplanade open to two-way traffic again!

Jones
Reply to  CiW
7 September 2020 9:08 pm

Make Hibernia between third st past the marina one way too,traffic congestion here is crazy

Sandpiper
7 September 2020 11:14 am

Having lived on the lake all my life I can tell you that Trees and landscaping is very expensive
and hard to maintain . most plants and shrubs don’t survive thus the cost or replanting and maintenance yearly Larger trees will suffer from Water and Ice damage limbs will be torn & stripped off from the weight of the ice alone Think again about landscaping wood benches will be wet or damp

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Sandpiper
8 September 2020 12:54 pm

There are trees growing on the west pier and they endure the freezing gales. Wood benches will be wet or damp in every park in Cobourg.

Frenchy
7 September 2020 10:57 am

Build the hell out of the substructure to withstand any use we find for the surface for 100 hundred years. And yes, as Ben mentioned below, now is the time to run service lines (water, waste, electrical) for any future uses we might find. Add all the greenery and seating you want, but make it portable (something like the big planter we have in the frink) so we can re-figure the deck for time of year demands and future events and uses. One day we might decide to put the midway back, have car shows, dancing, etc.
Concrete (coloured?) for the skin (could emboss a pattern in it for the seating/green area).
Finally, let some enterprising soul run a weenie cart out there. They’ll make a fortune.

Last edited 21 days ago by Frenchy
Barry
7 September 2020 10:23 am

I thought this was a great presentation and a lot of early design work has been put forward for consideration. My preference is the hybrid version incorporating contemporary and heritage design considerations. I am sure there are cost considerations for all three versions but this presentation is focused on design and function. I look forward to seeing in the cost impact on the preferred design at a future date.

Jones
7 September 2020 10:17 am

WOW there are at least 100 condos purchased by owners for a view of the lake which you will eliminate with trees on the pier without a second thought,,, I guess it’s petition time

Sandpiper
Reply to  Jones
7 September 2020 11:09 am

Not to mention the noise , traffic, reduced parking all those lights will inhibit Star gazing.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Sandpiper
8 September 2020 1:11 pm

Yes, the noise of all those ropes clanging against mast poles from all the boats, the deep-throated rumble of big yachts, There is lots of parking by the marina area. Star gazing was a splendid activity back in the days when hippies lay on the beach circa midnight and later to enjoy the annual Perseid meteor shower which nowadays is not possible because of the curfew. If one wants to gaze at stars, the west beach provides no lighting whatsoever and anyone can go out on that pier.

JimT
Reply to  Wally Keeler
8 September 2020 9:16 pm

My personal experience has been that there is no skywatching at the west beach because of mist that rises off the lake after dark and obscures the view overhead.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  JimT
9 September 2020 12:57 am

Why would mist rise off the lake on the west beach and not the east beach?

JimT
Reply to  Wally Keeler
9 September 2020 2:07 pm

I have no idea. My attempts at skywatching have only been at the west beach, because it is nearby.
I make no reference to conditions elsewhere.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Jones
8 September 2020 1:05 pm

I’ll bet that a Town-wide petition would gather more signatures in favour of trees, than a tiny minority of 100 harbourfront condo owners who don’t. So go ahead and call for a petition.

JimT
7 September 2020 10:16 am

Ever notice that the current, existing “edge protection bumper” on the East Pier is actually repurposed railway track, turned on its side and welded in place?
Seriously!

Wally Keeler
Reply to  JimT
8 September 2020 1:13 pm

It has saved lives.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Wally Keeler
10 September 2020 10:05 pm

There was no rail around the harbour during the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s and I know from living here at that time, that cars fell into the harbour by negligence, by drunkenness, by suicide. Some live were saved, some were not. The rail around the harbour has diminished that phenom significantly.

JimT
7 September 2020 9:22 am

While we’re on the subject of the East Pier: can we put a stop to the construction of the proposed new grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt Coast Guard station depicted here before it is too late?

Anything but this ramshackle agglomeration of lumber yard castoffs at the entrance to our new pier park, please.
comment image

Last edited 22 days ago by JimT
Wally Keeler
Reply to  JimT
8 September 2020 1:16 pm

I do notice a big blank wall on the north side that could a host a highly imaginative work of art/mural. A local artist could apply for a Canada Council (fed) Project Costs Grant to do their art.

Last edited 20 days ago by Wally Keeler
JimT
Reply to  Wally Keeler
8 September 2020 9:19 pm

…and what do you get when you put lipstick on a pig?

