Development

A New Secondary Plan for the Yonge-Eglinton Neighbourhood - Great News!

I've been a vocal opponent of the out-of-control pace of development in the Yonge-Eglinton neighbourhood at City Council for many years. The Yonge-Eglinton Urban Growth Centre (UGC) is the most densely populated UGC in the Greater Golden horseshoe and ranks among the densest communities in Canada. Over the past several years, I've repeatedly asked the Chief Planner for a moratorium on new development applications until the City's infrastructure is improved to accommodate the rapid influx of new residents.
 
In the absence of a comprehensive and up-to-date Secondary Plan, development in the Yonge-Eglinton neighbourhood has gone unchecked by the Province for many years. The negative consequences of this rapid intensification include overcrowded transit, constant construction, traffic congestion, lack of sunlight, significant dust, and lack of green space. In 2015, I moved a motion directing City staff to expand their study of the Yonge-Eglinton neighbourhood to address infrastructure capacity issues in the area.
 
On June 7, 2018, City Planning staff's new Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan was presented to the Planning and Growth Management Committee. While the Secondary Plan included many beneficial policies, I was very concerned by the permitted building heights proposed for the north-east quadrant of Yonge and Eglinton. If City staff's plan was adopted, building heights on Broadway Avenue, Roehampton Avenue and Eglinton Avenue would range from 32 to 56 storeys. I introduced a motion calling for further community consultation to ensure that the new Secondary Plan accurately reflected our vision for the future of this neighbourhood.
 
I assembled a working group of neighbours to create a revised plan lowering the permitted building heights in the north-east quadrant of Yonge-Eglinton to between 15 and 20 storeys. After an overwhelming show of community support, the Planning and Growth Management (PGM) Committee voted unanimously in favour of my motion to adopt reduced building heights on July 5, 2018. While the PGM Committee's decision was an important step forward, the amended Secondary Plan still needed to be considered by Toronto City Council.
 
In the interim weeks, the City received hundreds of letters from residents of the north-east quadrant asking City Council to support PGM Committee's decision to adopt our Option #3. I spent countless hours discussing the Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan with my colleagues on City Council. I'm very pleased to report that as a result of our collective efforts, City Council voted in favour of the Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan – Option #3.
 

When I first moved a motion asking for further consultation, I could never have predicted the unprecedented outpouring of community support for Option #3. The adoption of the amended Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan was an outstanding accomplishment for an area experiencing rapid intensification. This long-term Secondary Plan will shape the future of our neighbourhood for years to come. Thank you to everyone who has contributed to this process—I am so proud of what we have achieved in just a few short months.

The Impacts of Lane Occupancy on City Streets

Lane occupations, whether related to development activity, utility work or capital works projects contribute significantly to congestion throughout the city. When space on the roadway has been permitted for construction purposes, transportation patterns are impacted, creating traffic and safety issues.
 
This term, I moved a motion directing Engineering & Construction Services and Transportation Services to report on the use of traffic management plans and street occupancy approvals to address traffic disruptions from construction projects.
 
Upon receiving this report, I requested that staff provide additional options to shorten the duration of street occupations, including escalating fees and increasing fees at the time of renewal. I also requested that staff consider imposing fees for congestion-related economic impacts, such as the city's time and productivity losses associated with lane occupations.
 
As a result, instead of a citywide flat fee, permit fee rates were changed to be based on the market rate for space on public roadways as informed by on-street metered parking rates. Although this was a step forward, there is still more work to be done.

Construction staging areas that occupy the curb lane, as most on-road occupations do, constrain the movement of vehicles in pinch points that can result in acute traffic congestion, particularly if several streets in the same area have concurrent lane closures.

As well, in December 2017, at the joint Licensing and Standards and Public Works and Infrastructure Committee, I requested Municipal Licensing and Standards with Transportation Services to address construction trucks and other vehicles parking on pedestrian sidewalks during construction projects.

I will continue to advocate for increased fees and penalties and a reduction in the number and duration of lane restrictions throughout the City of Toronto. We must reduce congestion on our City's streets and ensure safe walking routes for pedestrians.

