GTAA officials cancel Etobicoke airport workshop same day

News Jun 29, 2017 by Tamara Shephard Etobicoke Guardian

Toronto Pearson airport officials cancelled an Etobicoke public workshop about its future growth plans with just hours’ notice  on Wednesday, June 28.

Officials with the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA), which operates Toronto Pearson International Airport, said 61 people preregistered to attend the public forum.

Officials said they learned Wednesday about an “extensive promotion to area residents” by some person or group in the community, which did not include the link to register, prompting concerns the Assembly Hall venue could not accommodate the potential crowd.

The performance hall at the city-owned and operated the Assembly Hall, on Lake Shore Boulevard West at Kipling Avenue, has a capacity of 254 people for theatre seating and 120 people for banquet seating, the city website indicates.

“We learned today from friends and family in the community that there had been an extensive outreach asking people to attend tonight’s meeting with no information included about the need to preregister,” Erin Kennedy, GTAA spokesperson, said outside the Assembly Hall.

Kennedy said on Wednesday, GTAA staff emailed the 61 residents who preregistered for the forum to inform them the airport workshop had been rescheduled.

The Etobicoke airport workshop will now take place on Tuesday, July 11 at 6:30 p.m. at the Toronto Congress Centre, 650 Dixon Rd.

The GTAA is required to conduct master planning every 10 years as part of its lease agreement, Kennedy said.

A reporter observed a handful of residents approach the Assembly Hall on Wednesday night between 6:20 and 7 p.m. The meeting had been scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m.

Mississauga resident Dave Street, who lives near the Etobicoke border, expressed anger at the GTAA’s decision to cancel the meeting.

“It’s atrocious that (the GTAA) get away with this,” Street said outside the front door of the Assembly Hall. “This is what happens when you have a group of people who don’t have to answer to anybody but themselves.”

Etobicoke Centre MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj and Mississauga East-Cooksville MP Peter Fonseca also expressed outrage at the GTAA’s decision to cancel the meeting.

Wrzesnewskyj said GTAA officials “should know the community are active on this file,” referring to Pearson airport and its operations.

“At the last CENAC (GTAA’s community environment and noise advisory committee) meeting, there were 150 people in the room,” Wrzesnewskyj said. “It was an overflow crowd. People from Etobicoke have concerns and want to attend these meetings.”

An April 21 Guardian article reported more than 150 people — “a standing-room-only crowd of Etobicoke and Mississauga residents impacted by noise levels some described as house-shaking” attended that April 19 meeting of GTAA’s noise committee.

That article reported Hillary Marshall, VP of stakeholder relations and communications, acknowledged the grievances of the Etobicoke and Mississauga residents and apologized for the noise from a spike in overhead planes due to work on “Canada’s busiest runway” — Pearson airport’s Runway 05/23.

“Whether they anticipate 60 or 100 or 200 people, you can’t prepare for that? That’s unacceptable,” Wrzesnewskyj said.

Fonseca was blunt in his criticism of GTAA officials.

“There is a lack of trust and accountability,” Fonseca said of the GTAA. “The trust has eroded.”

Both Wrzesnewskyj and Fonseca criticized the choice of the Toronto Congress Centre for the rescheduled meeting, charging it is far-removed from their communities and from many residents engaged and interested in airport issues.

Wednesday night’s meeting was the third of five scheduled public airport workshops being held by the GTAA across the Greater Toronto Area.

GTAA officials cancel Etobicoke airport workshop same day

GTAA officials said overcapacity concerns prompted decision after community flyer didn't include registration information; MPs cry foul

News Jun 29, 2017 by Tamara Shephard Etobicoke Guardian

Toronto Pearson airport officials cancelled an Etobicoke public workshop about its future growth plans with just hours’ notice  on Wednesday, June 28.

Officials with the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA), which operates Toronto Pearson International Airport, said 61 people preregistered to attend the public forum.

Officials said they learned Wednesday about an “extensive promotion to area residents” by some person or group in the community, which did not include the link to register, prompting concerns the Assembly Hall venue could not accommodate the potential crowd.

The performance hall at the city-owned and operated the Assembly Hall, on Lake Shore Boulevard West at Kipling Avenue, has a capacity of 254 people for theatre seating and 120 people for banquet seating, the city website indicates.

“We learned today from friends and family in the community that there had been an extensive outreach asking people to attend tonight’s meeting with no information included about the need to preregister,” Erin Kennedy, GTAA spokesperson, said outside the Assembly Hall.

Kennedy said on Wednesday, GTAA staff emailed the 61 residents who preregistered for the forum to inform them the airport workshop had been rescheduled.

The Etobicoke airport workshop will now take place on Tuesday, July 11 at 6:30 p.m. at the Toronto Congress Centre, 650 Dixon Rd.

The GTAA is required to conduct master planning every 10 years as part of its lease agreement, Kennedy said.

A reporter observed a handful of residents approach the Assembly Hall on Wednesday night between 6:20 and 7 p.m. The meeting had been scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m.

Mississauga resident Dave Street, who lives near the Etobicoke border, expressed anger at the GTAA’s decision to cancel the meeting.

