Council’s planning committee met Tuesday. Here’s a summary of what happened.
- Upzoning 1400 Baseline Road (Stoney Creek) prior to sell the City-owned lands.
- $29,000 to hire two summer students to patrol the Lake Ontario Waterfront Trail.
- Request from developer of 3033 and 3063 Binbrook Road to apply for minor variances to increase building height beyond what was agreed to in a recent OLT settlement. [Procedurally, councillors received their request letter with no action taken]
Notice of Motion
- Proposal for the City of Hamilton to adopt a Nuisance bylaw, similar to Kingston’s bylaw, to deal with McMaster Homecoming street parties.
- Information updates regarding Ontario Land Tribunal appeals:
- 310 Frances Avenue (Stoney Creek)
- 262 McNeilly Road and 1036 – 1090 Barton Street (Stoney Creek)
310 Francis Avenue Stoney Creek – the Three Tall Buildings Plan
City planning staff updated councillors on the Ontario Land Tribunal appeals by New Horizon Development Group regarding their contentious three tower development at 310 Francis Street in Stoney Creek’s lakeshore community.
New Horizon is appealing the decision of Hamilton’s Committee of Adjustment to deny minor variances sought for the development. City staff denied their site plan application following the CoA decision, New Horizon is also appealing that denial.
City of Hamilton staff state they will defend the decisions at Committee of Adjustment.
New Horizon will seek the OLT to approve three towers (44, 38, and 33 storeys in height) with 1,346 dwelling units in total, a five-storey parking podium with 1,732 parking spots in total, and 11,943 square metres of amenity space, 1,562 sq m of which will be located indoors.
More details on the discussion at Planning Committee, including next steps, here: Hamilton City Hall Prepares to Oppose 310 Frances Three-Towers at Ontario Land Tribunal
1400 Baseline Road – Upzoning Surplus City Lands
Councillors formally approved upzoning City-owned lands at 1400 Baseline Road in Stoney Creek in a 6-0 vote. The vote must be ratified at Council on Wednesday, February 9.
The City plans to sell the lands and place the proceeds of the sale into its affordable housing capital budget. The City hopes to gain “north” of $3-million for the property with the increased land value resulting from upzoning. The land is one of 19 city-owner properties identified as being underutilized that may be sold to finance affordable housing projects.
The local neighbourhood association argues the site is being zoned for too much height when it should be zoned for a mid-rise height with greater density. The local ward councillor says the City is trying to allow more height to prevent an appeal after selling the lands, while a Mountain councillor argues the City is underzoning the lands in light of two recent OLT decisions forcing greater density on arterial roads.
Summary of the debate here: Planning Committee Upzones City Lands at 1400 Baseline Road Prior to Sale
OLT Appeal by Sub-Division Developer at 262 McNeilly Road and 1036 – 1090 Barton Street, Stoney Creek
The developers who own the properties at 262 McNeilly Road and 1036 – 1090 Barton Street in Stoney Creek wants wishes to build 545 residential units, being 154 single and semi-detached dwellings, 206 street townhouses, and 185 block townhouses, with the creation of a neighbourhood park, and a stormwater management pond.
They are taking the City to the Ontario Land Tribunal after staff indicated they cannot support the present proposal. The non-decision appeal bypasses Council Planning Committee.
Viv Saunders delegated on behalf of the Lakewood Beach Community Council asking questions regarding urban design, why the development is not being designed with pedestrian amenities, and why a low-density use is being proposed along Barton Street when the City of Hamilton needs to intensify.
The Community Council states it wants to see transit-supportive development along Barton Street.
Ward 10 Councillor Maria Pearson, who represents the area, says there have been neighbourhood meetings and “the neighbourhood as a whole, that we had the neighbourhood meeting, were in support of this development.”
Ward 8 Clr John Paul Danko expressed frustration at the joint developers, Losani Homes and Branthaven, for “building minimum code stick-figure McMansions” at the minimum density. He cited recent Ontario Land Tribunal rulings imposing mid-rise density along minor arterial roads, and expressed a wish the City or another group could “have an alternative appeal to the Ontario Land Tribunal for something that is better or more in line with our 30-year growth plan.”
Council received the staff information report, it will return for settlement direction at a future date in closed session.
There was a debate regarding if the lower density is transit-supportive (staff say it is) and how despite the site being on Barton Street, because it is new development on greenfield, the density does not need to meet the density standards of grayfield intensification.
Read more in the full story here: Sub-Division Developer Bypasses Council with OLT Appeal at Barton and McNeilly in Stoney Creek
3033 and 3063 Binbrook Road – Asking For More Height
“The ink is still drying,” said an exasperated Ward 11 Clr Brenda Johnson referring to the recent Ontario Land Tribunal settlement between the City of Hamilton and UrbanCore developments to allow a six-storey building at 3033 and 3063 Binbrook Road with 111 residential units and ground floor commercial.
On Tuesday, UrbanCore asked Council to allow them to get a minor variance to increase the height to eight storeys, adding 46 additional dwelling units. The development principals, Sergio Manchia and David Horwood, cite Council’s recent decision to freeze the urban boundary as the primary argument for additional height.
“It’s not a variance. It’s not something that can be done on a minor scale. This is major,” Johnson stated.
Ward 15 Clr Judi Partridge agreed with Johnson, saying she is glad Council is “nipping this one in the bud” as developers will cite the urban boundary freeze in attempts to get more units. Partridge emphasized she supports the boundary freeze “100 percent.”
Committee did not approve the request.
Waterfront Trail Ambassadors
Councillors approved spending $29,000 to hire two summer students to patrol the Lake Ontario Waterfront Trail in Ward 5 to remind people of the prohibition banning electric-assist bicycles, electric scooters, and other electric-powered devices.
Ward 5 Clr Russ Powers requested the motion.
Director of Bylaw Enforcement Monica Ciriello states the students in previous years issued approximately 45,000 warnings in 2020, and about 30,000 in 2021.
Clr Wilson Proposes Nuisance Bylaw
Ward 1 Clr Maureen Wilson says the City of Hamilton to adopt a nuisance by-law to address the growing annual chaos caused by McMaster University’s Homecoming celebrations.
The nuisance by-law, if passed, will apply year-round and could be used to respond to other unsanctioned events.
In Kingston, their nuisance by-law includes posting the names of individuals issued by-law tickets, Queen’s University then sanctions any of its students who match the name and age description released by the municipality.
Wilson wants staff to bring back a bylaw for Council to pass prior to Council’s summer recess in July.
The motion will be debated in two weeks during the February 15 Council Planning Committee meeting.
Defining “Clearing” in the Snow Removal Bylaw
Ward 10 Clr Maria Pearson moved a motion director By-Law staff to create a specific “clearing” snow and ice to clarify a standard for property owners to know when they are compliant with bylaw requirements. The motion passed.
City Lawyer to Give Special Presentation on Two Recent OLT Decisions
Chief Planner Steve Robichaud told councillors that the City’s internal planner lawyer Patrick MacDonald will “will be coming forward at a future planning committee, I think the next one February 15, to speak about these two recent OLT decisions. And some of the issues of the challenges that we the city have in terms of dealing with these OLT matters.”
Ward 15 Clr Judi Partridge stated she was leaving the meeting “for other appointments” on Tuesday.