Seniors housing project gets a rough ride at public meeting – resident puts the Mayor on hold while she speaks.

By Pepper Parr

February 26, 2014


One doesn’t often see exceptional cooperation between a developer and the city’s planning department.  A proposal from the Hamilton District Christian Senior Citizens Home Inc. to put up a 148 unit, 6 storey apartment building for seniors on property assembled at 3260-3306 New Street somehow managed to go through two Public meetings – this second one lasted three hours and city council made a wise decision that is going to positively impact the lives of a lot of people.  We may well see more proposals like this one.

The developer came in asking for out – saw that wasn’t going to work and came back with a seven story proposal.  That didn’t work either.  The massing of the building on a street that just doesn’t have any high buildings was too much for everyone – even the planners.

The original proposal was for an 8 storey, 176 unit apartment building which got cut down to 7 storeys when the developer realized that a totally different approach was needed to the look of the building and the impact it was going to have on the neighbourhood.

It was at this point that the developer began to have deep discussions with the planners – how does one get away from that massing with a 7 story structure that is five to six lots wide?  Out of those discussions came the 6 storey design with a wide opening between the two.

With a much more satisfactory design that still wasn’t enough to change the minds of most of the people who delegated. 

The six storey version of the project did away with the massive look of the building

Graham Tower just plain doesn’t want a 6 storey building next to his house up – it’s too high and not compatible with the existing neighbourhood – and that is true.  The planners tried to explain that communities change and that this was an appropriate change for this community. 

Ward 2 Councilor Marianne Meed Ward wanted something that was at the four storey range.  Ward 1 Councilor Rick Craven pointed out that when a six storey structure was proposed for Plains Road was announced there was exceptionally strong  opposition in the Aldershot community. Today, said Craven, everyone says this is the route to go.

When Maranatha first went to council in December 20, 2012 the proposal was for an eight story structure – and it was a pretty brutal looking building. A community meeting in January 8, 2013 at Central Public library attracted 80-100 people.

The developers behind this project currently manage a 3-storey, 63 unit seniors apartment building that backs onto the General Brock lands – some of which is owned by Burlington and the rest by the school boards.

The property at 3260 New Street, to the immediate west of the proposed development, contains an 3-storey, 63 unit seniors apartment building.

It is easy to confuse the two organizations discussed at the meeting. Maranatha Homes is under different ownership than Maranatha Gardens

Maranatha Homes is a not-for-profit Christian aging-in-place community that aims to provide a variety of affordable and interconnected housing options including affordable rental units that will provide a variety of assisted living services and facilities to meet the social, therapeutic, and recreational needs of the residents.

Cumberland would serve as the common entrance point to the two projects both managed by the same people.  The set back from New Street is substantial and the two levels of underground parking means the grounds won’t look like a parking lot.

Maranatha Homes was built under Section 27 of the National Housing Act and was administered by Canada Mortgage and Housing (CHMC) until 2001 when the administration of housing was downloaded to municipalities through the Social Housing Reform Act.

CHMC currently holds a mortgage on 3260 New Street, the Homes, with an expiry date of August 1, 2026.

Maranatha Homes, Residence and Seniors Care was approved as a charity on December 27, 2012.

The original plan proposed a stepped building that was 8 storeys on the west side, stepping to 7, 6, 5 and 3 storeys at the east side.  The last revision was for a six storey apartment building, containing 9- one bedroom units, 116- one bedroom plus den units and 23- two bedroom units on the assembled lands that will consist of two towers connected from floors 1-3 with a separation at the 4th floor to reduce the impact of the building massing. The existing driveway serving the Maranatha Homes building, south of Cumberland Avenue will serve as the main signalized access to the site.

There will be two levels of  underground parking along with surface parking that will be shared by both Maranatha Homes and Gardens visitors.

Proposals like this have to go through all kinds of hoops – there is the Official Plan Amendment and Rezoning applications that are subject to the Provincial Policy Statement (PPS), the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe (Places to Grow), the Region of Halton Official Plan (ROP), the City of Burlington Official Plan (OP), and Zoning By-law 2020.

What kind of housing do we want for the seniors in the community who want to “age in place”.  The issue for Burlington and this city council was – what kind of housing do we want for the seniors in the community who want to “age in place”.  Many seniors (there are already more than 100 people who have asked to have their names placed on the waiting list for units in the building) want to move out of a house that requires upkeep they can no longer manage but they want to remain in the community where they are comfortable, where they are active in the community and close to family.  The problem was there just wasn’t much in the way of housing for these people.

