Letter: Hey 'negative nellies': density is good for this New West neighbourhood

Editor:

Re: Six-storey project too big for our New West street, Record Letters

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I wanted to write a note of support for the proposed addition of affordable multi-family housing in the Glenbrooke North neighbourhood and to offer a different point of view to those that may suggest density doesn’t belong here. A little backstory first. 

I grew up in Glenbrooke North and I consider myself extremely fortunate to still live here with my wife and three young children.

When considering a place to live and raise our family several years ago, we were lucky enough to be able to find and afford one of the few three-bedroom townhomes located in Glenbrooke North’s most dense, mixed-housing neighbourhood, mere walking distance to shops, parks, schools, and even the house that I once grew up in.

We were able to do so because a forward-thinking city council some 20-plus years ago had the vision and courage to allow more density and housing choice into our already beautiful community.

It is a quiet little area that has added value, character and charm to our amazing city. More importantly, it has added invaluable housing choice for those of us that, despite being fortunate to have had above average incomes, still can’t afford to get into a single family home.

My point is this - density done well can and does already coexist and compliment less-dense forms of housing in our city. It makes our neighbourhoods more vibrant and liveable.

It gives people from different walks of life the opportunity to live within different parts of our community.

The same amazing people who join our PACs, volunteer at morning practices so our kids can play sports, donate their time to help out on our city committees and at our farmer’s markets. The kinds of people who truly make New Westminster a better place to live.

Metro Vancouver needs more affordable housing choices. Our city needs more affordable housing choices. Especially ones that can be located walking distance from shopping, transit, parks and schools.

I encourage our current city council to show the same courage and vision that that previous city council did so many years ago, to look at the positive impact their decision has had on the growth and revitalization on our city today, and to find a way to make this proposed much needed affordable housing project work.

Regardless of what some negative nellies might have to say.

Mike Folka, New Westminster

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