ferusian

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Development Applications

Project description:
Housing Now Initiative. City-initiated rezoning. Proposed 25-storey mixed use building with Proposed Housing Now Initiative. Proposed 25-storey mixed use building with 266 dwelling units, including 133 affordable housing units, and community facility space on the ground floor. Proposal includes 67 parking spaces below grade, 267 bicycle parking space, and a mid-block connection between Sherbourne St and Bleecker St.
 

HousingNowTO

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1617326199605.png

Revised Site Presentation (April 2021) - https://createto.ca/housingnow/wp-c...y-Meeting-2-FINAL-web-copy-1-compressed-1.pdf
 

Northern Light

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,,,most useful slide in the deck for communicating the "Zoning Problems" in Toronto with non-development folks.

We need to change these DEFAULTS, rather than fixing them site-by-site....


The slide discussed above:

1617379574875.png


I'm not sure we could craft a broad-based zoning solution City wide, in 1 sweeping amendment that would address height adequately. But this does illustrate how much can and should change.

Land Use: Multi-residential should be permitted wherever residential is permitted, period. (this is not a height/density free-for-all, just permission for tenure/use etc., think of it as legal 4-plexes etc.)

Maximum Building Height: This is trickier in terms of an easy fix-it everywhere kind of thing, but we should at least pass a more reasonable default for any site fronting a rapid transit route. Can we just get 5-storeys/16M, as-of-right, or the current permission, the greater of the 2 on transit routes? I think that should be politically sell-able for the most part. Then we need to go back and revisit the areas/spaces that should permit a lot more.

Density: a reasonable rule-of-thumb to me, would be 5.0 times lot area as-of-right (on transit routes); then go back and revisit areas where this should be much larger.

Parking: Ditch the minimum all together.

The change above would have helped this site a bit, but not as much as it should.

But understanding the need to get a sweeping upzoning through, I suggest the lower thresholds above, for that purpose.

Then lets come back to Sherbourne and a host of other areas, and upzone some more.

*****

It strikes me that in the Tall Building Guidelines we acknowledge that people are more ok w/height, when the tower form is set back a bit from the edges of a podium.

I'm not sure why we shouldn't acknowledge that in as-of-right zoning as well. (at all building heights)

That the permitted height of a streetwall, in some cases, shouldn't be over 5-storeys (or 3 on a side street); but that doesn't mean the building height maximum should be the same as the streetwall maximum.

ie. If a proponent can create the illusion of a 5-storey building, then maybe 10 is fine in the site interior. (as-of-right)
 

allengeorge

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Parking: Ditch the minimum all together.
What do you think the chances are that parking minimums are ditched?

My gut says that this is unlikely: the Chief Planner does not seem particularly bold or forward-looking (if the Missing Middle housing report is any indication), and I don't think Councillors will go for it. My expectation is that we'll see some reduction in minimums, but everyone will still have to jump through hoops to get the actual minimums the market wants.

The entire process seems designed to allow Councillors to play kingmaker in their fiefdoms for each development.
 

HousingNowTO

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The entire process seems designed to allow Councillors to play kingmaker in their fiefdoms for each development.
Yes, that has been the default up until now... but I think parking-minimums in Toronto near Transit are likely to be KILLED in the next couple of years.

Mostly because so many other Cities are already doing it -- and at some point even Toronto Council gets "embarrassed" by being out-modernized by Edmonton, etc.

Toronto's current Chief Planner started-out as a local-planner in the City of Etobicoke way back in 1984.

Honestly, thirty-seven (37) years of dealing with City Councillors (and especially generations of Holyday and Ford family-members in Etobicoke) will grind the "bravery" out of a guy. He is as "bold" as he can be while keeping his job and his sanity.
 

Northern Light

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What do you think the chances are that parking minimums are ditched?

My gut says that this is unlikely: the Chief Planner does not seem particularly bold or forward-looking (if the Missing Middle housing report is any indication), and I don't think Councillors will go for it. My expectation is that we'll see some reduction in minimums, but everyone will still have to jump through hoops to get the actual minimums the market wants.

The entire process seems designed to allow Councillors to play kingmaker in their fiefdoms for each development.

I think the above take is correct; parking minimums are gone in Edmonton, and I think almost certain to fall in 2 other major Canadian cities by year's end (maybe more, but 2 that I know of); and I'm not counting Toronto.

They will probably fall City-wide; but worst case, I hope, should be seeing them gone from downtown and transit-adjacent sites, and trimmed elsewhere.
 

greenleaf

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I kid you not - the SHERBOURNE Parking-Lot site for HOUSING NOW needs to go to the "Toronto Preservation Board" next week -

PB25.4 - Alterations to a Heritage Property Designated under Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act - 405 Sherbourne Street
Absolutely wild, broken system.

”There are no heritage buildings on the site, but there are several heritage buildings adjacent to the site.”

This is an overreach that wrecks trust of the preservation process, like when Matlow designated all those properties that had no business being designated.
 

UtakataNoAnnex

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It's isn't likely the case of "preserving" a parking lot or the surrounding areas...it seems more about preventing what is planned to be built there by every legal means possible. /sigh
 

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