Hudson residents provide feedback at community consultation meeting
Tim Brody - Editor
Residents of Hudson were invited to provide feedback to Municipal representatives on the future of the Lost Lake Drop-In Centre and the possibility of having Hub Transit service in Hudson, at a community consultation which took place at the Hudson Community Hall on the evening of Feb. 16.
Approximately 25 people attended the meeting.
Hudson residents expressed an interest in having Hub Transit service for the community, asking questions about how often the service might visit Hudson, cost to use the transportation service, what barriers there might be to getting the service in place.
Hudson residents had been invited to complete a Hub Transit Survey that was mailed the week of Jan. 27 as means to garner additional public input.
Brian P. MacKinnon, Municipal Manager of Corporate Services/ Municipal Clerk, shared next steps regarding the municipally operated Hub Transit service, “At this point we’re just looking at providing an update to the community in terms of confirming we heard their input and looking at some potential enhancements to the service, so that’s what we hope to provide in about a month’s time.”
Jody Brinkman, Municipal Manager of Development Services, shared at the meeting that the Lost Lake Drop-In Centre was in poor condition. At the Jan. 18 Regular Council Meeting, Brinkman had provided Council with some options regarding the future of the centre.
Alternative #1 Remove the mold affected materials in the basement, clean and disinfect any mold affected structural components of the building. Install dehumidifiers in the basement and monitor the condition of the foundation walls. Inspect the basement after all rainfall events; take the measures necessary to dry the space after such events.
Alternative #2 Replace the foundation walls, replace all deteriorated floor joists and rim joists, install damp proofing to an elevation above the exterior grade. Remove the mold affected materials in the basement, clean and disinfect any mold affected structural components of the building.
Alternative #3 Demolish the building and return the site to a clean and graded state.
Alternative #4 Demolish the building and return the site to a clean and graded state. Provide space at the Hudson Community Centre or suitable alternative for the Senior’s Centre space at the Hudson Community Centre or suitable alternative for the Senior’s Centre. End lease with current tenant and provide assistance in finding a suitable alternative. Renovations can be completed to the Hudson Community Centre to provide a suitable space for the Senior’s Centre, which doesn’t limit the ability to utilize the hall for meetings, socials or wedding receptions. The kitchen and washroom area need some upgrading and creating a usable space outside of the hall area.
Alternative #5 Construct a new similar sized building with a full basement in the current parking lot for the Lost Lake Centre. Once complete demolish the existing Centre and develop a new off-street parking area for the newly constructed Lost Lake Centre. Constructing a smaller building or a pre-fabricated structure on a crawlspace could reduce the overall cost significantly and still provide a suitable space.
At the Jan. 18 Regular Council Meeting, Council directed staff to consult with the residents of Hudson regarding their needs and wants for a community centre, and seek input on an interim location; and further Council directed staff to explore a possible partnership with the Sioux Lookout Area Aboriginal Management Board (SLAAMB) for the construction of a new community centre in Hudson; and further Council directed staff to allocate $10,000 in the 2023 operating budget to undertake repairs to the Lost Lake Drop-in Centre to ensure the environmental safety of the building until an alternate or new location is found; and further Council directed staff to report back to Council following its consultations with the local residents and SLAAMB.
Residents of Hudson spoke of the importance of the Lost Lake Drop-In Centre in the community as a gathering place for community events, socializing, and the importance of the food pantry recently established to assist with food security in the community.
Hudson residents said they wished to keep such a building in the community in an easy to access location.
MacKinnon shared with regards to feedback received about the Lost Lake Drop-In Centre, “The next step will be to take the feedback received this evening and that will result in a report to Council and then Council will take that input and make some final decisions. One of the things to keep in mind is that for the interim, as Jody mentioned, Council did authorize a $10,000 expenditure in the budget to sort of do the immediate things that need to be done to ensure the building is safe for continued use until a final decision is made with respect to the future.”
Hudson residents were asked their thoughts on the meeting.
Former Hudson Ward Councillor Don Fenelon said he was surprised to see so many people in attendance for the meeting. He said the discussion reminded him of a past input gathering meeting held about 10 – 15 years ago plotting Hudson’s future.
Bob Starratt shared, “Astounded actually by the turnout. I was really pleased with that. It went well, I think. People certainly had options to ask all the questions they wanted and the answers were pretty reasonable and educated answers.”
Kathy Storey stated, “I thought it was good. They seemed willing to work with us. They gave us options. I was very happy with the turnout. And yeah, I think we can work together and come up with up with a solution.”
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