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View Full Version : Heron Gate 7 (796, 2816 Sandalwood Dr) | 3 x 18m | 6 fl | U/C


rocketphish
Aug 18, 2016, 5:37 PM
Three multi residential buildings are proposed, designed to reach a maximum height of 18 metres. A 3m setback is provided on Sandalwood Drive, a 3m setback on Heron Road, a 7.5m setback on Sandalwood Park, and a 7.5m setback on the eastern side of the property. In addition, on Heron Road, no proposed structures (buildings or below grade structures) are proposed within the zone identified for future road widening. The required amenity areas has been provided, as well as loading and servicing, landscaped areas, and other requirements of the zone.

Development application:
http://app01.ottawa.ca/postingplans/appDetails.jsf?lang=en&appId=__00DMTO

Streetview:
https://www.google.ca/maps/@45.3798651,-75.6483491,3a,90y,154.51h,76.05t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sJ09wqO4sq3N5y4hk48zxog!2e0!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en


Rendering:

https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8315/28499033193_795e2b544e_o.jpg


Location:

https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8174/29012596882_4e75ae028b_o.jpg


Site plan:

https://c2.staticflickr.com/8/7539/28499032073_a27d4c2c63_o.png


Current site:

https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8178/28499032133_d631d6184f_o.jpg

FutureWickedCity
Aug 18, 2016, 6:35 PM
Urban renewal or gentrification? Looks like quite a few low-income housing units will be lost. Nevertheless, it's hard not to cheer for some new attractive structures in this bleak part of the city.

OTSkyline
Aug 18, 2016, 7:27 PM
Not a fan... the buildings are way too large and bland. Where are the height variances? Why not try something different and have a little "community" instead of Building A, Building B, Building C ? :yuck:

sestafanos
Aug 19, 2016, 7:15 PM
Urban renewal or gentrification? Looks like quite a few low-income housing units will be lost. Nevertheless, it's hard not to cheer for some new attractive structures in this bleak part of the city.

If you look at the floor plans, you'll see a lot of 2 and 3 BR suites that only have 2 or 3 windows along the exterior wall, meaning that these will be cheaper end condos or rentals. I believe this is a whole building of low income housing.

bradnixon
Aug 19, 2016, 7:55 PM
Urban renewal or gentrification? Looks like quite a few low-income housing units will be lost. Nevertheless, it's hard not to cheer for some new attractive structures in this bleak part of the city.

They are already lost because the old buildings have been demolished.

This development should include cycle tracks along Heron to start building the bikeway along that street, and ensure a good connection to the commercial next door is provided.

Along with this development the City needs to invest some money into renewing Sandalwood park.

Tartarus
Sep 28, 2016, 11:57 PM
If you look at the floor plans, you'll see a lot of 2 and 3 BR suites that only have 2 or 3 windows along the exterior wall, meaning that these will be cheaper end condos or rentals. I believe this is a whole building of low income housing.

I attended an 'open house' public meeting at Jim Durrell arena last night which was organized by Jean Cloutier and involved a presentation from Timbercreek Developments (along with a chance to pose questions to their architects and planning consultant, etc). This development will be 100% rental and is definitely not intended to be low income housing - the units were described as "premium" units that would be rented at premium prices.

I misplaced the handout I picked up, but it was explained to us that there are three minor variances that the developers will be seeking:
- an additional height allowance of approximately three meters (apparently this is being asked for because the property slopes from one end to the other
- a change to the required number of parking spots per unit, from 1.4 to 1.0 (10 visitor spots plus 5 car sharing spots are also proposed)
- ground floor retail that has frontage on Heron Road, instead of facing into the property

Overall the mood at the meeting was largely quite negative, but there were two rather distinct groups that had very different reasons for being upset. The mostly-white, mostly-older crowd of Alta Vista residents from north of Heron mostly don't seem to want anything built on this property other than new townhouses. I overheard plenty of conversations about needing to "resist" this sort of development, because "they'll want to go even further next", and "this is the thin edge of the wedge", etc etc. Honestly I got some good chuckles from a few of the more fanciful objections ("what if this supposed coffee shop turns out to be a porn shop!?"). The attendees from south of Heron were both former residents of this property (who were angry about how they were evicted), and current residents of the rest of Herongate (who were worried about their rent rising and/or being evicted next). Things got pretty ugly when one lady asked how Timbercreek would keep "the ghetto crowd" out of the new development (specifically she wanted Somali families kept out). Anyways, the AVCA called for another meeting, for some reason, but it sounds like this is going to the committee of adjustment next.

rocketphish
Sep 29, 2016, 12:48 AM
I attended an 'open house' public meeting at Jim Durrell arena last night ....

Thanks for the informative report, and welcome to the forum! :cheers:

lrt's friend
Sep 29, 2016, 1:52 AM
I attended an 'open house' public meeting at Jim Durrell arena last night which was organized by Jean Cloutier and involved a presentation from Timbercreek Developments (along with a chance to pose questions to their architects and planning consultant, etc). This development will be 100% rental and is definitely not intended to be low income housing - the units were described as "premium" units that would be rented at premium prices.

I misplaced the handout I picked up, but it was explained to us that there are three minor variances that the developers will be seeking:
- an additional height allowance of approximately three meters (apparently this is being asked for because the property slopes from one end to the other
- a change to the required number of parking spots per unit, from 1.4 to 1.0 (10 visitor spots plus 5 car sharing spots are also proposed)
- ground floor retail that has frontage on Heron Road, instead of facing into the property

Overall the mood at the meeting was largely quite negative, but there were two rather distinct groups that had very different reasons for being upset. The mostly-white, mostly-older crowd of Alta Vista residents from north of Heron mostly don't seem to want anything built on this property other than new townhouses. I overheard plenty of conversations about needing to "resist" this sort of development, because "they'll want to go even further next", and "this is the thin edge of the wedge", etc etc. Honestly I got some good chuckles from a few of the more fanciful objections ("what if this supposed coffee shop turns out to be a porn shop!?"). The attendees from south of Heron were both former residents of this property (who were angry about how they were evicted), and current residents of the rest of Herongate (who were worried about their rent rising and/or being evicted next). Things got pretty ugly when one lady asked how Timbercreek would keep "the ghetto crowd" out of the new development (specifically she wanted Somali families kept out). Anyways, the AVCA called for another meeting, for some reason, but it sounds like this is going to the committee of adjustment next.

