News / Calgary

Calgary condo owner says view-blocking fence wasn’t in the blueprints

Kate Reeves wants her condo board to remove a large wooden fence blocking the streetscape

Kate Reeves sits in her condo on the ground floor of First Condominiums in East Village. She wants the fence behind her removed because it blocks her view of the street.

Jennifer Friesen / For Metro

Kate Reeves sits in her condo on the ground floor of First Condominiums in East Village. She wants the fence behind her removed because it blocks her view of the street.

They say good fences make good neighbours, but Kate Reeves wholeheartedly disagrees.

The Calgary woman lives on the ground floor of First Condominiums in East Village and since she moved in, she’s been lobbying to get the fence in front of her window taken down.

“I wanted to be on the main floor so I’d have a door and be connected to the streetscape and the outside,” Reeves said. “Eyes on the street, meet your neighbours – that sort of thing.”

She said the images presented in sales pictures showed a small ledge around the property, not the six-foot high wooden fence that now prevents her from seeing the street, and blocks sunlight from getting into her unit.

She said contractors were putting up the fence the day she did the walkthrough of her unit. Reeves contacted the builder in hopes of getting it removed, but he suggested going through the condo board.

“I didn’t want to take possession,” said Reeves. “In fact I didn’t move in for two months because I was so upset.”

Reeves said at the May condo board AGM, she brought up the idea of letting each condo owner decide if they want a fence, or at what height, in front of their ground-floor condos. She said the vast majority of the members voted in favour of that suggestion.

However in June, the Condo board, which has final say, said no to a fence removal.

The First board of directors provided Metro with a written response.

"While we respect Kate's position and appreciate the effort she has put in, due to the ongoing construction next door and the use of the easement for construction purposes, we have decided to revisit this matter after construction of Alt Hotel is completed and the interface of the podium units with the easement can be re-evaluated."

Reeves said her neighbours on either side are also keen to get the fence taken down, but they’re renters and are waiting to see how it goes for her.

“I thought it would be simple to get it down because it looks so funny,” she said.

She invited her neighbours into her unit on neighbour day to see the view with the fence and enjoy some strawberry shortcake.

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