Private residence at Trent clears hurdle - Macleans.ca

Private residence at Trent clears hurdle

Students oppose private-public partnership

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Trent University’s plan to allow a private residence on its property cleared a hurdle late Monday evening. Peterborough City Council’s planning committee threw their support behind the 450-bed private residence proposed for 4.5 hectares of land leased from the school for 99 years, reports the Peterborough Examiner.

But that wasn’t until they heard opposition from students and residents. Ian Cameron, a Trent student, opposes the private nature of the deal. “This residence is purely going through for income,” he said, admonishing the committee for considering the project in the summer when many students aren’t in town. Several other residents raised concerns about the safety, noise and traffic.

But Trent President Steven Franklin defended the project. “Trent needs to grow,” he said, explaining that “competitor” universities have similar arrangements.

The agreement between Trent University and Residence Development Corp. was leaked to the Examiner in December. It showed that Trent would collect $1,779,200 in land lease payments at the beginning of the deal and then five per cent of gross revenue each year, starting in the twentieth year of the lease.