I have seen these kinds of objections before. People don't like change, but change is inevitable. Newer buildings should be welcomed especially if 'premium prices' are to be charged. The days of building large tracts of low income housing are behind us. We know that low income housing needs to be scattered in order to avoid the ghetto effect.

I pass this location every day and we should all welcome renewal of the site. I took a few pictures during the demolition.

waterloowarrior
Aug 9, 2017, 12:39 AM
Foundation permit issued for 3 apartment buildings: two 7 storey and one 6 store building on a 1 storey underground common parking structure

bradnixon
May 9, 2018, 4:07 PM
More townhome demolition in Heron Gate planned. This time it's the block just south of Heron, between Baycrest and Sandalwood.

http://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/landlord-demolishing-more-homes-in-heron-gate-displacing-105-residents


Landlord demolishing more homes in Heron Gate, displacing 105 residents

Jon Willing
Adam Van Der Zwan

Published on: May 8, 2018 | Last Updated: May 8, 2018 5:36 PM EDT

More residents in Heron Gate are being forced to move because a landlord is demolishing their aging rental homes as part of a long-term redevelopment of one of Ottawa’s most culturally diverse neighbourhoods.

Timbercreek Communities has notified 105 households they must move by Sept. 30 because the company will demolish 150 units in the area of Heron Road, Baycrest Drive and Sandalwood Drive. Forty-five of the units are already vacant. The wood-construction units are at the end of their lifecycle and need to be torn down, the company says.

Yazen Sadek, 20, lives in at small home on Sandalwood Drive with his six siblings, mother and father. His family moved to the home five years ago to be closer to their family and friends in the Muslim community. He said many of the families in neighbourhood are Muslim and very connected to their community. Now they are in a state of shock, their futures uncertain.

“This just came out of nowhere. We have nowhere to go,” Sadek said.

John Loubser, director of operations at Timbercreek Communities, said the company has to demolish all 150 units, even if only 25 per cent of them are considered “no longer viable.”

“They share sewage, they share water mains, they share hydro service, they share roofs, they share foundations. They’re indivisible in a way and that unfortunately makes them all compromised in the relatively near term,” Loubser said.

Timbercreek is offering tenants the provincially mandated three months of rent, plus moving expenses and help with relocation.

Loubser acknowledged there was “quite a bit of shock and awe and some anger” expressed during a meeting with tenants Monday when they learned more about the demolition plan.

The company went through a similar demolition-and-relocation program in 2016 affecting 53 families across 86 similar-style townhomes in Heron Gate. The relocation that year happened over the winter. Timbercreek’s HG7 complex is under development on the land now.

Alta Vista Coun. Jean Cloutier said Timbercreek told him confidentially on April 18 that it would be notifying residents about the relocations.

“My objective is that the residents get the information they need to make the decisions they need to make, in the language of their choice, and in a way they understand so that they can make the best decisions for their families,” Cloutier said.

Timbercreek, which purchased the Heron Gate properties in 2012 and 2013, says it doesn’t plan to demolish more homes in the community. Loubser said the company has invested $44 million in the five high-rises over the past five years, so those buildings are there for the long term.

A secondary plan, as part of the city’s official plan, will create a development vision for the 16-hectare area. Residents have been participating in workshops.

“We envision a community of diversity and different sizes, types and forms of housing, potentially different ownership types of housing, alongside the revitalized towers,” Loubser said.

The chances are very good that every displaced tenant will find a new home, possibly within Heron Gate, Loubser said, although he noted a limited availability in the community.

The Ottawa Neighbourhood Study says about 44 per cent of residents in the greater Ledbury-Heron Gate-Ridgemont community are immigrants.

Clinton Cowan, president of the Alta Vista Community Association, said, “Everybody from all parts of the world live there.”

Cowan was “shocked” to learn about Timbercreek’s latest demolition plans. The community association will make sure the company and the local city councillor will live up to their commitments to be helpful to residents, Cowan said.

Cowan is afraid people won’t be able to afford Timbercreek’s new replacement units, whenever they’re built. The community association wants to see housing for residents of all financial abilities, he said.

The average monthly rent for a townhome in Heron Gate is roughly $1,400, according to Timbercreek.

James Gerior lives with a roommate in a unit on Sandalwood Drive. A labourer for a moving company, he recently went on disability leave after “breaking too many bones to work,” he said, pointing to the large cast around his leg. He said he’s lived in various homes in Heron Gate since 1989, before settling in his current residence nearly five years ago.

“I’m staying here until the end. I’m not going anywhere until they physically kick me out,” Gerior said.

Kelli Tonner, executive director of the South-East Ottawa Community Health Centre, said staff were at the tenants meeting on Monday to support residents. The health centre, which has multicultural services, can help people navigate the paperwork that comes with moving, which could include registering children at new schools.

“We are really there as a practical support to residents, as well as emotional support,” Tonner said.

Ben Ford, 32, lives in one of the units with his wife and five children. The kids are between 11 months and nine years old.

A freelance artist who home-schools his children, Ford originally came to Ottawa to study animation at Algonquin College about 12 years ago. He’s planning to leave Ottawa with his family by the end of the month.

