I'll reiterate. How do you write that into law? "If this thing costs more than we project, the City reserves the right to demand more." ? City building doesn't work that way. Things like Sec.37 are precise and legally binding.

Can't the agreement simply enclose the plans and specs of the design and any reasonable costs of construction thereof? I see contracts all the time that require the construction of some addition or improvement subject to certain reasonable restrictions or caps on on cost. A set of stairs couldn't have been included in those plans and specs?
 
I'll reiterate. How do you write that into law? "If this thing costs more than we project, the City reserves the right to demand more." ? City building doesn't work that way. Things like Sec.37 are precise and legally binding.

How about an amendment going through the approvals process through TEYCC then City Council?

City building doesn't work that way. City building doesn't mean making crossing a bridge more difficult than it should be.

(Also, thanks Chester for the $30k estimate.)
 
Can't the agreement simply enclose the plans and specs of the design and any reasonable costs of construction thereof? I see contracts all the time that require the construction of some addition or improvement subject to certain reasonable restrictions or caps on on cost. A set of stairs couldn't have been included in those plans and specs?

If this were a normal project with a normal timeline then perhaps. But recall that this process started in early 2007. Between CN and GO's countless and ever-changing demands concerning the height of the structure and the demands of the City's Works Department concerning where the thing touches down on the north side, it would be unnecessarily onerous (and therefore not legally binding) to expect the developer to not know what they were paying until the last minute. Especially when that amount was actually worked out a full two years before (2005-ish).

Another answer might also be that they knew they were going to be constructing more buildings, each with their own Sec. 37 contributions, which would cover the cost of future improvements.

How about an amendment going through the approvals process through TEYCC then City Council?

City building doesn't work that way. City building doesn't mean making crossing a bridge more difficult than it should be.

(Also, thanks Chester for the $30k estimate.)

You're exactly correct: "City building doesn't mean making crossing a bridge more difficult than it should be." Stairs are not fully accessible. Ramps are. Because of the limited funding and the accessiblity standards set by the Building Code and the ADOA, they constructed the ramp first and will move on to the stairs when they can.

I'm not trying to be an apologist for Concord Adex here, it's just that people seem to be buying into the Mayor McCheese line that Sec. 37 represents some sort of slush fund which can be accessed by anyone at any time for any reason. The reality is that these things are tightly controlled and in light of the demands of things like the Code and AODA, the best was done with the funds available.
 
Come on. I fault them. Really, how much more could one set of stairs cost? $10,000? $20,000 max? from a developer making millions upon millions? It's practically a rounding error.

I agree, we demand way too little from developers. Things are much too one sided, in favour of developers. I wonder how much other large cities get from developers, in terms of development fees, taxes and other benefits.
 
It seems a little absurd that it wasn't designed with stairs in the first place, and that rather than the developer charged with building it paying for these stairs, the community is forced to scrounge up s. 37 money from other developers.

It's like you read my mind. It's downright ridiculous.
 
I agree, we demand way too little from developers. Things are much too one sided, in favour of developers. I wonder how much other large cities get from developers, in terms of development fees, taxes and other benefits.

This has been a pain point for me for years. Builders will always do the bare minimum....and the bare minimum (decided by the city - building codes) are poor in many regards. "It's to code" is developer speak... The gravy train needs to end.

PS: I understand developers have to pay the city for a lot of different things....but they just pass those costs on to the buyer at closing anyways...and the city allows it.
 
I agree, we demand way too little from developers. Things are much too one sided, in favour of developers. I wonder how much other large cities get from developers, in terms of development fees, taxes and other benefits.

This is off topic, but I have a hard time letting a comment like that go unchallenged - how much exactly would be enough in taxes, charges and fees added onto a price of a condo to make people happy (well at least those people not purchasing the condo)? Currently these government imposed charges account for approximately 20% of the cost of an average condo in Toronto and across the GTA - that is a lot of money in a city that is increasingly becoming unaffordable.

One could make the argument that they disagree with how that money is being split among the three levels of government - but you can't look at sec 37 in isolation when other charges include: development charges (about to be increased by 100% in Toronto), education DCs, GO Transit DCs, Planning review fees, building and mechanical permit fees, municipal engineering and servicing charges, property taxes during construction (passed onto buyers), hydro connection fees, conservation authority fees, cash-in-lieu or parkland fees (in Richmond Hill they are going up to $29,500 per condo unit), municipal site plan requirements, public art contribution, tarion enrolment, HST (provincial portion + federal GST), provincial land transfer tax, Toronto land transfer tax...

This has been a pain point for me for years. Builders will always do the bare minimum....and the bare minimum (decided by the city - building codes) are poor in many regards. "It's to code" is developer speak... The gravy train needs to end.

PS: I understand developers have to pay the city for a lot of different things....but they just pass those costs on to the buyer at closing anyways...and the city allows it.

Re: "It's to code" comment - Ontario has some of the highest code standards in North America (and code was just updated with new requirements coming in on Jan 1, 2014) and has the leading energy efficiency code requirements in North America (new requirements came into effect Jan 1, 2012 with a further update finalized with implementation on Jan 1, 2017 (five year cycles). Yes "code" is bare minimum - that is what a code is for, and our "bare minimum" is way ahead of the national code and most codes in the U.S. and many developers go beyond that code with LEED or Toronto's Tier II standards etc to stay ahead of the competition.

Re: passing on costs: Well yes that is what happens. If you wish to purchase product "X", than all the embedded costs from government, labour, materials etc - those costs to bring product "X" to the market are passed onto the consumer.
 
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Thanks for the update.

Looking at the mesh I don't think it would be that terrible if it was anything but the colour they chose. Sky blue would have been great because it wouldn't be as noticeable from a distance. Any colour is always better than depressing grey.
 
The gray colour is simply the colour of the steel mesh. It's unpainted. Remember, the demand for the mesh was all a late surprise from GO. Money money money.

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