Affordable housing has become such an issue that it is central to the Federal Election on October 21st.
There is no need to take away the core City policy which is to conserve the character of neighbourhoods. Higher density development can be placed in the Avenues and Centres. However there will be a new pressure on neighbourhoods with the development sector trying to optimise their goals to the detriment of neighbourhoods and their tree canopies. The irony in Long Branch is that many affordable houses have been demolished to make way for above median priced dwellings.
CONTENTS 1) Application Status 2) Affordable Housing 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.
b) January 10, 80 23rd St (extended hearing to Oct 29,30 or 31st) Soldier houses (variances only) 0.35 to 0.60. Approved by COA. Appeal by City. For Proposal Cheeseman/Cieciura.
c) January 22, 27 39th,(extended to July 23, 24, 25 and again Jan 8, 9, 10 2020) 2 storey houses (revised from soldiers) 0.35 to 0.60. For Proposal Stewart/Romano. d) 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.
e) March 21, 25 and April 1 2019 (extended hearing Aug 2 , 20) 38 31st Soldier houses35 to 0.66. For Proposal Guglietti/Romano. Hearing Extension December 18 and 20th 2019
f) 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. Hearing extension Jan 17,20,27 2020
g)Aug 6th and 7th (extended Oct 4, 21 and 22), 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.
h) 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.
i) Nov 19th and 20th, 74 38th, soldier house and 2 storey house 0.58, 0.59 Approved by COA and appealed by City.
j) July 26th 6B Shamrock, rear balcony, 4sqm approved. Owner appealed for 8 sqm. Estoppel motion failed. Settlement may be in the offing. Planner Romano. Settlement approved
k) Oct 2nd and 3rd 90 Ash Crescent, approved by COA and appealed by neighbour. Lawyer/Planner for proposal Cheeseman/Cieciura.
B) Aug 29 2019 COA
76 39th St. Addition to detached house (0.35 to 0.39 density) NEW. Approved
C) Sept 12 2019 COA
15 Iris, Addition to detached house (0.35 to 0.53 density) Approved
95 James, 2nd Storey addition (0.35 to 0.64) Approved. See comments attached
D) Sept 26 2019 COA
17 Garden Place, Soldier House (0.35 to 0.74 density)
E) 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. Hearing 24 October
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. (postponed for rationale)
19 33rd St. Severance and variances. 2 storey houses (0.35 to about 0.40) (postponed for rationale)
6 41st Street. Large Deck (Oct 24th COA) New
16 Atherton. New house on wide lot density 0.35 to 0.43 which does not reflect traditional character. New
F) DIVISIONAL COURT (No change in status)
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.
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.
Fact: Toronto is growing fast. We have an opportunity to get our planning right, but have to act now. By allowing for gentle density in our neighbourhoods, we are choosing to build a city that everyone can live in. #HousingTO#TOpoli
It won’t completely solve Toronto’s housing shortage, but experts are calling a successful “gentle density” project in the Dufferin-Bloor area a step in the right direction.
Kevin Andrade, Nuno Nascimento and Nuno Paul, owners of Dufferin Lane Investments, recently won approval from Toronto’s committee of adjustment to build a three-storey building containing eight rental apartments on a site currently occupied by a detached single-family home.
Unpublished Letter to the Star, Dear Editor
As one of the first attempts to show how density can woven into the neighbourhood fabric, this is a disaster.
Practically every planning rule is left in the dust.
Rather than gentle density, this is an assault on the neighbourhood.
It means all the lots in this section of Dufferin Street, and many other streets near the subway, can be developed in the same way through precedent.
Whole areas could be radically changed without formal input from the Planning Department.
Why not pick up the traditional architectural facades. Make the apparent luxury units much smaller to address deep affordability.
This would lower the bulk and length of the building to that permitted.
Lets make proposals that neighbourhood citizens can embrace.
401 Lake Promenade
Toronto, M8W 1C3
B) AirBnB affecting affordable housing.
The City are wisely trying to limit these types of rentals to primary residences.
Short term stays would be up to 27 days for 180 days of the year.
LPAT Hearings have been going recently and final statements are to be heard October 15 2019
C) More density, smaller units on City owned land.
Unpublished letter to the Dear Editor at the Star
Toronto is a magnet for not only people but investment from around the world. That is why house prices will remain high.
Unfortunately City Hall are floundering on the real housing need – very small deeply affordable housing. Single person households are increasing.
At the moment the City is allowing the private sector to build on public land without this strong focus eg Sidewalk Laboratories.
More density is need on lots near transit hubs (such as car TTC parks) as well as a much higher proportion of direct need apartments.
By Jennifer Keesmaat | September 4, 2019 Toronto Life
Jennifer Keesmaat is the CEO of the Keesmaat Group and Toronto’s former chief planner.
Sidewalk’s proposal for Toronto’s eastern waterfront has a few foundational promises: first, that this Google company can deliver innovation in a way that government has not; and second, that the proposed public works will create a more inclusive city. These are worthy aspirations. Some specific proposals—like a new mass timber factory to push forward the industry in Ontario and ensuring 50 per cent of the housing on-site is rental—would be excellent for our city
Sidewalk Labs has also promised that 40 per cent of its housing will be below market rate. On its face, this pledge responds to a dire need to reinvent how we deliver housing in Toronto. The excitement has been palatable: 40 per cent below market—now that’s something! The problem is that below market rate is still unaffordable for most Torontonians. Sidewalk is selling us a false bill of goods.
Sidewalk breaks down their plan like this: five per cent of units will be deeply affordable, or at least 60 per cent below market rate. Another 15 per cent will be affordable as defined by the city—at or below the average market rent—and the final 20 per cent will be affordable for middle-income households. But people on a minimum-wage salary can’t even afford an average-priced one-bedroom apartment. Even if Sidewalk’s second tier of affordability is on par with the market, these homes are wildly overpriced compared to Canadian wages. It’s even more ridiculous to suggest that the homes designed for middle-class households are affordable by any stretch of the imagination. In a real estate economy as hot as ours, affordability cannot depend on the market. The city of Toronto needs to make the definition match the reality.
Municipal land is a precious and finite asset, and we have to maximize its benefits. Many European countries require privately owned land to offer 30 per cent social housing, 30 per cent affordable housing, and 30 per cent market-rate housing on privately owned land. Sidewalk’s paltry proposal—on municipal land, made viable for development through public investment, and using government programs and contributions to generate affordability—is unacceptable.
Sidewalk’s proposal describes a life story in which a couple moves into a unit, and as their equity grows and their family expands, they acquire the smaller unit next door and knock out the wall to create a bigger home. In theory, such units can grow and shrink as needed. But if these units follow the pattern of sub-divided houses in neighbourhoods, that means adjacent units will, over time, become larger, expensive units that house fewer people per square foot. A unit mix presented as diverse at the outset will gradually transform into fewer, larger, even super-sized units. Density and affordability will suffer.
We must ask: does the Sidewalk proposal deliver on the promise of creating more affordable housing? That’s a hard no. Developers are required to deliver 20 per cent affordable housing. When you break it down, Sidewalk has proposed only five. Policy can fix this. Private-sector partners are typically only as good as the public-sector leadership. Will Toronto demand more?
Enjoy the Fall especially if you are having a trip. DAVID