“I have been here so long it’s hard to know what I miss,” Ford said. “I’m sure I’ll know when I’ll get there. I can’t really answer that. I haven’t travelled outside of Ottawa in a long, long time. I’m sure the world is a new and scary place.”

jwilling@postmedia.com

twitter.com/JonathanWilling


What Timbercreek is doing for displaced tenants:

Compensation of three months rent

$1,500 to cover moving expenses and other miscellaneous costs

Assistance from a relocation agent

Negotiated discounts with moving companies



I understand why those being displaced are upset, but I think the landlord is fully within their rights to redevelop the site. If the buildings are at the end of their life, they're at the end of their life.

The idea that these people will not be able to afford anything seems like an overreaction. I did a quick search for similar-priced townhome rentals and was able to find a few in the same end of the city. (Here (http://www.districtrealty.com/ottawa-apartments/apartments-for-rent/3325-uplands-dr/)and here (https://www.homestead.ca/apartments/surrey-place)).

All that being said, I think the landlord and the community are currently going through consultation on developing a new secondary plan for the neighbourhood. I think it would have been wise to let that play out before moving forward on this next block.

Davis137
May 15, 2018, 12:26 PM
Ummm...these buildings are already going up, and 2 of them are almost at full height, and the footings and ground floor of the 3rd one is being formed...shouldn't this be changed to U/C?

Lakeofthewood
May 15, 2018, 12:48 PM
Ummm...these buildings are already going up, and 2 of them are almost at full height, and the footings and ground floor of the 3rd one is being formed...shouldn't this be changed to U/C?

The ones being built right now are east of Sandalwood. The ones bradnixon posted about are ones that are going to be built, west of Sandalwood.

Edit: Just realized you were saying the name of the thread should be changed to U/C. Of that, you are definitely correct.

Davis137
May 15, 2018, 2:40 PM
Sorry about that, I thought the project mentioned in this thread is the one that was/is going up in that area...my badd...

drizzo_613
Jul 21, 2018, 8:27 PM
Progress update from last month

https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1827/28666120467_16c1b66dad_k.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/KF8mUk)Heron rd/sandalwood (https://flic.kr/p/KF8mUk) by Alejo C (https://www.flickr.com/photos/drizzo613/), on Flickr

rocketphish
Aug 14, 2018, 5:08 PM
Battle lines drawn in Heron Gate, where an evicted community doesn't plan on leaving

Taylor Blewett, Ottawa Citizen
Updated: August 14, 2018

Though visually imperceptible, a front line has been drawn along Heron Road, Baycrest Drive and Sandalwood Drive in Ottawa’s Heron Gate rental community.

It runs across the neighbourhood’s overgrown lawns and overflowing garbage bins, in front of aging townhouses from which tenants have emerged to form a coalition that proclaims “#DefendHeronGate.”

“We are now being told, for the second time in two years, that our community will be destroyed and we have no say in the matter,” the coalition wrote recently, in a self-published article titled: “The Battle for Heron Gate Begins.”

“Enough is enough. This is our neighbourhood and we are staying.”

Earlier this year, a month after residents were invited to a “visioning session” with Heron Gate landlord Timbercreek to plan the future of their community, 105 households learned that vision did not include the homes they were living in.

Timbercreek announced in May that it intends to demolish 150 townhouses along three streets in its 16-hectare, 1,665 unit rental complex. In so doing it’s displacing hundreds of residents, many of whom are new immigrants and low-income earners, paying affordable rents for three- and four-bedroom units to house families twice that size.

Heron Gate is far from perfect, its tenants say — take a walk around the blocks slated for eviction and its dilapidation is evident — but for many of those tenants, it’s a home they’ve created, and won’t be able to replicate elsewhere.

Facing a rental market so unfriendly that they literally cannot find anywhere to move to, and because this is the second round of evictions at Heron Gate in recent years, they’re taking a stand.

On September 30, the date by which tenants must move out, as per Timbercreek’s request, they don’t plan on being anywhere else but in their homes, come what may.

The landlord has yet to announce what it plans to build out of the rubble of the 150 homes slated for demolition. But the homes are at the end of their life cycles, Timbercreek said, and 45 units are already vacant.

In 2016, 53 Heron Gate households relocated to make room for new low-rise apartments that are currently under construction on the site. Critics have condemned the neighbourhood’s evolution as gentrification, in which low-income residents are pushed out to make room for renters with the appetite and capacity to pay for high-end units.

“It became apparent to me that a master plan for the entire property was essential before any further development should occur at Heron Gate,” said Alta Vista Coun. Jean Cloutier before a community meeting held in January. “Timbercreek agreed, and is therefore initiating a developer-led secondary plan process to develop a long-term vision for the future of Heron Gate.”

While Timbercreek can’t build up in the neighbourhood until the secondary plan is solidified, it can, however, tear down.

“Timbercreek’s vision has always been for Heron Gate to be a diverse and sustainable community. A project of this magnitude, however, requires that tenants relocate during the revitalization process,” Timbercreek said in an emailed statement.

Leilani Farha, the UN special rapporteur on the right to adequate housing, characterized Timbercreek’s actions very differently in a recently published Huffington Post opinion piece.

“Their focus does not seem to be on the well-being of their tenants and diversity of the cities where they hold assets. Instead, they practice in unscrupulous demographic engineering in search of profits: replacing poor and vulnerable people with those who possess greater purchasing power.”

Legally, it doesn’t appear Timbercreek has done anything wrong. It’s provided residents the requisite 120 days notice and compensation in the form of three months rent. It’s also voluntarily providing $2,000 in moving compensation, relocation assistance and negotiated discounts with Ottawa moving companies.

Some tenants have already leveraged the resources at their disposal and vacated their homes — a walk through the blocks of houses slated for demolition reveals recently emptied units, with furniture, mail, and the detritus of daily living left behind.

Last week, Timbercreek said 70 per cent of the households facing eviction have found new places to rent, and some have been able to buy homes. Of those households that chose to remain in Ottawa, more than 75 per cent have found homes within five kilometres of Heron Gate, Timbercreek said.

However, that still leaves a significant minority of remaining tenants with little more than six weeks to find a new home.

