The suburban slabs are about to get prettier, and possibly happier.
Last year, the United Way issued a report called Poverty by Postal Code 2: Veritcal Poverty
, in which they asserted that poverty is especially intransigent in the citys outer areas, and most particularly in the high-rise apartments there.
After interviewing 2,800 residents of such towers, the United Way determined that though most of these towers were solid structures and an asset to the city and its residents, there were both long- and short-term problems that needed to be resolved. Broader issues—like long-term housing strategies and neighbourhood-improving by-laws—take broader and longer-term approaches. But there were other complaints residents had that could be fixed pretty quickly.
"Residents told us they needed community space," says United Way president and CEO Susan McIsaac
. "They wanted space where children could play, they wanted buildings that looked nicer, they wanted to reclaim some of the common space that had been lost to storage."
So they set aside $800,000 to make the slabs more livable, and this week, the costing is being figured out so that changes in the first two neighbourhoods in Rexdale (at a cluster of towers centred on 2667 Kipling) and Orton Park, can be completed within 12 months. Similar improvements to two other pilot areas, yet to be determined, could be done within 12 months of that.
An NFB production, called the Thousandth Tower
, has also been produced in tandem with this tower renewal
Writer: Bert Archer
Source: Susan McIsaac
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