Fabio Costante Windsor

Our West End is a blog dedicated for residents to share information regarding neighbourhood issues and developments with the primary intention of making West Windsor a better place to live, work and play. If you would like to post or share anything related to the west-end, please email Fabio Costante at fabiocostante@gmail.com.

To receive our updates and join the hundreds of west-end residents who are currently subscribed, input and submit your email in the "Follow By Email" box below.

Please note that any opinions expressed are those of the author/resident and not of any organization, unless expressly stated.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas


Merry Christmas everyone!  

For those who may be interested, I received an email regarding mass schedules at Assumption Church: 

Our Lady of Assumption Catholic church
350 Huron Church Rd., W.,
is celebrating Christmas Eve     Christmas Family Mass   5 P.M.
                                                  Christmas Vigil Mass      7 P.M.
                                                  Service of Carols    11:30 P.M.. followed by Solemn Mass
 
Christmas Day      Masses at 9 A.M.    and 11 A.M.   
 
New Year's Eve            Vigil Mass      5 P.M.
                                  
New Year's Day             Masses at 9 A.M. and 11 A.M. 

Source: West-end Resident 

Sunday, December 23, 2012

2012 Year in Review for the West-End


When I think of the past year, I think about how much we have been able to accomplish, but also how much more we have to do going forward.  From the good work in crime prevention and reduction, to the closure of Forster High School, we have had our share of ups and downs throughout the year. 

Let us take a look at some of the key areas where progress has been made, where challenges lay ahead and where we are going, together, as a community. 

Crime Prevention and Reduction

The Bridgeview Neighbourhood Watch team is operating in full speed.  According to the group, they have contributed, either directly or indirectly, to nine arrests in the west-end.  In addition, they have provided Windsor Police with useful tips and information throughout the year.  In sum, they are doing great work.  I hope they receive more help in the new year so they can expand their information sharing and further assist Windsor Police.  Moreover, earlier in the year, the City installed a light (Willy's Light) in North Merritt Park which alone has decreased the amount of illegal activity in that park.  

The same neighbourhood watch group is reaching out to youth in the area.  See what else they are up to here: Bridgeview Community Outreach.

We hosted a town hall with the help of residents on December 5th for the neighbourhoods close to the Church of the Ascension in hopes of establishing neighbourhood watches in that part of the west-end.  I will follow up with the Children’s Safety Village in the new year to see how progress is coming along there. 

Following our town hall, several residents have asked about forming a neighbourhood watch in their area of the west-end.  I received calls and emails from neighbours who live close to Mic Mac Park and Windsor Regional Hospital just off of Prince Rd.  I will work with Children’s Safety Village and Windsor Police to organize a few more town halls in the new year so that residents can get organized and form their own neighbourhood watch groups.

A few months back, CBC Windsor and Windsor Police hosted a community town hall where residents asked Police Chief Al Frederick any questions or concerns they had related to crime in our city.  I was featured on CBC as part of this initiative representing the west-end.  I asked the Police Chief if there is a specific strategy employed for the west-end regarding crime.  We face a higher crime on person and on property than the city average so it would make sense that we should have a unique strategy to deal with our peculiar situation.  I will keep pressing this issue forward as I believe it is an important one not just for the residents in the west-end, but for crime reduction in general.

A Strategy for the West-End

I proposed a strategy for the west-end several months ago.  You can read my article about it here: West End Strategy.

Since that time, I have met with out city councilor, administrators at city hall and several stakeholders in the area.  I have been able to gather and analyze important data and statistics on the area and just recently, myself, a local non-profit and other partners submitted an application to receive funding for this initiative.  We will hear sometime over the next few months if we were successful (fingers crossed) and if so, we will be able to aggressively move forward on this very important initiative. 

Some pieces of the strategy may be ripe to roll out sometime next year such as an important development regarding the university area that I will propose in the spring of 2013.  

Forster High School

Dr. Hanaka said it best in his opinion column to the Windsor Star: “When the cause is right, we will fight.”  And that is exactly what we did: West End Residents Fight for Forster High School.  We fought long and hard to prevent the closure of Forster.  The Board of Trustees voted in November to close Forster high school and amalgamate it with Century just east of Huron Church on California Ave. 