Toronto's Congestion Management Plan

Traffic congestion is a major issue in Ward 25 and across the City of Toronto. According to C.D. Howe, congestion and gridlock could be costing our City up to $11 billion a year in lost productivity. I've repeatedly pushed to advance the Congestion Management Plan (CMP) to better manage gridlock by reducing delays and improving safety through innovations in policy, operations, and technology.
 
Since adopting the CMP in 2013, the City has undertaken several new projects to manage unusual traffic flows due to events, construction, or weather-related road closures. In 2017, the City partnered with the University of Toronto to pilot drones used to monitor diverted traffic during major planned events and adapt traffic signal cycles accordingly. For Ward 25 residents commuting to downtown, City staff are now in the process of designing a comprehensive strategy to facilitate traffic on the Bayview Avenue Extension during closures of the Don Valley Parkway and potential Lower Don River flooding events. 
 
Transportation staff are working to improve traffic signal systems throughout the City. Last year alone, 46 CCTV traffic monitoring cameras were installed, with another 120 planned for 2019 and 2020. Our state-of-the-art Traffic Operations Centre uses these cameras to monitor traffic conditions in real-time and adjust signs and signals. Another 129 detection devices were installed to efficiently operate traffic control signals this year. The City is currently implementing a full Traffic Signal Coordination plan to improve traffic flow and reduce vehicle emissions.
 
The City has made significant strides forward in their collection of big data to inform traffic operations. The City's Big Data Innovation Team incorporates this data in their Advanced Traffic Management System (ATMS), which will be used to inform directional signs throughout the City. The Team is also currently working to develop Open Data Portal access to the City's real-time traffic signal control timings.
 
Though City staff are working to implement a number of new projects in addition to those listed above, traffic congestion remains a pressing issue in the City of Toronto. I've moved a number of motions at Community Council to improve traffic flow on our local streets and welcome any feedback or suggestions you may have.

Prioritizing the Downtown Relief Line

I ride the red rocket regularly on my commute to City Hall and observe first-hand the significant reliability and capacity issues on Line 1. I know all-to-well how frustrating overcrowding, sudden stoppages, and unforeseen delays can be for Ward 25-ers travelling to and from the downtown core. During peak hours, riders have to wait for multiple trains to pass by before there even is enough space to board the subway. These issues affect all three major transit stations in Ward 25: York Mills, Lawrence, and Eglinton. 
  
Since 2010, I've consistently advocated for the Downtown Relief Line and continue to believe that it should be City Council's top transit priority. As you may know, the Downtown Relief Line was divided into two separate projects, the Relief Line South (from Pape Station south to Queen Street) and the Relief Line North (from Pape Station north to Eglinton or Sheppard Avenue) in 2017. At Executive Committee, I moved a motion directing staff to accelerate planning of the Relief Line North.  
  
After several recent Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) approvals the population of the Yonge-Eglinton neighbourhood is due to grow exponentially. This influx of new residents will only exacerbate the existing issues on Line 1. As part of the Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan, I created a motion with the Chair of Planning and Growth Management directing City staff to develop short and long-term strategies to ease crowding on Line 1. We also asked staff to report back on the feasibility of delivering the Relief Line North and South as one undertaking to improve transit connectivity across the City.  
  
Like many of you, I am very frustrated by the long delays and mounting costs associated with the Automatic Train Control (ATC) project. At City Council, I directed TTC staff to expedite the implementation of this much-needed technology. In response to the unacceptable delay, I also initiated a comprehensive review of the entire TTC organization focused on creating a more efficient, streamlined internal structure. While this process has been extremely slow, I look forward to the positive benefits of this technology. ATC will control train speed and separation automatically, without human intervention—significantly reducing travel time. When fully implemented, it is estimated that ATC will increase Line 1 capacity by cutting train headways from 2.5 to 2 minutes.  

 City Council has approved the alignment and station locations for the Relief Line South.

City Council has approved the alignment and station locations for the Relief Line South.

 City staff are currently studying the alignment and potential station locations for the Relief Line North.

City staff are currently studying the alignment and potential station locations for the Relief Line North.

Yonge Eglinton Secondary Plan Update

UPDATE: I'm pleased to announce that the Planning and Growth Management Committee voted unanimously in favour of my motion to adopt Option #3 – 20 and 15-storeys.
 
