Re. “Letter: Port Moody, This Madness Has to Stop,” (Tri-City News, Jan. 6)
We should build more condos in Port Moody centre — as many as possible, actually.
Point 1: Like it or not, we have more people who want to live here than we have housing, so we continually have house prices and rental rates trending higher every year.
This hurts young families trying to raise the next generation of citizens. This hurts new immigrants trying to get a start in our community. A lack of affordable housing hurts our economic productivity and businesses trying to retain or attract skilled workers, which means higher taxes, inflation and jobs being relocated elsewhere.
Point 2: We have to change our living habits to address climate change. Port Moody centre benefits from two modes of rapid transit. We should be putting as many homes on the SkyTrain and West Coast Express lines as we can, to encourage people to ditch their cars and commute by transit and walk to amenities.
This is surely a better option than sprawling into our green spaces and agricultural land base. Unfortunately, land is scarce in Port Moody centre, so the only place to go is up.
Point 3: We need to grow our property tax base. More homes mean fixed capital improvement costs get spread across a larger tax base, limiting the need for property tax increases. Contrary to the author of this letter, Port Moody builds far fewer condos than most other suburban municipalities per capita, which is why our property taxes increase every year.
Point 4: Port Moody lacks culture, entertainment and dining spaces. New high-density housing, anchored by walking retail and amenities provide the business case for great retailers and restaurateurs to start great businesses in our city. That will keep us from having to leave our city every time we want a good night on the town (once COVID goes away that is).
Those of us who are lucky enough to have housing in Port Moody should stop trying to build walls into our community, which is what you're doing if you're against the density that comes with condos.
The single-family home is a relic from a bygone era. We are part of a growing region and for the health of our society, we should be doing everything we can to build more homes on rapid transit, not fewer.
Kyle Wright, Port Moody