I would like to express my gratitude to Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes and to the Engineering Department at the District of Saanich. This is due to the work that is being done, and nearly completed, for the crossing at Blenkinsop Road and Judge Place.
In January 2019, I ran into Mayor Haynes at the Chinese New Year Celebration being held at the University of Victoria’s Farquhar Auditorium. My daughter had just performed a pas-de-deux (ballet duet) choreographed by Kim Breland of Stages Performing Arts School for this occasion. The mayor and his wife approached my daughter, her dance partner and myself after the show to express their appreciation for the performance. Very graciously, the mayor handed me his card and said: “If there is anything I can do for you, let me know.”
A few days later I emailed Mayor Haynes, thanking him for taking the time to stop and congratulate my daughter, and then asking him to consider giving the matter of adding a crosswalk across Blenkinsop Road at Judge his attention.
Pedestrians already cross there frequently, and there have been two petitions over the years but Saanich’s Engineering Department has never approved it.
I was delighted to hear back, almost immediately, that he was looking into this matter, and then a few days later, that this project was going to be fast-tracked.
I dropped by the site today to thank the crew that is doing the work. I spoke to the gentleman that is controlling the access to the site to let him know how grateful I am. He told me that he couldn’t believe the number of people dropping by to do the very same thing.
I am bringing this to your attention because I think this is a good example of democracy in action, showing how people in the community, rather than ideology, can drive change for a common good. This is also a good example of how fine arts can bring people together that would otherwise not have had the chance to speak together about an issue.