The Heron Gate Tenant Coalition has advised its members that they are not legally required to move out before Sept. 30. Timbercreek would have to apply to the provincial Landlord and Tenant Board to obtain an official eviction order. The coalition has retained Ottawa lawyer Daniel Tucker-Simmons to represent many of its tenants in the case of an LTB hearing.

“Many of them are really committed to fighting this out, and for very good reasons, but most of them are driven to fight out of necessity,” Tucker-Simmons explained in an interview. Try as they might, many Heron Gate residents facing eviction just can’t find another place to live.

“The people they told me ‘move,’ and I don’t know where I can move to,” said Mohamed Iman, a Somali immigrant and father of seven.

He was on his way into a coalition meeting, where tenants got together to talk about the evictions. Iman said he accepts Timbercreek’s decision to demolish his home, but he can’t move out until he finds a new one.

“The property is for them, and I know that. But what can I do?”

As his family’s sole breadwinner, making $2,200 a month working nights as a cleaner at the University of Ottawa, the housing search has proven immensely challenging.

Many of Iman’s neighbours have stories that sound a lot like his.

According to the Ottawa Neighbourhood Study, 57 per cent of the households in Ledbury-Heron Gate-Ridgemont are making under $50,000 in before-tax income, compared to a city-wide average of 29 per cent. Forty-four per cent are immigrants, and 60 per cent belong to a visible minority.

In letters sent last Friday to Timbercreek’s legal counsel and Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson, Tucker-Simmons laid out his argument that the tenants facing eviction from Heron Gate are experiencing “housing discrimination” in their search for a new home, on the basis of their skin tone and ethnic background.

“They’re going to be the last ones on a landlord’s list to be able to rent,” he explained in an interview, and that discrimination is exacerbated by low vacancy rates. In Ottawa, the vacancy rate for townhouses was 1.6 per cent when the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation published its last rental market report in the fall of 2017.

In his letters, Tucker-Simmons requested accommodation for the tenants under the Human Rights Code of Ontario — either preservation or reparation of the residential complex, additional support securing comparable housing in the area without dispersing community members throughout the city, or first right-of-refusal on similarly priced units in the redeveloped Heron Gate complex.

“A real intentional community has developed here,” he explained. “The objective is really to preserve the community in one way or another.”

Timbercreek has said “all residents impacted by the relocation process at Heron Gate will be offered the right-to-return to a home at Heron Gate when the redevelopment of the community is complete,” but didn’t specify what that right-to-return would entail, exactly.

Abdullahi Ali has lived in Heron Gate for more than 20 years. “We help each other, we get together, we share every problem, every important occasion,” he said. Other residents spoke of babysitting one another’s children, carpools and translating for non-English speaking neighbours.

Ali was forced to move from one Heron Gate unit to his current one during the first round of evictions in 2016. Now, he’s looking outside the community and he’s having no luck finding another four-bedroom unit for his family of nine for anything close to the $1,600 a month he’s currently paying.

“Really what it comes down to is this is a real battlefront in the fight against gentrification and the fight for affordable housing in Ottawa,” said Tucker-Simmons.

But not everyone sees it that way.

A tenant for seven years, Benjamin Ford took issue with the narrative that Timbercreek is doing anything wrong.

“The reality is these are very old buildings, they’re hazards … and they were poorly maintained — that’s the key — by the previous (owner),” he said during an interview, sitting on his front porch and pointing out various problems with his home.

“I have no doubt that Timbercreek looked upon this place with the intention of doing what they’re doing — you don’t buy a dump like this without the intention of updating and flipping … I don’t have a problem with that.”

The Fords are among the lucky ones. They were able to find a new apartment in Ottawa within a week of looking. While they, like many other households facing eviction, have a large family — five children — they don’t belong to a visible minority, and possess perfect English skills.

“Everybody has sympathy, particularly for new Canadians, who need affordable rental accommodation,” said Michael Brooks, the CEO of REALPAC, a national industry association representing owners and managers of investment real estate.

“But whose obligation is it to provide affordable rental?

“This may sound crass, but this is private property. The occupants are there under a rental contract, exchanging accommodation for rent. Sometimes people confuse what should be a public responsibility with private responsibility.”

But where do you go when a social housing placement is years away?

For Margaret Alluker, Heron Gate was there when the public system wasn’t.

Alluker moved to the neighbourhood in 2012, around the same time she got on the city’s wait-list for social housing. Six years later, she’s still on the wait-list, and still living with her four children in Heron Gate. There are approximately 10,000 households waiting for a social housing placement, according to the city.

Alluker’s time in Heron Gate hasn’t been perfect. She’s battled cockroaches and mice, and as the secretary for advocacy group ACORN’s south Ottawa chapter, she participated in a July march to the Timbercreek office, where they delivered work orders to highlight what ACORN described in a press release as “eviction by neglect.”

“Timbercreek has purposely let these units deteriorate so they can push out poor people and rebuild luxury rentals,” the organization wrote.

In the statement it provided to this newspaper, Timbercreek disputed this allegation.

“Since acquiring the properties in 2012/2013, Timbercreek has invested $45 million into Heron Gate. Timbercreek continues to maintain Heron Gate units and quickly responds to repair requests made by residents.”

It’s not as if the company acquired the units in perfect condition. Former Heron Gate resident and Ottawa South MPP John Fraser remembered it as a “model community” when it was first built and managed by Minto back in the 1960s.

But maintenance degraded after TransGlobe acquired the property in 2007, and by the time Timbercreek took over in 2013, there were 500 outstanding work orders from the City of Ottawa.

”The current landlord is better at getting to those repairs,” Fraser said, though he also acknowledged that’s a relative commendation, and his office has fielded calls from dissatisfied tenants about Timbercreek’s property management.

In the battle for Heron Gate, the MPP is working from the sidelines. Rather than fighting the evictions, he’s chosen to support tenants in their search for new accommodations.

“The community is full of families, and they need help.”

