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  #201  
Old Posted Apr 13, 2012, 6:06 PM
suburbia suburbia is offline
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Several posts from the 'construction' forum that are better placed here:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty van Reddick View Post
Anecdotally....we've lived in Bankview for almost 12 years now. I park my car on the street, just steps from two apartment buildings that are famously problematic here, with police visits all the time, and our house is aside an alley where I've observed people smoking crack on several occasions. So it's not Sunalta but it's every smidgen as unsheltered.

We've never had so much as a coffee cup stolen from our property. Our car was last broken into in 2005. We do see a lot of socially disorganized behaviours, but this hasn't resulted in either my partner or me ever having been more than panhandled. A bottle picker helped push our car in a snowstorm once... my interactions with them have been mostly neutral and sometimes positive.

I cross the street sometimes when I'm alone on a stretch of 17th--this is a problem in the late mornings usually, after the morning commuter crush but well before people are back on the sidewalks for lunch, so around 10am--and there is a group of evidently drunk or high homeless men coming my way as running that gauntlet is always a horrible, disturbing experience. But it is in Vancouver and Toronto too.

I'm not sure where I'm going with this, except to say that there is a level of discomfort I have with living where I live but it's absolutely, positively not around my own fears of crime and personal victimisation; it's around being in almost daily thrall of people, mostly native men, who have needs that are very difficult to meet.
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Originally Posted by Calgarian View Post
I've lived downtown for almost a decade and have only ever felt threatened once, and that was from a big Native guy who I'd seen selling and smoking crack a few times. He was walking down the middle of the sidewalk (on a busy afternoon around 5PM) yelling out "who wants to get fucked up!" not in the drug sense, in the getting beat up sense.

Aside from being propositioned by a few crack whores by my old apartment, or being asked for change by some homeless guys, that's it! I feel more threatened walking by the bars at 2AM than by any vagrant. From my experience, if you ignore them and mind your business, they leave you alone, if they ask for change or something, just say sorry man, and keep going.
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Originally Posted by polishavenger View Post
Im not comparing the beltline to the suburbs. The inner city has different issues to deal with, not a contraversial statement in the least. And crime in the inner city might be slightly more visible because there are more people, but on a per capita basis, I would be interested in seeing how it stacks up to the rest of the city. Dont forget, rapes and murders happen in the burbs as well, and there are intoxicated men in parks there as well. Not to mention menacing teenagers.

What Im saying is that the neighborhood has improved since the 90's. You have your own personal experiences to go off of, and I have mine. I remember the downtown and beltine being empty boring places after work hours, with seedy people occupying the alley ways, hookers strolling Eau Claire and Victoria park. When I went to high school at St Mary's, my daily walk from the Vic Park Station included numerous homeless, an empty lot with condoms and needles, a burned out synagogue with squaters and vagrants, and a run down crack house. Now, the empty lot is developed with nice condos, the synagogue is converted to luxury homes, there are far fewer homeless, and the crack house is beautifully restored. Also, the down town is far more vibrant, the difference on the weekends is staggering. A once derelict Eau Claire now has luxury Condos, beautiful parks, new office development, and a large number of residential on the way. 7th Ave is now a respectable street you arent embarassed to have visitors see. These examples are only a few if you look at the rest of the inner city.
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Originally Posted by Strongbow View Post
...lol, once I was walked down Stephen Ave and a gnarly older native guy stuck his hand out and in a non-threatening voice said 'can you spare some change? You stole my country you know', then smiled and showed me his three teeth...I laughed and laughed as I dug some coins out of my pocket for him...
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Originally Posted by fusili View Post
It would be dishonest of me to say that there are not aspects of urban living, and specifically the Beltline that are a nuisance. Safety to me is a different thing, as I am a 6'4" male, but I do have to admit, if I was a single woman walking at night, there would be quite a few places that would scare me, and honestly there are a few places that I do not feel comfortable for my girlfriend to be walking around alone at night.

