Comment 57048

By Ezaki Glico (anonymous) | Posted January 19, 2011 at 13:37:12

@ A Smith

Burlington is hitting build-out inside of 5 years. If it has frozen suburban development (and I'm not sure that it has), it's in reaction to this fact, and not because of progressive vision. Regrettably. Despite this fact, there is real and considerable opposition to density in the city's core. The dialogue around the Molinaro Group's Strata project gives you an idea of the temperature. The psychology of Burlington taxpayers is just as interesting and conflicted as that of Hamiltonian taxpayers.

Build-out has also featured in Hamilton's development thinking, though in a slightly different way. I'm sure someone can dig up the corroborating details if they root around in the library's microfilm, but at one point Mayor Wade's solution to downtown decline was to build out, the theory being that once you've made all other options unavailable, that developers and politicians would have to address downtown. That "waiting game as proactive" strategy is flawed on any number of levels (especially as it was formulated in a pre-greenbelt Hamilton, where there were potentially generations of suburbs you could greenlight before you'd ever have to focus on the core), but I wonder how many projects that have been approved from that era are still in the pipes, as it were.

Pipes that the city will have to install at a loss, of course.

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