No matter where you go in Westwood these days, there are signs of change — as in, lots of real estate signs.
In my nine years in the neighbourhood, I don’t think I’ve ever seen as many. That isn’t to say that there’s a mass exodus out of our area; of the few listings I know first-hand, the change will put empty nesters into condos or townhouses, and young families will enjoy a move up to roomier homes not far away.
Even so, change can be difficult. Here’s hoping for a smooth transition for all concerned – those who are moving and those who remain to welcome new neighbours. We might as well get used to change while we’re at it – our aging population will make for ever more ‘for sale’ signs in our future.
It’s not only homes that our going on the market though. Residents of our westerly side are bracing for change now that the city has decided to sell Stewart/St. Charles Park on Allard. Despite the addition of a new play structure, the park has apparently not achieved its full potential and is being sold.
Coun. Grant Nordman (St. Charles) expects the parcel of land will be bought by a developer and turned into a new condo complex of sorts. With any luck, these condos will become 55+ units to give our faithful seniors a place to stay, in the neighbourhood they helped create over their many years!
There are signs of change too, along Portage within our local business sector — some places have sadly closed but others are relocating to vacant spaces, and still others will soon arrive; Government Services, A&W and Original Joe’s are just a few on the move.
Last but not least, change is in the air for the old Allard School, currently home to the Winnipeg Police Academy and Police Museum. The Academy is slated to relocate to the new downtown Police Services building on York Avenue this fall (or whenever the construction is complete). Many people expect the St. James School Division, which still owns the property, to sell it.
However, board chair Bruce Chegus says no plans have been made and none will be considered until the current tenants move out.
Then what? Given that the city is looking into options regarding the adjacent Allard Arena and Westwood Library, change is really just a matter of time…
Sharon Pfeifer is a community correspondent for Westwood. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org