Comment 92359

By jason (registered) | Posted September 20, 2013 at 10:08:16 in reply to Comment 92349

So good to see other local residents engaged and poring over these planning maps. You sound like me. Lol.
Just for clarity's sake, allow me to make a few corrections based on our many meetings with the planners. Sadly, these maps aren't always as straight-forward as they appear.

I'll try to respond to each point below if I can format this properly.

  1. Devenport Street from York: all of these homes would remain zoned as low density residential.
  • this is incorrect. The two homes shown in my piece would be rezoned into the medium/mixed-use you've pointed out. Just to clarify, the only real difference between the pink and red zone is that ground floor commercial/retail is allowed in the pink zone. Red is just straight residential. Both zones allow up to 10 stories, even though the mixed-use zone states 6 as the preferred height. This is why I was sure to use the phrase "up to 10 stories" in my piece. Also, a bit of inside info to help shed more light on this - we were told by the planners that developers regularly call looking to assemble land here for 20-25 storey towers. So, most everyone involved in this process so far understands that there is some serious pent-up demand for height on these blocks. I can't see a developer wanting 20 stories and settling for 6 when they can easily bump it to 10.
  1. Locke Street North: the two houses depicted could potentially be assembled into a high density residential development fronting onto York incorporating the existing parking lot and one storey law office.
  • this is correct, except it's 3 homes on Locke, not 2. Again, I assure you that every single home pictured in my piece is part of the rezoning/land assembly plan.
  1. Ray Street North: the two houses depicted could potentially be assembled into a medium density mixed use development fronting onto York, likely incorporating the adjacent Stonewalls parking lot or building.
  • this is correct.
  1. All of the pictures of homes on Inchbury: maximum 2.5 storey townhouses or apartments would be permitted Strathcona Avenue North (1st image): homes on the right hand side would allow maximum 2.5 storey townhomes or apartments; the two last homes on the left hand side could be assembled into a mixed use medium density development fronting onto York (presently a parking lot and the Realtors Association building); the first two homes on the left hand side would remain as presently zoned.
  • this is where the largest change is proposed, despite the strange shaded area on the map. The ENTIRE block of Inchbury's west side and Strathcona's east side would be allowed to be assembled and demolished for construction of new buildings that would basically create a wall of apartments from Victoria Park to York. And even though the plans state 10 stories as a maximum, rest assured that it would be tough to win that battle when the current building is 13 stories AND the land slopes down towards York. If there is anywhere in this entire plan that should alarm local residents, it's this entire block. In fact, this block has been the subject of most of our conversations with the city. My best advice is for residents to walk these streets and envision the beautiful homes on Inchbury, and solid red brick Victorians on Strathcona gone and replaced with buildings similar in size to the current seniors building there. The simplest way to look at these two blocks on the map is to imagine the dotted shaded area as solid red on Strathcona and both sides of Inchbury. Please note, I forgot to take a photo of the 2 homes on the west side of Locke that would be incorporated to create a huge parcel of land with the pictured homes on the east side of Inchbury. The potential exists for many high-rise buildings to be built at the end of Locke, Inchbury and Strathcona with this plan.
  1. Strathcona Avenue North (2nd image): maximum 2.5 storey townhouses or apartments would be permitted
  • same as above: this block is where the tallest buildings would likely go.
  1. Strathcona Avenue North (3rd image): two homes could be assembled into a mixed use medium density development fronting onto York (presently lawn).
  • this is correct, but the pressure for extra height would be tremendous here given the entire block across the street being rebuilt as 10 or more stories.
  1. Devenport Street (two images), York Boulevard (two images), Dundurn Street North (three images, note that only the two homes on the left are being rezoned): These two homes on Devenport, five homes on York and two homes on Dundurn could potentially be assembled with the existing parking lot at Devenport and York into a mixed use medium density development fronting onto York.
  • this is also correct

Hope this helps clear up any confusion. Again, the Inchbury/Locke/Strathcona blocks are the areas we are most concerned about. The potential exists for a ton of high-rise development along that entire stretch. The special policy area that is shaded out in the map will allow for the maximum height and land assembly with the surrounding blocks shaded in red.

I don't expect that everyone will agree with me or the Strathcona Community Council on this issue, but I've yet to hear any response as to how wiping out those 3 streets for new highrises would be good for our community. The ugliest buildings in our neighbourhood are the 'modern' ones built in the 70's when the last round of demolitions and land assembly was attempted. Today's shiny modern condo towers will be viewed the same way in 30 years. One thing we all know to be true though - the brick century homes that define our neighbourhood will be just as treasured and loved in 30 years as they are today, 100+ years after their construction.

Cheers

Edit: for some reason all my numbers show up as 1, 1, 1 here, yet when I edit them, they are correctly listed as 1,2,3 etc....

Comment edited by jason on 2013-09-20 10:10:22

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