July 2019 Long Branch update from David Godley

The following text (with embedded links) is from David Godley of Long Branch; the message includes two attachments (as well, an addendum at the end of the message includes an additional attachment):

hume

housing

Greetings from Long Branch

Lake levels still high after this weeks rain. Fortunately no damaging storm or rough lake yet. We have saved Montreal again!

Contents: 1) Summary of TLAB hearings 2) Application Status 3) Provincial Impacts West GTHA 4) Unpublished Letters to the Star 5) Housing (Perks) 6) Climate Change (Hume) 1) Summary of TLAB hearingsCourtesy Long Branch Neighbourhood Association

TLAB Hearings Upcoming Hearing Dates
99 Twenty Seventh St Day 1: Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Day 2: Thursday, July 18, 2019

27 Thirty Ninth St Day 1: Tues, July 23, 2019

Day 2:  Wed, July 24, 2019

Day 3:  Thurs, July 25, 2019

6B Shamrock Day 1: Friday, July 26, 2019
38 Thirty First St Day 4:  Friday, Aug 2, 2019

Day 5: Tues,  Aug 20 , 2019

65 Fortieth St Day 1: Tues, Aug 6, 2019

Day 2:  Wed, Aug 7, 2019

90 Ash Day 1: Wed,  Oct 2, 2019

Day 2:  Wed, Oct 3, 2019

77 Thirty Fifth St Day 3:  Fri, Oct 11, 2019

Day 4:  Wed, Oct 16, 2019

80 Thirty Ninth St Day 5:  Tues, Oct 15, 2019

Day 6:  Friday, Oct 18, 2019

Day 7:  Thurs, Oct 24, 2019

Day 8:  Friday, Oct 25, 2019

80 Twenty Third St TBD  likely one of Oct 29, 30 or 31
74 Thirty Eighth St Day 1:  Tues, Nov 19, 2019

Day 2:  Wed, Nov 20, 2019

11 Shamrock Day 3:  Wed, Dec 4, 2019

Day 4:  Thurs, Dec 5, 2019

Day 5:  Friday, Dec 11, 2019

Note the irony of 5 minutes limit each for the COA and 8 days of hearing at TLAB. Clearly these issues are much too complex for COA. The original legislation was not intended for density variances.   2) Application Status

  1. A) DIVISIONAL COURT

9 38th Street. The Divisional Court judge decided on January 31st 2019 that there was enough evidence for one of several items to go to a full hearing – procedural fairness. The issue was how a Request for a Review should be answered after a TLAB decision was overruled. A hearing is expected within months.

11 Stanley was to go before a judge on February 19 about a leave to appeal to the Divisional Court on the legal points of a decision which refused the applications. However further discussions are taking place.

15 Stanley has been the subject of a Review Request and leave to Appeal to the Divisional Court. The resident who appealed both 11 and 15 and acted independently winning both decisions at TLAB has requested that TLAB change their rules not to allow both actions to be done simultaneously. The proposal was well received by TLAB at a business meeting. A classic strategy in legal matters where it is a well resourced party against a not so well resourced party (ie personal finance) is to wear down the opposition.