Burlington currently has 9,000 people over the age of 80 – which represents 4% of the population.  That number is projected to triple in 30 years.  Burlington has more seniors (as a % of the population) than any other city in the GTA.  More than 17% of the current population is over 65.

It doesn’t take much more than a grade 5 math level to figure out where we are going.  Knowing that today – we can plan for tomorrow.  That point didn’t seem to have any traction in the minds of most of the people who spoke last Monday evening.

The choices seemed to be – learn to live with a larger than normal structure in an established community or begin thinking of other ways to house seniors who want to move out of the single family structures they are currently in and no longer want to maintain. With 148 units available and more than 100 people on the waiting list – the market seems to be saying something.

Mayor Goldring felt the development was a great idea that met the needs of a growing senior’s population. The development is in ward 4 but Jack Dennison, the councilor for the ward, had little to say. Dennison had come up against the residents at the community meetings – he knows when to keep his head down.

Councilor Taylor hardly spoke.

Councilor Sharman saw it as a good project.

These apartments are not going to be cheap: There will be 140 one bedroom and one bedroom with a den that will measure 79-98 m2 and be priced at $2074 a month.

There will be 8 two bedroom units that are between 103 and 130 m2 priced at $3677 a month.

This is not affordable housing: rents range from $2074 to $3677Question were raised by some concerning adjacent road network capacity was it capable of  absorbing the additional traffic generated. The capacity of a typical urban travel lane is 800 vehicles per hour. New Street has two lanes in each direction, therefore the capacity of New Street is 1600 vehicles per hour in each direction.  

New Street is serviced by Burlington Transit’s Route 10 with bus stops on both the north and south side of New Street; the New-Maple route provides cross-town connectivity to the downtown bus terminal, Mapleview Mall, Burlington Go Station, Appleby Mall and the Central Park area which includes a large concentration of community services.

The site is located approximately midway between Guelph Line and Walker’s Line where there is a variety of neighbourhood conveniences. The site is also located a short distance by car (1.7 km) or bus to the Central Park area which includes a large concentration of community services geared at different demographics including the Burlington Seniors Centre, the Central Public Library, Burlington Music Centre, the Burlington Curling Club Central Arena and the YMCA.

An apartment building use differs from a retirement home whereby it does not supply meals to occupants in a common kitchen and dining facility and where other communal facilities may be provided. The proposed use will contain apartment units with their own kitchen facilities.

Maranatha Homes property and Maranatha Gardens lands will be under the same management but different ownership.

The people behind this development are not getting and discounts or special deals.  They will pay all the fees and charges that every other developer pays as well as be required to provide the city with securities to ensure that the work is completed.

City development charges may be payable, Educational Development Charges are payable; Regional Development Charges and Surcharges are payable

As progressive as the project is – there was and still is – some very vocal local opposition to the project.  Graham Tower lives in the home on the east side of the project – and he just plain did not want a large building next door to him and he feels the development will impact very negatively on the value of his property.  The developers staged the height of the east side, have plans for trees – Tower wasn’t happy and is not likely to ever be happy.

Anup Ogale, who lives on Pine Cove  gave the most detailed delegation.  He mentioned a sink hole that would hold the Titanic; an engineer spoke later and explained it was a hole in a drive way and was found to be above ground that had utilities running beneath it.

He added that the building was going to be set on bed rock and if there was any “quicksand” in the area it would not be underneath the structure.

Both the Maranatha Homes and the Maranatha Gardens back on to the Brock lands – residents managed to convince themselves that something was up for the development of that property.  The proposed development faces New Street with a substantial set back from the road.

Mr. Ogale had done quite a bit of research; each matter he brought up was answered by the planning staff.  What planning staff could not do was fully explain why they would not go for eight storeys or even seven storeys but would accept six.  The planner explained that he felt that was an appropriate height for that location – and the area residents just weren’t buying that argument.

A Myers  Lane resident, whose name we shall withhold, managed to embarrass both herself and anyone who knows her,  with comments during her delegation that were just plain rude and disrespectful.  Mayor Goldring mentioned that he drives by the site most days on his way to city hall and he had not found the traffic to be impossible.  He signaled the committee chair that he wanted to speak and the resident cut in and told the Mayor to wait – she was speaking.