“It’s atrocious that (the GTAA) get away with this,” Street said outside the front door of the Assembly Hall. “This is what happens when you have a group of people who don’t have to answer to anybody but themselves.”

Etobicoke Centre MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj and Mississauga East-Cooksville MP Peter Fonseca also expressed outrage at the GTAA’s decision to cancel the meeting.

Wrzesnewskyj said GTAA officials “should know the community are active on this file,” referring to Pearson airport and its operations.

“At the last CENAC (GTAA’s community environment and noise advisory committee) meeting, there were 150 people in the room,” Wrzesnewskyj said. “It was an overflow crowd. People from Etobicoke have concerns and want to attend these meetings.”

An April 21 Guardian article reported more than 150 people — “a standing-room-only crowd of Etobicoke and Mississauga residents impacted by noise levels some described as house-shaking” attended that April 19 meeting of GTAA’s noise committee.

That article reported Hillary Marshall, VP of stakeholder relations and communications, acknowledged the grievances of the Etobicoke and Mississauga residents and apologized for the noise from a spike in overhead planes due to work on “Canada’s busiest runway” — Pearson airport’s Runway 05/23.

“Whether they anticipate 60 or 100 or 200 people, you can’t prepare for that? That’s unacceptable,” Wrzesnewskyj said.

Fonseca was blunt in his criticism of GTAA officials.

“There is a lack of trust and accountability,” Fonseca said of the GTAA. “The trust has eroded.”

Both Wrzesnewskyj and Fonseca criticized the choice of the Toronto Congress Centre for the rescheduled meeting, charging it is far-removed from their communities and from many residents engaged and interested in airport issues.

Wednesday night’s meeting was the third of five scheduled public airport workshops being held by the GTAA across the Greater Toronto Area.

GTAA officials cancel Etobicoke airport workshop same day

GTAA officials said overcapacity concerns prompted decision after community flyer didn't include registration information; MPs cry foul

News Jun 29, 2017 by Tamara Shephard Etobicoke Guardian

Toronto Pearson airport officials cancelled an Etobicoke public workshop about its future growth plans with just hours’ notice  on Wednesday, June 28.

Officials with the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA), which operates Toronto Pearson International Airport, said 61 people preregistered to attend the public forum.

Officials said they learned Wednesday about an “extensive promotion to area residents” by some person or group in the community, which did not include the link to register, prompting concerns the Assembly Hall venue could not accommodate the potential crowd.

The performance hall at the city-owned and operated the Assembly Hall, on Lake Shore Boulevard West at Kipling Avenue, has a capacity of 254 people for theatre seating and 120 people for banquet seating, the city website indicates.

“We learned today from friends and family in the community that there had been an extensive outreach asking people to attend tonight’s meeting with no information included about the need to preregister,” Erin Kennedy, GTAA spokesperson, said outside the Assembly Hall.

Kennedy said on Wednesday, GTAA staff emailed the 61 residents who preregistered for the forum to inform them the airport workshop had been rescheduled.

The Etobicoke airport workshop will now take place on Tuesday, July 11 at 6:30 p.m. at the Toronto Congress Centre, 650 Dixon Rd.

The GTAA is required to conduct master planning every 10 years as part of its lease agreement, Kennedy said.

A reporter observed a handful of residents approach the Assembly Hall on Wednesday night between 6:20 and 7 p.m. The meeting had been scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m.

Mississauga resident Dave Street, who lives near the Etobicoke border, expressed anger at the GTAA’s decision to cancel the meeting.

“It’s atrocious that (the GTAA) get away with this,” Street said outside the front door of the Assembly Hall. “This is what happens when you have a group of people who don’t have to answer to anybody but themselves.”

Etobicoke Centre MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj and Mississauga East-Cooksville MP Peter Fonseca also expressed outrage at the GTAA’s decision to cancel the meeting.

Wrzesnewskyj said GTAA officials “should know the community are active on this file,” referring to Pearson airport and its operations.

“At the last CENAC (GTAA’s community environment and noise advisory committee) meeting, there were 150 people in the room,” Wrzesnewskyj said. “It was an overflow crowd. People from Etobicoke have concerns and want to attend these meetings.”

An April 21 Guardian article reported more than 150 people — “a standing-room-only crowd of Etobicoke and Mississauga residents impacted by noise levels some described as house-shaking” attended that April 19 meeting of GTAA’s noise committee.

That article reported Hillary Marshall, VP of stakeholder relations and communications, acknowledged the grievances of the Etobicoke and Mississauga residents and apologized for the noise from a spike in overhead planes due to work on “Canada’s busiest runway” — Pearson airport’s Runway 05/23.

“Whether they anticipate 60 or 100 or 200 people, you can’t prepare for that? That’s unacceptable,” Wrzesnewskyj said.

Fonseca was blunt in his criticism of GTAA officials.

“There is a lack of trust and accountability,” Fonseca said of the GTAA. “The trust has eroded.”

Both Wrzesnewskyj and Fonseca criticized the choice of the Toronto Congress Centre for the rescheduled meeting, charging it is far-removed from their communities and from many residents engaged and interested in airport issues.

Wednesday night’s meeting was the third of five scheduled public airport workshops being held by the GTAA across the Greater Toronto Area.