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Urban Development and Proposals Discussion

Alex_YYC

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I'm curious if anyone's been out to the New Horizon Mall recently? Back in March they were getting a large tenant and were 50% leased.

 

Chowda7

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I'm curious if anyone's been out to the New Horizon Mall recently? Back in March they were getting a large tenant and were 50% leased.

Ya the Sky Castle takes up pretty much half of the 2nd level and is open in December. The main floor is still pretty bare tho but starting to fill out
 

Calgcouver

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No love for Lacaille? lol

I think Batistella would be my preference as well, really like pretty much everything they have done in this city so far.
La Caille could pull the trigger on the 16th Ave site they have if they had a single pro forma that wasn’t geared towards luxury condos for empty nesters from 15 years ago. #eauclaireforever
 

Surrealplaces

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I thought I would do a follow up on @Beazley66's post from a couple of years ago, as I cycle past this area a few times a week. The affordable houses are built now and blending into the neighborhood very well.
I was going through my files containing past opportunities in the form of RFP's. I came across one that was a no go
for us. It was for 8 affordable housing units to be proposed along 16th Avenue, between 4A Street and 9th Street N.W., adjacent to the 16th Avenue sound wall.
I'm not sure if the RFP (design build) was awarded yet. A very challenging series of sites.
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The streets they're on.

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zagox

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I thought I would do a follow up on @Beazley66's post from a couple of years ago, as I cycle past this area a few times a week. The affordable houses are built now and blending into the neighborhood very well.



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The streets they're on.

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Beautiful development, well done. My main question is, does this project make any sense? The cost of design and construction for these units, plus the amount of city staff time that was consumed to produce 8 units of affordable housing is astronomical. And at a city-wide scale, at the risk of agreeing with Richard White, 8 units is utterly meaningless.

The best argument I can think of for this project is that these units are sort of a symbol of the city's commitment to creating affordable housing in many different communities, even the rich ones. If they kick on with larger scale initiatives that are lower cost per door, maybe an occasional small-scale high-cost project builds political support in some way.

However, if the goal is to make any sort of material change in the life of the average Calgarian struggling to afford housing, building 8 units at a time is a cruel joke.
 

CBBarnett

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Beautiful development, well done. My main question is, does this project make any sense? The cost of design and construction for these units, plus the amount of city staff time that was consumed to produce 8 units of affordable housing is astronomical. And at a city-wide scale, at the risk of agreeing with Richard White, 8 units is utterly meaningless.

The best argument I can think of for this project is that these units are sort of a symbol of the city's commitment to creating affordable housing in many different communities, even the rich ones. If they kick on with larger scale initiatives that are lower cost per door, maybe an occasional small-scale high-cost project builds political support in some way.

However, if the goal is to make any sort of material change in the life of the average Calgarian struggling to afford housing, building 8 units at a time is a cruel joke.
Good comments, I largely agree.

The Rosedale affordable housing project is nicely designed and integrated, but all effort was to achieve 16 units (I think it was 8 lots, with two units per lot)? This location is along a MAX BRT line, walking distance to several post-secondaries and the highest density of both professional and service jobs this province has to offer (Calgary's inner city). Both units come with a parking stall, a uniquely Calgarian amenity for affordable housing.

Sure there are some site limitations - a lot of coulda-woulda-shouldas from the terrible 16th Avenue expansion project of 2005-2010 - that prevents larger developments here and makes everything less efficient. From my count of the aerial photos from pre-16th expansion, the roadway took out ~20 homes in Rosedale (not counting other communities so the total housing loss is higher). So even with some well designed, well-integrated affordable housing, what did we achieve? A net loss of 4 units in effectively what has evolved to become one of Calgary's best examples of a wealthy but publicly financed, pseudo-gated community.