The best thing for safety in a neighbourhood is activity. One woman I know who lives in the Beltline, has a mental condition and is on AISH. She always tells me the safest part of the neighbourhood is 17th avenue, because it is full of people. The same goes for my girlfriend. If she is out with friends on 17th (we live on 15th just behind Mount Royal Village), then I am totally comfortable with her walking home, as there are a lot of people out. If she was walking down 15th avenue around 2nd street, I would come escort her.

The other thing that the Beltline can improve on is street lighting. Too often the lighting is sparse, oriented to cars on the street, and does a poor job of illuminating the sidewalk. I also hate the new tall lights on 12th, as they make the place feel like an institution. Proper street lighting can go a long way to making women feel comfortable in the neighbourhood.
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Originally Posted by Aegis View Post
I disagree 100% with this. There's been plenty of new development in Beltline since 2007, and the hookers/johns/drug dealers are all in the same locations. They are there because it's an established location, not because it's underdeveloped. I remember the same general comments being made in 06/07 in the forum.

I will grant you that Beltline has improved significantly since 2007, but I think that has more to do with the recession causing transient population to move on, than with any significant changes in the cityscape.

Last edited by suburbia; Apr 14, 2012 at 12:38 AM.
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  #202  
Old Posted May 2, 2012, 6:40 PM
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This is further discussion to a post from the Construction thread that I felt was more appropriate for this thread. The following are just some points of view and not really a urban vs/ suburban debate. It's more some elements that I think are issues that limit the potential and opportunity for the suburbs to evolve and deviate from their current issues.


There is no changing the fact that the suburbs exist and will continue to exist. What needs to be considered is how they connect with the city to allow people to experience the amenities of a city, ie. Stampede, Hockey Games, Performing Arts, etc. These are all elements that will continue to be placed within the heart of the city. So the challenge is to connect people better. Is that through limiting sprawl? Or improving transit?

Second to that is rethinking SFH developments as a place where people can build a home to stay long term and allow that home to grow as they need. I think what is lost in some new communities is that sense of community because these models create communities of constant change. Due to economics you start in a condo or 'starter' SFH, and you upgrade as the family grows. To me that negates the notion of creating a home. Why can the home not be allowed to change with your family? This to me is where architectural guidelines or regulations are perhaps the underlying problem.

If communities allowed people to purchase land and to build a home with the opportunity to add on as their family grows then they could create a place that suits their lifestyle. Why do all the starter homes have to be clustered together? Why can't some smaller homes be mixed with larger homes?

It is naive to think that everyone lives the exact same and therefore creating SFH that are essentially copies of one another only truly benefits the developer and builders. No offence to developers, they have found a financial model that works and people are not questioning it or willing to challenge it at this time. However, I do feel as a member of the building industry we have a responsibility to look at what is best for the greater community, that being Calgary, and not just the profit. There is no reason to why developments cannot be profitable should the current community models evolve.

Personally, I would like to see the architectural guidelines allow for people to change their home to reflect their personality and lifestyle as they see fit. I think it’s ridiculous that people be restricted to a regulated palette of colors and materials that create these themed communities. I realize the issue for many is they don't want to live next to the purple house because they hate purple or feel it lowers the value of their home. I guess I find it interesting that we don't let people tell us how to dress or what to drive but we allow people who develop these regulations to dictate how we live. Don't get me wrong the suburbs are not the only place that this occurs...many urban neighborhoods are also trying to enforce similar regulations.

My comments are not directed at Calgary solely, I think they would apply to many urban/suburban cities in Canada that are growing and will continue to grow. However, Calgary should not settle to be like any other city. It should be the city that others look to for ideas, understanding and solutions on creating a great city. I think one former said it best that we should demand more if Calgary is continue to grow and become a global city.

