KBIA Ambassador: Week 5 in Review
Starting the second half of my journey with the KBIA, this week was one that threw me for a bit of a loop in terns of my job responsibilities.
It’s not that my responsibilities varied a whole lot from previous weeks but this week was the first where I experienced a significant amount of pushback from the business owners in the area regarding the organization that I work for.
At the start of my week, which was a Tuesday this time around, I began doing the same tasks I had been doing for the last month. I beautified the area in the morning – picking up litter and disposing of it, as usual. In addition, I spent a good amount of time talking to people, just like I do every week.
Where this week got very different was when I started to go around with a reminder pertaining to setting up booths for Binder Twine – an event that I unfortunately wont be around to experience. As I started to circulate this reminder, I was met with significant apprehensiveness from many business owners that escalated above the particular event I was there to discuss. In other words, business owners did not only have things to say about the booths but they similarly started to question the entire purpose of the BIA more generally.
I had a few prolific voices that complained for a significant amount of time that the BIA wasn’t really doing much for them and, being that I am just a summer student, I wasn’t able to field their questions as well as I might have hoped. Still, the reality of having to take in complaints without being able to answer them and then relay the complaints to the BIA was an experience that I was largely unfamiliar with. I felt that I dealt with it pretty well but it was surely something that was unique to this particular week at work.
Furthermore, this week also included a meeting with the KBIA, which was the second and last of my tenure here. Unlike last time around, however, I was able to stay for nearly an hour and a half this week, which provided me a great opportunity to listen in on how a meeting for this type of organization works.
It was interesting to see the agenda that the meeting had to run through and see how many different things such a seemingly small organization dealt with on a monthly basis. I had never been at a meeting like this for such a length of time and the learning experience was quite a productive one.
The last prominent part of my week included something the BIA referred to as “asset mapping”, a concept focused on finding and plotting all city owned assets within the designated boundary – from Nashville and Highway 27 over to Islington and Nashville then down to Islington and Major Mackenzie.
I didn’t get too far into this task this week but asset mapping is surely one of the more interesting things I have done in my time here. To go around and find all the city-owned property around here – from bollards to electrical boxes and so on – is a time consuming task but one that opened my eyes to many different things around Kleinburg.
For example, as I was plotting all the bollards on Nashville road this week, I became even more aware of their role in the local parking problem around downtown Kleinburg. Seeing the amount of bollards that exist in just that small stretch showed me why so many people complain about parking here and opened my eyes to a significant issue in this community. The bollards are a prominent and well-understood problem here already but this asset mapping task finally allowed me to truly appreciate the severity of this problem while providing me the opportunity make note of it to pass on through the BIA.
All in all, I think this week was another great one for me as a summer student with the BIA. Once again, I look forward to what the future has in store because this role keeps changing and I have no idea what the future will hold for me.