Thank you to everyone who wrote letters and attended the Committee meeting on July 5. I'm so impressed by how quickly the community mobilized around this issue—the Committee received almost 100 letters in support of Option #3. This an unprecedented victory for the Yonge-Eglinton neighbourhood that I will continue to fight for at City Council on July 23-25. 
 
I've included my letter asking the Planning and Growth Management Committee to support Option #3 below.

Improvements to the Committee of Adjustment

Many Ward 25 neighbours can relate to the experience of receiving a Committee of Adjustment (CoA) public notice in their mailboxes. Over the past eight years, CoA application volume has increased by approximately 96%, leading to significant deviations from the zoning by-law outside of the downtown core.  
 
Ward 25 is no exception to this concerning trend—there are a growing number of applications requesting long lists of variances from the established zoning by-law. Since January 2018, the CoA has considered 116 minor variance and consent applications for properties in Ward 25.
 
In 2014, I moved a series of motions intended to improve the CoA process and make it more accessible and transparent for residents. My motions were inspired and informed by feedback I received from the residents of Ward 25. Over the past four years, the City has implemented several new initiatives, including the following:

  • Application information is now posted months in advance of the hearing date on theApplication Information Centre. The CoA website also includes a FAQ page, Toronto Local Appeal Body (TLAB) information, and key staff contacts.
  • CoA hearings are now video-recorded and are made available to the public upon request. City staff recently began livestreaming Toronto & East York district hearings in February 2018. City staff estimate that livestreaming will begin at North York Civic Centre in fall 2018.   
  • Additional full-time and temporary City staff are being hired to review and make recommendations on CoA applications. City Planning now generates reports for close to 50% of the applications received.
  • City staff have implemented an enhanced training process for committee members including periodic training on key issues.
  • Practices and policies are being harmonized across the four districts.

Though we have made progress over the past four years, we have a long way to go. I am continuing to advocate for much-needed improvements to the CoA and would welcome additional community feedback. If you have any suggestions or comments, please contact my office at 416-395-6408 or councillor_robinson@toronto.ca.

Midtown in Focus - Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan

At the Planning and Growth Management Committee meeting in June, City Planning staff presented their recommended Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan. This Final Report was informed by the Midtown in Focus Planning Study which began as a public realm exercise to improve parks, open space, and streetscapes in the Yonge-Eglinton neighbourhood. In 2015, I directed staff to expand the scope of the study to include a review of the area's infrastructure capacity, including transit, water, schools and utility services.  

While I recognize that there are many useful aspects of the draft Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan, I am concerned by the proposed permitted building heights and the parkland deficit in the north-east quadrant. I've spent many hours over the past few weeks consulting with senior City Staff, Chair of the Planning and Growth Management Committee, and most importantly, concerned neighbours.
 
On my behalf, the Chair of the Planning and Growth Management Committee moved a motion to defer consideration of the item until another community meeting is held. This meeting is intended to specifically address the permitted building heights in the north-east quadrant and the lack of green space in the area.
 
I have included the details below:
 
DATE: Thursday, June 21, 2018
 
TIME: 6:30-8:30pm
 
LOCATION: The Roehampton Hotel, Eglinton Room
                        808 Mount Pleasant Rd, Toronto, ON
 
I worked closely with the Chair to develop the long list of motions he moved at Planning and Growth Management Committee on June 7. These motions address a number of outstanding issues, in addition to those identified above, including:

  • Permitted Heights: Lowering the permitted building heights to reduce the proposed density in the north-east quadrant and directing staff to list the heights in metres, rather than storeys.
  • Infrastructure: Requesting a report back on the appropriate use of holding provisions to ensure that there is sufficient infrastructure in the Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan Area.
  • Parks: Determining potential parkland sites in the north-east quadrant of the Secondary Plan Area.
  • Transit: Directing City Staff to conduct a further assessment of short and long term service improvements to ease crowding on Line 1 and to consider delivering the Relief Line North and South as one undertaking.
  • Schools: Requesting City Staff to meet with the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Municipal Affairs to explore a funding strategy to support the timely provision of local school facilities.
  • Employment: Exploring opportunities to increase employment opportunities in the study area.

The full series of motions can be found online, here.
 
