Kadie Balfour and her husband Roberto have lived in South Etobicoke for nearly 10 years and have called the beautiful Long Branch community their home for the past five years. They currently live in the Lake Promenade apartment community in a unit overlooking the lake. They are expecting a new addition to their family in January 2024.
From writing and producing to shooting and editing, producer and director Kadie Balfour holds a wide variety of skills which allow her to balance artistic values with technical ability – creating quality, engaging content.
She has worked on productions for CBC, MarbleMedia, BTA, Frank Content, Melbar Entertainment, and more, with an extensive scope of roles ranging from the production office to the set. She has also helmed independent projects, being involved in every aspect from conceptualization to editing, for clients such as the Newmarket National Play Festival, novelist Gloria C. Bishop, as well as her own passion projects.
In the fall of 2023, she has been the representative of the tenants of building 240 Lake Promenade on the Working Group.
As part of her community involvement, Kadie Balfour sent the following email to Toronto City Councillor Amber Morley on the Lake Promenade Co-Tenancy Project:
Hello Councillor Morley,
I do apologize for the length of my letter but I would like to outline my concerns, which are also the concerns of many of my neighbours.
This message is regarding the Development Application 23 134668 WET 03 OZ and its related applications that affect the demolition of 21 Park Blvd, 31 Park Blvd, 220 Lake promenade, 230 Lake promenade, and 240 Lake promenade. This application may have already been brought to your attention as it’s created quite a stir in local social media groups. I have also contacted the City Planner Eno Rebecca Udoh-Orok to voice my concerns with this matter.
I’m sure you are familiar with these mid-rise rental apartments situated at the southern end of Long Branch Avenue in the Long Branch Neighbourhood. My husband and I live in one of these rental apartments, it is our first 2-bedroom home, and our intention was to grow our family here for the foreseeable future.
From a community perspective, this proposed development is much larger than any building in the area and is out of line with the historic character of what used to be a cottaging neighborhood – creating a major eye sore on the lakefront. Furthermore, the scale and density of this project poses a public nuisance to the houses in this quiet neighborhood, as well as inviting an influx of heavy traffic on residential streets – both a safety concern and a noise concern. A project of this scale should be reconsidered for a major road, not these side streets.
However, the more disturbing part of this proposal is that following through on this project would displace hundreds of people who currently live in affordable, rent-controlled apartments. The proposed replacement is neither of those things.
These apartments currently house elderly, newcomers to Canada, families of all ages, students, and young working professionals – all who depend on rent control to manage their financial well-being. These are people, like my husband and I, who moved to these apartments because of the reasonable costs, the spacious units, and the proximity to a beautiful and quiet neighbourhood.
The hundreds of tenants in these current buildings help make up the fabric of the Long Branch community. And they could be priced out of their home. Even when an application like this claims it will add rental units, and that original tenants will be given first right of refusal to similarly priced units, they legally are not rent controlled. So, as you know, after a year the rent can be hiked up, even if the company promises to not to do so (Here is a recent example of a company breaking that trust: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/rent-increase-high-park-building-toronto-1.6782590 )
I haven’t seen a floor plan but I can say with good confidence the units likely won’t have the same square footage that the current apartments here have.
All these factors and more threaten a significant lifestyle change for the hundreds of tenants who would be invited back to live in the new units (if they even come back). Hundreds of us will priced out of our own neighbourhood with little to no other options. Like many, I would not be able to afford to live in this city at the current rental market rates, and would have to seriously consider leaving Toronto.
If we did move back into a new unit after being forced out, I’m not sure where any of us would go in the meantime, but it certainly wouldn’t be in our current neighbourhood. There would be a huge influx of tenants looking for homes in an already very competitive rental market.
If you read this far, I do truly appreciate it – thank you for your time, Councillor. And I strongly urge you to stand with us to help fight this.
240 Lake Promenade #411, Etobicoke