Parliamentary secretary to the minister of families, children and social development Adam Vaughan said the Heron Gate eviction is too far along to halt, but makes a good case study for “the economic displacement of low-income rental communities,” an issue not isolated to Ottawa.

“It’s unfortunate we have to learn from them, but it’s important that we do.”

But among the 105 households served with eviction notices, there remain holdouts who aren’t waving the white flag just yet.

Some tenants have vowed not to move on principle. But others, including those with “I am not moving” signs in their windows, said in interviews that given the time to find an adequate place, they would. And that’s what they’d like from Timbercreek.

But unless the company changes course — and the question of whether it’s considering doing so was not directly addressed when posed by this newspaper — the Sept. 30 deadline marches ever closer.

“Rental supply is at its peak in the summer but finding a range of options becomes more challenging toward the fall, so now is the time for residents to meet with Timbercreek’s team, view listings and secure a lease,” the company said.

The City of Ottawa will not provide a demolition permit until all services to the homes have been shut off, and no residents remain.

Alluker said she’s given up on looking for a new house before the end of next month, and she’s hoping that Timbercreek offers tenants more time to relocate.

“For me, the issue that we’re fighting for is not a one-single-person issue. It’s not my issue. It might be my neighbour can find a place but for me, unity together is a good thing to make sure that next time, something like will not happen.

“My daughter was crying like, ‘Oh I can’t move from here, my friends, I’m going to miss them, my teacher, my school.’ I was like ‘okay, we have to wait.’ I don’t know what will happen, but let us wait.”

https://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/battle-lines-drawn-in-heron-gate-where-an-evicted-community-doesnt-plan-on-leaving?video_autoplay=true

Davis137
Aug 14, 2018, 5:40 PM
That's quite the article...describes points of view from both sides of the story. This is the same thing that is playing out in other cities across the country...cities grow and grow, the markets go up, and some people can't afford to live there any more. This is actually happening in some parts of Kingston, just down the highway. Redevelopment and gentrification of some of the areas like Willamsville, Kingscourt and Centertown. Low income people are being forced out to accommodate more housing for Queens students, as well as semi-luxury Condo's for people retiring and moving to the Kingston Area.

McKellarDweller
Aug 14, 2018, 5:42 PM
“The people they told me ‘move,’ and I don’t know where I can move to,” said Mohamed Iman, a Somali immigrant and father of seven.

I hope somewhere along the way, his kids pick up some common sense, basic personal responsibility, and finance skills that he never did.

Lakeofthewood
Aug 14, 2018, 7:16 PM
I hope somewhere along the way, his kids pick up some common sense, basic personal responsibility, and finance skills that he never did.

Pretty uncalled for comment given that the man is losing his house. I'd say he's doing pretty darn good for $2200 a month and seven kids.

Iman said he accepts Timbercreek’s decision to demolish his home, but he can’t move out until he finds a new one.

“The property is for them, and I know that. But what can I do?”

As his family’s sole breadwinner, making $2,200 a month working nights as a cleaner at the University of Ottawa, the housing search has proven immensely challenging.

kwoldtimer
Aug 14, 2018, 9:05 PM
Pretty uncalled for comment given that the man is losing his house. I'd say he's doing pretty darn good for $2200 a month and seven kids.

So about $40,000 grand a year in Canada Child Benefit payments?

acottawa
Aug 14, 2018, 10:07 PM
It must suck to get evicted, but I don't think it is realistic to expect housing that is low-rent, low-density, well-maintained and close to the city centre. Something has to give.

Davis137
Aug 15, 2018, 3:09 PM
Realistically, people will have to start living elsewhere (cities/towns other than the GTA, Ottawa, Montreal, etc), as the cost of living will be more favorable. This doesn't just happen to low-income households, as many people are leaving places like the GTA, and relocating to say Hamilton, Brantford, Paris, Guelph, etc...

This sort of thing is NOT discriminatory, it's just the way things go. Doesn't matter what walk of life you come from, if you can't afford to live somewhere, you will need to move on. As a matter of fact, my own family wanted to live in a couple areas of Ottawa, but the price of admission was way too high for how little of property we could secure, so we looked elsewhere. It's tough finding a property that is meant for larger families (we have 4 kids under the age of 10), that is somewhat reasonable, that isn't in a poor location (with regards to commutes to work or schools).

OTownandDown
Aug 15, 2018, 6:26 PM
So about $40,000 grand a year in Canada Child Benefit payments?

Yes, I put a pretend family in the calculator and found it was $41,000/year ($3300/month) for an income of $65k (which may be generous?)

It seems like what they're building is several tens of times the density of the existing townhomes. Can they not just do the communist thing and set aside three and four bedroom apartments for the evicted families, who would move back into the same 'lot' but in the building instead of a townhouse? This was normal during the post-war communist growing pains in the fatherland.

waterloowarrior
Aug 15, 2018, 6:38 PM
Toronto has a rental demolition/conversion replacement by-law... Mississauga just passed one. These by-law can require the developer to provide affordable replacement housing or provide cash-in-lieu towards the City's affordable housing program.

https://yoursay.mississauga.ca/rental-housing

J.OT13
Aug 15, 2018, 8:11 PM
Toronto has a rental demolition/conversion replacement by-law... Mississauga just passed one. These by-law can require the developer to provide affordable replacement housing or provide cash-in-lieu towards the City's affordable housing program.

https://yoursay.mississauga.ca/rental-housing

That's an example Ottawa needs to follow.

kwoldtimer
Aug 15, 2018, 10:41 PM
Yes, I put a pretend family in the calculator and found it was $41,000/year ($3300/month) for an income of $65k (which may be generous?)

It seems like what they're building is several tens of times the density of the existing townhomes. Can they not just do the communist thing and set aside three and four bedroom apartments for the evicted families, who would move back into the same 'lot' but in the building instead of a townhouse? This was normal during the post-war communist growing pains in the fatherland.