I was asked to sit on a committee to fight the closure.  That same committee intends to reconvene in the new year to discuss the options before us now that the board voted to close Forster.  Whatever the committee asks of me I will do and let me be clear, the fight to have a high school west of the bridge is not over. 

Awareness Surrounding the West End

The ourwestend.com blog now has over 300 subscribers from the area.  Folks are sharing information and working together in ways not seen before.  I receive emails nearly every day from residents regarding issues in the area.  I see nothing but more of this continuing in 2013.  Let’s keep up the good work of sharing information and working together for the common good.

Community Parks

Over the next several years, City Council will be looking at closing community parks all throughout the city.  Five of the parks on the chopping block are located in the bridgeview neighbourhood in the west-end.  Many residents in that neighbourhood (myself included) are opposed to the park closure, but we must not just oppose the idea, we must also come up with solutions to make these parks viable.  I touched a bit on this in my article earlier this year: Community Parks in the West End.

I encourage all of the residents interested in preserving our parks to really think outside of the box about how these parks could be repurposed to better reflect the needs of residents in the area.  I know personally there are families that have decided to move in an area where there is a close-by park.  We want to attract more families to the west-end.  We must preserve our parks.

Other News

Many were glad to see that finally something was being done to Grace Hospital.  The eyesore will be no more by summer of 2013.  What will be developed in its place?  We do not know, yet, but hopefully something that complements the area and makes it more attractive, especially to the residents who live in the surrounding neighbourhoods, they deserve it. 

I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that good things come out of the talks between the Mayor and the Ambassador Bridge.  The status quo is no longer an option for residents in the west-end: Status Quo Not an Option.  Here’s to hoping there will be a resolution that will see something being done to the boarded-up homes in 2013. 

Myself and a few volunteers dropped flyers in some of the neighbourhoods close to the College Avenue Community Centre around the time when we were told that the Sandwich Community Health Centre would not be moving there.  According to good sources, there is good reason to believe (fingers crossed again) that the deal may be revived.  I heard overwhelmingly from residents that they wanted to preserve the centre.  Let’s hope that good news flows from the second go around at saving the CACC.  

Lastly, there have been a lot of smaller developments that occurred throughout the year bringing positive news for the area.  Some of these positive developments include: The repurposing of Blessed Sacrament Church, residents coming together to eradicate graffiti in their neighbourhood and community churches coming together to clean up local parks.  I have been fortunate to lecture to students at Forster and Assumption on civic engagement and jobs.  Check out some of the great things these students are doing: Forster Youth Win Entrepreneurship Challenge.

Moving Forward

We have made a lot of progress but there is still much more to do.  As we move forward, I intend to work closely with our city councilor, our elected representatives, local businesses, community stakeholders and residents in making the west-end a better place to live, work and play.  It has been a tremendous year and I look forward to everything that 2013 will bring.

Have a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and a relaxing holiday with family and friends. 

My Warmest Regards,

Fabio Costante 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

St. Mark's Church Christas Eve Service

St. Mark's Church will be hosting a Christmas Eve Service at 10:30pm on December 24th.  They are located at 1636 Tecumseh Rd. W.  All are welcome.

Source:  Rev. Sue Paulton


The West-End Crawlers

Friends,

Two residents in the west-end are starting a social initiative entitled "The West-End Crawlers".  Last week, the group attended 8 bars/pubs in the west-end in one night, while simultaneously collecting canned goods for those in need.  The idea is to host social initiatives throughout the upcoming year with the hope of meeting new residents in the west-end and giving back to the community.  Below is an email I received from the co-founders of the initiative with a few pictures:


