Issues and concerns of the Dunbar/Southlands neighbourhood

dunbarDunbar is a neighbourhood north of the Fraser River that contains a mix of commercial and residential areas. From upper class homes to farmlands, the community is unique to say the least.

According to Jonathan Weisman president of the Dunbar Residents Association Dunbar was traditionally a family neighbourhood.

While in the past the neighbourhood was a relatively affordable place for families and working class people to buy homes, present day buyers and newer residents are most likely to be higher income earners, therefore creating an interesting mix of income levels within the population.

The abundant amount of large lots in the area has made the region a very desirable place for both homebuyers and commercial businesses.

Housing costs in Dunbar have skyrocketed in the past few years and residents are concerned with new developments moving in. Locals have emphasized the value they hold in keeping the neighbourhood as family-oriented as possible.

“In the 60s and 70s the neighbourhood of Dunbar was a family place where a schoolteacher and a garbage man could buy a house and raise a family,” said Weisman. “Today that is no longer the case.”

“There is a desire within the community to maintain the area as a single-family neighbourhood,” said Weisman. “The issue is that this is a great place for families and the challenge is how we are going to get more families into it.”

The Dunbar Housing Trust was set up to facilitate rental exchange between renters and tenants who support more families moving into the neighbourhood and are willing to sell for less than market.

“I think that we are going to try and foster an exchange of houses where families who want to move to Dunbar can connect with residents who are prepared to sell at lower prices if they know their home will be kept as a family home,” said Weisman.

Residents of Dunbar are passionate about their community and want to keep it as family-friendly as possible. To do this they will have to continue to try to seek solutions to the rising property costs in the area that are causing young families to look elsewhere.


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