Mayor will get to sign a letter supporting the LaSalle Park Marina search for breakwater funding.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

April 19, 2016


It took several hours but the Community and Corporate Service Standing Committee did agree to recommend that council authorize the Mayor to write letters of support for loans and grants the LaSalle Park Marina Association wants to apply for.

Councillor Jack Dennison (Ward 4) wants the letter to be strong and forceful – it will need to be – the Marina Association is looking for $12 million.


The option the LaSalle Park Marina Association hopes is chosen through the Environmental Assessment. The design will add 100 slips plus 20 available for transient use and more significantly provide a solid barrier that will allow fish stocks to return and breed and put an end to the wave agitation

John Birch, Executive Director of the LaSalle Park Marina Association , has been toiling for a number of years at getting a permanent breakwater built for Burlington. In his delegation to council last night he pointed out that Bronte has a marina that was paid for by the federal government, Kingston got a large chunk of federal money as did a number of other municipalities in the province. It is Burlington’s turn, said Birch.

It may well be – but it is going to be a tough.

Ward 2 Councillor Marianne Meed Ward was the only member of Council to vote against the writing of a letter. Her argument was that city council has not yet voted on whether or not they want to approve a expanded marina.

Trumpeter swan - magnificent creatures that many think need the marina space at LaSalle Park to survive the winters. Nonsense according the Marina Association.

Trumpeter swan – magnificent creatures that many think need the marina space at LaSalle Park to survive the winters.

Meed Ward felt that a letter at this time was premature and inappropriate. One citizen wondered how council would react if Birch was able to raise the funds needed – would the city be able to see beyond all that funding and make the best decision for the city.

Birch points out that Burlington is a waterfront community – he got that part right.

The Trumpeter Swan Coalition, they don’t want the expanded marina built and point out that a waterfront community means making space for not just boats but for the swans as well.

Save media that mattersThere were some very good delegations made – the Gazette will report on these in more depth at a later date.

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6 comments to Mayor will get to sign a letter supporting the LaSalle Park Marina search for breakwater funding.

  • Lonely Taxpayer

    $12 million for Loans and Grants… (1) Know that if the estimate is $12M, the final cost is often double. (2) Loans need to be paid back. Who pays these loans back? The taxpayer. (3) Grants come from the government (i.e. the taxpayer). (4) Donations from the public earn a tax receipt – hitting the taxpayer once again. (5) If council signs off on a letter – how do they “un-sign” when the costs come in?

    If the federal government is willing to invest 12M of the their 100B infrastructure funding into this project – go for it. Otherwise it will be invested elsewhere outside Burlington.

  • Maggie

    I have to agree with JQ regarding the location of the marina and John the city has little to gain by supporting LPMA. This marina, while pleasant for members does little to help the city. It certainly does not bring in outside revenue. As both a boat owner and a travel writer, I do not consider LaSalle Park Marina a destination I would stop at for long, certainly not overnight. If I was coming into the bay I would go the small extra distance to Hamilton which has much more to offer. Besides the park which offers all types of entertainment on a regular basis, boaters are in easy walking distance of restaurants and two good marine stores. Its not far to downtown. There is a bus or a cab ride is less than $10. A cab from LaSalle to downtown would be close to $20. Walking to downtown Hamilton is also an option, I’ve done it more than once.
    Bronte Harbour has shops and restaurants to offer transient boaters as does Oakville or Port Credit. Why would someone from out of town choose LaSalle when there are better options. Who is going to fill up those 20 transient slips.
    There is the environmental issues to consider as well, in particular the trumpeter swans.
    Yes Burlington is known as a waterfront city. If the city were to consider a decent marina downtown then helping to fund it might make economic sense, but not at LaSalle.

  • JQ Public

    Just because other communities got federal and provincial funding for private marinas does not mean we in Burlington should belly up to the same trough and expect our own taxpayer dollars back to cover an unnecessary expense like this. LaSalle Park is an isolated park not on a natural river outlet and nowhere near the downtown, like other city marinas mentioned.

    This public funding for private facilities has got to stop somewhere. Unfortunately Burlington City Council buys the same old stale arguments and bends over backwards to help. Shame on them. Luckily one Councillor has the sense to object, but to no avail.

    Editor’s note: It is not a private marina. The dock is public and anyone can rent the use of the facilities. – just the way anyone can rent the recreation centre facilities.

    • JQ Public

      I beg to differ. The wharf etc. as you mention is all public. I never said it wasn’t. The marina is private, as I stated. Enhancing the private marina will do nothing for the public aspect of this shoreline and park.

      • Mike Ettlewood

        Absolutely correct JQ. Try putting your boat in one of the Marina slips if you are not a member. Methinks that Mr. Parr was splitting hairs.

    • John

      JQ, I think you have misunderstood what committee has recommended.

      They have simply recommended to council the Mayor sign a letter supporting the LPMA efforts when applying for funding.
      The city has not committed to funding this marina, they will determine what is best for the city if and when the LPMA is successful with their efforts.

      You are correct, federal and provincial funding is also our money however, do you honestly believe the money won’t be spent if the LPMA does not apply ?

      Thankfully most of council and the mayor understands the city has a significant facility to gain and nothing to loose by supporting the LPMA.