WE, RITA HIGGINS AND CHRIS DIETT, DECIDED IN OCTOBER OF 2012 TO HOLD A HALLOWEEN CRAWL. UNFORTUNATELY, WE DIDN’T COME UP WITH THE IDEA IN ENOUGH TIME TO GET THE WORD OUT TO A LOT OF PEOPLE, OR DESIGNATE AN ORGANIZATION THAT COULD HAVE BENEFITTED FROM IT.  HOWEVER, IT WAS SUCCESSFUL NONETHELESS, AND A GREAT TIME WAS HAD!  “A TEST RUN” IF YOU WILL! 
THEN WE NAMED OURSELVES. AND ANYONE WHO WANTS TO CRAWL WITH US:  "THE WEST END CRAWLERS"
 FOR DECEMBER 15, 2012, WE ORGANIZED, (MUCH BETTER), A CAN DRIVE/CHRISTMAS CRAWL.  WE WERE ABLE TO COLLECT JUST ABOUT 250 CANS OF FOOD FOR THE WINDSOR DOWNTOWN MISSION!  THANKS GREATLY IN PART TO KYLEAN MCCOLL OF FACES ROADHOUSE, WITH HER AWESOME PERSONALITY AND ART DISPLAY!  IN OUR OPINION, EVEN THOUGH TURNOUT WAS LOW, IT WAS A COMPLETE SUCCESS! OTHER FACTORS FOR THE LOW TURNOUT, WERE COMPANY CHRISTMAS PARTIES AND UNIVERSITY EXAMS SCHEDULED AROUND THE SAME TIME. 
ALL IN ALL, WHAT COUNTED WAS THE DOWNTOWN MISSION, AND OUR GOAL WAS WELL MET!   WE HAVE DECIDED NEXT YEAR’S DATE WILL BE MOVED BACK AND MAY BE COMBINED WITH “MOVEMBER SHAVE-OFF” PARTICIPATION. 
 IT IS OUR HOPE THAT FABIO WILL POST A LINK TO OUR "WEST END CRAWLERS" FACEBOOK PAGE, WHEN IT IS PUBLISHED.  IN FUTURE, WE’RE PLANNING SEVERAL CRAWLS THROUGHOUT THE YEAR, EACH FOR A DIFFERENT CAUSE.  WE HOPE YOU’LL JOIN US IN THIS ADVENTURE, AND HAVE A GREAT TIME TOO!
THANK YOU WEST~ENDERS!
~RITA HIGGINS / CHRIS DIETT




Long Time Business Closing in the West-End

Friends, I received an email from a west-end resident who wrote the following: 

"Hi Fabio:  Just heard that the West End is losing another Business.  Kim Jackson, owner of Best Lil' Hair House in Windsor, 1537 University W., has decided to  close.  It's on the South side of University, between Curry & McKay.  She has been trying to hire another stylist & been unsuccessful, says it's too hard to continue, so is going to work for a salon @ Howard & Eugenie.  Both my husband & I have been going there for a # of years, so hate to see her leave, not just for our convenience, but that the West End is losing another business."

Source: West-end resident

Online Petition for Barricade at the end of 1100 Block of Josephine

Friends,

I am assisting a resident in getting a petition signed for a barricade that he would like installed at the end of the 1100 block of Josephine Ave.  The land in question abuts the Taylor School yard and as it is, cars are free to enter and exit Josephine to Campbell and vice versa, putting young children who attend Taylor at risk; particularly those who walk down Josephine to get to and from their school.

You can sign the petition online by clicking on the link below and following the instructions therein.  I also pasted the petition below the link.  If you have any additional questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Regards,
Fabio

https://www.change.org/petitions/the-city-of-windsor-on-install-barricade-at-the-end-of-the-1100-block-of-josephine-avenue


The block in question is Josephine Ave., just south of Grove Ave. and north of Taylor Public School, at approximately the 1100 block.  Josephine comes to an end just before it meets the school property; however, there is an alley strip that connects Campbell Ave. to Josephine. 
Due to several dangerous incidents where drivers were speeding down the alley, either to connect to Josephine going west or to connect to Campbell going east, the residents of the area are asking that a barricade (or cul-de-sac) be placed at the end of Josephine (1100 block) to prohibit cars from using the said alley and thereby alleviating risk to the children in the area.  Many students go to and from school crossing the alley and these same children are oftentimes not seen by drivers coming west from Campbell.
Several years ago, the residents allege that a barricade did in fact exist at the end of Josephine, but after road and sewer repairs, it was taken down and never replaced.  
Petition
We, the undersigned, call on the City of Windsor to install a barricade or cul-de-sac at the end of the 1100 block of Josephine Ave. and help protect the young children in the neighbourhood. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Town Hall a Success - Thank You

Friends,

The town hall was a great success.  We had approximately 25 residents from the designated neighbourhood (Campbell, McEwan, Curry, McKay and Cameron, north of University Dr. W. and south of Riverside Dr. W.) along with Children's Safety Village and Windsor Police.