Perhaps a better way to achieve mixed-income communities with more affordability is not to wall them off and have their political clout grow to essentially prevent all land intensification, while they quietly reaping the location benefits (and increasing housing values) of billions of public dollars of investments in our transportation system, post-secondary schools and other area amenities nearby. Hell, we even bought Rosedale a wall to physically separate themselves along income lines.

I don't know what a sound wall costs, but perhaps 1km of concrete could have bought a few more homes instead? Better yet - if the sound wall was done to preserve "property values" from increased traffic noise (which is often the case), lining the neighbourhood with affordable walkup apartments is an even better sound-mitigation tool. If traffic noise is such a detriment to property values, congratulations you have found a way to keep the walkups from appreciating in price and becoming affordable by putting them next to your loud roads.

Ideal outcome? Probably not - it's not great to live next to a terrible road regardless of income - but if we held the assertion that traffic noise lowers property values enough to justify an expensive wall, surely we could apply the same logic to put some affordable housing at a large scale in areas that are likely to maintain lower values. Of course, to have that outcome would have require that choice to be available during the 2005 road expansion project - a tough task in siloed transportation project world. Far easier to throw up a wall and let the affordable housing advocates fight for scraps a few decades later.

In summary, within the limits of the scope of the housing project itself - they are well designed and should be commended for fighting through incredible opposition and political battles to achieve the results that they did. Certainly better than empty lots, certainly a design win to point to regarding integrating affordable housing anywhere. But expand the scope to a slightly to a macro-level and the results of a limited tactical victory for affordable housing and urban design are overshadowed by strategic failures elsewhere.
 

UrbanWarrior

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I would have loved to see the south side of 16th lined with walkups and the whole section from 4th to 10th with ground floor retail, or spaces on the ground floor able to be retail converted one day. It would have killed two birds with one stone (noise + affordable housing) along with showing the rich that they don't run this city. Instead we got the opposite.
 

Surrealplaces

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I think it's still worth while, from the point of view that the design and build of the houses is a one time cost, and now that it's done it's good going forward. I agree that the money used to design and build them could have been used toward a larger scale project that would have yielded more affordable housing units and more bang for the buck, but it's also nice to have affordable housing units in the inner city that are single family homes. There's no other way to do that without doing a project like this on land that is difficult to develop.

It'd be interesting to know the exact cost of designing and building these houses compared to a larger multifamily project. I would expect the costs to be more efficent for a larger multifamily project, but on the other hand, small single family homes are much less complex, and easy to do.

Beautiful development, well done. My main question is, does this project make any sense? The cost of design and construction for these units, plus the amount of city staff time that was consumed to produce 8 units of affordable housing is astronomical. And at a city-wide scale, at the risk of agreeing with Richard White, 8 units is utterly meaningless.

The best argument I can think of for this project is that these units are sort of a symbol of the city's commitment to creating affordable housing in many different communities, even the rich ones. If they kick on with larger scale initiatives that are lower cost per door, maybe an occasional small-scale high-cost project builds political support in some way.

However, if the goal is to make any sort of material change in the life of the average Calgarian struggling to afford housing, building 8 units at a time is a cruel joke.
 

Cowtown

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It's nice to see they are upgrading the underpasses that connect downtown to Betline, but I wonder if they could have taken it a step further and added the kind of uses you sometimes see in other countries? (Europe, Asia)

I remember seeing little kiosk and information booths, etc. under underpasses in Europe. Here are some photos of some uses in Japan.

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Cyric

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I hadn't previously seen this Stampede 2019 Concept Plan before seeing it in the slides for the land use change to allow a hotel on the NW corner of the BMO parking lot. Some interesting items in there that I wasn't previously aware of. You can zoom in for detail at the link below.

Stampede 2019 Concept.JPG


https://corporate.calgarystampede.com/CS-2020-25-Strat-Plan/?page=12
 

Mountain Man

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Interesting that a hotel will go where the Coke Stage is, and I assume the amphitheater will be the new Coke Stage?
 

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