Today's discussion:

Sorry, NIMBYs, but luxury ‘condos for the rich’ are part of the solution

It’s not new housing developments that are attracting high-income people and raising rents—on the contrary, building more new market-rate housing is a necessary step if we want to solve the housing crisis. The big mistake left-wing NIMBYs make is misunderstanding why the cost of housing has risen so much in recent years.

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I have to say that the Hub’s relentless partitioning of all issues into Left vs. Right is both tiresome and factually incorrect. Plenty of people who you would identify as “right” can be as antidevelopment as an anyone on the left, perhaps more so. What people are tired of is relentless sprawl without consideration to aesthetics, impact on quality of life or what makes a city an attractive place to live. I live in Ottawa, (otherwise known as the fastest growing city on the country) and the amount of housing construction in terms of high density tall structures and sprawling suburbs outside the greenbelt is mind boggling. No one, other than the developers wants this place to become another Mississauga but we are well on our way there. Surely we can have a considered discussion about how to grow, where to grow and how to pay for it without using childish and pointless political labels.

6th November 2023 at 9:56 am

My friend ran for Ottawa council way back in the early nineties. He was opposing the development of Kanata and the new home of the Senators. His main opposition was the wife of one of the main developers. Guess what? He lost and those in charge got exactly what they wanted but apparently they don’t want it anymore. Oops…

6th November 2023 at 10:30 am
Michael F

That’s what you get when one of the editors is a former National Post employee. Relentless partisan rage bait.

6th November 2023 at 12:24 pm

I understand the research but I look at my. neighbourhood or other middle-upscale neighbourhoods. Developers come in and demolish older apartment buildings with reasonable rents to build high cost condos, albeit with the option for previous renters to purchase. However, the previous tenants, some of have been in their buildings for 20+ years, can never afford to buy these expensive condos. So the neighbourhood narrows to be one of high income families and loses the lovely diversity that comes with a neighbourhood of mixed income. It then drives the kind of restaurants and stores that come in so that there is no longer any place to have a cheap and cheerful meal and no place to shop. I’ve seen this happen over and over again. It destroys neighbourhoods.

6th November 2023 at 8:22 am

Great article.

It would have been better without the gratuitous, unprovable declaration that left wing NIMBYs think one way, and the implication that – presumably right wing folks? or just right wing NIMBYs? – have no misunderstading as to why the cost of housing has risen so much in recent years.

6th November 2023 at 5:21 pm
Michael F

A big part of the affordable housing puzzle in many Canadian cities is the ‘missing middle’ phenomena. Small multiplex units in mainly single home areas. City councils would not zone this type of developement for years because of wealthy, conservative NIMBYs not wanting their property values adversely affected by this type of housing. Oak Bay on Vancouver Island or any wealthy urban area in Toronto are examples.

6th November 2023 at 12:22 pm

There is a new development not far from where I live. These houses start at $850K. An out of town developer bought all the land and put up these houses. I cannot see how this development is going to alleviate the housing crisis for those who cannot afford to live in this development. If a developer has the choice of building luxury homes which will sell or affordable housing or even social housing, the developer will choose the luxury condo. The bottom line is profit. That is what seems amiss in the conservative ethos. There is no willingness to act for the common good. Individual rights, private property, control, maintain the status quo, protect your privilege are the driving force. Opinions such as the one in this article are a good veil to hide the conservative agenda.

6th November 2023 at 8:52 am

I concur with your assertions. However, some ppls priorities are incongruous. Having been a cop in T.O. I always wondered; why so many BMWs and Mercedes in the rent controlled govt funded places… Hondas are cheaper better and a smarter vehicles. Just sayin!

6th November 2023 at 7:13 am
Paul Haliburton

I understand your point of view. Didn’t Jack Layton live in govt funded housing? I wonder, does Olivia Chow continue to do so??

6th November 2023 at 9:53 am
Richard Courtemanche

Compound with the general lack of resources, open borders and mass immigration, housing and accommodation will be in permanent crisis. But, it’s easier for present politicians to pass on accrued problems.

6th November 2023 at 5:42 pm