5 Things They Can Build in the Parking Lots at Square One

The amount of Square One parking in City Centre is too damn high. The sprawling lots -- which might occupy more square footage than the mall itself -- monopolize ample space that could be used for any number of exceptionally fun and cool facilities. I know, I know -- we're a driving city and we need places to park our Pussy Wagons (that's a dated Kill Bill reference, by the way) when we spend a day buying things at Wal-Mart and Forever 21. So let's imagine, for a beautiful moment, that we have good public transport and walkability and can afford to replace acres of concrete with cool buildings.

Here are five things that would be better than a million parking lots, in no particular order.

Hershey Centre/Sport Arena

I don't have much (re: any) reason to hit up the Hershey Centre because I am indifferent to 99.9 per cent of athletic activities, but I am in the minority and sports fans in Mississauga would greatly benefit from a central sports arena. It would be great to be able to walk to a restaurant after a big game. Also, imagine you're a loving a parent whose kid plays hockey. You dutifully take him or her to every game and practice, but the hour or more spent in the icy arena is boring and you're tired of hearing other parents screech about Steven needing a penalty because Steven is 7-years-old and skates like a newborn moose learning to walk and no one cares about these trivial injustices (least of all you). How happy would you be if you could walk to the mall and get a latte at Aroma? Exactly.

A St. Lawrence Market

Sauga is fortunate to have a few pop-up farmer's markets in the warmer months, but a permanent and covered market would be far superior to an austere concrete parkade that you can never find a spot in anyways. When you visit the St. Lawrence Market downtown, you can spend well into the double digits on delectable raw buffalo mozzarella cheese and then walk to a selection of chic restaurants. I want to leave my condo, drop $18 on cheese and then walk to a cool tapas restaurant with exposed brick interior and rose sangria. I can't do that right now and it's not fair. Would all of you kind readers bring this request to the city/all relevant entrepreneurs on my behalf? Thanks in advance.

More Outdoor Space

A small dog park/enclosure stands in front of One Park Tower on Confederation Parkway. It's a nice addition to the street, but it's remarkably tiny. If there were fewer lots in the neighbourhood, there would be more room for sprawling outdoor space geared towards animals and humans alike. Imagine you've just gone on a successful first or second (or 10th) date at a resto or cafe and want to top the night off with a scenic walk through some weeping willows. Well, you can't do that -- not unless you drive down to the Lakeshore or Erindale Park. You can't share a romantic outdoorsy make-out session or scandalous tree trunk hookup because of parking lots. You should be furious. All those Honda Civics are preventing you from expressing your love and sexuality in the woods as nature intended.

An Urban Strip

If you want to wander from shop to shop or cafe to cafe, you have to go to Streetsville or Port Credit. It would be great if the numerous City Centre dwellers could step outside of their condos and walk along an outdoor strip dotted with cool shops selling esoteric things like infused olive oils (for people like me who are too lazy to put a jalapeno in a bottle), cafes with chalkboard menus and baristas with man buns and interesting restaurants selling, like, savory pies and rosemary and basil-infused baked goods (not gluten-free though, that shit is overdone) and Malaysian/Spanish/Congolese fusion wraps.

An Indoor Water Park

About a year ago there was developer that was going on all the news stations saying that there will be a new indoor water park that will be built in 2015 in the GTA and Mississauga was a possible location. Since then we have not heard from the developer but I for one would think it would be great to build something that people can use all year round since 8 months out of the year the outside is freezing. The indoor and outdoor water park would cost $60 million and will open in the fall of 2016, MarbleLIVE, the developer group behind the project. The 100,000-square-foot park would offer a retractable roof, sandy beaches, wave pools, cabanas, restaurants, a lazy river, vendors, and live entertainment. I'm down for this!

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