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Letters to the editor, October 2, 2014 

These are the letters and comments from the print edition

Over the lanes

On Friday, September 12, the Province of Nova Scotia announced $150,000 in funding for new bike lanes which will mean the loss of 43 parking spots on University Avenue, from Robie Street to the quad at the end of the Dalhousie campus. There will be permanent barriers erected on the four blocks, ensuring the safety of cyclists. This means fewer parking spaces for the users of the Dalhousie Arts Centre, Halifax's premiere performing arts centre and the home of Symphony Nova Scotia. Spaces in front of the Public Archives building will also be eliminated, possibly as early as the end of September, once council passes this initiative on Tuesday evening.

I support bikes and increasing safety for them, but I do not support taking away parking, taxi stands and disabled parking for the Rebecca Cohn Auditorium and the Public Archives. Plus, by the time cyclists reach the four-block lanes on campus, they have already reached their destination, and could walk their bikes for a block to park in a rack.

On a cold winter's night in February, when over 1,000 people are attempting to find parking to attend Symphony Nova Scotia, a dance show or other cultural event, I don't think we are going to see many cyclists using the bike lanes. Why not make the lanes for bikes during daytime hours only? Anything that decreases parking for the many people from all parts of HRM who attend the Cohn will have a negative affect on the performing arts.—Peggy Walt, Halifax

Potato bugs

Growing patchouli provides an income to the farmers, that's been established ("Potatoes, not patchouli, for the people of Rwanda," Voice of the City by Rylan Higgins, September 25). If these same farmers switch to potatoes, where are their paycheques going to come from? From the poor starving masses who can't afford to buy food at the local markets?

"A bottle of Patchouli of Rwanda, furthermore, sells for $70 at Hudson's Bay. What percentage of that likely ends up in the hands of Rwandan farmers?"Good question—maybe one that should have been addressed in the article? So is this an actual example of wealth extraction or is it just a fictionalized opinion?

"One scholar sees worrisome similarities between the current leadership and those who ruled the country when violence erupted in the 1990s." One whole scholar.

I did enjoy this article but am still left with the opinion that Barb Stegemann is doing much more good than harm and will continue bringing positive change to a country that certainly needs it. —posted by nukka at thecoast.ca

Whine arts

Jack Wong thinks he's a radical, but really he's just a petty censorious party-pooper ("The end of the Microgallery," Arts by Stephanie Johns, September 18). According to his online CV, it's Eyelevel Gallery's board that he sits on: what's wrong with this picture? —posted by Jane Kansas

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