Wally Keeler
Reply to  JimT
9 September 2020 1:10 am

For those of minimal imagination https://theculturetrip.com/europe/belgium/articles/wim-delvoye-tattooing-pigs-or-the-art-of-provocation. Perhaps you should engage the creative arts more often and see the power that some artists with uber creativity have to enhance and transform ugly to art.

The answer to your question is that you did not have sufficient imagination to rethink the dime-a-dozen throwaway phrase of “lip stick on a pig“. Pig lips on a stick for pork lovers.

And the wall is not a pig. It is simply a blank wall begging to be filled with an artist;s creativity, Just because your self-restricted imagination comes up with bland gland pigs, my imagination can see a beautiful landscape, perhaps a panorama of the beach in olden tymes, or a historical painting of Susanna Moodie debarking on the very east pier, or any number of imaginative concepts or manifestations. And all your imagination can come with is a worn out assertion of lipstick on a bland gland?

Last edited 20 days ago by Wally Keeler
MiriamM
7 September 2020 9:15 am

The item mentioned in the presentation which got my attention was wave-overtopping measures as part of the new designs. Typically such measures are under water structures and I wonder how these might affect other parts of the waterfront, like use of the west end of the sandy beach swim area, or use of the pier as a place for docking – also a favourite jumping off place for surfers. Anyone familiar with the east pier in winter knows about the tremendous force of Lake Ontario. The big pile of ice on the pier in winter can reach the height of a small tree, or twice the height of an adult human, for the width of the pier. A spectacular sight! Summer wave action topping the pier is a popular attraction, too. And, these dramatic waves are a subject for artists. In my office, I have a large framed print of a photograph by T. Amsden of a back lit storm wave with the Cobourg lighthouse in the background.
And, I would like to be able to walk out to the lighthouse again … in fine weather, of course.

Last edited 21 days ago by MiriamM
Wally Keeler
Reply to  MiriamM
8 September 2020 9:05 pm

The big pile of ice on the pier in winter can reach the height of a small tree, or twice the height of an adult human, for the width of the pier.

In recent past years I have gone out to those ice structures to colour them. Cobourg is becoming home for a rebar manufacturer. If three or four rebars were attached to the metal siding on the east side of the pier at the diagonal portion of the pier, and leaning on gentle angles over the water, they will produce magnificent art sculptures. Perhaps when the rebar manufacturer sets up shop they will donate 10 rebars of 8-10 feet in length to the Town. If four rebars were inserted in the west pier where the former ammo bunker was located, and positioned at gentle angles, the storms that build up on that pier will produce fantastic ice structures. An off season attraction that can provide spectacular results at exceedingly minimum cost aka cheap.

Jones
7 September 2020 8:44 am

No Trees on the pier
why is it so important to block the view of the lake .?

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Jones
8 September 2020 1:19 pm

Block the view from where? Block the view from whom?

cornbread
7 September 2020 8:29 am

With debt for all on the rise for all and Canada and Ontario in debt up to their ears, where is Cobourg going to get the significant amount of extra money to build this “Dream” pier? The extra tourism is not going to pay the bills. Let’s get back to basic for the next year or two until we get out of this Covid 19 mess and hopefully get a few more industries and jobs in Cobourg.

JimT
Reply to  cornbread
7 September 2020 8:45 am

The industry that Cobourg should be promoting is the tourist industry. It’s clean, quiet and labour intensive. Lots of first jobs for young people still in school to introduce them to the rigors of full employment.
We are positioned ideally on a major highway and rail line just an hour from the Big City. A beach that others can only dream of having. A big, wide pier out into the lake…
Etc. etc.

Sandpiper
Reply to  JimT
7 September 2020 11:05 am

NOT clean tourists bring and leave Garbage and Parking is required , Not quiet for those living south of King st and the noise from Cars and Motor cycles is ridiculous down here well past midnight Not a Cop to be found . Very labour intensive at the residents and Tax payers expense . and the way Northumberland is growing do we really want others enjoying our beach when there is no room for locals

Conor
Reply to  Sandpiper
7 September 2020 11:37 am

My gosh Sandpiper you have a hatred for tourists who I might add do spend money. If you want more room for locals might I suggest bringing back the coal piles, the oil tanks and the freighters bringing in steel rolls for local industry at the time. Then the locals would be the only ones who would want to be there. Wake up and smell the coffee, you are not an island on to yourself.