Many residents signed up and many were excited and energized to revitalize their neighbourhood watch.

As I mentioned to the residents in attendance, the fact that we are coming together as a community to establish neighbourhood watches, among other positive developments, is a clear signal to the region that the west-end is a place where neighbours look out for each other.  We want to attract families back to the west-end and our efforts in establishing neighbourhood watches and looking out for each other is a positive step in that direction.

I want to thank Children's Safety Village and Constable McEachrane from Windsor Police who did a fine job presenting and responding to questions from residents.  I also want to acknowledge Larry Moore, Kathleen Buck (both live on McEwan), Mary Fox (Campbell), John Guiry (McKay) and Tony and Dawn Girimonte (Cameron) who volunteered and helped out, whether it was delivering flyers or getting the church room set up, they all pitched in and helped make it happen.

Below are some media/news links and a picture of the town hall.

Best Regards,
Fabio Costante

CTV News Interview

CBC Windsor News Interview

Windsor Star Article


Sunday, December 2, 2012

Neighbourhood Watch Town Hall

Friends,

This Wednesday, December 5 at 6pm, myself and a few others are hosting a neighbourhood watch town hall at the Church of Ascension.  Children's Safety Village and Windsor Police will be present to discuss how to formally start a neighbourhood watch, in addition to answering any questions or concerns that residents may have.

The meeting is geared for residents who live on Campbell, McEwan, Curry, McKay, and Cameron, between Riverside Dr. W. and University Ave. W.  However, even if you do not live within these boundaries but are still interested in learning about neighbourhood watch and crime in the west-end, do not hesitate to join us.

As you may already know, there has been some unfortunate activity in the area as of late so this comes at a good time.  See the two links below:

Student Chased Down

Crime Spree in City's West-End

Regards,

Fabio Costante

Monday, November 26, 2012

Jarvis: Surmounting silos


Friends,

In case you missed it, see Windsor Star Columnist Anne Jarvis' latest article discussing how and why school boards and the city should be working together for the betterment of our community.  She discusses how the city and the school boards oftentimes move in different directions by working in silos and uses the recent Forster decision, and the impact it will have on Sandwich Town, as a case in point.

The city and the school boards can do much more by working together to advance their own interests while simultaneously advancing the interests of the broader community.  It's a win-win situation and if such a partnership existed, Forster most likely would not have been on the chopping block.


You can read the article here:  Jarvis: Surmounting silos

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Car Break-Ins

There has been some unfortunate news as of late regarding car break-ins.  One occurred last night on the 1100 block of Josephine and another on Merritt Drive, in addition to two others which occurred this past week on the 1000 block of California Ave.  Neighbours are suspecting that it's youth in the area but there is no hard evidence to absolutely prove this.

Please be on the lookout and please also notify police if you suspect anything.

Source:  West-End Residents

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Ward 2 Meeting and Forster Update

Friends,

Just a reminder that the Ward 2 meeting will be tonight at 6:30pm at the Church of Ascension.  Hope to see you all there.

As you may already know, the board of trustees voted to close Forster.  Over the past two days I have received messages and calls supporting our position to save it.  Once the dust settles, I will call a meeting and look at the options before us.  There will be more to come on the Forster decision in the near future.

Regards,
Fabio

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Saving Forster - Sandwich Town's Future Depends On It

Friends,

The closure of Forster will be a huge setback, not just to Sandwich Town, but to the entire west-end.  See my recent Windsor Star article below and please get in touch with your GECDSB Trustees and MPPs.

See my article here:  Saving Forster.

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Grafitti - 900 Block of California

I recently received this from a neighbour who lives close-by:

"Over the weekend our teal green Dodge Caravan was tagged (the hood and driver's front fender) with thick magic marker as well as more "art work" was done on the back of my garage.  I live on the 900 block of California Ave."

Source: West-end Resident

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Help Keep Forster in the West-End

Friends and West-enders:

We need your help.  As you may already know, on November 19th, the Greater Essex County District School Board will decide whether or not to close Forster Secondary School.  If they go ahead with the Director's recommendation -- to amalgamate Forster with Century -- Sandwich Town will never be the same again.  A school is the heartbeat of a community.  Forster is an integral part of the fabric of the west-end.  It would be difficult to picture our west-end without this historic landmark.  Even worse, it would be difficult to grasp the fact that no school may exist west of the bridge.