This post is not a personal attack at people’s choices. I think debate and the sharing of ideas and opinions are the only way to improve on how we develop our cities further and create long tern sustainable growth.
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  #203  
Old Posted May 2, 2012, 7:29 PM
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I just found out my sister's place is going to be used as one of the Urban options on the show Urban vs Suburban. Her place isn't for sale, but will be used as it's very similar to one getting built. I'll be curious to learn how the show actually works behind the scenes.
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  #204  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 2:44 PM
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Globe & Mail:
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/...rticle2427435/
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  #205  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 3:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AUM View Post

Personally, I would like to see the architectural guidelines allow for people to change their home to reflect their personality and lifestyle as they see fit. I think it’s ridiculous that people be restricted to a regulated palette of colors and materials that create these themed communities. I realize the issue for many is they don't want to live next to the purple house because they hate purple or feel it lowers the value of their home. I guess I find it interesting that we don't let people tell us how to dress or what to drive but we allow people who develop these regulations to dictate how we live. Don't get me wrong the suburbs are not the only place that this occurs...many urban neighborhoods are also trying to enforce similar regulations.
This is a bit of a red herring. For every 1 case of a developer denying a color or material choice from a homeowner, there are 100 cases where the developer has insisted on additions and modifications to a home to try to avoid complete uniformity within the community. Left to their own devices, most homeowners would rather blow all of their budget on kitchen and ensuite upgrades and spend as little as possible on exterior finishings and architecture. This is the main reason for architectural controls.
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  #206  
Old Posted May 9, 2012, 10:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wentworth View Post
This is a bit of a red herring. For every 1 case of a developer denying a color or material choice from a homeowner, there are 100 cases where the developer has insisted on additions and modifications to a home to try to avoid complete uniformity within the community. Left to their own devices, most homeowners would rather blow all of their budget on kitchen and ensuite upgrades and spend as little as possible on exterior finishings and architecture. This is the main reason for architectural controls.
So a sea of beige vinyl siding is better than what would have occured had the developer allowed homeowners to choose their own exteriors? I don't by this. The one control where I see your point is corner lot buildings. Most homeowners tend to cheap out on side windows and finishing left to their own devices.
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  #207  
Old Posted May 10, 2012, 2:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by O-tacular View Post
So a sea of beige vinyl siding is better than what would have occured had the developer allowed homeowners to choose their own exteriors? I don't by this. The one control where I see your point is corner lot buildings. Most homeowners tend to cheap out on side windows and finishing left to their own devices.
Go check out the very newest communities like Auburn Bay and Mahogany. I was actually very surprised by this newest generation of new suburban homes. Much greater variety and certainly not the typical sea of vinyl beige siding we're used to seeing. Even the finishings of garage doors has improved - they're not so oppressive looking.
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  #208  
Old Posted May 10, 2012, 4:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by O-tacular View Post
So a sea of beige vinyl siding is better than what would have occured had the developer allowed homeowners to choose their own exteriors? I don't by this. The one control where I see your point is corner lot buildings. Most homeowners tend to cheap out on side windows and finishing left to their own devices.
Yet it is the communities that have the most lax architectural controls often end up having the most vinyl siding. Same if you go to smaller centers where there are no developers or controls, 90% of the homes are the same beige vinyl. Why vinyl? Because it's cheap. Why beige? Because it never used to work so well in darker colors (fading, etc.), and people just used to like that shit. Communities like Garrison Woods have less of this oppressive vinyl siding because of their architectural controls.
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  #209  
Old Posted May 10, 2012, 4:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wooster View Post
Go check out the very newest communities like Auburn Bay and Mahogany. I was actually very surprised by this newest generation of new suburban homes. Much greater variety and certainly not the typical sea of vinyl beige siding we're used to seeing. Even the finishings of garage doors has improved - they're not so oppressive looking.
Faux-modern suburban architecture!

I just wanted to be the first to say it. (I've seen this in Walden and Aspen too, I'm not actually sure if this is what you were referring to.)
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  #210  
Old Posted May 10, 2012, 6:25 AM
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Wentworth,

I understand what you are saying and your points are very valid. In most cases many people would default to similar finishes and materials.