If you haven't already, please let me know your thoughts on the draft Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan. You can email me directly at councillor_robinson@toronto.ca.

Planning Reform - Local Planning Appeal Support Centre

After many long years fighting against the Ontario Municipal Board, I am pleased to report that, as of April 3, 2018, all new planning appeals will be directed to the new Local Planning Appeals Tribunal.

My overriding concern with the prior OMB process was the lack of accessibility and transparency for residents. While developers can assemble large teams of qualified experts, the costs of participating in an OMB mediation or hearing were prohibitive for concerned neighbours and residents' associations. 
 
The planning reform legislation passed by the Province in December 2017 implemented new Local Planning Appeal Support Centres (LPASC) to provide free advice and support to residents on local planning matters.
 
In April, the Toronto LPASC opened its doors to the public for the first time. The LPASC is an independent agency of the Province of Ontario, accountable to a board of directors. The stated purpose of the organization is to help "people understand and navigate the land use planning and appeal process in Ontario." Chapter 4 of the LPSCA Act (2017) outlines the following support services:

  1. Information on land use planning.
  2. Guidance on Tribunal procedures.
  3. Advice or representation.
  4. Any other services prescribed by the regulations. 

I would encourage all residents concerned about a development application in their neighbourhood to contact the LPASC for more information about the appeal process. If applicable, the LPASC will also provide planning and legal support in certain cases.
 
Hours: Monday – Friday
            8:30am – 5:00pm
 
Address: 700 Bay Street, 12th Floor
 
Telephone: 647-499-1646 or Toll-free: 1-800-993-8410
 
Email: info@lpasc.ca
 
Web: https://www.lpasc.ca
 
If you are interested, you can read more about improvements to the land use planning and appeals system, here.

2908 Yonge Street – Update

Dear Friends and Neighbours,

I'm pleased to report that the development application for 2908 Yonge Street was refused at North York Community Council this morning.

City Planning brought forward a strongly-worded report recommending refusal of the applicant's proposal to construct a 13-storey mixed-use building at the corner of Yonge Street and Chatsworth Drive (currently the site of a gas station).

You can read staff's full report online, here.

I spoke in opposition to the proposed development and am happy to let you know that North York Community Council unanimously voted to adopt staff's recommendations.  

I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to all of the neighbours who attended the Community Consultation meeting in February and took the time to write to City Planning.

Thank you for your ongoing engagement and support.

Warm regards,

Jaye

Have Your Say: TLAB Public Consultation

I am pleased to advise that after almost a year in operation the Toronto Local Appeal Body (TLAB) will be hosting a public consultation meeting on Wednesday, April 18 for members of the public to review the TLAB Rules of Practice and Procedures.
 
During my time in office, I have worked with the residents of Ward 25 toward local planning reform. As many of you know, contested Committee of Adjustment (CoA) appeals to the OMB have resulted in too many disappointing outcomes for the neighbourhoods of Ward 25.
 
In 2014, I successfully moved motions recommending concrete improvements to the CoA. These motions initiated a wide range of advancements to the City’s planning processes, from increased transparency through the introduction of audio-visual recordings, to the establishment of Toronto's very own Local Appeal Body, created to replace the OMB as an arbiter of CoA appeals. While the TLAB is far from perfect, the introduction of this body was a step towards a fairer community-based planning review process.
 
This meeting is an important opportunity to voice your concerns and share your experiences with TLAB representatives. Your commentary will contribute to an ongoing procedural review that will culminate in a recommendations report submitted to TLAB officials by the end of 2018. Be sure to visit the TLAB website for further details on how to participate in this important public consultation event.

Transitioning to Post-OMB Planning in Ward 25

A new release from the Provincial government indicates that the oppressive reign of the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) over development in the City of Toronto is finally drawing to a close. At the end of February, the Province announced that Bill 139, the planning reform passed by the Legislature in December, will come into effect on April 3, 2018.
 
As many of you are aware, I have been a vocal opponent of the OMB throughout my tenure as a City Councillor. From the townhouses on Bayview to the towers at Yonge and Eglinton, most of the development applications in Ward 25 have been appealed to and approved by this unelected, unaccountable body. On that note, I am pleased to report that any application received by the City after December 12, 2017 will be considered by the new Local Planning Appeals Tribunal (LPAT), a true appeal body with limited power to overrule municipal decisions. Development applications received before December 12 must be appealed by the April 3 proclamation date to be heard by the OMB in its current form.

