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Cambridge urban cores
#1
I hesitated to open a new thread, but I saw an article in the Record about whether Cambridge's downtown(s) should be made heritage districts.  The discussion is spurred by an apparently bad cladding of the red brick Merchants Bank building along the river in Galt, next to the old Post Office.  The article has "before and after pictures" and, indeed, the "after" seems hard to digest.  Unfortunately, the property owner did not respond to the Record's request for an interview, so there is no indication of why the new cladding was required (deterioration of the brick?  water infiltration?  need for insulation?  the metal siding was on sale?).

It will be interesting to see whether this generates discussion in Cambridge.  I don't know to what extent individual buildings in downtown Galt have heritage protection, but the idea of protecting the entire area seems worthy of discussion, at least.

http://www.therecord.com/news-story/7053...istricts-/
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#2
It does look terrible, I agree, but I hate the idea of bringing in another layer of control over what people can do on their own property.
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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#3
Wow, that's brutal.

I agree with Canard though, controlling what people can do is not the answer. Even more so in this case because there is a LOT in all three Cambridge cores that shouldn't be protected.
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#4
The cladding is the least of the problems at that address.
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I used to be the mayor of sim city. I know what I am talking about.
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#5
(01-08-2017, 09:57 AM)Drake Wrote: The cladding is the least of the problems at that address.

Bad building?
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#6
The problem with making them heritage districts is that it's too late. There are already too many buildings that don't really qualify as heritage (the TD bank in Preston, Cambridge Place in Galt). What would be better is targeting the heritage buildings themselves and putting in new regulations to protect them specifically - and regularly review what's on the list with temporary protection put on buildings that might qualify in future.
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#7
(01-08-2017, 10:00 AM)panamaniac Wrote:
(01-08-2017, 09:57 AM)Drake Wrote: The cladding is the least of the problems at that address.

Bad building?

Sorry to be vague. My limited experience with that building left me with the conclusion that it was poorly maintained and run like a soon to be slum. The apartments on the 2nd floor are pretty rough and reminded me of the debacle on Weber St that caused all the drama and eventual closure.
_____________________________________
I used to be the mayor of sim city. I know what I am talking about.
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#8
I really fear for designating core areas in a blanket of heritage. These are the areas that are supposed to be the focal point of a city, where growth and renewal is strongest. I fear that such designations choke off an area, and if the cores of Cambridge were to be closed off to development, Cambridge itself would likely follow the path of Mississauga of all but the last little while, with little urbanization, primarily becoming a suburban sprawl farm, and with people gradually becoming as unaware of Hespeler, Preston, and Galt as Mississauga's residents are of Streetsville.
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#9
A better solution would be to designate the area of heritage interest (but not necessarily a lock-stock-and-barrel blanket heritage district) and to make funding and expertise available to property owners who wish to repair their property. Cambridge has been lucky enough to have areas where there is decent urban fabric that preserves some of its historic character. It's no mistake that film crews are more likely to film in the downtown cores of Cambridge than elsewhere in the region.
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#10
How much power do municipalities have in terms of setting/enforcing design standards for areas without heritage designation? It seems like not enough.....
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#11
(01-09-2017, 09:24 AM)Viewfromthe42 Wrote: I really fear for designating core areas in a blanket of heritage. These are the areas that are supposed to be the focal point of a city, where growth and renewal is strongest. I fear that such designations choke off an area, and if the cores of Cambridge were to be closed off to development, Cambridge itself would likely follow the path of Mississauga of all but the last little while, with little urbanization, primarily becoming a suburban sprawl farm, and with people gradually becoming as unaware of Hespeler, Preston, and Galt as Mississauga's residents are of Streetsville.

Since when were Mississauga residents unaware of Streetsville?

We still have a lot of area available for redevelopment. The whole of the Hespeler Road area between Industrial and Franklin, for starters. A lighter touch will be necessary in the old districts to avoid overwhelming them. It's harder to add density to areas where the roads are already well over the capacity they were designed to sustain. With Preston the solution is easy; get rid of the through traffic. Hespeler and Galt will be much harder.
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#12
Cambridge is looking into to different options for heritage protection of buildings along the Grand River in Galt.


http://m.therecord.com/news-story/724080...-buildings-
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