Asked by the committee chair to respect the process the resident said “you respect us… we voted you people in and we can vote you out.”

The resident pointed to council and said “I see all kinds of attitude here ..It went downhill from there.  The resident pointed to council and said “I see all kinds of attitude here .. it seems as if you have decided and that you know what is best…No you don’t” and with that the delegation walked away from the podium.

She did return to answer a question from Councilor Meed Ward who wanted to find out just what it was the woman was opposed to;  with that she returned to the podium and said: “We don’t want the re-zoning”.  That was certainly obvious.

The Standing committee voted 6-1 to accept the staff recommendation; Meed Ward, who wanted four storey structures and perhaps a bigger footprint, did not vote the recommendation.  This item comes to city council March 17th – the question is will it move on to the Ontario Municipal Board.  It shouldn’t.



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25 comments to Seniors housing project gets a rough ride at public meeting – resident puts the Mayor on hold while she speaks.

  • Ross McDonald

    A small note to people like Joan and others that are so fond of your local politician. Councillor Meed Ward voted against this proposed development. She supports a shorter building; an arbitrarily based opinion that makes no economic sense whatsoever, and puts affordable housing further out of reach for those in need.

    If Meed Ward had her way, the rents would be even higher, due to the economics of construction costs alone, not to mention that less of the existing infrastructure costs would be absorbed by a lower density; that also impacts the city’s budget and demand for increase in taxes and/or development charges which get passed on to occupants of living units.

    This may in fact indicate that Meed Ward is not sensitive to the financial challenges of our aging community, and further reinforces the insanity at city hall. There is no reason why this building couldn’t be 30 storeys tall.

    • Joan Turbitt

      small note back to people like Ross, most of the surrounding neighbourhood and all of those wanting and needing truly affordable housing do not want this project becauseit is Not affordabale, and because it is too high for the surrounding area.
      If you don’t live there or are not in need of affdble hsg what is your gripe? Marianne Meed Ward listens to constituents and goes to bat for them, whether it goes along with her personal preference or not, you would have to ask her. Councillor Meed WArd would Not want the rents to be even higher, and this bldg has Nothing to do with affordable housing. It is clear that you know nothing of Ccouncillor Meed Ward or affdble hsg or you would not say such a thing. Or mabe you would, however you are wrong. As anyone who has attended her meetings can attest there is No One more thorough,more savvy on all media and research fronts, and listens to the consstituents in her ward and others. Unfortunately, your bias is showing and telling.

      • Ross McDonald

        If Meed Ward is so wonderful, how many affordable units has she provided?

        Where is it exactly you want these units to be built?

        Meed Ward may be a good listener, but, she cannot deliver on the affordable housing issue. She adds little value to your cause.

        The entire New Street corridor should accommodate high rise development, to capitalize on the existing spent costs on in-place infrastructure, to increase the tax base, make more efficient use of public transit, and also provide affordable housing units.

        Who cares about the people who already live in the surrounding low density neighbourhoods; we live in an urban city setting. You can have the status quo and continue to drain the economic life out of inevitable tax revenue looming on the horizon, or, you can intensify development and provide needy people with affordable housing and build a better city.

    • Joan Turbitt

      Who cares what the people who live in the surrounding area think? Obviously not you Ross. Back at you and your biased self absorbed opinions not based on fact. The citizens in this city have every right to care about their suroundings especially if they are going to be paying to live there or not. Your statement that projects such as this will fund others is a crock we have been hearing for deacades because it has not helped the thousands on the wait list for rental apts. they can afford. Bldgs. 30 stories high is something no neighbor wants and would end forever the reason so many people want to move to Burlingtoin. The views the scenery available to everyone. If one wants the concrete jungle go to the U.S. we want to keep Burlington as much as possible as is.
      The argument here is for affordable housing and what that means obviously neither a concern of yours and certainly something you know nothing about. Who cares what persons with such an uninformed opinion have? Back at you Ross.

    • Joan Turbitt

      I meant who cares what a person with such an uninformed opinion that does not consider others, has?

      • Ross McDonald

        If you want to get rid of the waiting list for affordable housing, you better start embracing the concrete jungle reality of the world and the finances required to build you an affordable unit. Unless you would prefer to pitch a tent in Brock park.