We just held our community town hall where approximately 50 - 60 residents attended (see picture below).  From current students, to parents, to folks who attended Forster back in the day, we had a great cross section of passionate and committed residents who all share one common hope: to have and to keep a high school in the west-end. If you share that same belief, please call your GECDSB Trustees and MPPs. Let them know that students west of the bridge deserve a quality school and that Sandwich Town's future depends on it.  



Regards, 

Fabio Costante 



Monday, November 5, 2012

Bridgeview Youth Outreach

Friends, 

Residents in the Bridgeview neighbourhood formed a west-end youth outreach initiative and hosted a meeting this past Sunday where Windsor Police and RCMP educated youth about drugs and drime.  Olympian boxing coach Charlie Stewart allowed us to use his gym for the meeting.  Below are some pictures I took.  There were approximately 10 kids from the Bridgeview neighbourhood present and pizza was sponsored for the meeting.

Bringing awareness and educating our youth about the implications of crime and drugs is a step forward in making our west-end a safer place for all. 

Regards, 
Fabio Costante 



Sunday, October 28, 2012

Beyond the Badge: What Windsor Wants from Police

This was a great initiative by CBC and Windsor Police.  Residents were given the opportunity to ask Police Chief, Al Frederick, questions regarding policing and crime in their neighbourhood.  I am featured at around the 5:10 mark representing the west-end.  See the link below.

Crime Strategy for the West-end

Pasta sauce cookoff benefits kids in West Windsor

I attended the pasta sauce cookoff this past Saturday and tried several delicious sauces.  A big congratulations to the Friends for Atkinson Park and Pool group, along with all of the volunteers who made the event an overwhelming success.  See the link below to learn more about the fundraiser.

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Pasta sauce cookoff benefits kids in West Windsor

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Saving Forster High School

Friends,

We are hosting a meeting on November 8 regarding the potential closure of Forster.  I hope you can make it and please spread the word with friends and neighbours.  See the communication release below.

Save the Date...Save the School...Save the Community
 
 
Re:  Forster closure
 
Please join the open public information meeting to be held on: 
 
Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 
St. John's Parish Hall
3294 Sandwich St. W. at 7 p.m.
 
This meeting will provide important information in advance of the Board's meeting November 19, 2012, which will decide the fate of Forster High School.
 
More information will be provided Thursday, November 8, 2012.
 
A full house is needed at both meetings.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Interview with CBC News

Friends,

I just completed an interview with CBC News where we walked through Sandwich Town and other neighbourhoods in the west-end.  The primary purpose of the interview was to ask the new Windsor Police Chief Al Frederick, and various other community groups on Policing, three fundamental questions:

1.  Does Windsor Police have a unique strategy specific to the west-end to reduce and eliminate crime?
2.  How can we as residents, aside from forming neighbourhood watch groups, assist Windsor Police in achieving their goals?
3.  How can we work together to change the negative perception of the west-end?

Some, if not all, of those questions will be addressed at a town hall next week featuring the new Police Chief, and other snippets may be aired on CBC News sometime in the near future.

In addition to the questions, we discussed the challenges, opportunities and strategies to make the west-end a better place to live, work and play.

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Monday, October 15, 2012

Price Chopper’s closure to create grocery vacuum

Friends,

In case you missed it, see the link below discussing the closure of Price Chopper's on Crawford and Wyandotte.  What are your thoughts regarding the closure and relocation?

Price Chopper’s closure to create grocery vacuum

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Spaghetti Dinner and Pasta Sauce Contest

Friends,

Below is an email I received regarding a fundraiser for the Friends For Atkinson Park and Pool (FFAPP) Group:

Source:  West-end Resident

"TO ALL PAST AND PRESENT SUBSIDIZED SWIMMING PARTICIPANTS...

