A definition of "infrastructure" is the fundamental facilities and systems serving
a country, city, town or village, including the services and facilities necessary
for its economy to function. Infrastructure is composed of public and private physical
improvements such as roads, bridges, tunnels, harbours, parks, sidewalks, parking,
water supply, sewers, electrical grids, telecommunications and more. It has also
been defined as "the physical components of interrelated systems providing commodities
and services essential to enable, sustain, or enhance societal living conditions."
Infrastructure forms the backbone of our economy and society. It connects people
and businesses, powers our homes and industry and facilitates our access to the
world. It directly contributes to the productivity of our workforce which makes
our standard of living even possible. Continual investment in and renewal of our
infrastructure stock is critical to promoting the competitiveness and prosperity
of where we live and work.
Issues that effect our lives more often than not can be directly related to an infrastructure
problem of some kind. Causes can range from just not available, to poor design or
outdated requiring an update. Whatever the issue, whatever the cause can be a reason
for change, but just spending money on it doesn't always get the best bang for your
buck. Projects with decades-long impacts are too often chosen based on politics
rather than on good policy or planning. Some people advocate the complete separation
of elected leaders from project choices because some politicians are too easily
swayed by short-term political factors.
Close examination of some of Port Stanley's infrastructure has now become a very
public matter of interest. Because of the age of the village much of the existing
infrastructure in the older areas of the village were designed for a different era,
and changes to maintain, update and comply with newer standards, and growth has
been an ongoing challenge that has been very difficult for local government to meet.
Expectations are always high and there always seems to be an easy solution to fix
any problem, but finding that best solution that is not just a band-aid placed on
the problem till the next election is the one that I'm looking for!