SW Buyer
Reply to  Conor
7 September 2020 12:41 pm

Conor,
I don’t believe that Sandpiper hates tourists. Rather, she knows the difference between tourist visitors (spends) and beachers (generally doesn’t spend). She also knows that the Town’s ratepayer should not be investing in projects that don’t provide a return.
It’s all well and fine to say that she (we) are not an island unto ourselves. We (Cobourgers) however, should spend our tax dollars wisely and not fritter them away on projects that benefit mainly non-ratepayers.
As with the beach, locals pay for it, the locals should enjoy it. If others want to contribute to the cost and upkeep, that’s great and they are welcome to enjoy it also.
The EP work is going to cost several millions, paid mostly by the local ratepayers. Cobourg is no longer the well heeled enclave that it used to be. We can no longer afford to toss a few million here and there on feel good projects.
As noted by other commenters: what’s the rush?
With the as yet unknown impact of C19, a bit of patience would seem to be warranted

Conor
Reply to  SW Buyer
7 September 2020 3:05 pm

Sorry Sw but Sandpiper starts out by saying “Not clean tourists bring and leave garbage and Parking is required. There is no difference between a tourist and a beacher as both spend money. I am not a beacher but I have never been to the waterfront when it has been all that crowded. Of course she doesn’t realize these people also support the Waterfront Festival and venues such as that. The truth is she doesn’t like “out of towners” Let people enjoy themselves. Maybe she should relax, go have an ice cream on the waterfront and also remember to take her garbage home with her 🙂

SW Buyer
Reply to  Conor
7 September 2020 4:13 pm

Conor:
You wrote “…both spend money…” I agree that visitors do, however, in general, beachers do not. Ask any downtown merchant. Beachers may spend at the beach canteen, the two ice cream shops and perhaps Tims and gas on the way home.
You also wrote “….The truth is she doesn’t like “out of towners…” That’s a fairly brave statement for you to make, especially with no proof. Have you ever discussed the subject at length (or even at all) with Sandpiper?
You also wrote “I am not a beacher but I have never been to the waterfront when it has been all that crowded.” Without any crowded hot summer weekend beach experience, what qualifies you to say Sandpiper’s comments are wrong

Conor
Reply to  SW Buyer
7 September 2020 5:01 pm

So that’s not spending money? I have walked the boardwalk on many a busy day and there is always room for more sunbathers, unless of course you are an out of towner.It be a brave statement but I stand by it.. All you have to do is read some of the statements on line to see a lot of town folks don’t like out of towners.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Conor
8 September 2020 1:31 pm

“...a lot of town folks don’t like out of towners.”

And a lot of those particular town folks are metropolis migrants wanting to shove their big city perspective down the throats of local born and bred town folk.

When the Spanish Flu began to wane by 1921, the CPR Recreation Club brought thousands of their employees and families to Cobourg Park and Beach for their third annual picnic.

Hotels sprang up along the edges of the park to host visitors to the Park from Toronto as well as hundreds of American tourists arriving from Rochester on the ferries.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Conor
7 September 2020 6:53 pm

Of course she doesn’t realize these people also support the Waterfront Festival and venues such as that. 

How does “supporting” the Waterfront Festival contribute to Cobourg’s finances? Did you perhaps mean to write “attends” rather than “supports”?

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Ken Strauss
8 September 2020 1:35 pm

Money goes to the Lion’s Club and the Rotary Club whose volunteers worked long and hard to create these events, which, if your assertion is true, they never invest that cash in Cobourg for the Cobourg good.

Fact Checker
Reply to  Wally Keeler
8 September 2020 2:06 pm

Wally,
I think Ken is using “Cobourg” in the context of the Town (corporate entity) rather than Cobourg, the community

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Fact Checker
8 September 2020 3:37 pm

Indeed, Fact Checker, and I apologize if I was unclear. I should have written something like: “I suspect that Conor supports the Waterfront Festival by attending the festival rather than by reducing Cobourg’s property taxes. Visitors to the Waterfront Festival are a cost to Cobourg’s taxpayers rather than a net benefit.”

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Ken Strauss
8 September 2020 8:39 pm

Not entirely. Visitors also buy spirits and food at Ribfest and the Waterfront Festival, and the service clubs, in turn, purchase Cobourg services for tents, fencing, etc. and a proportion of their profits are invested in other services that benefit Cobourg residents. Some of that profit comes from outside visitors, These include visitors from Grafton, Creighton Heights, Baltimore, Camborne, Centreton, Cold Springs, Sleepy Hollow, Port Hope,
Furthermore, these service clubs provide clean up and recycling services at their expense.

