HOW MUCH GRIDLOCK?

December 7, 2012

Be thankful for the relatively low urban density of the entire Beaches. This circumstance saves us from gentle gridlock, except for a few hours of any day, so far. Will denser population worsen density of local traffic? You know it will. More streetcars and busses, more cars and trucks, and possibly more taxis, will begin to choke each others’ progress, and will choke our lungs, also.
We get only as much information as civic sources and news media think we can deal with, or that they want us to consider. None of them seem to think that we should expect relief from another form of gridlock. It is stop-and-go sewage disposal. Movement of sewage depends on enough water supply and enough effluent conduits. All of enough flow-through capacity, in total at all times: 24/ 366. Nobody wants sewage to overflow, but testing by Mark-One Human Nose indicates that there have been overflows of sewage occasionally near Coxwell and Queen. Should we accept the likelihood of more and bigger overflows to deal with if they happen? Should we care about the threat of cholera, typhus, dysentery, and noxious aromas, as if they are reasonable costs of developments?
IS OUR BILL COMING DUE?
We know that traffic gridlock has reared its ugly head in some parts of Toronto. We have notice that flow of sewage has been somewhat blocked, already in at least one part of the Beach. Even if sewage could be conducted entirely away from local streets, it would not always be properly treated. Despite former installation of offshore holding tanks, intact flotsam of feces and condoms have been reason enough to close access to Lake Ontario’s waters, and the sands of the local beaches.
WE ALREADY ARE LOSING!
Our sewage system already is inadequate to serve the people we have. The system should be much enlarged and tested well before we accept additional population. In fact, we need upgrading now, to safely serve who we are. We don’t know how close we might be to an infrastructural disaster, large or moderate. It seems that would-be developers upward, especially of condos, think the best test of adequate infrastructure would be an environmental disaster, but not where they personally live. Our health and safety are not necessarily among their priorities. The only safeguards they need are lawful permissions, which they expect to get if Council and bureaucrats can be brought into line. How could that be done? Profits for all.
OUR GOODNESS CAN DISARM US.
If you are a typical Beacher, you are usefully employed, considerate, and fair-minded. In this way, you are at initial disadvantage when you deal with people of opposite sentiments.
For them, fairness is getting what they want, no matter what anybody else wants, needs, or gets, if anything. In masterfully righteous and cogent terms, they imitate kindly intent. They need to keep us off-guard only long enough to get all the approvals that the law requires of them. Might this pattern of arrangements have allowed developments from Kippendavie to west of Woodbine? Beachers did not marshal enough opposition to that “foot-in-our-door”. However, we did prevent the potentially disastrous windmill farm that McGuinty almost succeeded in erecting offshore. Expect another try at it. Kill it.
BUILD ON SAND?
From Dundas to the waterfront, from Leslie to Victoria Park, the terrain is an alluvial outwash plain, of barely moderate mechanical strength. The water table is close to surface. All of the alluvium below it is saturated with water that lubricates movement of it by heavy loads from above. Could three or four storied buildings impose enough load to cause movement of ground with utilities buried in it? What might be the effect on water, sewage, and floodwater conduits? Would you believe interpretations by anybody associated with a developer, or by a contractor, Councillor, or bureaucrat who serves a developer? We are expected to do just that. Some of us might take this easy way out.

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