Friends For Atkinson Park and Pool is holding a Spaghetti Sauce Competition at Holy Name of Mary Church on October 27th. Tickets for the spaghetti dinner are $10.00 for adults and children 12 and over. Tickets for children 5 years old to11 years will cost $5.00 and children 4 years old and under are free. Refreshments and baked goods will be available for an additional cost. This is a joint fund raiser with The Knights of Columbus and all monies raised by F.F.A.P.P. will go directly to our subsidized swimming program.

With the amount of publicity that we have been getting in the media for this event, we are certain that we will have a big crowd and therefore will need as much assistance as possible for clearing tables, etc. as possible.  If any of our older swimmers age 12 or older and/or their parents are available to assist (4-7 p.m.) it would be greatly appreciated.  The K of C members did acknowledge that they would love to meet some of the kids so they could put faces to our programme. They have been one of our generous supporters of the subsidized swim program and have also donated their time at the park painting the skate board park and assisting us with other events when needed.

I have attached 2 flyers inviting you to the event or inviting you to join the competition by creating your own tasty sauce to be judged by Professional Chefs  from our area. We hope to see you there.

Please contact myself or Marilyn Woodison for tickets.

Marilyn Woodison at 519 254-8624 or
Debbie Morin 519 253-8613"


Thursday, October 11, 2012

Solar Lights Stolen - 3600 block of Queen St.

Friends,

A resident who lives on the 3600 block of Queen St. had her solar lights stolen.  They were placed on her fence facing the alley.  Police were notified.  If you see or learn about anything suspicious in the neighbourhood, please report it to the police right away.

Let's continue to share relevant information to not only help our friend retrieve her stolen property, but to also make our neighbourhood safer.

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Source:  West-end Resident

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Museum in Sandwich Town

Friends,

"On Monday night, council approved a motion by Ward 2 Councillor Ron Jones the the city begin lobbying the province over the future use of the jail.  Jones has been arguing for the jail to be converted into a museum for the west side."

What are your thoughts on this?  See the link below to learn more about the status of museums in Windsor.

Windsor mayor pledges new museum by 2014

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Bridgeview Neighbourhood Watch BBQ

Friends,

Approximately 100 people attended our 1st Annual BBQ for residents who live in the Bridgeview neighbourhood in the west-end.  Windsor Police, Windsor Fire & Rescue, University Campus Police, Crime Stoppers, MADD Canada and Windsor/Essex Children's Safety Village (Neighbourhood Watch) were all present.

Below are some photos taken at the event:






Thursday, September 6, 2012

Olde Sandwich Towne Festival starts Friday

Hope to see you there! (See link below)

Olde Sandwich Towne Festival starts Friday

Crime Update - 1100 Block of Partington

Friends,

There have been a rash of break-ins recently on the 1100 block of Partington.  Please secure your homes and be on the lookout, especially if you live in that area.  Police were notified and evidence was gathered.

Source:  West-end Resident


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Break-Ins on 100 and 200 Block of Campbell

Friends,

I received a few emails from several residents notifying me that there have been several break-ins on the 100 and 200 block of Campbell.  They are in the process of forming an official Neighbourhood Watch as a consequence of such recent activities.  Let us show are utmost support and provide any help where necessary in assisting their endeavours and making their street more safer.

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Monday, September 3, 2012

Neighbourhood Watch BBQ

Friends,

I want to first wish you all a happy Labour Day.  I hope your weekend was enjoyable and relaxing.  I spent mine canoeing and portaging through Algonquin Park -- one of Canada's many great gems.

I would like to bring your attention to a BBQ that is being hosted by the Bridgeview Neighbourhood Watch team.  It will be held at North Merritt Park on Sunday, September 9, 2012 from 1pm till 3pm.

The BBQ will feature Windsor Police; Windsor Fire and Rescue; Crime Stoppers; MADD Canada; Windsor/Essex Children's Safety Village; and more...

See a fire truck and an antique police car.  Get some home safety tips and get to know your neighbours.

Open to all neighbourhood residents.

I will definitely be there and I look forward to seeing you there too.

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Seeking Volunteers to Help Repurpose Blessed Sacrament

Friends,

See my latest Windsor Star post by clicking on the link below.

Seeking Volunteers to Help Repurpose Blessed Sacrament

Regards,

Fabio Costante

Kids Library

Friends, 

I received this email below from a resident who lives on the 1100 block of Partington.  