Last edited 20 days ago by Wally Keeler
Ken Strauss
Reply to  Wally Keeler
8 September 2020 9:11 pm

Wally, as you note some local merchants may obtain minimal benefit from Ribfest or the Waterfront Festival. Why should the town’s taxpayers fund something that benefits a few merchants to the detriment of most residents?

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Ken Strauss
9 September 2020 12:53 am

some local merchants may obtain minimal benefit

There is no “may” about it, they actual do obtain benefit, minimal, moderate or otherwise. They rent fences from local businesses. They rent tents from local businesses. They buy wine and beer from local businesses to sell to visitors. They rent tables and chairs from local businesses. They purchase foot stuffs (burgers, condiments, hot dogs,etc) from local businesses. Visitors from Grafton, Creighton Heights, Camborne, Cold Springs, Precious Corners, Sleepy Hollow, Centreton, etc etc pay for parking.

sw Buyer
Reply to  JimT
7 September 2020 11:15 am

JimT:
The Town has been “promoting” Cobourg’s tourist industry for a decade or more in order to “save” downtown. All we got for the most part, was an overcrowded beach, traffic, piles of garbage, beach costs and no money.
Surely we’ve learned not to continue with this insanity

Last edited 21 days ago by sw Buyer
cornbread
Reply to  sw Buyer
7 September 2020 1:16 pm

Good comment but you forgot to mention the CIP Grants we taxpayers got to add to our tax bills to improve downtown for the tourists

Bill Thompson
Reply to  JimT
7 September 2020 2:09 pm

It was before my time here but I was told that a prior Mayor was responsible for choosing “tourism” over commerce/industry ?
Anyone verification of that ?

Ahewsonator
Reply to  Bill Thompson
7 September 2020 2:17 pm

Tightwads are so insufferable. Miserable post after miserable post.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Ahewsonator
7 September 2020 6:48 pm

What is your issue? Bill asked a sensible question. Please answer his query or don’t waste electrons with your nonsense.

Leweez
Reply to  cornbread
7 September 2020 4:15 pm

With covid debt looming for the Town and the wants of an East Pier refurbishment we should sell our hydro company
Peterborough, Belleville, Trenton, Port Hope, Oshawa, Whitby all sold their hydro companies. Our hydro company did not even pay a dividend to the Town last year.
what are we holding on to this for? And please don’t say for response time as that would not be affected

Fact Checker
Reply to  Leweez
7 September 2020 6:02 pm

Leweez:
Why should LUI pay a dividend to Cobourg (via Holdco)?

A 2017 (couldn’t find a later one) monthly utility cost (electricty) comparison for Ontario towns showed:
Cobourg (LUI) $95.04
Port Hope (Veridian) 94.64
Peterborough 94.64
Kingston 93.20
Oshawa 94.13
Newmarket 90.92

The 2020 monthly customer & distribution charges appear to be:
LUI $23.87 and 0.0117/KWh
Veridian $23.19 and 0.0115/KWh

Peterborough Utilities was sold to Hydro One for $105M. The sale closed in August 2020. Peterborough is expected to net about $50M after debt, liabilities and fees are paid.

Peterborough Hydro has an electricity generation plant (hydro dam) and a customer base of 37K. LUI is strictly a distribution operation and has a much smaller customer base of about 9K

Orillia Hydro also recently sold to Hydro One for $41.3M (26.35 cash, 14.9 debt assumption). After fees and expenses Orillia could net about $20M. Orillia has a population of about $32M, compared to Cobourg’s 19.5M

Perhaps something the Town should consider.

Last edited 21 days ago by Fact Checker
Leweez
Reply to  Fact Checker
7 September 2020 6:09 pm

I was under the assumption that a yearly dividend was to be paid to the Town.
is this not true?

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Leweez
7 September 2020 6:59 pm

Have you considered that any dividend from LUI comes from higher electricity rates? Do you favour charging more for electricity in order to pay for Holdco’s slush fund?

Leweez
Reply to  Ken Strauss
7 September 2020 7:13 pm

No, but if the town receives no dividend from Lakefront, why do we not sell it, am I missing something?

