Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Condos killing Toronto's fabric and history

In this article Christopher Hume asks the question if Condos are destroying the fabric that keeps Toronto together.
It's time we understood that heritage represents a rare resource, a civic asset, not simply an obstacle on the way to a developer's bottom line. Our willingness to sacrifice our history at every opportunity reveals a worrisome lack of self-confidence and sophistication.

Regardless of what will replace these houses, the neighbourhood – and with it the city – will be diminished by their disappearance.

Is Hume really on to something here? Will we look back at the last 20 years of the condo boom as another mistake in the planning and revitalization for our cities? Will it be connected with urban renewal, the process that cleared city blocks, but this time for the direct purpose of building condos? Condos have their place and can be an affordable option to new homebuyers, but why is the trend to tear down and rebuild, instead of converting existing structures? This might help explain why.

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