"Hi Fabio,

I have attached a pic of my free little kids' library which I've installed in front of my house. These little libraries are catching on in Toronto and throughout the U.S. I made it because I strongly believe that raising a reader is the answer to reducing ignorance, racism, and hatred. All the years my boys were growing up i had a sign posted on our fridge that read 'the more you read, the more you know. the more you know, the further you go!'. My boys
are avid readers today and I know it is because I made it a priority in our house when they were children. I've
written that quote on one side of the library. I believe little kids naturally love books, but if the parents do not
provide access to books when they are young, chances are the children won't pick up the habit of reading for
pleasure when they're grown. 

So far I have spotted a couple of kids using the library. Maybe the idea will catch on in Windsor. I hope so.
My library is very rudimentary,(there's a photo of my cat Vixen 'reading' a book on the front),  but there are pics of some incredible ones on the net. Hope you like it!"

Source:  West-end Resident

Friday, August 17, 2012

Volunteers sought to rebuild house in West Windsor

The family of a 70-year-old woman whose West Windsor home went up in flames last year is appealing to the public for help to rebuild.

Dolores Banks spent three months in a coma from the smoke she inhaled in the Sept. 24, 2011, incident.

She was rescued from the burning house at 1199 Chappell Ave. by police officers and kept alive by paramedics.

Banks eventually recovered, but her single-storey bungalow-style home sustained more than $100,000 in damage.

Now the Banks family is asking for volunteers in an effort to renovate the decades-old house.

According to an ad placed on Kijiji.ca, Dolores and her husband Donald were denied coverage by their insurance company - "leaving their home of 50 years in desperate need of repair."

Dolores Banks is the mother of former NHL player and current Las Vegas casino host Darren Banks.

Darren Banks said the ad was placed by his sister, and his parents are currently living in an apartment on the east side.

"They lost everything in their house. All their personal belongings," Darren said on Thursday. "Nothing in the house can be rebuilt by insurance (money)."

The ad asks for the help of volunteers of any skill level - and the specific help of licensed carpenters, electricians, window installers, plumbers, tillers and drywall workers.

Anyone interested in lending their labour and expertise is asked to call 519-256-0167 or respond to the Kijiji ad via email (Ad ID 403392829).

Source: Windsor Star

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Marilyn’s Story: A Lesson on Preserving our Parks

See my latest Windsor Star post about the value of city parks and what residents can do to protect them by clicking on the link below.

Sincerely,
Fabio Costante

Marilyn’s Story: A Lesson on Preserving our Parks

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Neighbourhood Updates

Friends,

I have two updates to share:

1.  There have been a few car break-ins on the 1000 block of Rankin in the Bridgeview area.  The neighbourhood watch group is advising that if you live in this area to be aware of any suspicious activity you see.

Source: Bridgeview Neighbourhood Watch

2. All Canada Post vandalized mailboxes will be changed in Sandwich Towne.

Source: West-end Resident in Sandwich Towne

Sincerely,

Fabio Costante

Saturday, August 4, 2012

It's time for a monument to Brock and Tecumseh

Friends,

See Gord Henderson's Opinion by clicking on the link below.  This will be a fantastic development for Old Sandwich Towne.  I am 100% supportive of this initiative.

Regards,
Fabio Costante

It's time for a monument to Brock and Tecumseh

Former Bingo Parlour Converting to Dollarama on University Ave

Friends,

Firstly, I want to wish you all a happy and relaxing long weekend.  Secondly, please see an email I received from a fellow west-ender below:

"Hi Fabio, some good news. Noticed some activity at the old bingo parlour on University Ave.  Read in the Star that the building will re-open as a Dollarama in the fall. Not sure if this will replace the Dollarama at Huron Church and Tecumseh but it looks like it will be in the company's new format like the one at Devonshire Mall."


Source:  West-end Resident 


Sincerely, 
Fabio Costante 

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

A Strategy for the West-End: Our Time is Now

Friends,


Notwithstanding previous plans that focused on specific neighbourhoods, we've never had a comprehensive strategy for the west-end. Over the next 12 - 18 months, I plan to work with key stakeholders to finally address this gap. See my proposal below (click on the link) that was recently  published by The Windsor Star and please share your thoughts as we move forward.  