B) TLAB

  1. A)  January 7th and 8th 2019 (extended hearing to Oct 15,18, 24,25)   80 39th Soldier houses 0.35 to 0.62 density, For TLAB Makuch, for Proposal Kanter/Romano.
  2. B)  January 10, 80 23rd St (extended hearing to Oct 29,30 or 31st tbd) Soldier houses (variances only) 0.35 to 0.60. Approved by COA. Appeal by City. For Proposal Cheeseman/Cieciura.
  3. C) January 22, 27 39th,(extended to July 23, 24, 25) 2 storey houses (revised from soldiers) 0.35 to 0.60. For Proposal Stewart/Romano. D)  January 15th and 17th 2019, (extended hearing to April 26, 29 and May7, and Sep 3, 4, 5 and 12th) 10 Lake Promenade. Soldier Houses 0.35 to 0.59. For TLAB Makuch. For Proposal Cheeseman/Cieciura. Withdrawn due to TLAB allowing OPA 320 to be addressed
  4. E) February 26th and 27th 2019 (extended hearing December 4, 5 and 11), 11 Shamrock. Soldier houses 0.35 to 0.69 For Proposal Artenosi/Romano.
  5. F) March 21, 25 and April 1 2019 (extended hearing Aug 2 , 20) 38 31st Soldier houses35 to 0.66. For Proposal Guglietti/Romano. 
  6. G) April 17th and 18th, (extended hearing July 17, 18) 99 27th St Soldier houses 0.35 to 0.94. For TLAB Yao, for Proposal Weston Consulting. Plans being revised to lower density.  TLAB Chair Ted Yao.
  7. H) June 19th, (extended hearing to day 5) 70 36th Soldier houses 0.35 to 0.67 TLAB Ted Yao. Refused
  8. I) Aug 6th and 7th, 65 40th, (2) 2 storey houses 0.35 to 0.79 . Approved by COA and appealed by City. A test case for the Long Branch Character Guidelines.
  9. J) July 9th 10th, 77 35th,(extended to Oct 11 and 16) 2 storey semis 0.60 to 0.61 and 0.7. Approved by COA and appealed by City. City dropped appeal because of lack of planner. Neighbour Resident also appealed. LBNA a party. A test case for Long Branch Character Guidelines Guidelines.
  10. K) Nov 19th and 20th, 74 38th, soldier house and 2 storey house 0.58, 0.59  Approved by COA and appealed by City.
  11. L) July 26th 6B Shamrock, rear balcony, 4sqm approved. Owner appealed for 8 sqm.
  12. M) Oct 2nd and 3rd 90 Ash Crescent, approved by COA and appealed by neighbour. Planner for proposal  Cheeseman/Cieciura.

C) COA Files. For the time being severance applications have diminished (19 33rd is the exception), in no small part due to LBNA (particularly Christine Mercado and Judy Gibson strongly supported by residents) opposing all of them at TLAB. These are multi day hearings full of procedural matters against Toronto’s top lawyers and wily Planners who do not seem to follow their professional code. LBNA are dealing with 11 severance/variance cases. I believe Christine and Judy have cloned themselves. If TLAB had not been initiated we would probably have many more severances granted as well as a line up of applications.

  1. D) July 18 2019 COA Hearing, Variances.

369 Lake Promenade.  Addition of second floor. 0.35 to 1.34. approved ( Thanks Anjelica)

65 35th Street. Addition of second floor. 0.35 to 0.53 approved (Thanks Anjelica)

30 24th Street. New house 0.35 to 0.68 approved with conditions (Thanks Nicole)

  1. E) Aug 15 2019

19-21 29th Street, 3 houses replacing 2. 2 soldier houses and a 3 storey without garage. 0.35 to 0.74, 0.75 and 1.07.

  1. F) Other Applications

36 Ash, Soldier Houses 0.35 to 0.71 Deferred

11 Garden Place, Soldier Houses 0.35 to 0.71 Deferred

46 Park Blvd. Legalising triplex with addition and affecting two healthy trees. Planning Recommends refusal

39 Fairfield, no data. Postponed

29 Lake Promenade, Raising (illegally) flat roof by 0.5m. Deferred. No hearing scheduled

  1. G) New Applications

19 33rd St. Severance and variances. No data available



If you wish to look at all the material online go to “Development Applications Toronto” then check “Committee of Adjustment” “Ward 3”  “Search” and follow the cues. However the number of applications in Ward 3 has outstripped the capacity of the Applications Information Website and you cannot view the whole list of applications together.

Previous “Updates” can be found on preservedstories.com a major blog site run by Jaan Pill, formerly of Villa Road.

Submissions on applications need to be in to COA by 3pm on the Thursday before the COA meeting for inclusion in the package that is given to COA members. Submissions before 10am on the day of the hearing will be considered. E&EO. Please feel free to correct, add to or forward information. Feel free to circulate.

Have a great weekend and stay cool. David

3) PROVINCIAL IMPACTS IN THE WEST GTHA. It is not just Toronto that is upset.

City planning upended by province

It “came out of nowhere”, changed thirteen statutes, and was pushed through the provincial legislature so fast that city staff could only tell councillors after the fact about the multiple problems it imposes. Dubbed by the Ford government “the more homes, more choice act”, Bill 108 upends Hamilton’s downtown secondary plan, imposes severe challenges for municipal efforts to rationally plan and pay for growth, and makes it more difficult for citizens to challenge new development.

