TPR endeavours to track all Hamilton cases being adjudicated by the Ontario Land Tribunal. There are dozens of Hamilton files in front of the land-use tribunal, including days in which the OLT holds four or five simultaneous hearings.
Here’s an update on recent hearings, decisions, pending decisions, and upcoming cases.
Lawyers for CN, the Jamesville developer, CityHousing Hamilton, and the City of Hamilton updated the OLT on December 20, saying they’ve made little progress on defining the outstanding issues while at the same time expressing optimism they may reach a deal before May 21st when the contest appeal hearing is scheduled to begin.
There are ongoing confidential mediation talks.
Development Charges at 71 Main Street Dundas
The City will keep $646,416 in parkland dedication charges paid by the developer of a nine-storey, 64-unit condo building at 71 Main Street in Dundas.
Construction on the building began before the Ontario Progressive Conservative government enacted Bill 23 on November 28, 2022. The final construction permit was issued on December 6, 2022.
Bill 23 capped the amount of development charges municipalities can collect. The developer appealed to the OLT, arguing development charges should be calculated on the date of the final permit; the City successfully argued charges are applied on the date of the first building permit.
The pre-Bill 23 developer charges were $836,416; post-Bill 23, they became $190,000.
Garner Road Marsh
The developer seeking to “relocate” the marshlands at 140 Garner Road East to build a business park on the 35.27-hectare property is being granted more time to prepare their case.
In a case management conference held in December, Ontario Land Tribunal Vice-Chair Hugh Wilkins and Member Aaron Sauve granted developer ONE Properties Limited Partnership additional time for a consult to complete a report on how to ‘relocate’ the Garner Road marsh the developer wants to build five warehouses and parking on.
The Hamilton Conservation Authority rejected the development. The developer appealed to the OLT. In 2022, the OLT granted Party status to Environmental Defence, which is represented by lawyer Phil Pothen.
With Environmental Defence as a Party, the developer needs to make a stronger case than they would against the Conservation Authority.
A 15-day contested hearing is now scheduled to begin on Monday, February 24, 2025.
909 North Waterdown Drive
The City and LIV Developments Ltd. have agreed to zoning for 219 residential units, 84 in stacked townhouses and 135 units within an eight-storey condo mid-rise.
11, 19, 20, 21, 23, 27 & 30 Lakeshore Drive, Stoney Creek
The OLT approved a settlement for the 2.5-hectare property with some frontage onto Lake Ontario.
City staff supported the Losani Homes and Marz Homes proposal to build 38 homes on the site.
Last Council term’s Ward 10 Councillor Maria Pearson opposed the project, citing traffic and that the developer was charging other properties if they wished to connect to a new sanitary sewer to be constructed to facilitate the new homes.
The developers appealed for non-decision in December 2022.
186 Hunter Street East
As TPR reported on December 7, the City and LiUNA’s Wellington Hamilton Non-Profit Housing Inc. reached a settlement to permit a 14-storey, 227-unit building.
The deal requires that “no less than 25 percent” will have rent set at “30 percent of household income for the 60th percentile of incomes in the area.”
The OLT’s written approval decision was issued on January 30.
1284 Main Street East – Delta Secondary School – Case Management Conference
The Ontario Land Tribunal will conduct a 10-day contested hearing beginning on Monday, September 16, 2024, to decide if three 14-storey buildings will be allowed to be constructed on the rear portion of the former Delta Secondary School property at 1284 Main Street East.
New Horizon Development Group wants to build 975 new residential units on the site, with a mix of the three residential buildings, stacked townhouses, and units in the original Delta Secondary School building. The developer is appealing against heritage designations for the post-World War II extension wings.
Thirteen nearby residents were granted participant status, allowing them to submit written correspondence to be considered by the Tribunal. Residents must file their statements on or before July 23.
The City and New Horizon Group have recently met for mediation talks.
December Hearings – Written Decision Pending
526 Winona Road (Stoney Creek)
Metroland reporter Richard Leitner covered December’s eight-day contested OLT hearing on the Fengate LiUNA proposal to build four buildings on the Lake Ontario property at the end of Winona Road.