A Strategy for the West-End: Our Time is Now


Sincerely,


Fabio Costante

Friends for Atkinson Announcement

Dear Residents: 


I received this email from a member of the Friends for Atkinson group regarding a few items that will be coming soon: 


"1. Vendors are sought for a flea market and craft sale August 25, 2012 at Atkinson Park Riverside Drive at Bridge. Starting at 10 am, a good opportunity to sell your treasures to treasure seekers. For details call Marilyn Woodison of the Friends for Atkinson Park and Pool, 519 254 8624.

2. Kids wanted for subsidized swimming lessons. Again this year the Friends for Atkinson Park and Pool, Riverside Drive at Bridge, are subsidizing swimming lessons for local children who qualify.

Three sessions are coming up:

July 23 to August 3, August 7 to August 17 and August 20 to August 31.

For info and to register call Debbie Morin at 519 253 8613 or email Debbie at
debbiemorin@cogeco.ca."


Source:  West-End Resident 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Public Meeting Next Tuesday

Dear West-end Residents: 


Please see an email I received below from a member of the group who is hosting the meeting: 


"A citizens group concerned about the declining quality of life in the west end of Windsor have scheduled a public meeting for residential homeowners July 10, 2012, 7 pm, at Bedford United Church, 3340 Sandwich St., Windsor.

This meeting is being held to review legal options taxpayers have to combat declines in neighbourhoods, everything from by-law infractions, partying, parking and others.

A lawyer will give a presentation of how the law can be used to restore these neighbourhoods.

For details call Bob Nagy at 519 973 0978."


I will be attending the meeting.  Hope to see you there. 


Regards, 
Fabio Costante

West-end Closures

Dear Friends,

In case you missed it, it was brought to my attention that CBC covered the west-end yesterday and discussed churches, schools and business closures.  You can see the coverage by clicking on the link below.  It begins at the 3:50 mark.

http://www.cbc.ca/player/News/Canada/Windsor/ID/2253223972/

Regards,
Fabio Costante

Friday, June 22, 2012

Monday, June 18, 2012

West-End Parks

Friends,

Please see an email below that I received this morning from a west-end resident who lives on Campbell Ave. 

"Hello Fabio,

Please share this with all of your readers:

What "tough times" are they referring to??? With the new bridge announcement last Friday, I thought everyone has been trumpeting about the impending "boom times", or am I missing something?

This parks issue is a moving target--first, they claim that we cannot afford to bring these parks into compliance with an accessibility law that is not yet in force. Then they call this "surplus" parkland, pointing to the 2010 OMBI report (attached) that indicates Windsor is above the median in the measurement "All parkland in municipality as a percent of total area of municipality" (Fig.17.1). Please note, however, that we are actually below the median respecting how much parkland is available per resident: Fig. 17.2 "Hectares of maintained and natural parkland per 100,000 population".

Now we seem focussed on our parkland operating costs ($68 per capita), which are 45 % higher than the median -$47 per capita. I expect that this difference can be accounted for in the very high percentage of what the report calls "high profile parks" (Fig. 17.4). At 39% of our maintained parkland, we have the highest ratio of "high profile" parkland of any of the communities listed--85% higher than the median of 21.1%. These properties, of course, cost a great deal more to maintain than other parkland.

Before one single park is put "on the chopping block", I think we need to look hard at how selling each property will in fact effect this budget. I doubt that we will be selling off the "high profile" /costly to maintain properties, so any savings to the maintenance budget for most properties would likely be minimal, unless we are going to sell a great many of them.

This drive to eliminate neighbourhood parks seems short-sighted in the extreme. A recent report by the medical Journal the Lancet (see attached article), clearly demonstrates the relationship between green space and our health. Instead of eliminating parks because council considers them "underutilized", perhaps we should be considering how to encourage the use of these green spaces within our community.

The comments that our community is aging and the parks are no longer needed will be self-fulfilling. The closure of grade schools in the West end is now leading to the closure of a high school (no feeder school in the area) and the west end community is not attractive to young families. The loss of local recreational facilities and parks will further kill our neighbourhoods.

Please make your voice heard on this issue and connect with City Council requesting more public input to this critical issue."
 
Source:  West-End Resident

If you would ilke a copy of the mentioned report and article, please send me an email and I will send them to you accordingly.