Are they planning any four bedroom units? That's got to be pretty rare.

acottawa
Aug 15, 2018, 11:26 PM
Are they planning any four bedroom units? That's got to be pretty rare.

I suspect there would be little demand. Those being evicted probably couldn't afford units of that size in a brand new building.

OTownandDown
Aug 16, 2018, 1:11 PM
I suspect there would be little demand. Those being evicted probably couldn't afford units of that size in a brand new building.

Yes, but what I'm saying is that a very small number of units would be needed to let these people continue living in their neighbourhood for the same price. The developer avoids being the evil profit-hungry maniac, and the people continue to live in their neighbourhood.

It would be what, maybe two floors of the buildings? The remainder of the units go for full price. Same deal as CCOC buildings and other large developments with mixed-incomes.

acottawa
Aug 16, 2018, 4:19 PM
Yes, but what I'm saying is that a very small number of units would be needed to let these people continue living in their neighbourhood for the same price. The developer avoids being the evil profit-hungry maniac, and the people continue to live in their neighbourhood.

It would be what, maybe two floors of the buildings? The remainder of the units go for full price. Same deal as CCOC buildings and other large developments with mixed-incomes.

Not sure, it sounds like there are hundreds of residents implicated in this. I don't have any details but I think it would be a lot more than two floors.

c_speed3108
Aug 16, 2018, 6:15 PM
Not sure, it sounds like there are hundreds of residents implicated in this. I don't have any details but I think it would be a lot more than two floors.

According the Citizen article the other day.

150 Units are being torn down
105 Were Occupied at the time the notices were sent out.


70% of the 105 ~ 74 units have found places elsewhere to move to.

This means there are about 31 units where the residents have not yet found a new place to live.



They also said about 75% of those staying in Ottawa are within 5 KM which places them roughly in box bordered by the Fisher, the Queensway and 417, airport and the Greenbelt .

OTownandDown
Aug 16, 2018, 7:09 PM
According the Citizen article the other day.

150 Units are being torn down
105 Were Occupied at the time the notices were sent out.


70% of the 105 ~ 74 units have found places elsewhere to move to.

This means there are about 31 units where the residents have not yet found a new place to live.



They also said about 75% of those staying in Ottawa are within 5 KM which places them roughly in box bordered by the Fisher, the Queensway and 417, airport and the Greenbelt .

Great data. I'm surprised so many found alternative accommodations so quickly in our really tight rental space.

How many units is the developer building now (almost complete) and how many will be built in the future?

Edit: So I counted about 24 units per floor of one building, so assume 96 per building, so that's 288 units on the same lot as 79 (that I counted from satellite image) townhomes.

Now, not everyone would want to live in an apartment building, so again only about 31 holdouts would move into one of the apartment buildings. There are several three bedroom units per floor, and even if some are converted to 4's it wouldn't be a huge stretch for the builder. AND even if they offered a steep discount on these units, its not like they're losing money.

I don't know what the other development will look like, didn't bother to look up the plans, but assuming its similar percentages, and hopefully the buildings are friggin' bigger than these 4 storey wastes of vertical potential. I guess the NIMBY's on the north side of Heron won on that one?

originalmuffins
Aug 16, 2018, 7:42 PM
Not sure, it sounds like there are hundreds of residents implicated in this. I don't have any details but I think it would be a lot more than two floors.

Even better, they can then use that as rationale to increase the floors!.

bradnixon
Feb 13, 2019, 3:42 AM
https://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/heron-gate-developer-pledges-no-more-mass-evictions-in-social-contract



HERON GATE DEVELOPER PLEDGES NO MORE MASS EVICTIONS IN ‘SOCIAL CONTRACT’
By: Aedan Helmer

Ottawa Citizen

Updated: February 11, 2019

There will not be a repeat of the mass evictions that forced families from their homes and enraged many in the Heron Gate community last spring, executives with developer Timbercreek pledged at a community consultation Monday night.

In the first update since early December on the plan to redevelop 40 acres of land in the heart of the Heron Gate community, Timbercreek executives and consultants, along with Alta Vista Coun. Jean Cloutier, rolled out some of the first conceptual sketches of what the property could look like.

Greg Rogers, Timbercreek senior VP development, called it a “long-term plan for a community’s renewal,” showing slides of streetscapes, parkland, and housing units that Timbercreek pledged would consist of about 20 per cent affordable housing.

The developer also pledged it would abide by a “social contract” that brought a round of applause from the crowd of about 60 residents and community advocates who packed into the Heron Road Community Centre.

“No further demolitions for occupied units will occur until impacted tenants are able to transfer their leases and relocate within the community to newly-constructed units at the same rent,” Timbercreek stated.

Cloutier said he’s been in talks for months with the developer about the “groundbreaking” agreement.

“It has never been done,” Cloutier said as participants broke off into focus groups to brainstorm further ideas and visions for the redevelopment, which Timbercreek has also promised it will study and incorporate into its final design.

“If there needs to be redevelopment and if some homes need to be torn down and demolished, we cannot have another episode where hundreds of families are being evicted en masse,” Cloutier said. “We need an agreement where those families can move into another home within the community, because it is their community.”

Those units have to be the right size for the family, the councillor said, and have to be at the same rental price.

“There’s the traditional planning where we talk about transit, land use, recreation — all very important factors, but this social part of this redevelopment is groundbreaking,” Cloutier said.

The councillor noted the commitment was made in the pre-consultation phase, as there is no official site plan or official zoning application before the city’s planning department while the developer continues to collect input from the community.

What Timbercreek described as the “social framework” of its vision is made of five main points, including the pledge to relocate impacted families and a commitment to designate 20 per cent of the newly-constructed units as affordable housing.

The developer also pledged diversity in housing units, improved use of green space in and around Sandalwood Park, and efforts to bring employment and training opportunities into the community.

“People need to feel included in the community, connected to social networks and engaged in community and civic life,” said Antonio Gomez-Palacio, a consultant working with Timbercreek on the project.

