At the Franco-Centre Wednesday, Iqaluit residents heard from city planner Mathew Dodds about a proposed new subdivision in the city. (Photo by Jeff Pelletier)JEFF PELLETIER

An improved road system, more housing and a fenced-in dog park were among ideas Iqaluit residents shared about what should be included in a new subdivision being proposed near the city’s downtown.

The subdivision would be located on what’s currently an unoccupied ridge behind the Aqsarniit hotel.

Approximately 20 people showed up to a community meeting Wednesday evening at the Franco-Centre about the proposal. City planner Mathew Dodds outlined details and contract planners Michelle Armstrong and Samantha Toffolo were also present to answer questions and take notes on people’s comments.

The project is being led by Qikiqtani Inuit Association, in partnership with the city.

“It is a good pilot size for us,” Dodds said in his presentation, speaking about the unique partnership the city has formed with QIA to co-develop the area.

Other benefits he highlighted included the fact the area would not require major pipe upgrades, and it is close to other areas where development is ongoing.

Traffic was a major concern raised by several attendees, who said the Four Corners and Nunavut Arctic College areas can become heavily congested at times.

Dodds hinted that city council would be looking at ideas to improve the flow of traffic in those areas at some point in the future.

Residents’ other concerns included the land’s current use — attendee Myles Hawkins said people frequently use the area for tobogganing, snowmobiling, dog walking and mountain biking.

“It would be important for any development that happens to incorporate that in because I’m sure the folks that move into the development and the subdivision would also value those types of activities,” Hawkins said.

Armstrong said the buildings that would go up there would be mixed commercial and residential.

Attendee Brad Pirie said he wants to see more high-density housing to help alleviate the housing crisis.

“Something like that, I think, would be quite beneficial for the city, especially where it’s located,” he said.

Beyond housing, attendee Sandi Chan said the city would benefit from new business, a recreational centre and a fenced-off dog park in the area.

“Densifying that area between Plateau and Federal Road, I think it’s a good idea,” Chan said.

“If there’s restaurants, if there’s a McDonald’s, if there’s a new rec centre for youth so youth [don’t] have to go all the way up to AWG [Arctic Winter Games Arena], that would be really good.”

No one spoke against the development during the roundtable discussion, only offering questions and suggestions.

Another consideration briefly addressed Wednesday was the proposed Nunavut Inuit Heritage Centre.

Planners for that project held a community meeting Tuesday, at which they identified the proposed subdivision area as the location where they want to build the new centre, which would house a performance space, workshops and a collection of historic Inuit artifacts.

However, those project designers are looking at an alternate location outside the city’s core area.

The city is still encouraging residents to come forward with their ideas, questions and concerns.

Dodds said the city is looking at setting up tables at grocery stores and, possibly, the Elders’ Qammaq to hear from more people.

“This is just to kick-start our engagement,” Dodds said in his presentation.

“We’ll have an online site in all three languages with some community mapping exercises and some surveys to collect more information from the community.”

By Jeff Pelletier, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Jun 07, 2024 at 05:35

This item reprinted with permission from   Nunatsiaq News   Iqaluit, Nunavut
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