Catherine Thompson, Waterloo Region Record:
If there’s one issue that defines Kitchener these days, it’s growth. The city is the largest in Waterloo Region, with a population of about 235,000, making up about 44 per cent of the total population in the region. Kitchener is booming, with dozens of planning applications for new, more intense development. In the downtown alone, more than $1 billion in construction is planned over the next five years, including several highrises that will boost the number of downtown residents. The growth brings new life, more taxes and revitalization, but it also can alter existing neighbourhoods, strain resources and increase the need for affordable housing.