As part of her community involvement, Amy Kim wrote the following two emails on the Lake Promenade Co-Tenancy Project.
From: Amy Kim <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, Jun 26, 2023 at 9:38 AM
Subject: Re: Concern regarding proposed development of 30-storey condos in Long Branch
To: email@example.com <firstname.lastname@example.org>, <Eno.email@example.com>
Good morning Councillor Morley, and Planner Eno Udoh-Orok,
It’s been a month since I first expressed my concerns about the proposed development at 220, 230, 240 Lake Promenade, and 21 and 31 Park Boulevard in Long Branch, and thought I’d follow up since I have yet to hear a response.
Councillor Morley, I’m particularly curious to hear about your position on this matter.
Since my email a month ago, I learned that this development will:
- be the largest demoviction Canadian history, displacing over 500 families;
- not be matched with the necessary infrastructure upgrades (transit, roadways, bikesharing, parkland) to support the almost 4 times increase in density;
- kill and destroy 141 mature trees in the area, which will lead to poorer air quality, as well as increases of urban heat island effect as shade cover is removed and replaced with buildings that absorb & radiate the heat back out;
- be unprecedented in the area with the excessive height of the proposal.
As mentioned in my initial email, I’m very concerned about the displacement of existing residents, some who have lived in the area for half a century. Imagine planning to live out your retirement in a home, only to be displaced for who knows how many years. This level of uncertainty is certainly an unacceptable way to treat our elderly neighbours. I understand the residents will be offered a unit in the new developments, but will they be of equal size? at their original rental price? Will they be protected with rent control measures, even though the new buildings would be first occupied after 2018, and thus not required by law to have rent control?
There are so many questions surrounding this development, and I urge you, councillor Morley, to make your position known and work with your constituents to find a suitable path forward.
My partner and I chose to make Long Branch our home 3 years ago due to the unique community charm of the area. We fell in love with the mature trees in the area that provided cool shade in the hot summer months, and the fact that the dwellings in the neighbourhood were all unique, but yet fit so nicely together. The thought of this uniqueness being destroyed by monstrous glass buildings smack dab in the middle of the neighbourhood is quite disheartening and frustrating to say the least.
Thank you for your time. I look forward to hearing from you.
Amy (Soojin) Kim (she/her)
Resident and homeowner in Long Branch
On Fri, May 26, 2023 at 1:46 PM Amy Kim <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Dear Councillor Amber Morley and Planner Eno Udoh-Orok,
I hope this email finds you well. I am writing to express my concerns regarding the proposed development of 30-storey condominiums at 220, 230, 240 Lake Promenade and 21 and 31 Park Boulevard in Long Branch. While I understand the need for urban development, I believe it is essential to carefully consider the potential impacts on our community and its residents.
First and foremost, I would like to highlight the already precarious state of affordable housing in Long Branch. The replacement of the existing rental apartments with high-rise condominiums raises significant concerns about the displacement of residents who currently call these apartments home. The current rental price for a 1 bedroom in these apartments is $1925 (source) vs. $2400 avg in Toronto (source), which represents an increase of 25%. It’s also likely many existing tenants of these apartments pay lower than what’s advertised online given they have lived in the building for many years. This is not a sustainable increase for anyone to absorb.
The shortage of affordable housing options in our city has reached alarming levels, and it is crucial that we prioritize the preservation and availability of affordable rental units. I strongly urge you to consider alternative approaches that preserve and enhance the existing rental stock at existing rental prices to ensure that current residents are not unfairly pushed out of our community. Many of the residents of these buildings are young families, and I am very concerned about their ability to find affordable housing in this community where their children attend local schools.
In addition to the affordable housing crisis, I would like to draw your attention to another pressing issue related to the proposed development: the blocking of sunlight for local residents residing in single home dwellings surrounding the development site. Natural light is not only essential for physical and mental well-being but also contributes to the overall aesthetic appeal and livability of our neighbourhood. The construction of a 30-storey building will cast significant shadows (as demonstrated in the applicant’s shadow study), depriving neighbouring homes east and west of the buildings of vital sunlight, especially during morning and evening of winter months when sunlight is already scarce enough as it is. This not only impacts the quality of life for current residents but also devalues their properties. I urge you to thoroughly assess the potential shadow impacts and consider design modifications (such as capping heights of the buildings to existing 7 storey levels) that minimize the adverse effects on neighboring properties.
As engaged and concerned community members, we place our trust in local planners and city councillors to make decisions that prioritize the well-being and interests of the residents. I kindly request that you consider these concerns seriously and explore alternatives that strike a balance between urban development and the preservation of affordable housing, as well as the quality of life for current residents.
Thank you for your attention to these matters. Councillor Morley, I was very excited to see your election over former councillor Grimes, particularly due to your steadfast commitment to your community and constituents. I believe that by working together, we can find a solution that addresses the needs of our community while preserving its unique character and ensuring a sustainable future.
Amy (Soojin) Kim (she/her)
Resident and homeowner in Long Branch