Perhaps architectural controls could set a minimum standard in a community, but if they allowed people to go above that minimum standard I don't see where the issue would be.

So as an example let's say a family in Cranston wants to remain in their current community and wishes to convert their single family neo-traditional home into a more contemporary home. Why would this be an issue? Would the guidelines allow this? As mentioned above if there was a minimum standard to materials that had to be used and the family maintained setback and height requirements why should they not be allowed to do so? I think if the guidelines could allow for a little more variation while maintaining a minimum level of requirements it could possibly create a more dynamic character to an often repetitive situation.

I'm posing this question in place of just saying the suburbs suck and they are what they are. I think by questioning and challenging things we can create opportunity for positive changes and perhaps making static situation more dynamic.
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  #211  
Old Posted May 10, 2012, 11:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AUM View Post
Wentworth,

I understand what you are saying and your points are very valid. In most cases many people would default to similar finishes and materials.

Perhaps architectural controls could set a minimum standard in a community, but if they allowed people to go above that minimum standard I don't see where the issue would be.

So as an example let's say a family in Cranston wants to remain in their current community and wishes to convert their single family neo-traditional home into a more contemporary home. Why would this be an issue? Would the guidelines allow this? As mentioned above if there was a minimum standard to materials that had to be used and the family maintained setback and height requirements why should they not be allowed to do so? I think if the guidelines could allow for a little more variation while maintaining a minimum level of requirements it could possibly create a more dynamic character to an often repetitive situation.

I'm posing this question in place of just saying the suburbs suck and they are what they are. I think by questioning and challenging things we can create opportunity for positive changes and perhaps making static situation more dynamic.
The restrictive covenants regarding architectural controls typically expire after a few years. On my title, it was 5 years, but I believe even they have been found to be not enforceable when taken to court, so they really only pose an issue when you are initially building the house. I know of at least one home in my neighbourhood where the owner has modified the home immediately after taking possession.
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  #212  
Old Posted May 10, 2012, 11:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AUM View Post
Wentworth,

I understand what you are saying and your points are very valid. In most cases many people would default to similar finishes and materials.

Perhaps architectural controls could set a minimum standard in a community, but if they allowed people to go above that minimum standard I don't see where the issue would be.

So as an example let's say a family in Cranston wants to remain in their current community and wishes to convert their single family neo-traditional home into a more contemporary home. Why would this be an issue? Would the guidelines allow this? As mentioned above if there was a minimum standard to materials that had to be used and the family maintained setback and height requirements why should they not be allowed to do so? I think if the guidelines could allow for a little more variation while maintaining a minimum level of requirements it could possibly create a more dynamic character to an often repetitive situation.

I'm posing this question in place of just saying the suburbs suck and they are what they are. I think by questioning and challenging things we can create opportunity for positive changes and perhaps making static situation more dynamic.
The restrictive covenants regarding architectural controls typically expire after a few years. On my title, it was 5 years, but I believe even they have been found to be not enforceable when taken to court, so they really only pose an issue when you are initially building the house. I know of at least one home in my neighbourhood where the owner has modified the home immediately after taking possession.
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  #213  
Old Posted May 11, 2012, 4:50 PM
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Wentworth,

It seems like the guidelines are actually improving from what they used to be from years back. 5 years is not that bad and would definitely allow a family to change their home as their family changes. Being that so many new communities are not very old I'm sure we will see changes happen in the upcoming decades. I actually noticed a home that was completely redone from the studs in Hawkwood a couple of years ago. So there are some people who are seeing the opportunity that they can have their home change to suit their lifestyle.
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  #214  
Old Posted May 30, 2012, 5:17 PM
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This is more extreme - not urban vs. suburban, but, rejecting both and going to commuter communities. Can't be good, but reading the article, can't argue with the reasoning either.

http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/Pa...565/story.html
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  #215  
Old Posted Nov 9, 2012, 7:24 PM
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I posted this in the construction thread, but it deserves a home here instead ...