Bryan
Reply to  Leweez
7 September 2020 7:37 pm

Leweez:
That may have been the plan but common share dividends are not guaranteed. In LUI’s case, they chose not to (could not) pay a dividend due to a cashflow shortfall as predicted by the intervenors during LUI’s 2016 rate application

Leweez
Reply to  Bryan
7 September 2020 8:19 pm

So if someone(another hydro company) offers to buy our company, why not sell?
you can negotiate that no jobs will be lost and rates are a set amount for so many years, like Peterborough did.

Paul Pagnuelo
Reply to  Fact Checker
7 September 2020 7:13 pm

Dean has the potential sale of LUI already spent on his $24 Million Waterfront Plan. Not on the wise and prudent infrastructure we need but on more toys for the boys. Time for everybody to give their heads a good shake. Everybody and every government is deep in debt because of COVID. The future and everything we do will never be the same. Basic needs and economic survival must be the priority. If Cobourg’s survival is dependent on any kind of tourism, Town staffers are chasing the wrong solution. They may as well just open a few new lemonade stands We should be managing our tax dollars through high impact priority spending on mandatory and essential services. There is nothing essential about a travel lift or anything else in the plan other than a basic fix to the east pier at this time. There is no rush other than a pre-fabricated desire by staff to spend well beyond our means by borrowing and taxing more. When picking your palette ask yourself a few basic questions. Do we need this? What do we need? How much? Who pays? Can you afford it? The answers will set the true direction this entire… Read more »

Bryan
Reply to  Paul Pagnuelo
7 September 2020 7:57 pm

Paul:
Press reports indicate the councils of both Peterborough and Orillia are struggling with the issue of what to do with the utility sale windfall. Some Councillors propose a spending spree, while others argue for investment and use the investment income for tax reduction/debt reduction/capital projects.
Hopefully, if Cobourg Council faced a similar situation, they would opt for prudent conservative action (investment/debt repayment) over a spending spree.

You suggest that Cobourgers ask themselves a basic question: do we need this? An important primary question. An essential part or this question is to recognize that needs and wants are quite different. Needs are few, wants are many. Focus on the important basic things; these are the needs. The rest are wants; the nice to haves, fluffy stuff.

Last edited 21 days ago by Bryan
Leweez
Reply to  Bryan
7 September 2020 8:31 pm

what a nice struggle to have

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Leweez
7 September 2020 8:48 pm

Leweez, considering the propensities of politicians (most of our present Council included), the decision would be to squander any windfall and ignore the future. No struggle!

Cobourg taxpayer
Reply to  Leweez
7 September 2020 9:14 pm

Nice is not the adjective I would use. I am sick of all politicians spending indiscriminately during these times.

Cobourg taxpayer
Reply to  Paul Pagnuelo
7 September 2020 9:12 pm

Here here I soo agree with this. Finally some fiscal responsibility is proposed. I filled out the survey recommending the same.

Ahewsonator
Reply to  Fact Checker
8 September 2020 5:23 am

In the meantime, Cobourg has a town owned utility, which has increased in value substantially, as well as often pays out a dividend to the town. It’s great that all those places enjoyed a one time bonanza but that option is now off the table for them. Also, Lakefront employees local people, if we sold to Veridian or something you can say bye bye to most of the local jobs. Any profits that Veridian enjoys goes to their shareholders, in Cobourg it goes back the town.

Leweez
Reply to  Ahewsonator
8 September 2020 6:31 am

Wondering how has it increased in value?
when you negotiate a sale, you make sure that no jobs are lost.
often pays a dividend? That doesn’t sound right

Bryan
Reply to  Leweez
7 September 2020 9:48 pm

Leweez:

I believe that LUI’s (and LUSI’s) predecessor, the Cobourg Public Utilities Commission was self sufficient and did not pay the Town a “dividend”. Therefore, why should LUI or LUSI?
The only difference between the CPUC and the Holdco Group is that the Holdco Group is a corporate structure forced upon the Town by the province. The Town, through Holdco, still owns the electrical utility as it did with the CPUC. The only difference is that the Holdco companies are corporate entities, while the CPUC was not. The Town owned the utilities directly.

Leweez
Reply to  Bryan
7 September 2020 10:38 pm

So why does Lakefront have a 7 million dollar loan with the Town of Cobourg
Did the CPUC have loans with the Town?
Lakefront doesn’t sound as self sufficient as its predecessor.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Leweez
7 September 2020 11:30 pm

Leweez, it is not a “loan” in the sense that Lakefront borrowed money to build something. The $7M was the deemed value of CPUC when it was transferred to Holdco in 2000. The loan was part of a sham transaction initiated by the province to prepare electrical utilities for privatization. For the last 20 years Cobourg politicians have used the “loan” to covertly overcharge electricity users and move money to a slush fund that allows them to imitate Santa.