“That was a good first step, but this community is still in big trouble,” said community advocate Paul Howard outside the meeting, referencing the recent outbreak in violence and the long-standing presence of street gangs in the area.

“It’s in transition and things are actually getting worse before they get better. But we can beat this problem of violence, there’s no excuse for it. And I’m all for enforcement, but we can never arrest our way out of the problem,” he said.

Howard gave credit to Timbercreek and to the councillor.

“I’ve been (Cloutier’s) biggest critic, but I think we need to turn the page and all work together. We can do better in this city and it’s up to us to all pitch in.”

A second community consultation will be held Tuesday at 6 p.m. at The Hub on Cedarwood Drive.

bradnixon
Feb 13, 2019, 4:04 AM
Erin McCracken had some pictures on Twitter from the open house, e.g.: https://twitter.com/erin_mccracken/status/1095102105461948416

OTSkyline
Feb 13, 2019, 8:50 PM
Wow that's a big increase in density vs whats currently there.

Good progress and for the area though! Although they will need to increase transit and frequencies on Walkley is that's the case.

Wonder when we will see the chosen plan and renders of the whole area.

Multi-modal
Mar 24, 2019, 2:28 AM
Construction Update...

South side of Heron Gate 7 (looking northeast):
https://i.imgur.com/2WC6Hdn.jpg

Looking east from Sandalwood Drive:
https://i.imgur.com/LC0EFoh.jpg

Looking southeast from Sandalwood Drive:
https://i.imgur.com/n9FvVUL.jpg

Looking east from the intersection of Heron and Sandalwood:
https://i.imgur.com/lnNKF95.jpg

Multi-modal
Mar 26, 2019, 3:47 PM
Erin McCracken of Ottawa Community Voice shared the following images from the Heron Gate public open house held yesterday evening:

https://i.imgur.com/PlTHrgK.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/mhsrxZe.jpg

Plans look great. Note the tallest building in the top rendering is supposed to be 40 stories. I hope they increase transit and community services though - if this gets built in 10-20 years like Timbercreek is planning then one of the most dense locations in Ottawa is going to be even more dense. Honestly more residential density than most people in Ottawa can imagine, and in a location that isn't on a rapid transit line (even if local service is decent).

I got a kick out of one of Erin's tweets, which reads like "local man concerned about things NIMBYs are concerned about always":
An Alta Vista man now expressing concern for heights above six storeys: light, privacy, wall effect on Heron Road.

I hope someone at the meeting told the Alta Vista man to screw off. No one is touching your single family home a couple blocks north of Heron. I wouldn't have the patience to be a planner at some of these meetings.

CityTech
Mar 26, 2019, 6:59 PM
Too much density for a site outside the rapid transit network. Should be rejected.

lrt's friend
Mar 26, 2019, 7:22 PM
Too much density for a site outside the rapid transit network. Should be rejected.

Unfortunately, most of the low income developments are outside of the rapid transit network. Rapid transit is for middle class suburban commuters and for future luxury condo dwellers. Land next to the Confederation Line will be too valuable for the poor.

OCCheetos
Mar 26, 2019, 7:26 PM
Too much density for a site outside the rapid transit network. Should be rejected.

With an extension of the Baseline BRT (in some form) I feel like it'd be fine. It would feed well in to the Confederation Line at Huffman or the Trillium Line at Mooney's. The Alta Vista transit corridor wouldn't be too far either, and neither would a bank street subway..

lrt's friend
Mar 26, 2019, 11:07 PM
With an extension of the Baseline BRT (in some form) I feel like it'd be fine. It would feed well in to the Confederation Line at Huffman or the Trillium Line at Mooney's. The Alta Vista transit corridor wouldn't be too far either, and neither would a bank street subway..

You made some big assumptions there.

On Edge
Mar 26, 2019, 11:49 PM
Unfortunately, most of the low income developments are outside of the rapid transit network. Rapid transit is for middle class suburban commuters and for future luxury condo dwellers. Land next to the Confederation Line will be too valuable for the poor.

is this meant to be low income housing? I thought it was to be a significant upgrade from what was there before.

Multi-modal
Mar 27, 2019, 12:04 AM
You made some big assumptions there.

Even without any of those assumptions, there is plenty of capacity to increase the frequency of the 44, 46, and 291 (side note: 291 should really be called 244). Minor transit priority measures and use of the SE Transitway put Herongate quite close to downtown.

Multi-modal
Mar 27, 2019, 12:06 AM
is this meant to be low income housing? I thought it was to be a significant upgrade from what was there before.

I'm sure rent will still be fairly cheap. I also think they committed to 20% affordable housing.

CityTech
Mar 27, 2019, 4:28 AM
I'm sure rent will still be fairly cheap. I also think they committed to 20% affordable housing.

Other than the 20% affordable housing, rent will not be cheap. Rent on newly built places is always expensive no matter where they are. Look at those new apartments next to the 174 in Gloucester... the one bedrooms go for $1500 to $2000. In friggen Gloucester. On top of that, new rental buildings that open after November 2018 are not subject to rent control anymore thanks to Dougie, so moving into a new apartment means you have zero protection from potentially massive rent hikes.

That said, even these expensive new buildings still improve rental affordability in the long run, because they attract tenants away from existing rentals, helping to raise the vacancy rate and thus reduce price growth in those buildings.

Nowhere
May 29, 2019, 5:24 AM
Move-in ready this fall. (https://renx.ca/timbercreek-multi-billion-dollar-ottawa-heron-gate-development/)

OTownandDown
May 29, 2019, 1:09 PM
With an extension of the Baseline BRT (in some form) I feel like it'd be fine. It would feed well in to the Confederation Line at Huffman or the Trillium Line at Mooney's. The Alta Vista transit corridor wouldn't be too far either, and neither would a bank street subway..

Heron gate is a stone's throw from Walkley Station (which...is to be a train station? or is it a train station now? I used to live there and went to walkley every day. Perfect for a short collector bus loop following the hub and spoke model.