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Originally Posted by artvandelay View Post
Yep, he even won a Darwin Award for his efforts. I believe it happened at Bromley:

http://darwinawards.com/darwin/darwin2000-31.html
I was searching the Internet for where this happened, and came across a few interesting posts regarding the area on calgarypuck

http://forum.calgarypuck.com/archive...p/t-42497.html

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Holy crap, yes Bromley Square aka 'Calgary's highrise Ghetto' deserves its own thread.<>
-The umpteen times the water (hot or complete) was turned off. Showed up at work a couple times with devilish hair after mistakingly sleeping till 9:01am.
-Dropping 4 floors what felt uncontrollably in the east glass elevator. That elevator was shut down for 4 or so months after that.
-getting stuck in the elevators numerous times (all 4 of them).
-waiting eons some days for an elevator to come up to my floor. I remember walking down 32 floors of stairs some mornings because that was faster.
-Sketchy folk always surrounding the building and in front of the macs/pizza 555/liquor store. Seeing that line-up every day at the Mustard Seed was always a sobering sight.<>
-That god awful smell behind the macs in the alley.
-The trains... oh boy do I not miss those trains! Listening to those beasts brake for 5-10mins on a Sunday morning was never fun. I have to admit though, I was a fan of toy trains when I was a kid and it was kind of neat seeing the 150 or so cars in a row (especially when they were all full of lime yellow sulphur!)
-Making sure guests didn't throw shyte off the balcony was occaisionally a challenge.
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A few years ago, I had a friend that lived up on 25. One night after a hard night drinking at Manhattens, I staggered to his balcony and puked all over the edge. The splatter on the parking lot belowe was very impressive.
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Ahhh,so you puked on the South side, nice. Definately not the only vomit on that side of the building! Once my friend did the deed over my balcony, but he mananged some how to get most of it onto 3104's railing. As it was disgustingly obvious where it came from, I glad buddy didn't come home for a couple weeks and it had rained a lot before he did....
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It was a perfect place to stumble home from The Palace (which for some reason we frequented).
The train sounds were great - particulalry the big crashing sounds that would happen from time to time.
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We used to have huge parties and spread peanut butter on the main door to bromely. Them watch the ensuing carnage on the security camera's. I finished two passports at bottlescrew bills and got trapped in the elevators numerous times. Great times, what a dive!
Hmmm ... I now don't seem to mind needing to shovel snow off my drive way a few times a year.
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  #216  
Old Posted Nov 9, 2012, 7:26 PM
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Originally Posted by suburbia View Post
I posted this in the construction thread, but it deserves a home here instead ...



I was searching the Internet for where this happened, and came across a few interesting posts regarding the area on calgarypuck

http://forum.calgarypuck.com/archive...p/t-42497.html


Hmmm ... I now don't seem to mind needing to shovel snow off my drive way a few times a year.
This is straight-up trolling. A poorly built and maintained building has nothing to do with urban vs suburban. I am sure living in a crack house that has been condemned with roaches is no better. Substandard housing and dense housing are completely different things.
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  #217  
Old Posted Nov 9, 2012, 7:29 PM
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Originally Posted by fusili View Post
this is straight-up trolling. A poorly built and maintained building has nothing to do with urban vs suburban. I am sure living in a crack house that has been condemned with roaches is no better. Substandard housing and dense housing are completely different things.
x2! My old house in Hawkwood was next door to a grow op that sat abandoned for a year.
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  #218  
Old Posted Nov 9, 2012, 7:41 PM
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Why was this posted in 2 threads?
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  #219  
Old Posted Nov 9, 2012, 7:58 PM
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I realize suburbia is trolololing us, but I should mention that Bromley is under renovation and is going mid market. Looks like they're targeting the same market as Hull Estates now. So it's days of being a vertical ghetto are over.
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  #220  
Old Posted Nov 9, 2012, 8:22 PM
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They started renovating that building about 5 years ago, looks much much better than when I was there.
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