Last edited 21 days ago by Ken Strauss
ben
Reply to  Ken Strauss
8 September 2020 7:28 pm

I would like to see the calculations that you base this statement on Ken. For example if you divide the dividend by the number of users of the system can you really say that we have been overcharged when you compare it to other utilities? The difference would be profit for Cobourg.

BTW the reason for the loan, as Ken states is because Mike Harris the god of all conservatives rigged the rules of the transfers/sales so that PUCs that wanted to be non-profit were not allowed to do so.

If anybody wants to cast stones at the dividend we receive just consider that the NHH would not have been built without it!

Ken Strauss
Reply to  ben
8 September 2020 8:05 pm

Ben, no calculations are required. The dividends that were paid to Cobourg came from the electricity users in Cobourg; electricity would have been cheaper without the dividend.

Bryan
Reply to  Leweez
7 September 2020 11:55 pm

Leweez, Good questions. Based on the public domain documentation that I could find, this is my understanding of LUI’s origins. The $7M “loan” is an accounting entry to “balance the books”. It was a totally arbitrary “creation” of the OEB (Ontario Energy Board) that mandated the structure of the transaction. The OEB wanted the debt to equity structure to mimic that of the private sector electrical energy companies: approximately 50% shares, 50% debt. The transaction could have just as easily been 100% common shares, a mix of common and preferred shares, or a mix of various share classes and debt. There was no “loan” other than as an accounting entry. No cash changed hands. The CPUC was one of the Town’s business units. The CPUC’s assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses were owned by the Town. After the transaction, the Town still owned the electrical utility business. Cobourg owns 99.99% of the Holdco Group (1 share to Cramahe). LUI is self sufficient. It is mandated by the province to operate that way and the OEB monitors this quite closely. As with any business, loans are required from time to time, primarily to finance capital additions. Operating loans, other than a line… Read more »

Leweez
Reply to  Bryan
8 September 2020 7:53 pm

Bryan, maybe you could answer this for me,
if the Town still owns the electric utility, why would they put the maintenance and repair of streetlights out for tender and make Lakefront bid on the job.
From what I know, streetlights have been taken care of by Lakefront and formerly CPUC,forever.
And Lakefront was not the winning bid.

Last edited 20 days ago by Leweez
greengrass
7 September 2020 8:16 am

disappointed, although we do not live within the town limits we are not allowed to voice our opinions? after all it is our home town where we spend the bulk of our money!

Bryan
Reply to  greengrass
7 September 2020 8:09 pm

Greengrass:
All well and good and I’m sure Cobourg businesses appreciate your patronage. However, you pay your municipal taxes to another municipality, not Cobourg. I’m sure a donation to the Town of Cobourg on behalf of EP repairs would be greatly appreciated.

Ahewsonator
6 September 2020 6:12 pm

I like option 2. Gives pedestrians an actual space to interact with the pier without feeling dominated by vehicles, as well as still gives people an opportunity to take a spin out on the pier in their vehicle. Option 1 is far too much hardscape. I do not like the lawn portion of option 3. Often lawns just become burnt out nothingscapes.

Jones
Reply to  Ahewsonator
7 September 2020 9:12 am

How do you control erosion from green areas that will let water drain straight down, the pier was great the way it was

JimT
Reply to  Ahewsonator
7 September 2020 10:00 am

I agree. And minimize the use of park benches while we’re at it: use limestone slabs of variable sizes instead. More durable, more natural, no less comfortable for parking oneself on, and probably cheaper in the long run.

Frenchy
Reply to  JimT
7 September 2020 10:23 am

A little chilly on the derriere during the cooler months.

Bryan
Reply to  Frenchy
7 September 2020 11:21 am

Frenchy:
So is steel.
The Town has made some benches with wood slats and concrete supports. The wood comes from trees cut down by the Town. Seems to be a viable alternative.

Eastender
6 September 2020 5:17 pm

“…..over a 24 year period……”
I’ll be looking up or down, as the case may be.

ben
6 September 2020 3:15 pm

I din’t care which option we have let’s consider the fact that options change in the future, The population that favours ‘passive’ use may be outdated in a few years and then the uses for the Pier will change.

To accommodate the future changes it makes economic and planning sense to install basic services – water, sewage and electrical. If we don’t it will be “penny wise and pound foolish!