550 Kerr Street | 59.72m | 16s | Rock Developments | Turner Fleischer

SaugeenJunction

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Development proposal for the strip mall across from Rain and Senses Condos on Kerr Street in Oakville. Town of Oakville planning application page here. 3 towers rising 16 stories each, heights of 51.8 metres each, and sharing a podium. It’s great to see more density coming to the area.

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As a bonus, here is a mangled development notice sign from today:
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WislaHD

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So is this shopping plaza really separate properties? It seems strange that this would be proposed almost in isolation from the rest of the shopping centre.

Nevertheless, there is a conceptual block plan available from 2018 on the City page. The block plan outside of the development proposal is referred to as "adjacent site".

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wopchop

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The project involves a lot of properties: 530, 550, 588 Kerr St, and 131, 171 Speers Road. It seems like since 2020 there has been a lot of consolidation here, as the new concept plan involves all the properties. It also now contemplates a phased development from West to East of all properties, to work around the Kerr St grade separation (which is now on hold).

Overall, I like the plan but key things are needed. There definitely needs to be a grocery store here which they have committed to doing. Also a pharmacy needs to return. Hopefully the Film.ca cinema can also survive this, as it is a great local attraction.

I also notice that no cycling lanes are proposed at all on the street extensions, which is unfortunate.

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Here is new concept plan from November 2021:

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Link: https://www.oakville.ca/business/da-39836.html
Urban design brief, dated May 2022: https://www.oakville.ca/assets/2011 planning/da-161656-UDB-may2022.pdf


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just east of the creek

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Oakville has a notice of a public meeting up for the revised plans to be held Sept 6th. There has been a lot of concern shown about pedestrian and other levels of traffic through the Kerr/Speers intersection, which should and could be addressed as part of the rebuilding of Kerr (railway underpass) and the extension of the ongoing Speers rebuilding which includes some form of buffered bike lanes. A lot of the other objections raised are much more flimsy given the high rises across the street and kitty corner, the rail lines to the north edge of the site, and the retail/commercial to the south and west. Connections to Oakville Go and the QEW sell, connections to the up and coming Kerr Street Village sell.You can argue about scope and mass, public open space, but this plan beats the heck out of one of my favourite Oakville Parking Lots, of which most of this site is composed of.
 

Bojaxs

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Oakville has a notice of a public meeting up for the revised plans to be held Sept 6th. There has been a lot of concern shown about pedestrian and other levels of traffic through the Kerr/Speers intersection, which should and could be addressed as part of the rebuilding of Kerr (railway underpass) and the extension of the ongoing Speers rebuilding which includes some form of buffered bike lanes. A lot of the other objections raised are much more flimsy given the high rises across the street and kitty corner, the rail lines to the north edge of the site, and the retail/commercial to the south and west. Connections to Oakville Go and the QEW sell, connections to the up and coming Kerr Street Village sell.You can argue about scope and mass, public open space, but this plan beats the heck out of one of my favourite Oakville Parking Lots, of which most of this site is composed of.
It's honestly needed in this area. I've lived within a 5-10 minute drive of this plaza my whole life. It's tired and old. The massive parking lot is a waste of space. It's mainly empty all the time. I used to work at the Canadian Tire when it was located in this plaza. This was back in the early 2000's. Even then I saw first hand that the plaza was falling apart.
It's a shame they couldn't get the underpass completed before starting this project. If this projected gets completed before they start to construct the underpass, then traffic is definitely going to be a nightmare. But I suppose that's the price we pay for constantly putting it off.
 

just east of the creek

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It's honestly needed in this area. I've lived within a 5-10 minute drive of this plaza my whole life. It's tired and old. The massive parking lot is a waste of space. It's mainly empty all the time. I used to work at the Canadian Tire when it was located in this plaza. This was back in the early 2000's. Even then I saw first hand that the plaza was falling apart.
It's a shame they couldn't get the underpass completed before starting this project. If this projected gets completed before they start to construct the underpass, then traffic is definitely going to be a nightmare. But I suppose that's the price we pay for constantly putting it off.
Completely agree, although my experiences run a bit further back. It’s just too bad, as you pointed out, that work was not progressing now, on the Kerr street underpass. And I am not sure of the status of the 171 Speers RD property, the movie theatre showing on the plans I believe, but a local councillor leasing the land and contending he has a 10 year lease….
 

