Working groups needed for ODC Neighbourhood Meeting Tuesday August 22

If you’re just tuning into the story of the redevelopment of the ODC property at the corner of Moore & Roger in Waterloo, here is a background article you can read.

This is another update from Anna-Marie & the crew of neighbours mobilizing to ensure that resident input is communicated clearly and directly with the City of Waterloo & the project planners.

I want to give more detail about the meeting planned for Tuesday August  22 with neighborhood residents, ODC and it’s developer, and Wendy Fisher, the planner assigned by the City of Waterloo to this proposed development. Read on!

Meeting Details       

We’ll gather the evening of August 22 at Waterloo City Hall. The exact time and meeting room will be announced as soon as those details are confirmed. Until then, please save the date.

Community Response        

Abundant responses to my call out to neighbors on July 9th to contribute topics for the information meeting revealed three consistent areas of concern.

  • Density – What is the appropriate number of housing units? How high should they be? To quote one respondent, “This area is a neighborhood community. To keep a neighborhood community it has to feel and look like one. I think that apartments on the site will take away from the feeling of neighborhood. Anything more than this (will) make it look like an apartment complex and not a neighborhood.”
  • Traffic  – Quiet is the word most often used by respondents who wrote their concerns about increased traffic. In a nutshell, we value our quiet streets. Neighbors are unsettled about the possibility of increased vehicle traffic as it relates to safety and to sound, and the potential for traffic flow problems due to an increase in vehicles parking on Roger and other side streets
  • Quality  – This is the best tag I can think of for the third category of issues raised. Quality overlaps with traffic and density but it also focuses concern with the aesthetic of the proposed construction and how it blends with existing buildings, as well as with the destruction of buildings of architectural and/or historical interest. Fear was expressed that ODC’s plan reveals a lack of usable green space and destruction of mature trees. Equally vocal were respondents who declare they live in this neighborhood because it lacks the conformity of a suburb, though what is proposed seems suburb-like.

What’s Next?       

 It’s time to roll up our sleeves and form working groups to develop presentations at the Aug 22 meeting. I suggest that we develop three ad hoc groups to organize presentations under the banners of Quality, Traffic and Density.

Please contact me by Friday, Aug 4th if you would like to join your neighbors to develop a presentation on one (or more!) of these issues.

If you are interested in coordinating one of these groups, definitely get in touch with me!

How to Help

  • Get involved in a working group and help draft a presentation to the planner and ODC
  • If you didn’t yet have an opportunity to contact me (Anna-Marie) with topics you want included in this conversation, please briefly outline them in an email to me.
  • Contact Councilor Melissa Durrell and let her know your ideas and concerns. Send a copy of your letter to Mayor Jaworsky, Wendy Fisher, and to me.

Please forward this email to your neighbors and encourage them to contact me to be added to the list for future updates and, of course, to add their voice as we prepare for our discussion on August 22.

Thank you!

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