City councillor happy dilapidated Forster neighbourhood has been made a federal issue

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The councillor for Windsor's Ward 2 is pleased with the spotlight being put on the neighbourhood around the former Forster Secondary School.

Fabio Costante is applauding federal Liberal candidate Sandra Pupatello's pledge to revitalize the area if elected as he calls it, "the single most important issue in the west end."

The former high school on Felix Ave. is owned by the Ambassador Bridge Company and surrounded by a number of boarded up and derelict homes.

Costante says whoever wins the election should make the issue a top priority.

"Whichever candidate pledges to work with the community, consult with the community and really tackle this issue, that's something that certainly we all welcome, but it's a very complicated and convoluted issue. It's been a long-standing, almost 15 or so year issue," he said.

Costante says the city has done all it can at this point and could use some help from upper levels of government.

"The city has retained counsel to negotiate with the bridge company," he continued. "So those discussions have been going on for several years through our legal counsel. Then there's the remaining question on the remaining boarded up homes."

Costante says the bridge company could use a push as it's been dragging its feet for years.

"Now the bridge company has, for 15 years, been provided this opportunity to tell the city what they want to do with respect to tearing down homes and rebuilding or if they want to restore certain homes and they've not done any of that. So, really, the ball is in their court."

Pupatello made the campaign promise earlier this week stating the area around the former high school should not be left to rot.

She's seeking the Windsor-West seat against Conservative Anthony Orlando, Matt Giancola from the People's Party of Canada, Margaret Villamizar of the Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada and incumbent Brian Masse from the New Democrats.

The federal election is slated for September 20.