The winners appear to be land developers and speculators who can avoid the current comprehensive land planning process and have been given new rights to push for urban boundary expansions. Burlington’s mayor describes it as “welfare for developers” and an analysis by Environmental Defence found it largely aligns with the requests made to the province by the Ontario Home Builders Association.

The legislation was introduced on May 2, with a comment deadline of June 1. It was finalized two days later and will likely be imposing planning nightmares by early July when city staff expect to be inundated with developer attempts to expand the urban boundary.

The legislation tears up the long-standing rule that only municipal governments can propose an urban boundary expansion and only with detailed justifications. Under Bill 108, expansions of up to 40 hectares can now be applied for by individual landowners at any time and must be decided on by council within a much reduced timeframe that will be very difficult to meet.

Official plan amendments, for example, now must be decided within 120 days of being submitted by a private developer instead of 180 days, and zoning changes must be finalized within 90 days. Failure to meet these deadlines allows the developer to bypass council and appeal directly to the provincial tribunal.

Staff told councillors last week that they had asked for longer periods to adequately respond but were unsuccessful. So it will now be much harder for city planners to assess developer proposals, undertake traffic and other studies, receive input from other city departments and commenting agencies, consult with the public in affected communities and then make a recommendation to council within the timeframes. And multiple developer proposals will likely arrive at the same time.

“We could have multiple 39.5 hectare applications all being submitted more or less simultaneously and then trying to figure out how to deal with all of those applications,” warned Hamilton’s chief planner Steve Robichaud. “We could have everybody applying individually and I think that is what will happen. As soon as the first person comes in, the rest will want to start piling on.”

Among many other changes “it means the matters that were worked out with community in terms of the downtown secondary plan bonusing – that’s gone by the wayside,” Robichaud told councillors. That’s partly because of the severe limits that have been put on the use of the inclusionary zoning that allows cities to require affordable units in new residential developments. These were demanded by citizens last year and acceded to by the city for the full downtown, but now will be limited to major transit stops such as the proposed LRT.

Councillor Whitehead asked staff if the province had explained why it was shortening the timeframes, and was told that no justification has been provided. Whitehead predicted there will be “a lot more cases that will bypass the democratic process and go straight to appeal”.

Those appeals will no longer give deference to council positions. And residents registering to participate in the appeal hearings will no longer be permitted to speak at the tribunals, but only submit written statements. There’s also a reference to different fees for “different classes of persons” but no explanation of what this means.

The changes to the Planning Act alone overturn many of the reforms of the last 15 years, including reversing the changes to the Ontario Municipal Board adopted in 2017 after nearly two years of consultations.

CATCH (Citizens at City Hall) updates use transcripts and/or public documents to highlight information about Hamilton civic affairs that is not generally available in the mass media. Detailed reports of City Hall meetings can be reviewed at hamiltoncatch.org. You can receive all CATCH free updates by sending an email to http://hamiltoncatch.org/newsletter/?p=subscribe. Sharing links are available on the hamiltoncatch.org.You can unsubscribe at http://hamiltoncatch.org/newsletter/?p=unsubscribe

4) UNPUBLISHED LETTERS TO THE STAR, Yellow Lands and Housing Affordability

Dear Editor,

The review of the low density neighbourhoods or “yellow lands” is long overdue. The City has already implemented gently density through second suites.

Converting garages and adding  grandparent suites would provide housing at a level that is needed. It can provide the very low rental which is currently missing in Toronto.

The framework into which these new homes need to be fitted is the Official Plan. This 2006 document requires that the character of neighbourhods be conserved. This in turn provides great livability and by extension attracts economic development and jobs. Toronto’s neighbourhoods are its jewel in its crown.

Currently, especially in older neighbourhoods, affordable housing is being demolished and larger, more expensive  houses on smaller lots being built. This not only ruins neighbourhood character but reduces the quality of life for next door neighbours.  Trees are destroyed to feed builders’ urge for profit.

The real need  is for deeply affordable housing which often requires public subsidy such as co-op developments and  rooming houses. There is a plethora of opportunity for these along the main roads or “Avenues”.  Inclusionary zoning is another method recently curtailed by the Province. Nuanced additions to “yellow lands” with small units can be a major contributor to the housing affordability crisis

Let’s build the missing middle but let’s do it smartly.

