I am writing to you this morning, because the gas company contractors are installing gas lines to two new semi-detached houses across the street and they are trampling on my garden plants. They were asked kindly yesterday to be careful with the plants, but it never got to the supervisor or the backhoeåç guy.
It’s a typical day in Westboro.
My house, on Tweedsmuir, is surrounded by new million dollar houses. Construction noise is constant during the week and even on weekends. It is not going to stop for another year, because they are building one next to me. I went to the committee of adjustment to find out what was happening with the houses being built next door. It seems to me that the only thing that is important to the City, is the cash register. By-laws for the city are ignored or modified at a whim or because the city knows they will get extra tax revenue from these new houses. That also means my taxes go up too; and my house isn’t worth a million dollars. They offer me $520,000, tear it down in 45 minutes, and start building two new houses on the same lot, even though it’s just a single lot.
The contractors for these new houses don’t care either. When they put in the water main across the street, they filled up the excavation hole, but not quite. For months now, when school buses and trucks go by and hit this (un)-bump, the house shakes. The plaster on my walls is cracking in some places.
With the renovation of Churchill Avenue, cars and buses and trucks had to make detours. The detour was on Kirkwood Avenue, but people found a way of cutting through Clare Avenue to Dovercourt Avenue, going west. It’s constant traffic at rush hour. People actually live here, and walk with their children, some with dogs. People are racing up Tweedsmuir, frustrated with the detour. I asked the city to put up signs, and they put up 50 km an hour signs. That’s crazy. Bronson Avenue is 50 km, and Scott Street is 50 km. Other streets in the neighbourhood have 40 km signs, speed bumps, and narrowing effects.
The neighbourhood that I chose to live in, is not the same neighbourhood now. I can’t afford to sell and I can’t afford to buy. My wife is expecting, and the baby will be born in February 2015, just in time to get rattled by the construction of two, million dollar semi-detached houses next door. The child will grow up remembering how noisy Westboro was. Not the Westboro that I remember.