As of late, the escarpment area has been in the news. Over and over we hear and read, “No one was forced to sell.” This statement is less than the half truth.
As we were the displaced people, we would like to make the rest of the story perfectly clear to the public.
In 1974 the federal government allocated $2 million to purchase or expropriate over 90 homes along the escarpment. There was a three-year plan. It went as follows:
Year 1: $800,000 for those who were willing to sell.
Year 2: $608,000 to purchase those properties which appear to be in the greatest danger.
Year 3: $592,000 for actual expropriation proceedings which would be initiated if properties could not be acquired otherwise.
In return the city was to ensure the escarpment was stabilized. The area was to become green space “for all to enjoy.”
The following city councils did not complete the three-year mandate nor did they do any work on the escarpment. The money, however, was spent.
Now it is claimed that the lots are safe and can be resold. Had we known that the following councils would not meet the mandate, we might still be in our homes.
For anyone wishing more information from this era, signed copies of some of the correspondence is available to confirm the above.
To the three councillors that voted against selling the two lots on Ogilvie Street, thanks – you made the right decision.
C.T. Stark C. and A. Repka