        Having a left wing Councillor like your beloved Meed Ward simply listening to your concerns will not actually build you an affordable apartment. Building an apartment actually takes concrete, labour, land, and a lot of political will and skill in putting community development deals together; and money. Where do you think money comes from? Do you think your neighbours surrounding your affordable housing will fund your affordable housing? (Here you go, here’s $150K to build your 800sf apartment – doesnt work that way).

        Neither does this example: Meed Ward takes a 6 storey building down to 4 storeys, tells you that she cares for you; you go off feeling all warm and fuzzy for a few days, while the waiting list for affordable units just became longer.

        Your Mayor and Councillor should tell you exactly the number of affordable units that were created in your desired neighbourhood during the time that they have been managing the affordable housing issue.

        Good luck in getting that information.

        There is a solution to this, but, Meed Ward will not deliver the solution to you. The list keeps getting longer.

    • Joan Turbitt

      Ross I do not know why you persist in this inane arguement. Of all of the meetings I have attended on housing issues for over 3 decades I do not ever recall hearing of or seeing you.
      Of all of the meeting for the City of Burlington, on any issue and facilitated by Ward 2 Concillor Marianne Meed Ward, I do not recall hearing or seeing you there either.
      That any citizen is pleased with the work of their councillor should not be denigrated by someone who knows nothing about any of it. I hear more compliments regarding the availability and good research and results in a timely fashion by people all over the city than any other councillor that I can remember. That you do not like this fact is an opinion best kept to yourself and again is very telling. There are persons many of us do not like so what? Your point is a non point and an excuse given by persons wanting to make as much money as possible on as large a number of high price units as possible and has not yet in all of these years funded any kind of affordable housing for the many seniors who need it right now. Additionally, there was a recent study that said at the current rate it would take 27 years to house the number of persons on the wait list now. This is not just seniors and does not include the many thousands of seniors retiring daily. We need to do something now if this does not appeal to you, find something else to do. We are looking for proactive solutions to a very real issue for a large number of persons many who do not have a lot of time to wait.

      Editor’s note: Let us make this the last comment on this issue – please.

  • Joan Turbitt

    Re Susan Lewis’ response to Roger. If deliberately builidng only Units tht no one living under the poverty level can afford it and therefore are forced to leave town.

    This includes seniors and disabled, chronically ill, terminally ill,under and unemployed persons and families.
    After All the above have done for their families and community, contributing work time and paying taxes, volunteering and caregiving or those downsized because of corp moving business overseas etc. is their crime? FOR SHAME. In other words if you “trip and fall” or become a senior, or any of the above situations you are run out of town? Do you not realize this is the eventuality of most of us? This is not only poor planning but the height of ridiculousness and Not by any means a way to govern.
    I wonder how well recieved this knowledge would be if many tourists or potential families wanting to move here realized that was the modus operandi of this city?
    Think about it.

    • Roger

      Burlington is leaving its income challenged seniors and other income challenged people behind – the mayor and council need to make Burlington affordable and accessible to all – they are not – devlelopments like this are for the upper income part of the population – we are losing are youth who cannot afford to live here – 4 on my street have left with no plans to come back and forgetting about the seniors who are just coping to meet daily costs – why does Burlington not have a homeless shelter

    • Susan Lewis

      Joan, I was agreeing with Roger’s comment, “Guess the people who can not afford to live in Burlington can leave from the councillor’s perspective.” I’ve often thought the same thing myself.

      Perhaps I should have said, “Maybe think that the best way to keep that distinction is to make life as difficult as possible for many low income people, in order to force them to leave.”

      I do not think Burlington should force anybody to move out. I was expressing an opinion on what may be motivating some of our Councillors to make decisions that obviously have a huge negative impact on some people’s lives.

      I do not believe we live in an inclusive city and over the past few years, I have done a lot of advocating on behalf of many of the disadvantaged people in Burlington, especially for our disabled and for our seniors. So far, with very little results. My only hope at this point is the next election in October.

      If you misunderstood what I was saying, I apologize. Writing is obviously not one of my talents.