70Challenger

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Nice to see some development planned here, that dumpy strip mall and surface parking is such an eyesore.
 

wopchop

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It's honestly needed in this area. I've lived within a 5-10 minute drive of this plaza my whole life. It's tired and old. The massive parking lot is a waste of space. It's mainly empty all the time. I used to work at the Canadian Tire when it was located in this plaza. This was back in the early 2000's. Even then I saw first hand that the plaza was falling apart.
It's a shame they couldn't get the underpass completed before starting this project. If this projected gets completed before they start to construct the underpass, then traffic is definitely going to be a nightmare. But I suppose that's the price we pay for constantly putting it off.
The development in my mind is welcome, but there certainly needs to be new retail to replace what is there currently, and not "upscale" retail either. Our area needs an affordable grocery store, and there should be zero compromise on that.
 

just east of the creek

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The development in my mind is welcome, but there certainly needs to be new retail to replace what is there currently, and not "upscale" retail either. Our area needs an affordable grocery store, and there should be zero compromise on that.
There certainly appears to be enough at grade retail to fit, whether Food Basics makes the transition is another thing, market forces will intervene and I think the ’gentrification’ of Kerr Street is well underway.

One could see the Corbetts Ski Shop strip mall moving soon as well. It is in that same planning designation.
 

wopchop

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Some tidbits;

"Oakville council has sent a development plan to construct 11 buildings, including a 28-storey structure, within Kerr Village back to the drawing board.

Councillors voted 7 to 6 to reject the development application during a Wednesday, Dec. 7 meeting."

"In a report to council, Town Senior Planner Paul Barrette recommended approval of the proposal, arguing that it is consistent with the Provincial Policy Statement, conforms to the Growth Plan and the Halton Region Official Plan, has regard for matters of provincial interest and represents good planning.

Barrette pointed out the site is within a strategic growth area and said the proposal is transit-supportive because the subject lands are adjacent to seven transit routes and within a 15-minute walk of the Oakville GO Station."

This part was interesting - the owner being Jeff Knoll of Film.ca cinemas

"Those present also heard from attorney Meredith Baker, who spoke on behalf of the owner of 171 Speers Rd."

She called for a decision regarding the development proposal to be deferred, noting her client’s property has been incorporated into the plan without her client actually agreeing to it."
 

just east of the creek

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Ahh, the classic case of not legally being required to own a property to file a rezoning for it..
I guess the owners of 171 were supposed to jump up and grab the opportunity. This is a development that should go forward. Will they be able to work out a solution over 171, it's been some time since the development proposal surfaced. Also wonder if the Kerr Street underpass argument is a red herring or not? I do not think there have been many whispers about its future lately. Possibly after completing the Burloak underpass, they use the same process of closing the street entirely while construction takes place. That could generate a construction timeline beginning in late 2026 or early 2027 I believe.
 

wopchop

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I guess the owners of 171 were supposed to jump up and grab the opportunity. This is a development that should go forward. Will they be able to work out a solution over 171, it's been some time since the development proposal surfaced. Also wonder if the Kerr Street underpass argument is a red herring or not? I do not think there have been many whispers about its future lately. Possibly after completing the Burloak underpass, they use the same process of closing the street entirely while construction takes place. That could generate a construction timeline beginning in late 2026 or early 2027 I believe.
The thing with 171 is that the owner wants to run his cinema, and his business. He doesn't seem interested in cashing in on redevelopment that jeopardizes that. Everything that I know about Knoll is that he is highly invested in the community, and helping it out. So I don't doubt his intentions.

The local Ward 2 councillor wasn't quoted in the article, but spoke out against the development. You gotta take anything Chisholm says with a major grain of salt. The man doesn't do any public events. He didn't campaign at all (he ran unopposed). I have no idea what he is supposed to represent at all. He has no interest in serving any of his constituents, except his friends.

Cathy Duddeck (regional councilor) was quoted. I know she has spoken on a number of occasions about infill development and holding developers to account. But mostly this has been in relation to residential infill homes, not necessarily large developments. I'm not surprised she opposed it at all. But her speaking about the Kerr St underpass is good I think - as a regional councilor that sort of infrastructure planning is part of their responsibility.
 
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