Toronto & East York Community council agree with staff to oppose this at OMB. Staff note "overbuilt precedent" & substantial growth pressures. They also say this seven-storey condo proposal does not conform to city & provincial plans/policies and is overdevelopment
See, this is why I disagree with opponents of the OMB.
So long as zoning laws remain anachronistic, OMB serves an important role in moving things forward (denser living along transit corridors, substantial shortage in urban housing stock).in the times we live in .This site is overbuilt, according to the zoning for this land parcel, there is no denying that. If zoning bylaws didn't effectively freeze neighbourhoods in time and was a lot more flexible and responsive to growth and changing trends, then we wouldn't need an OMB.
Opponents to the OMB don't know the rabbit hole they are proposing to enter.
We aren't in a dictatorship, and administrative decisions of government (which is in essence what planning decisions are) need to be able to be reviewed to prevent their arbitrariness. If that purpose is not served by the OMB, what will serve it? Will it really do a better job of it?
If the OMB were abolished outright, I think the most likely result would be the courts filling the void, resulting in longer, costlier & less predictable appeals to a judge for judicial review of planning decisions.
a lot of people who advocate for full OMB abolition imagine a world where politicians can approve and disapprove projects with impunity, regardless of planning policy and zoning. It's what politicians want obviously as it gives them more power and satisfies NIMBY voters. Too bad if you want to develop a property though, as you would be at the power of the city with 0 recourse.
The ultimate problem with the development process is that politicians see the problem of development bypassing the city, and think the solution is to get rid of the bypass route, instead of improving the city route. The city could easily smooth out the development process by updating its zoning by-law to match various provincial growth policies - but that would require upzoning neighborhoods which would not go down well politically. So instead we sit with the same, 70 year old zoning by-laws, while politicians blame the OMB for implementing provincial planning directives that city willingly ignores.
The province has recently started to try and force the cities hand with mandatory rezonings around new rapid transit stations - and the city isn't too happy judging by some conversations with community planning and councillors.
This is also especially frustrating because reasonable proposals like this (or a certain 6s condo on Queen East) are opposed by the city because wealthy people around them do not want their neighbourhood to change (incrementally), yet in other areas, particularly on the east side of downtown, nobody gives a hoot. Very disappointing.