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buildup

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The Planning department issued a report for the original development and zoning amendment application. In this report the Director states "this application is not appropriate for the site. The overall proposal, including the proposed height and massing, does not conform to the Official Plan; is inconsistent with Council-approved guidelines; and represents an overdevelopment of the site".

I assume this boiler plate response, which I assume is applicable to anything proposed in Toronto is just a formality.
 

Ramako

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The Planning department issued a report for the original development and zoning amendment application. In this report the Director states "this application is not appropriate for the site. The overall proposal, including the proposed height and massing, does not conform to the Official Plan; is inconsistent with Council-approved guidelines; and represents an overdevelopment of the site".

I assume this boiler plate response, which I assume is applicable to anything proposed in Toronto is just a formality.

I don't remember seeing an application where height and density were not considered inappropriate, but to be fair the existing zoning for heights and densities around the city seem to be quite outdated.
 

DtTO

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I don't remember seeing an application where height and density were not considered inappropriate, but to be fair the existing zoning for heights and densities around the city seem to be quite outdated.

That isn't being fair, considering it's the city's job to update those. I've seen that same canned response for so many different projects, it's almost expected now.
 

interchange42

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That isn't being fair, considering it's the city's job to update those. I've seen that same canned response for so many different projects, it's almost expected now.

Toronto's zoning bylaws are quite certainly outdated. The Planning Department, the City Councillors, and the OMB all know it. Negotiations for increases are all based on that knowledge. It's the degree to which the current bylaws over-restrict new development that developers and the City typically disagree over.

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arvelomcquaig

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Will Toronto's zoning bylaws ever be updated? They've been absurdly outdated for decades now, haven't they?

And, as usual, I can't understand what's wrong with this proposal being taller and denser than its surroundings.
 
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interchange42

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The zoning bylaws reflect the thinking of the 70s. It's Ontario's Places To Grow Act of 2005 which called for intensification of cities that is considered the stale-date of our bylaws: we did not update them to take into account the call for more density.

City Councillors have not moved with any sense of urgency to update our bylaws as it's seen as political suicide: NIMBYs would let them have it at the next election for daring to threaten their homes with shadows from taller buildings, or their neighbourhoods with more traffic. Meanwhile, the process for obtaining height and density increases for new developments has become one of negotiation in which councillors get to extract cash from the developers in the form of community benefits. Councillors get to boast to their constituents "I got major park improvements" or similar during the next election in the cases where the developers and the City come to an agreement, and where they didn't, there's the OMB to blame for allowing the new neighbourhood sore-point to proceed; "The City's hands were tied." And they were , it's true.

So the current system works well for City Councillors, well for lawyers, so-so for developers, so-so for NIMBYs (they win some, they lose some), so-so for the city.

The big problem is that the community benefits are pretty desperately needed: the City does not have the money for the renewal projects that are now being paid for by the development industry (and ultimately the purchasers of the new units). The benefits could be paid for through increased property taxes, but raising them is more political suicide for Councillors. Until there's another political solution (eg. new powers granted by the Province), I don't see changes coming.

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