A heritage designed Anglican parish, a historic landmark in the heart of a vibrant downtown connected corridor, and a plan to build an eight-storey residential building that will generate needed funds for the revival and survival of the congregation that calls the church building home.
This is the story of both Hamilton’s Anglican Cathedral Place and Winnipeg’s All Saints Church.
The Winnipeg Free Press feature’s the All Saints project in a story that reads almost the same as our Cathedral Place.
The similarities between the two churches and projects are many.
Both parishes say the project is required to infuse the church with funds for needed capital upgrades, as well, the condo will provide for long term sustainability by creating more commercial and community activity
Both churches are major landmarks in their respective cities and located on major corridors into their downtown core. (See Streetview embed below of All Saints)
Our Cathedral Place is in the heart of the James North Commercial district, just north of the Core. All Saints is just south of the Downtown Core at the foot of Osborne North which is a vibrant district with many similarities to James.
Adding to All Saints landmark status in Winnipeg, it is directly across from the provincial legislative building and located on the Trans-Canada Highway.
Both parishes have thrown open their doors to the community, offering services and providing space. They are more than just a place of Sunday worship, they are the hub of community and social services serving their downtown areas of need.
Both congregations are concerned that without the redevelopment plan, they won’t be able to afford to maintain their existing property.
Winnipeg’s plans are in their infancy, they just received a $10,000 grant from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to start their planning process.
In Hamilton, Cathedral Place has been to the City Hall’s Design Review Panel, been reviewed by staff at the Development Review Team, has a City Council approved negotiation with the City for the purchase of the small municipal parking lot.
The Diocese says they are making many changes to the plans and the original plans presented in 2014 are not a present reflection of the architectural plans for the project. I’m watching the planning file for updates. For more on the Hamilton Cathedral Place proposal, visit The Public Record’s topic page for the project.
There is one big difference I notice between these two projects…
The Winnipeg church is surrounded by 3-4 storey apartment buildings, a health clinic and a parking lot. The view behind the Winnipeg church: https://firstname.lastname@example.org,-97.1514672,3a,75y,15.3h,82.7t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1srgKQMESeAuKIYBphH0gv7g!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!6m1!1e1
In Hamilton, the existing view of the church is much more ornate and has an elaborate rose window (which will be blocked by the development) and the development is surrounded by two storey homes on a residential side-street.
In the Hamilton case, the 8-storey design will have a far more negative impact on the church and the character of the street…
In Hamilton, the view behind the church:
If a development goes ahead, it would fit better on the City’s parking lot, or should be limited to two storeys along the back of the church to preserve the character of both the street and the historical church itself. Although I still believe there are many more brownfield and other suitable sites for development than intensifying a historical location at the expense of it’s quality and character simply to raise capital.
Further to my initial comment, I would also note that the current zoning for this location is “Neighbourhood Institutional (I1) Zone”. From the City, residential use in this zoning is described with: “Lastly, any residential redevelopment that may occur on an existing institutional property would be permitted in a form consistent with the surrounding area (e.g.) single detached, semi-detached and duplex dwellings.”
This supports the idea that an 8-storey condo development does not fit within the character designated for this spot. Obviously, the developer will seek a zoning amendment, but this indicates the previous consideration of this property by the City staff and I suspect it would match the feelings of the residents in the area. If dense development along Hughson St was planned for, the City would likely have bestowed I2 or I3 zoning permitting townhousing or other dense forms of residential development.
The surrounding lots are all zoned D/S which is protected urban development, limiting them to one and two family dwellings.
Additionally, the West Harbour Secondary Plan which is designed to guide development in the area notes institutional zones are capped at 3 storey’s for development, and low-density residential (which the area of Hughson concerned) is designated is capped at 3 storey’s as well. The secondary plan notes that development should be consistent with the existing use of surrounding areas and designed to preserve historic buildings and remain consistent with existing character.
The combination of the above should give a good indication of the City’s intent for the street and the recognition of it’s character. From what I can tell, this proposed development goes against the various secondary plans, official plans, zoning by-laws, etc.