May 29 – Planning & Development Committee Notes

Official Agenda:,773,89907&preview=94513

Official Minutes:

There was another great turnout for the Century Condos revised proposal (21, 23, 25 Main St. E. And 6 Doran Avenue) “open house” at the May 29thPlanning & Development Committee meeting.

Some of the site specific zoning exceptions being requested include:

  • height (16 metres/4 storeys where 15 metres/4 storeys is permitted);
  • reduced parking for restaurant (8 where minimum of 10 is required);
  • reduced rear yard setback (4.7 metres where 7.5 metres is required);
  • minimum distance of parking lot from abutting residential zone property line (0.14 metre where 4.5 metres is required);
  • reduced accessible parking spaces;
  • reduced loading spaces (1 with height at 4.0 metres where 4.5 metres is required).

The full summary of exceptions being requested is posted in the agenda.

Question:  When is four storeys not really four storeys?  When it’s five storeys in the back.

Although the revised proposal appears to be reduced to four storeys from the original eight, Mr. John Ariens, IBI Group and planner for the developer noted that although the building will have four storeys facing Main Street, it will have five storeys at the rear facing Doran Avenue.  Mr. Seaman, Director of Planning, stated that “planning staff is of the opinion that an Official Plan amendment is required”.  We’ll see what comes forward at the next Public Meeting.

We’ve captured some of the comments from speakers/delegates below (as these are not recorded in the Town’s minutes, unfortunately):

  • What is the policy on closing public laneways in the downtown?
  • Should not be reducing the commercial/employment gross floor area, difficulty in meeting employment lands targets.
  • Four storeys is more attractive.
  • 33 parking spaces above ground won’t cut it.
  • Increased traffic, no transit.
  • Doran Ave is only 22’7”  and not wide enough to handle the traffic with people parking on the street.
  • Traffic monitoring (ping) placed in an area where it won’t capture the true volume – around 400-600 cars per day.
  • The “temporary” waste pad – will this be permanent?
  • Where are the snow removal/dumping areas on the site?
  • Don’t agree with more residential units.
  • Parking issues – no enforcement, not enough bylaw officers, insufficient services in general.
  • Not enough visitor parking.
  • Question if 2” cast iron pipe is sufficient infrastructure.
  • Don’t agree with “no parking” restrictions on Doran, tenants rely on street parking.
  • More access from Ontario St., laneway could become 20’ wide, Town needs to make it feasible & safe for Doran.
  • 9 commercial spaces not enough parking.
  • Difficulty turning left on to Ontario St.
  • Wish the façade was all red brick, don’t like the white brick.
  • Were the new RISE condos on Robinson St and traffic impacts considered?
  • 92 units is over intensification.
  • Construction of the development – where will all the dump trucks, construction vehicles stage and park? Can’t close a lane of Main St, traffic chaos.
  • Need to fix the parking issues on Doran.  Buses should go on Robinson St. Would be nice to go back to horse and buggy.
  • The bylaw does not identify all parcels – consistency and legal description in all documents should read 21, 23, 25 Main Street East and 6 Doran Avenue.
  • Loading should not be reduced to 1 space – should be 3 to permit residential and commercial loading.
  • Restaurant parking should not be reduced to 8 spaces – should be minimum 10 (much more required) as per the zoning bylaw.
  • Is the neighbouring garage on the site plan encroaching the property (as the lot line crosses through it), or is the survey incorrect? What will happen to the neighbour’s garage?
  • The setback to the neighbour’s property line of 0.14 metre, where 4.5 metres is required, is not adequate.
  • Why is there a 1 metre proposed road widening shown on Main Street when emails between the Region and Jared Marcus indicated that the Region would not require the widening (currently 18.1 metres, where 20.1 metres is the requirement)?
  • Sidewalks should be the full length of Doran to St. Joseph’s on the south side – extend across #9 Doran.
  • The rear yard setback of 4.5 metres is not sufficient for exiting/entering the parking structure. 7.5 metres as in the zoning bylaw should be required.
  • The loading/parking structure clearance proposed is 4.0 metres in height. The zoning bylaw requires 4.5 metres clear, unobstructed height.  This should not be reduced to accommodate all commercial vehicles.
  • The entrance/exit off Doran driveway width was 6.84 metres, but has now been reduced to 6.5 metres – not adequate for aisle width (normally two way drive/aisle width is 6.75 metres).
  • Don’t have enough parking downtown for the new developments and commercial coming in.
  • No one has considered the logistics of building this – where will all the contractors go? Traffic problems.
  • What’s happening on the other side of Main St (where the building burned down)?  More traffic?
  • What about storage? (Comment from the public, “that’s what you have balconies for”, met with laughter)

Chair DiFlavio noted that the Town does not have a specific policy for the closing of laneways and will inquire further.

Mr. Basic stated that downtown parking requires some flexibility and the current zoning permits existing buildings not to have to consider parking.  Parking space could also be leased from another property within 120 metres.

Mr. Ariens noted that waste collection will be in the basement and brought out on the waste pads on garbage day only.  He stated that the 4.5 metres rear setback is adequate and there are no issues with emergency access.

With regard to the 1 metre road widening on Main Street, he stated that this is a requirement by the Region.

Chair DiFlavio noted that the Region has been asked by Mr. LeRoux to review the increase in traffic on Ontario Street, review options such as painting the road and crosswalks, and consider new developments on Robinson St and downtown.  Mr. Ariens noted their traffic study had factored in 2% for background growth.

Chair DiFlavio asked Mr. Ariens if the site density had been calculated and if it could be defined as 2x or 3x the lot area? Mr. Ariens stated that they had not done the calculation. The Chair asked that this comparison and calculation be done and brought back to the next meeting.

Mr. Ariens also stated that construction staging and vehicle access would be part of the site plan control discussions and would be prepared by the architect and reviewed by Town staff as part of the approval process.  Chair DiFlavio noted that the closure of Main Street and construction vehicles on Doran Avenue were valid concerns.

Chair DiFlavio asked if the sidewalk on the south side of Doran could be extended all the way to St. Joseph’s.  Mr. Basic noted that there was an agreement negotiated for the use of the land with the landowner when the school was built.

Balconies and what people can put on them was discussed by members of Planning.  Concerns that bbq’s and bright green Adirondack chairs may be all the rage was raised. Mr. Seaman noted that the condo board will set the rules and that the design of the balconies was still under consideration.

Mayor Bentley questioned the amount of parking downtown and suggested that similar to the Balsam landowners agreement and Elizabeth St, the Town acquired fees in lieu of parking and bought property.  This may be something to look at with monies in lieu going to more parking downtown.

Chair DiFlavio stated that he would get “booed” by suggesting that after 9 pm there is a ton of parking downtown with about 60 at the GBF/TD Bank and there are about 100 spaces after 6 pm for those who want to go to the restaurants downtown.

That’s all for this instalment!