    • Joan Turbitt

      Susan No, I am sorry if my reply led any one to believe I hold your responsible for even thinking such things as what the need for affordable housing is and why it is needed. I know you advocate a great deal for accessibility in transit and the right to housing etc. for those without sufficient income to cover such rents as these mentioned in the article. One becomes weary sometimes and is not being as clear when responding to her about him about that at this time or other. As I said it has been said to me at an affordable housing meeting when this type of discussion was happening and the NIMBY contingent said to me, “if you can’t afford to live here get out of town” so I replied that she could get out of town because I was here first. I was much older. No one has the right to try and throw us out of the city we grew up in and lived in for decades. Development or not. Not at the expense of the vulneraable in our society. As you Susan are a staunch advocate for. It is difficult to educate in this forum, to in response to others etc. But believe me people in the general population, it can and will very likely happen to all of you at some time or other. Become chronically or terminally ill, have a massive stroke, get Huntington’s Chorea, or Cancer, or or or, the money you must pay out for care is prohibitive. I have been told stories of people who had care from a large agency 23 out of 24 hrs per day until the health coverage ran out, then paying out of liquid assets, down to 1 hour per day of care for his partner as he too is terminal. It did not end at all well. He told me at one point he was making soooo much money. It went in a virtual flash. I think a small gathering of persons, you Susan and I know several others with good life stories to tell, (most have post secondary educ. or worked in profession positions) and still this happened to them, and perhaps Mr. W, and Pepper to document, and some developers only the genuinely interested in an info exchange with a view to achieving the goal of quality affordaable housing.

    • Joan Turbitt

      I’m not sure I was clear, Susan you and I among others would NEVER agree to anyone having to leave this City because they coult not afford to live here. It is definitely the responsibility of council to ensure there is quality housing available for all income levels. After all seniors have done for the community because they are not wealthy throw them out? People who do believe this need to do their homework as to what the reality is.

  • Joan Turbitt

    Thanks James, I’ll stick to what is easy for me add a zero and round up. I appreciaate the reply from those of you who sent in the answer. So, if 98m2 is 1000 or 1055 sq ft. then I think that is a good size for a single or couple or even couple with on again child in college for eg. However, I am adamantly opposed to the cost, under the guise of Affordable Housing for seniors by a Christian group. The implications are misleading. The 2 and 3 plus thousands per mo. for these units is definitely Not for those in need of affordable housing and none of them could possible afford them. By No stretch of the imagination is this Affordable. Do your homework I would be happy to fill you in. Many many seniors monthly pensions are one third to one half of this amt. Single persons on disability pensions, and Ontario works make even less. Let’s call it what it is a cash cow to make even more money off seniors just as so many other so called services to help them are.
    There is a long list anytime any one wishes to hear it in a meeting of like minds, and in a civilized info gathering mind setwith a goal toward solutions to this tremendous and out of hand problem.

    Mr. Wonderful, I agree that we live in a city that could be great IF all citizens wre afforded the necessities of life.
    They are affordable housing income based on no more than 30% cost for rent, transportation, affordable fares and actually takes persons where they need to go without having to transfer 22-4 times, service more than once an hour as in one place, service that extends beyond 7 pm as people need to get home after work etc. A return to the taxi scrip prog. or viable alternative with door to door service for those who are frail elderly and disabled, and need to be able to leave home spontaneously, not have to give a weeks notice, and return health care benefits persons with disabilities lost when were switched to seniors pension and can no longer get eye glasses, one time only, no new dentures, will fix or relign existing dentures, and will pull or fill teeth. So if they have no teeth to eat with too bad for them.
    As for the prices of these “affordable” units I would not pay that price if I won the US powerball of 4 or 6 mill to live in an apartment building. If the wealthy want them go ahead but DO Not try and convince anyone that these are in any way AFFORDABLE for our Seniors. This excludes wealthy seniors who can choose where they live and no aspersions are being cast there only to point out that these are being passed off as affordable in order to be built. Not for anyone I know that needs affordable housing or that the Region knows of check your stats.
    Mr. W I have not said that All Developers are bad, but situations such as this do not bode well for the many thousands of senior/disaable single income fam. that are so desperate for quality homes that cost no more than 30% of their incomes.
    Finally it should not but what can we build for the seniors, but let the seniors decide and tell us what they need and want.
    How would you like these seniors and persons forced to pay 50-75% of their pensions because of projects like this to decide where you got to live and what you paid?
    Could you afford 50-75% or more of your income for rent only?
    Roger, Re “ask councillor why he thought 2048 per mo. for a senior to pay was reasonable. It is obvious he does not have any idea of the reality of the situation or does not care as in the buses running down his street for decades before he moved here.
    As for the comment that some may think that people who cant afford to live here should move out of town …..the last person who said that to me during an affordable housing debate, “got told”, I said, You get out of town as I was here first. And that is not the issue, fortunately that person has no authority and no power of reason or rationale to find a solution but a self inflated opinion of their own importance.
    There but for chance go we all.