I'm at the Trainyards now, and its actually quite simple to take a collector bus to Hurdman station, a 5 minute ride, with frequent service. I see no difference here.

EDIT: Also, lol, I forgot to mention that Heron is actually also close to Heron... but Confederation Station is a big slog down the hill, so I'd sooner go to Walkley ;)

OTSkyline
May 29, 2019, 6:20 PM
The Trillium line passes at Walkley but there currently isn't a station there. The plan is to build one as part of Phase-2 (adding Walkley & Gladstone stations and extending to Airport/South).

If this entire plan comes to life, they will need to add a lot more busses up and down Walkley to connect to the transitway and LRT.

RogueNacho
Jul 2, 2019, 2:56 PM
Been noticing very little activity here the last few weeks. Any ideas why it's taking so long to install the balcony glass and finish the exterior trim around the edges of the buildings?

Catenary
Jul 2, 2019, 3:09 PM
Been noticing very little activity here the last few weeks. Any ideas why it's taking so long to install the balcony glass and finish the exterior trim around the edges of the buildings?

Aren't there strikes affecting the industry right now?

OCCheetos
Jul 9, 2019, 10:58 PM
An article from the CBC about the redevelopment proposal: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/timbercreek-heron-gate-secondary-plan-1.5198976

It has this diagram that highlights the number of floors each building would have.
https://i.cbc.ca/1.5201930.1562354795!/fileImage/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/original_780/timbercreek-plan-for-heron-gate-building-heights.jpg

I gotta say, a 40-storey building still isn't the kind of thing I'd expect to be built in Herongate.

OTownandDown
Jul 10, 2019, 1:04 PM
lol, they just know that the neighbourhood will protest, and they'll actually then get approved for the 20 storey buildings they actually want to build, instead of proposing the 20 storey buildings that will be reduced to 12 storeys.

An article from the CBC about the redevelopment proposal: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/timbercreek-heron-gate-secondary-plan-1.5198976

It has this diagram that highlights the number of floors each building would have.
https://i.cbc.ca/1.5201930.1562354795!/fileImage/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/original_780/timbercreek-plan-for-heron-gate-building-heights.jpg

I gotta say, a 40-storey building still isn't the kind of thing I'd expect to be built in Herongate.

rocketphish
Jul 10, 2019, 5:13 PM
Timbercreek unveils 'blueprint' for Heron Gate, adding 5 million square feet

Blair Crawford, Ottawa Citizen
Updated: July 10, 2019

https://i.imgur.com/iyHGGXO.png

The developer of Ottawa’s Heron Gate has plans that could quadruple the neighbourhood’s population, adding five million square feet in 55 new buildings to the property, including townhouses, 16 low- and medium-rise buildings and a central highrise that could soar 40 storeys.

The proposal from Timbercreek envisions a 20- to 25-year plan for its 20-hectare property near the intersection of Walkley and Heron Roads, where it controversially evicted residents and demolished more than 230 aging townhouse in what critics labelled a “hyper-gentrification.”

Timbercreek’s vice-president of real estate investment management, Paul Popovici, cautioned the proposal, which was submitted to the city in April, is still in the very early stages.

“This is a blueprint for the next 25 years-plus over how this community is going to develop,” Popovici said in a phone interview from Toronto.

“We’re really excited about it. It’s a way of seeing a long-term vision for the community. We are long-term community builders. We’re not developers who buy today and sell tomorrow.”

In total, the complex would have 5,600 units, a mix of rental and condos, some with up to four bedrooms. It’s a lot of people to put in an area that will still be more than 1.5 kilometres away from Walkley Station on the city’s planned Trillium South LRT line. But Popovici says he’s not worried.

“In terms of the transit that’s there now, it’s certainly sufficient to cover what’s going to come in the next three, five or 10 years,” he said. “And as transit expands, so will this community.”

Alta Vista ward Coun. Jean Cloutier has his own concerns about the development, including the density, the height of the towers and the “social contract” to provide affordable housing and the park space and recreational facilities that will make it “a vibrant, safe and inviting place for all the residents to live.”

Timbercreek has assured that up to 20 per cent of the units will be considered “affordable housing,” he said.

“We are still very early in the process,” Cloutier said. “This will not be coming to committee or council until spring of 2020.”

At least seven community meetings have been held on the development since 2017 and Cloutier says he’s committed to holding more in the fall. Timbercreek has been very responsive to input, he said, but Cloutier does have some concerns about the proposal, including the height of the towers.

“It is for a lot an awful lot of density on that triangular piece of property,” he said. “For those people who attended these meetings, it’s not a huge surprise. But let me just state, 40 (storeys) is pretty high for that area.

“We have some work to do.”

https://i.imgur.com/jELscV4.png

Popovici stressed that the high tower is still just a concept and a long way from getting city approval.

“Don’t get hung up on the 40-storey number. We’re still very early in the process,” he said.

“But one of the benefits of height is it gives you room on the ground to have the amenities that people enjoy: Like parks, like playgrounds, like paths. That’s one of the benefits of having height instead of the sort of urban sprawl that’s been so unsuccessful in other American cities.”

Heron Gate is the largest housing project to date for Timbercreek, which manages more than 23,000 residential units across Canada. The company has taken steps to soothe its relationships with the community, announcing in February that there would be no more demolitions of occupied units and that anyone displaced will be offered a new home in one of the company’s new builds in the community.

And while the tall, high-density proposal for Heron Gate has worried some critics, who liken it to communities like Toronto’s troubled St. James Town, the comparison isn’t fair, Popovici said.

“St. James was developed 40 or 50 years ago. There’s been a lot of lessons learned from those towers that were surrounded by nothing.,” he said. The biggest difference is that Timbercreek is in for the long haul, he said.

“It’s in our own interest to make sure that the community thrives and that its healthy and vibrant because we want to be here 30 years from now.”

https://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/timbercreek-unveils-blue-print-for-heron-gate