As we progress through the latest "revitalization" process for Windsor, there is one thing that should be considered about some of the ideas being bandied about. First and foremost, the City can be the catalyst of any project and offer support in terms of planning and implementation, but in no way should the City be owners/operators of any venture.
The London Fog documents the on-going saga in London with Storybook Gardens, purchased by the City of London in 2003. They invested $7 million dollars into the failing venture in 2003 and have lost another $1 million since then.
Windsor has plenty of it's own examples when it comes to white elephants with the Cleary and Canderel leading the pack. Municipalities exist to provide services and infrastructure to their citizens, not play business owner, operator or developer.
In Windsor we own golf courses and marinas, but can't fund appropriate library services. Roseland reportedly makes money, as it's currently reported to the public, but does it really? The City never factors in the staff time to oversee the operation, not to mention Councillor's time as members of the board.
If the Mayor and Councillors want to be entrepreneurs they should do it with their own money, not taxpayers.