Conserving Long Branch – June 2016 David Godley Update

The following update is from David Godley:

Greetings Long Branch Community

A fuller list of applications with Planning Department recommendations will be forwarded shortly.

Meanwhile here is a summary of activity*:

Applications for June 9 2016 Committee of Adjustment (COA)


78 29th Street

10 Garden Place


14 41st Street


42 Exmoor Drive

50 36th

88 Laburnham

Applications for July 7 2016 Committee of Adjustment

16 25th Street

9 Meaford Avenue

93 Lake Promenade (new)

Appealed to Ontario Municipal Board

20 Garden Place

30 36th Street

2 Ash Avenue

80 23rd Street

New Application

82 27th Street

OMB Hearing

7 July 10am

9 Atherton Road

*Derived from Development Applications and COA websites for the City of Toronto

Long Branch Neighbourhood Association LBNA Meeting May 7 2016

A meeting drawing in those who attended the first meeting was held.

People had two sessions at different tables under the headings of civic engagement, social, natural environment, heritage and communications.

A strong basis has been formed through community development principles of inclusion and empowerment.

Thank you all those who have been involved demonstrating that a genuine community exists in Long Branch.

The process may seem slow.

However without Brian Liberty devoting himself to the task of setting up an association, on top of his demanding work and raising a young family, there is unlikely to have been headway.

New Toronto Neighbourhood Association have met 5 times but their progress can be measured by their wondering if they could join Long Branch!


Lawn Signs

This is a separate program from the Long Branch Neighbourhood Association but the two are mutually supportive.

The issue in Long branch has had no publicity in the press despite the issue of neighbourhood character being amongst the most acute in Canada.

Without documentation it is seen as an issue of little importance to the outside world. We are fortunate that the Planning Department have recognised that the City’s Official Plan is being undermined and have strengthened wording in Official Plan Amendment 320 to clarify the intent.

The attachment on strategy shows how the loss of character has been achieved:


Congratulations to the group from the Shamrock Area for taking on and funding this important strategy of increasing awareness.

There are already over 200 signs on lawns and requested.There are about 100 left from the second batch.

Mike Laffrade started this movement. After MJL’s premature death Mike Flynn took over the torch. If you would like a free sign protesting inappropriate development please email his daughter

Planning Department Process

Due to the lack of dialogue between applicant and the community and the ease of approval at the OMB, the Planning Department have changed their policy.

For applications where an immediate precedent has been set and they previously recommended refusal, refusal recommendations will continue.

For other applications which appear to be at odds with the intent of the Official Plan and Zoning Bylaw, a recommendation of Deferral is made to effectively have a community meeting so that dialogue can take place between the applicant and those concerned, with both Planning Department and Councillor Office staff present. Several Community meetings have had some success. A community meeting is now scheduled for 32 27th Street. Staff are to be congratulated for trying to retard the adversarial process so damaging to good planning.

There are still informational issues of having advance warning of revisions (one is being done for 32 27th Street) and showing contextural relationship to surroundings.

However the new digital submissions should solve some of the difficulty with accessing vital plans of facades.

Committee of Adjustment Goes Digital

Beginning June 30th, 2016, all Minor Variance and Consent applications must be submitted digitally in person with a re-writable DVD at the District’s Committee of Adjustment application intake counter. Paper applications will no longer be accepted.

This new requirement for submitting an application is part of City Planning’s eService Delivery Program, which will enhance accessibility to existing Committee of Adjustment services and information. As of June 30th, 2016, application information, submission materials and decisions will be available for viewing online at

For further information on eSubmission requirements, please see the 2016 Digital Application Checklist at:

Daniel Fleming tel: 416-397-9273

Urban Design Guidelines Community Meeting, May 17 2016

About 100 people attended the Assembly Hall for the first public meeting of the Urban Design Guidelines study on Long Branch.

Long Branch neighbourhood was the first neighbourhood in Toronto chosen for such a study because of the rapid deterioration in character contrary to the Official Plan.

Councillor Grimes hosted the meeting and Planning’s Urban Design staff and S vN consultants ran the meeting supported later in the mini consultations by Local Planning staff. These professionals appeared to be on the same wavelength as the resident community. A healthy number of people representing development interests also attended. They seem fixated on their own properties rather than answering the question ‘what is the character of Long Branch”. But one speaker seemed to flummox staff with the question “What is character”.

Both groups can learn from each other and we understand there will be development interests on the Advisory Committee which is to run over the summer. Those who have signed up are to be taken on a walking tour near the end of June.

There will be at least one more full community meeting towards the end of the year and possibly a second one before that. The consultants plan to have the guidelines ready for the Planning and Growth Management meeting in January 2017. From there they would be adopted by Council. There could be recommendations for implementation such as zoning changes.

The study first concentrates on Visions, then Principles and finally Guidelines. Guidelines have been used extensively before outside neighbourhoods and a section of the Official Plan references them generally. There is a parallel study for Willowdale but Long Branch is more of a challenge with its development over a long period of time.

Information: contact Urban Design Planner

David Godley

I am an independent retired planner who is trying to achieve an equitable planning process.

I have been helping residents in Long branch and elsewhere with planning issues pro bono since 2006 when my Committee of Adjustment terms were finished.

I am not a member of the LBNA or for that matter the Lawn Signs group.

Please keep me in touch with anything that you think my 100 or so recipients might want to know.

Additional attached file:



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