Comment 113352

By mdrejhon (registered) - website | Posted August 07, 2015 at 15:50:15 in reply to Comment 113347

I also support low income housing, it must be part of a diversified Hamilton mix, to avoid leaving the poorer behind.

(Not talking about tall towers at West Harbour -- this is is for out-of-way piers like future discontinued steel land -- you can't see water anyway while driving past the steel mill).

The Toronto Regent Park revitalization (whether you're for it or against it) is an amazingly interesting case study (except for the much-hated temporary construction-time-period displacement of some of the families before they moved back into a nice subsidized-housing upgrade that's almost unamiously liked).

The poor people at Regent Park has generally rave reviews of the brand new luxurious municipal FREE indoor swimming pool miniwaterpark that opened there (Regent Park Aquatic Centre). Beyond nicer residences and far better amenities (including free), the quality of life of the poor Regent Park people has dramatically increased for those who duked it out during the frustrating construction time period (some families being forced into an hourlong commute in temporary housing elsewhere).

But on average, it was a resounding "include-the-poor-and-rich" success by Canadian standards, beyond my expectations. Subsidized housing in the same building as luxury condo apartments, makes everyone feel more included, saw white-people business suits next to immigrant families, single moms next to full middle class families, people having popular at outdoor patiopubs, etc. (For those not familiar, Regent Park is the area between Gerrard and Dundas, to the north of the PanAm athlete's village that's being converted to condos, and west of Don Valley). Even though the small 3-story ugly box apartments got replaced by tall condo towers with embedded subsidized housing. The development was profitable, despite having to subsidize the poor housing.

There were definitely a bunch of controversies there, and I'm not happy with 100% of the Regent Park megaproject, but, it behooves a good look at any Hamiltonian city planner wanting to install a "gradually sloping densification" from 4-storey lowrises at West Harbour all the way to tall towers on former U.S. Steel lands (if they disappear in 20 years). It may not happen for 50 years, so this may be an issue for our grandkids, but I am not discouraging it as long as the poor is included (see above).

Better condos (with embedded subsidized housing) and office towers than an abandoned steel mill in 25 years from now, eh? You can't see the waterfront in front of U.S. steel anyway, while driving on Burlington...

Maybe it'll just be an office park, or a steel-parts manufacturer -- still a big improvement if that Toronto-downtown-sized parcel of land begins to later employs MORE people than U.S. Steel (so everybody wins). Maybe not this generation, but one of the next two or three.

Comment edited by mdrejhon on 2015-08-07 16:02:40

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