    Thanks to everyone for the input perhaps we can collectively provide a solution with only positive and viable solutions no negativity or name calling. Anyone who wishes to say no you seniors are not entitled can stay away.
    Sir Richard Branson says he always finds it easier to say Yes than No.

    • Mr. Wonderful

      Joan, what you are saying can be achieved.

      What you need however, is a cohesive political will and council which is competent in administering such matters; unfortunately, neither exists today.

      The problem with this Mayor and council, is they spend millions on chasing IKEA store relocation dreams, and PIER legal costs, and then dont have time to focus on real important issues which affect a large number of seniors and others trying to get by on an abusively low $11/hr minimum wage.

      One prime example of this city’s failure was losing many affordable housing units on a new development downtown at the corner of Caroline Street; simply because this council has no knowledge or experience in capitalizing on benefits which could be secured through the development approvals process; such as affordable housing units. That development is in Councillor Meed-Ward’s territory; I bet she has never stepped foot inside an affordable housing unit, and she certainly knows little if anything about how new development can supply affordable housing units.

      This Mayor came out publicly stating that he does not know how to accommodate more affordable housing units in this city, and needs to do some additional research. He said something to the effect “affordable units are a one time thing only, and then the pricing goes to reflect market when the unit is sold” —– Balogna!

      The reality is, there are many ways to achieve what you want, and what this community needs. It is truly shame that such a wealthy community such as ours is missing out on delivering what is achievable.

      We need competent, experienced, and knowledgeable people to manage this city. The mathematics of providing affordable housing is relatively quite simple; throw in some other elements into the overall feasibility equation, and all of a sudden we can have beautiful, functional, and desirable affordable housing throughout this city for a sustainable long-term (don’t listen to this Mayor speaking to the affordable housing issue).

      Rents well below what are being promoted can be achieved. Based on cost of construction and long term financing, you can set rents below $1,000.

      • Joan Turbitt

        Mr.W. I am well aware that what ai am saying can and Has been achieved. I agree we need a cohesive every person involved group, to do so.
        City governance planning, bldg., developers and citizens first and foremost to tell you of their needs and wants, and All levels of Government.
        I also agree that is an abusive amt.of wage and should NOT be allowed to be tied to the COL index at this point as you point out because I know this would ensure those persons would Never ever rise above the poverty level.
        They know it too. We are ‘not so green as we are cabbage looking.” (old expression) The COL index should only be applied if the wage was 14 or 15. hr right now and not until it is the same ratio above the poverty level as that. In other words adding 1.00 per year will still ensure poverty.
        I also do know that we can have beautiful, functional and desirable affordable housing throughout the City that is sustainable and Long term. However, rents must be no higher than 30% of income as pensions are so small particularly for seniors of today because many of us worked before CPP came out.
        The key is Sustainable, long term, quality, beautiful, functional, and affordable and it is doabale. This is essential so that when the day comes that the amount of seniors who will live there and comprise the majority of tenants no longer need them, they will be available to anyone, who can pay 30% or more if desired. Mr. W why wait, let those of us with a Sincere desire to resolve this issue meet sooner rather than later. The meeting would be about the provision of affordable based on no more than 30% of ones income which is not a set figure remember because some incomes are higher than others and we are not talking about the uppr income levels. We want qhality, and sufficient quantity in size as to be liveable for the original tenants and any one else who may some day live inthem. Why build a ton of “army barracks type housing no body wants to livein or look at.
        This meeting will be proactive to work out the practical application of viable solutions. Most importantly citizens who need and want this housing should be present to weigh in.
        Those who do not want this type of housing need not attend as it is non negotiable it is needed and required by many now and many many more later. Only those of like mind need attend.
        No attempts at intimidation, Info gathering only. No swearing heard it all said it all.
        Invite developers, builders, financial people, not those who can only say no. We are meeting to find a solution think out of the box if need be. Anyone who will champion the cause is invited.
        FYI Mr W you would do well to speak to Council Meed Ward and discover that she is well informed regarding aff. hsg issues and on side for a lot in conversations I have had with her.
        I await your decision with interest.