Unfortunately, the Province's transition plan also includes a provision stating that all decisions appealed before December 12, 2017 will continue to be heard by the existing OMB. As of December 2017, approximately 140 applications had already been appealed to the OMB since the reforms were first announced in the Spring, while only 50 applications were appealed in the same period in 2016. This exponentially increasing volume of appeals has created a significant backlog in the current OMB system that may take years to work through. While we have made significant progress, Toronto is not yet free from the OMB's oppressive presence in our planning processes. The proclamation of Bill 139 is unfortunately too little, too late for many Ward 25 neighbourhoods.    
 
That being said, Bill 139--the Building Better Communities and Conserving Watersheds Act--will amend the Planning Act and enact new legislation aimed at giving communities a stronger voice in the planning process. The new LPAT will only hear appeals of municipal decisions that do not follow provincial policies or Toronto's Official Plan. "De novo" hearings, or hearings started anew without reference to earlier decisions, will be virtually eliminated. Bill 139 will also prevent amendments to new Secondary Plans for two years, unless supported by City Council. These policies will allow planners to develop long-term and sustainable plans for the City without the looming threat of OMB appeal.
 
Under the new system, the timeline for City Council to make a decision on Official Plan amendments will be extended from 180 to 210 days after submission. Zoning by-law amendments will be similarly extended from 120 to 150 days, unless accompanied by an Official Plan amendment, in which case they will also be subject to the 210-day limit. This means that Planners will have more time to review applications and report to City Council, which will prevent developers from circumventing the planning process and appealing to the OMB before Council has an opportunity to make a decision.  
 
Bill 139 also includes an act to establish Local Planning Appeal Support Centres, which will provide legal and planning assistance to residents in order to level the playing field for all participants in the appeal process. The new legislation will also support clear and efficient decision-making by requiring case management conferences and encouraging mediation.
 
There is still a lot of uncertainty, but I am cautiously optimistic that this legislation will give residents and municipalities more power to protect the beautiful neighbourhoods of Ward 25 in the years to come. If you have any further questions or concerns about the transition from the OMB to the LPAT, you can contact the Provincial Policy Planning Branch directly atOMBReview@ontario.ca.

 I have fought against the OMB for many years and am pleased to see the Province finally moving forward on this much-needed planning reform. 

I have fought against the OMB for many years and am pleased to see the Province finally moving forward on this much-needed planning reform. 

4155 Yonge Street Follow-up

Dear Friends and Neighbours,

Thank you to those who attended City Planning's Community Consultation meeting in February to discuss the development application submitted for 4155 Yonge Street.

Earlier this year at North York Community Council, I extended the notice area for the meeting to ensure that a much larger part of the neighbourhood received advance written notice of the public consultation.

We had a fantastic turn out at the meeting. As I've told many of you, I was very impressed by the neighbourhood's well-informed comments and questions about the proposed development. 

I heard a number of concerns from the community at the meeting, including:

The height and massing of the proposed building in relation to the surrounding neighbourhood, top-of-ridge, and the historic St. John's York Mills Anglican Church;

  • The close proximity to the toe-of-slope of a designated natural heritage feature;
  • The potential traffic impacts, with particular consideration of the daily Summit deliveries;
  • The potential to exacerbate flood risks in an already sensitive area, and
  • Other concerns about the existing TTC tunnels, construction process, and potential impacts on the surrounding neighbourhood.

I share your concerns and continue to believe that the proposed development is not appropriate for the subject site in its current form.

Since our meeting, I have sent an official letter to the CEO of the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) stating that I will not support a 14-storey building in such close proximity to a designated natural heritage area.

As many of you know, Valeria Maurizio is the City Planner with carriage of this application. If you haven't already, I'd encourage you to write to Valeria and let her know what you think about this application. Please copy me on these emails so that I can stay in the loop. Valeria is also available to answer any and all questions about the planning process and the application. You can reach her at valeria.maurizio@toronto.ca.