The developer proposes two 12-storey mid-rises and two tall buildings of 22 and 26 storeys. The development includes townhouses along the lake. In total, there are 1,160 units proposed.
Leitner’s report does an excellent job of summarizing the arguments and positions advanced before the Tribunal. I will not take away from his work. I encourage you to read at this link.
This was a non-decision appeal hearing; the developer appealed in mid-2022.
The OLT decision is pending.
January Hearings – Written Decisions Pending
392-412 Wilson Street East & 15 Lorne Avenue (Ancaster)
The most controversial hearing of January was a rare Site Plan appeal by developers Sergio Manchia and Frank Spallacci for one of their Ancaster properties, which was involved in the Doug Ford government’s development and Greenbelt scandals.
Manchia is a key local figure in the Greenbelt and Urban Boundary expansion reports by Ontario’s Integrity Commissioner. The IC reported Manchia purchased four tickets to the “stag-and-doe” party for Premier Doug Ford’s daughter. Further, Manchia and Premier Ford met in September 2021.
Following this, when Premier Ford’s government overturned Hamilton’s urban boundary freeze, the Province imposed higher densities along Ancaster’s Wilson Street.
With these provincial changes in hand, in August 2023, the City was forced to concede at the OLT and allow the approval of an eight-storey mixed-use development containing 118 residential units.
The review includes the changes made to allow the Wilson Street development.
If the developers can secure their building permits, the zoning changes cannot be reversed.
A decision is pending.
2900 King Street East
The City says two tall towers southwest corner of King Street and Centennial Parkway are incompatible with “the scale and character of existing residential neighbourhoods” and do not conform with the City’s tall building design guidelines.
The lawyer for the landowner says the City is “using a backwards-looking approach” to development.
In pre-hearing submissions, the City says the proposal is incompatible with “the scale and character of existing residential neighbourhoods,” does not conform with City design requirements, such as lacking the use of an angular plane and not stepping back from the public right-of-way, and other technical concerns.
Ward 5 Councillor Matt Francis opposes this development because it is not on the LRT corridor, is close to the downtown Stoney Creek core, and “will set a precedent in downtown Stoney Creek.”
The OLT heard arguments from both sides over two weeks. A written decision is pending.
117 Jackson Street East
DiCenzo Construction Company is taking the City to the OLT for a non-decision appeal seeking zoning to permit the construction of two tall buildings of thirty (30) and thirty-nine (39) storeys on this downtown property, which borders Hamilton’s tallest building.
City planning staff recommended denying the application due to non-conformity with the Downtown Secondary Plan. Among the reasons for denial, City staff noted the height is greater than the escarpment, the building will cast a slight shadow on Prince’s Square at 50 Main Street, and the podium is larger than permitted.
Before Council could formally deny the application, the developer appealed to the OLT for non-decision.
The first case management conference was held on January 12. Contested hearing dates are set for October 7 to 11, and October 16 and 17.
The City and developer will submit arguments regarding height, built form/design, sun shadowing, wind, visual, and noise impacts, unit types (family housing), infrastructure servicing, and climate resilience.
No persons sought participant status.
LRT Expropriation Compensation Challenges
927 King Street East
The commercial property owner on the northeast corner of King Street East and Sherman Avenue is seeking greater compensation for his property.
Metrolinx is expropriating the land to expand the public right-of-way to accommodate the planned Sherman Avenue B-Line LRT stop.
Owner Jetmir Imeri has the property listed for sale at $1.9-million.
He is seeking $1.65 million for the land expropriation, based upon an appraised market value assessment, plus $100,000 “for punitive damages resulting from the conduct of the Respondent with respect to the proposed Expropriation of the Property,” and legal costs.
A planned January 11 Case Management Conference hearing for the appeal was cancelled “due to a scheduling conflict.”
The case will go directly to a contested hearing. The date of this hearing has not yet been set.
Production Details v. 1.0.1 Published: February 7, 2024 Last edited: February 12, 2024 Author: Joey Coleman Edit Record v. 1.0.0 original version v. 1.0.1 added link to 117 Jackson OLT CMC decision.