Yours truly,

David Godley

Dear Editor

Toronto’s neighbourhoods are its jewels in the crown. The Official Plan requires that their character be conserved to provide great livability.

To simply change the zoning is the “sledge hammer to crack a nut” approach. We need something more nuanced at the local level supported by changes at the macro level.

Decreasing affordability in city’s is a global trend where vast sums of money from huge corporations to individuals are chasing residential property.

Copenhagen is probably the leader in planning and they solved many problems through promoting cycling.

Both Provincial and Local Governments promote inequality through capitalism unlike the Scandinavian countries.

Housing affordability is therefore a many faceted issue which can be addressed by policies on transportation, finance and equality, such as minimum wage.

Within this sphere there are many tactics, one mentioned in a related article by John Lorinc is to freeze rents.

The real need though is for deeply affordable housing which requires public subsidy such as co-op developments and  innovative housing. Inclusionary zoning is another method recently curtailed by the Province.

While 4 storey walk ups can be a good answer in the right place a better focus is rooming houses. Both these forms of housing have ample land for development in main streets without touching the character of neighbourhoods.

The main streets are the best place for these buildings as tenants will be reliant on transit.

Neighbourhoods are already being intensified gently through second suites.

Long Branch, a neighbourhood of 10,000 people, has had recent builds and approvals for over 2,000 usually four storey units. There could have been walk ups and rooming houses woven into the various private developments.

We have the zoning for plexes but there is no demand in neighbourhoods. The inappropriate splitting of lots for double density detached is not going to help affordable housing because they are destroying it.

They are also destroying the character of the neighbourhoods which decreases Toronto’s attraction as a place for employment investment. The large impacts of these developments are equivalent to expropriation of property rights for adjacent neighbours without

compensation by blocking light and views and destroying the tree canopy.

Let’s building the missing middle but do it smartly. This will involve a package of reforms which can achieve all the objectives of the Official Plan without ruffling the feathers of residents in two thirds of the City’s neighbourhoods. Simply changing zoning rules is bad policy

now and would result in abrasive intensification.

Yours truly,

David Godley

5) HOUSING

Councillor Gord Perks on housing as a commodity

6) CLIMATE CHANGE

Christopher Hume, Star contributor, on Global Warming. Attached

And we are still losing trees to development.

[End of main text from David Godley]

[Addendum]

In an additional message, David Godley shares a letter recently published in the Toronto Start; the letter concerns the following Toronto Star article:

Yellow Belt intensification

LETTER TO THE STAR, Published July 20 2019

Yellow Lands and Housing Affordability

Dear Editor,

The review of the low density neighbourhoods or “yellow lands” is long overdue. The City has already implemented gently density through second suites.

Converting garages and adding grandparent suites would provide housing at a level that is needed. It can provide the very low rental which is currently missing in Toronto.

The framework into which these new homes need to be fitted is the Official Plan. This 2006 document requires that the character of neighbourhods be conserved. This in turn provides great livability and by extension attracts economic development and jobs. Toronto’s neighbourhoods are its jewel in its crown.

Currently, especially in older neighbourhoods, affordable housing is being demolished and larger, more expensive houses on smaller lots being built. This not only ruins neighbourhood character but reduces the quality of life for next door neighbours. Trees are destroyed to feed builders’ urge for profit.

The real need is for deeply affordable housing which often requires public subsidy such as co-op developments and rooming houses. There is a plethora of opportunity for these along the main roads or “Avenues”. Inclusionary zoning is another method recently curtailed by the Province. Nuanced additions to “yellow lands” with small units can be a major contributor to the housing affordability crisis

Let’s build the missing middle but let’s do it smartly.

Yours truly,

David Godley

1 reply
  1. Jaan Pill
    Jaan Pill says:

    I am pleased that, as a consequence of an upgrade of the Preserved Stories website, I am now able to readily cut and paste David Godley’s email messages, and in that way quickly create a post.

    I am also pleased that I can readily concert David Godley’s Microsoft Word files to PDF files, which are easier than Word to access, at the site. As well, I am pleased that I have learned to convert PDF files to JPEG files.

    These are technical points that I am pleased to share. An underlying message is that, if we work at blogging over a period of time, we can with the passage of the years gain a measure of technical proficiency.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Enter Captcha Here : *

Reload Image