I would like to take this opportunity to extend my sincerest thanks to the Yonge Ridge Homeowners' Association, St. Andrew's Ratepayers Association, York Mills Valley Association, William Carson Crescent Condo Boards, and the St. John's York Mills Anglican Church for their overwhelming support in this process.  

I have already received a number of emails from concerned neighbours and I truly appreciate the community's continued engagement on this file.

As always, please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns.

Warm regards,

Jaye

COMMUNITY CONSULTATION MEETING 110, 114, & 120 Broadway

City Planning is hosting a community consultation meeting to discuss the proposed development at 110, 114, and 120 Broadway Avenue.

Date: Monday, February 26, 2018
Time: 7:00pm – 9:00pm Presentations, Questions and Answers
Place: Northern District Library, 40 Orchard View Boulevard, Room 224

110-120 B.JPG

About the Proposal

The application proposes the development of a 28-storey (92 metre high) tower and 35-storey (112 metre high) tower connected by a six storey base building on the lands at 110-120 Broadway Avenue. The development would consist of 822 residential units, including 121 rental replacement units and 261 parking spaces in two levels of underground parking.

City Planning presented a Preliminary Report at the December meeting of North York Community Council (NYCC). I moved a motion to extend the notice area for the meeting. You can read the complete recommendations here.

Contact Information

Cynthia Owusu-Gyimah, City Planner

(416) 395-7126

Cynthia.Owusu-Gyimah@toronto.ca

Community Consultation Meeting - 2908 Yonge Street

2908 Yonge.PNG

Dear Friends and Neighbours,

As you may be aware, the City recently received an application to construct a 13-storey mixed-use building at 2908 Yonge Street, at the corner of Yonge and Chatsworth, currently occupied by a gas station. The proposed development contains 85 residential units, 421m2 of at-grade retail, and 87 underground parking spaces with access from Chatsworth Drive. The total proposed floor area will be 8,559m2, with a proposed floor space index of 7.8.

A community meeting will be held on February 28, 2018 at Glenview Presbyterian Church Sanctuary, 1 Glenview Avenue, from 6:30-8:30pm. Although this development technically falls within the boundaries of Ward 16, the proposed building would be precedent-setting on this stretch of Yonge Street and would impact the Old Lawrence Park neighbourhood.

For more information on this application, please see the City's Application Information Centre page.

I would encourage you to share your comments and concerns directly with Cathie Ferguson, the City Planner with carriage of this file. You can reach Cathie by email at Cathie.Ferguson@toronto.ca, or by phone at (416) 395-7117.

To recap:

Date: February 28, 2018

Time: 6:30-8:30pm

Location: Glenview Presbyterian Church Sanctuary,1 Glenview Avenue

I will be attending next week's meeting in support of the community. I hope to see you there.

Warm regards,

Jaye

OMB Update - 200-214 Keewatin

Dear Friends and Neighbours,

I am writing to inform you of a disappointing outcome for our neighbourhood. 

My office recently received notification that the Ontario Municipal Board released a re-interpretation of the March 6, 2017 OMB decision on the application for 200-214 Keewatin Avenue.

The OMB initially refused the developer's proposal, but instead approved a single row of townhouses in the southern block of the site, facing Keewatin Avenue. The decision document, dated March 6, 2017, unequivocally states that the developer is permitted to construct only a single row of townhouses—not back-to-back units.

As you may be aware, the developer subsequently requested the OMB to clarify the language used in this decision document.

 Although the City of Toronto's solicitor submitted a compelling argument in support of the community, the OMB released their decision on February 15, 2018, permitting the applicant to construct two rows of townhouses, back-to-back, in the southern block of the site.

Despite the language used in the initial decision document (highlighted in attached), the OMB has now ordered that the applicants revised plans, which adjust the front and rear setbacks and eliminate one building (thereby leaving two rows of townhouses back-to-back), "…satisfy the directed revisions contained in the Order of the Board dated March 6, 2017 and found at paragraph 64 (b) (i) of that Order."

To clarify, the developer is still not permitted to construct any townhouses in the northern block—there will only be one building. Unfortunately, this building will contain double the amount of townhomes permitted by the initial 2017 OMB decision.

I am at a loss to explain this interpretation of the stipulations put forward in the March 2017 decision. It is unclear why a "clarification" of the language used in a decision took almost an entire year to complete.

