Ottawa residents call for freeze on off-campus student residence development

February 20, 2014

Neighbourhood associations in Ottawa, representing thousands of residents, have sent a letter to Mayor Jim Watson and other city councillors, asking for a freeze on all off-campus student residence developments, while the city works on creating a student-housing strategy. Calling for a stop to the increased “degradation of traditional residential neighbourhoods,” the letter requests a “comprehensive approach to ensure that student housing is integrated into our communities in the most thoughtful and constructive manner possible.” Ottawa has already placed temporary bans on certain housing conversion projects, but the University of Ottawa has a chronic housing shortage and is pursuing multiple avenues to increase options for students. “They’re still not planning for new residents on campus and we think this is an abrogation of their responsibilities to have growth in student population without accommodating their students,” says Bob Forbes of Action Sandy Hill. Ottawa Citizen