    • Chris Ariens

      It may not be affordable per se. I wouldn’t pay that price either. However, there seems to be substantial demand for units like these. The target is those who live in the area, enjoyed many years of home value appreciation, which they can easily convert to an income stream that will fund their ongoing expenses.

      It is tough to find “affordable” housing in a desirable community with a competitive free market.

      And that’s the key question. Does anyone really want to make our community less desirable to those with money in order to keep it “affordable”? It’s in our nature to make the community even more desirable than it is, which has the side effect of driving property values up. What will help is letting these seniors stay in their community, instead of cashing out on a high and moving elsewhere. Places like Marantha (and many more of them) are needed to allow our city to continue to be vibrant and to be able to grow the tax base to afford services like improving affordability for those who need it.

      Quality developments should be welcome here, whether they are affordable or not.

      • Joan Turbitt

        The point here Chris is that people who can afford to pay 2 and 3 thousand per mo. for an apt can live pretty much anywhere they like.
        They are Not in Need of Affordable housing so let’s not try to pass this project off as affordable is all I am saying.
        The developers, government and general population need to understand exactly what affordable is and I supspect many do and choose to skirt around it. Let us be clear about what it means.

        • Chris Ariens

          I think the point is that developments like this are helping to KEEP the people who want to stay here and help to make the community more affordable for all of us. Indeed the well-off can move wherever they like, and increasingly, what they like is a place where they can enjoy the same quality of life they have today, close to people they know and neighbourhoods they have lived a good part of their lives in, without the burden of having to take care of a huge home and property. We have to be realistic about affordable housing…not every house or apartment building needs to meet that criteria. It’s a good building that meets a need and will contribute to the tax base that we rely on to fund our infrastructure and our services.

          I would love to live on Lakeshore but I can’t afford a house there. In no way does that “force me to leave town” just because I have to choose a less costly place to live. That’s life.

  • Roger

    2,048 per month for seniors is affordable housing for seniors for Councillor Sharman – guess working at city hall – once their is a significant loss of common sense – Councilor Sharman has lost touch with much of his ward and the plight of the fixed income seniors that live their – Suggestion to Ward 5 – ask the councillor why he considerd 2.048 dollars for a senior to pay per month for an apartment reasonable – guess the people who can not afford to live in Burlington can leave from the councillor’s perspective

    • Susan Lewis

      Roger, I think you may have hit the nail on the head.

      Burlington is the number 1 mid-sized city in Canada, according to a magazine written for people who have a fair amount of disposable income.

      Maybe, the best way to keep that distinction is to make life as difficult as possible for many low income people, in order to force them to leave.

  • Joan Turbitt

    I am once again astounded at what some people call affordable. Usually the developers and no one in the know.
    How large is 79-98mm2 which goes for $2,074.per mo.?
    ” ” ” 103-130m2 ” ” ” $3,627 per mo.?
    How much is that in feet? So those of us of Senior age can compare? It is I suspect very small. Even if it is 1000sqft it is obscenely overpriced. This is a Christian Seniors Grp.>? Sounds more like a Cash Grab from vulnerable seniors who many many make one half to one third that amount a month total. Consider also disabled, chronically ill and single income individuals and families.
    Because Considering them this plan is NOT.

    • James Smith

      Rough guide – add a Zero and round up, so 98M2 is about 1000 Sq Ft .
      ( The actual calculation is multiply number of M2 by 10.7639, so 98 M2 is 1055 Sq Ft )

    • Mr. Wonderful

      Joan, we need more people like you to speak to the housing affordability issues in this city.

      We live in a great city with lots of money, and very little problems overall; we are very fortunate in Burlington.

      This city has the opportunity to set an example for how affordable housing can be provided, especially for seniors. There are first class senior housing developments taking place now; at Appleby Line and also downtown.

      Affordable housing for seniors as well as for other younger aged citizens is something that can be achieved, with some smart work, political will, and collective interest; and also with developer involvement.

      But everybody has to acknowledge that developers are not the bad guys, and we need to embrace more intense development schemes across this city.

      So, let us all work together and things will work out just fine.

    • Tony Pullin

      Hi Joan, the general rule of thumb is to multiply by 10 to convert meters to feet. 79 square meters is approx 790 square feet.