Oshawa

What we can learn from the looming GM closure in Oshawa

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What we can learn from the looming GM closure in Oshawa

Oshawa

When Christian Huggett first heard the news that General Motors Canada was closing its Oshawa assembly plant, like many of us, he was disappointed.

After all, the loss of at least 2,500 jobs – not to mention untold positions in related suppliers – in a community of 170,000, is going to hurt. Hurt whom, and how badly, are the only questions.

“We thought it was a shame, given the long history of GM in Oshawa and the legacy it has created in shaping its past and providing jobs for many,” the vice-president, development, at Podium Developments, Toronto, told Condo Life.

Economic diversity

“We also understood that the employment sector in Oshawa has been shifting for some time, and Oshawa has healthily diversified to add technology, educational institutions, healthcare, administration and many professionals to its offerings of great jobs and companies in the market.”

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While various governments and the plant’s union vow to try to find some way to save the operation, resurrection seems unlikely.

And it serves as a good reminder to us all – of how important it is for cities to develop diversified, modern economies. And how homebuyers should look beyond the headlines when researching their prospective new home location.

Opportunities remain

Podium, one of several developers building new homes in Oshawa, recently launched Ironwood Towns in the north end. The company remains confident in the city.

“We believe the North Oshawa residential market is not driven by the success or change in one industry,” says Huggett.

“This includes the significant GM news. It has not altered our plans. We continue to believe that the outlook is bright for home sales in North Oshawa, buoyed by its proximity and relationship to schools, the 407 network, the significant growth occurring and planned for North Oshawa, and that our site is unique in its physical and design characteristics to make it stand out.”

Buyers, too, then, can remain optimistic. There’s a lot more going on in Oshawa and other areas in Durham Region than just one industry and one company.

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