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555 Beechwood
#1
The Region is looking into two new affordable housing projects (one in Waterloo and one in Cambridge). I attended a virtual public engagement session last week on the 555 Beechwood project and there was a lot of opposition to it (Traffic, height (it's 6 stories), plus a lot of unfortunate comments about renters not caring for their homes). Though I heard the earlier session was even stronger in their opposition. I believe it goes to council on July 15th and I suspect there will be many folks speaking against it at that point. I have registered to speak in support of it myself. There's a little bit of information on the Region's website about it too. https://www.regionofwaterloo.ca/Modules/...d317618f5c
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#2
(06-28-2020, 01:25 PM)dtkmelissa Wrote: The Region is looking into two new affordable housing projects (one in Waterloo and one in Cambridge). I attended a virtual public engagement session last week on the 555 Beechwood project and there was a lot of opposition to it (Traffic, height (it's 6 stories), plus a lot of unfortunate comments about renters not caring for their homes). Though I heard the earlier session was even stronger in their opposition. I believe it goes to council on July 15th and I suspect there will be many folks speaking against it at that point. I have registered to speak in support of it myself. There's a little bit of information on the Region's website about it too. https://www.regionofwaterloo.ca/Modules/...d317618f5c

Since this is a mulit-storey building rather than SFH, rowhouses, or stacked towns, that seems like blaming residents for the failure of the landlord (before the landlord has even failed!).
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#3
It's next to an existing townhouse complex so it should fit in and the property maintenance would be no different. And it's only 300m from the Erb St intersection so traffic should be a non-issue.

In theory, the resident feedback is on the building design and environmental performance so hopefully the region is not swayed by the complaints when we urgently need more affordable housing.

@dtkmelissa, do you have a link to the council meeting info?
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#4
(06-28-2020, 02:45 PM)tomh009 Wrote: It's next to an existing townhouse complex so it should fit in and the property maintenance would be no different. And it's only 300m from the Erb St intersection so traffic should be a non-issue.

In theory, the resident feedback is on the building design and environmental performance so hopefully the region is not swayed by the complaints when we urgently need more affordable housing.

@dtkmelissa, do you have a link to the council meeting info?

This is all that's on the website currently for the meeting: https://calendar.regionofwaterloo.ca/Council/Detail/2020-07-15-1100-Special-Council-Meeting

I
 believe the agenda goes online the Friday before, so I can do my best to remember to post that here then as well.

If interested you can email regional councillors (https://www.regionofwaterloo.ca/en/regio...mbers.aspx) or register as a delegation (https://www.regionofwaterloo.ca/en/regio...uncil.aspx)
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#5
There's a bunch more information in this link, including the slide deck from the public engagement session.

https://www.engagewr.ca/affordable-housi...dium=email
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#6
Not surprising there is opposition to affordable housing in Waterloo Region. NIMBYs don't like poor people.
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#7
Not all cities in the region are the same.
https://kitchenerhousinginc.ca/about/
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#8
Thanks! So, the zoning already allows the building size that is being discussed. The regional council decision is simply to declare the land as surplus and to designate it for affordable housing.

Even if it were not affordable housing, the new land owner could build a mid-rise apartment complex there.
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#9
(06-28-2020, 03:07 PM)ac3r Wrote: Not surprising there is opposition to affordable housing in Waterloo Region. NIMBYs don't like poor people.

But is the opposition relevant, or is it just venting?  In many cases, it seems more the latter (and the project gets built).
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#10
(06-28-2020, 03:31 PM)tomh009 Wrote: Thanks! So, the zoning already allows the building size that is being discussed. The regional council decision is simply to declare the land as surplus and to designate it for affordable housing.

Even if it were not affordable housing, the new land owner could build a mid-rise apartment complex there.

Yes, that's correct. Though, many people still seemed quite concerned that a six-story building simply does not fit into the neighbourhood.
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#11
(06-28-2020, 01:25 PM)dtkmelissa Wrote: The Region is looking into two new affordable housing projects (one in Waterloo and one in Cambridge). I attended a virtual public engagement session last week on the 555 Beechwood project and there was a lot of opposition to it (Traffic, height (it's 6 stories), plus a lot of unfortunate comments about renters not caring for their homes). Though I heard the earlier session was even stronger in their opposition. I believe it goes to council on July 15th and I suspect there will be many folks speaking against it at that point. I have registered to speak in support of it myself. There's a little bit of information on the Region's website about it too. https://www.regionofwaterloo.ca/Modules/...d317618f5c

The first mistake is proposing this in Waterloo -- they give zero sh*ts about less fortunate people. It's not the height, it's not the traffic. It's the people "renters not caring for their homes". If this was being built as a high end condo, you likely wouldn't have much negative feedback, as it would be a low-rise condo.
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#12
There would also likely be less opposition if this were in Northdale, among the student highrises. It's the low-rise Beechwood location that has hackles up.
My Twitter: @KevinLMaps
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#13
But it's in compliance with the zoning. And directly abutting Erb St W, not embedded deep in a single-family neighbourhood.
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#14
(06-30-2020, 08:11 PM)KevinL Wrote: There would also likely be less opposition if this were in Northdale, among the student highrises. It's the low-rise Beechwood location that has hackles up.

Well, I did write to my regional councillors about it (and adding a PS about what they said about the emergency bike lanes). Got one response hoping that we get delegations speaking in support of it as well.
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