As you know, the OMB is an unelected and unaccountable quasi-judicial body that makes the final decision on planning appeals for the Province of Ontario. When an application is appealed to the OMB, it’s the Province – not the City of Toronto – that decides if the application is approved. I have been fighting against the OMB since I was first elected to office. This decision confirms my long-held opinion that the OMB is neither a transparent nor fair institution.

The neighbourhood mounted an impressive effort to oppose this application at the 2016 OMB hearing, and the Board's initial decision was a reflection of their hard work. For this reason, I am disappointed that the OMB did not defend the decision outlined in the March 6, 2017 document. I don’t believe that it is fair for an unelected body to re-interpret a decision, made in clear language, behind closed doors.

The February 15, 2018 OMB document directly contradicts the position of City Planning, City Legal, and most importantly, the surrounding neighbourhood. This is a precedent-setting townhouse development on one of the most beautiful and eclectic streets in Midtown Toronto.

After learning of the OMB's recent decision, I immediately scheduled a meeting with City Legal and was informed that there is, unfortunately, no avenue for appeal or recourse. 

On December 12, 2017, the Province passed new legislation intended to reform the OMB and empower local residents. Unfortunately, the transition is progressing slowly and the Province has yet to set an official date for the bill to come into effect. If you would like to see the Province move forward on this issue, I would recommend that you contact your local Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP).

Thank you for your engagement on this file.

Sincerely,

Jaye

Community Consultation Meeting - 4155 Yonge Street

City Planning is hosting a community consultation meeting to discuss the proposed development at 4155 Yonge Street.

About the Proposal

Goldberg Group is proposing a 14-storey residential building on the western portion of the subject site, constructed over the existing TTC subway tunnel. You can find out more about this application here.

City Planning presented a Preliminary Report at the January meeting of North York Community Council (NYCC). I moved a motion to extend the notice area for the meeting. You can read the complete recommendations here.

Contact Information

Valeria Maurizio, City Planner

416-395-7052

Valeria.Maurizio@toronto.ca

29229-101029.jpg

RESIDENTIAL INFILL CONSTRUCTION

Based on feedback I have received from residents, I moved several motions directing the City to improve its response to residential infill construction sites and ensure that our neighbourhoods are protected and respected when undergoing development.

City staff have developed a multi-faceted strategy to minimize the negative impacts of residential infill construction and streamline how the City deals with contested development. You can read the Staff Report developed in response to my motions to minimize the negative impacts residential infill here. A final report from Building Toronto is expected to be presented to the Planning and Growth Management Committee in the first quarter of this year.

As part of this strategy, Toronto Building has developed the Good Neighbour Guide for Residential Infill. This can be found on the City's Toronto Building website, which includes information on how the City responds to and addresses complaints about infill development.

If you have concerns about residential infill in your neighbourhood, you can now request a building inspection online. Building Toronto has also developed a new website where residents can check the status of building permits as well as any work order issues, you can visit the site here. For more information on the City's Residential Infill Development Strategy, please visit www.toronto.ca/infill.

It is important to note, that the Province of Ontario's Building Code Act does not enforce a standardized timeline or deadlines to ensure the timely construction of residential construction projects. Unfortunately, until this is addressed, the City's powers are limited.

Midtown in Focus - Public Open House

The proposed Yonge-Eglinton Secondary Plan will set in place a road map for Midtown's evolution over the next 25 years. The Plan provides detailed direction for the physical development of Midtown and sets priorities for investing in and sustaining a complete, liveable
community.

The Plan is supported by infrastructure assessments focused on parks and public realm, transportation, community services and facilities, and water – together they will ensure that infrastructure capacity keeps pace with development and supports quality of life for all
Midtown stakeholders.

 

This open house is your opportunity to see how the proposed Secondary Plan and infrastructure assessments will shape the future of Midtown. Please drop by to learn
more about the plan, attend workshops and share your thoughts!

For more information, please contact:
Paul Farish, Senior Planner
City Planning Division
416-392-3529
Paul.Farish@toronto.ca
www.toronto.ca/planning/yongeeglinton

Visit the Midtown in Focus website to read the proposed Secondary Plan and take the online survey (starting February 10, 2018).