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LETTER: Apartment sized houses create problems on several levels

Overly large homes dwarf neighbours and burden city services

Dear Editor,

I agree with Mr. Smith [City state sad, Langley Advance Times, June 7 Letters] It’s sad and negligent that the city allows “mammoth apartment-size housing” to loom over his home.

The city planning department and elected officials look less than professional when allowing properties to develop this way.

Residential homes that are similar in size share a good neighbour feel that is inclusive. It is the norm when a new subdivision is developed, as it provides curb appeal and a welcoming look.

Unfortunately, what is happening now in the majority of cases, when a property is subdivided later in an “established neighbourhood,” this consideration or requirement is neglected.

A remedy: approve new buildings in an existing neighbourhood that are a reasonable percentage larger than what is already established. Neighbourhoods do change, but it can be accomplished in a harmonious way.

Unfortunately, investors, developers, and the city all play a part, lacking consideration and due diligence when permit approval and design are a poor fit for surrounding home owners.

Apartment-sized houses can also cause a burden on hospitals, police, schools, and other important services that base their resources on the official community plan.

The city designation may read “single family,” but this is misleading, as I have experienced homes this size will have suites or rooms rented exceeding the bylaws. This is a detriment in the long run to the families living in that area as well as the community. We hear about delays or problems when services can’t keep up to demand.

A contributing factor is allowing developers to over build, and city planners who are out of touch.

Jim Lawson, Langley

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