People living in the northeast community of Renfrew have won a long running battle to stop a proposed six-storey apartment building in its tracks.
Gord Strasdin says it was pandemonium after a city hall committee voted 13-to-1 against the project in a land use committee meeting that went late into the evening Tuesday.
“We were leaping and hugging, there were tears: it was two-and-a-half years of a grueling, grueling battle that came to at least a pause.”
Eden McCaffrey, another homeowner in the area, says she couldn’t agree more. She says the proposed 65 unit-building in the 900 block of Radnor Avenue Northeast was too big and too much to handle for the small parcel of land, especially one adjacent to two schools.
“As the vote was coming in, I was already in tears. I burst into tears…It was the height and the mass volume of people that they were proposing would be living there. I am all about densification and inclusivity, diverse housing. But what they proposed, it was so out of line for the neighbourhood.”
A United Church used to call the site home.
Treena Duncan, executive director of the Chinook Winds Region of the United Church of Canada, issued the following statement to Global News.
“We thank city council and administration for their consideration. We look forward to further dialogue and engagement with the community as we discern the future for the former Renfrew United Church property.”
While voting against the land use change, Gian-Carlo Carra, the area councillor, says he expected better.
“In the years since I have been working with the United Church and even before I have been very clear: you owe an obligation, you have been a church, you haven’t paid property taxes, your job is to serve the community.”
McCaffrey, for one, says she has an idea for the next try.
“What I ideally would love to see is row houses and townhouses that are going to have families come join the neighbourhood and be able to access the school and all the amenities.”
The Renfrew group says it’s not about what they didn’t want but about responsible development.
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