Developer plans for 1705 Weston

A developer has announced that it has plans for the lot just south of the UP Express station, at 1705 Weston Road.  There are few details on Oldstonehenge’s website, but they plan “mixed-use development” and “affordable rental housing and easy access commuting done the right way”.

So far, so good.

Oldstonehenge’s description of Weston, however, is quite tone-deaf.

 An ethnic patchwork of heritage homes, older housing stock and outdated high-rise apartment complexes makes this an undervalued node in the city. The recent addition of the Weston Station on the GO Line and nearby UP (Union Pearson) Airport Express really adds the potential for its gentrification.

Start with the facts. The GO station has been around since the dawn of time; only the UPX is new.

But I really don’t like the judgment.  “Older housing stock” is an odd and mechanical way to describe “homes”, and “outdated rental properties” is a pejorative for “affordable apartments”.

An “ethnic patchwork of heritage homes” doesn’t “make this [neighbourhood] undervalued”. I, for one, quite like our heritage homes. And “gentrification” is usually used sneeringly, because it means  “conforming to a middle-class taste.”

I imagine Oldstonehenge was trying to say, “We think we’ll be able to add something new to this old, diverse, and affordable neighbourhood. We think you’ll really like living here, and the commute downtown is really easy.”

At least that is what I hope they mean.

Author: Adam Norman

I am raising my two children in Weston.

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