To get good insightful answers, how the question is framed matters. I missed an opportunity on Thursday
While politicians are on the campaign trail, the City’s non-political planning processes and meetings continue with an increased number of files as development continues to grow in the City.
This week’s Committee of Adjustment will involve 24 hearings. The full agenda is on the City website.
Here are some of the more interesting minor variance applications:
540 Centennial Parkway North
The Centennial SmartCentre is looking to expand further with a six storey Hotel and conference centre with two restaurants, one at each end of the complex.
The restaurants planned are the American 24/7 diner chain Denny’s and Canadian restaurant chain Moxie’s.
Variances are required because the land – which houses a Wal-Mart – remains officially zoned as Industrial.
There are a couple of applications to allow additions to existing homes. I’m going to watch this files at Committee. They could be owner-occupied homes or multiple rental unit homes. The difference being significant as rental home additions are usually to add another unit, and are often denied by the Committee.
3552 Regional Road 56 and 2680 Kirk Road
A couple of landscape contractor businesses are asking the Committee of Adjustment to allow their operation to be housed on Agricultural property despite the business use being prohibited under the zoning bylaws of the City.
Contractor businesses operating on farmland have been targeted recently by the City in response to complaints from both farmers and landscape businesses operating on properly zoned commercial lands.
Agricultural lands are taxed at a significantly lower tax rate than commercial.
Properly zoned commercial lands are taxed at a much higher rate, and businesses operating in compliance with zoning bylaws are at significant competitive disadvantage paying full property taxes and licensing fees.
Farmers are concerned about the impacts on the nearby farm properties from the use, and that the contractors are taking land which should be for farming families – decreasing the rural population and causing the potential lose of rural schools among the concerns.
This is a big issue for the City’s Rural and Agricultural Affairs Sub-Committee.
85 Barlake Avenue and 54 Mohawk Road West
There are a couple of files requesting variations requested as part of Council approved conversions of rental apartment units to condominiums at 85 Barlake Avenue and 54 Mohawk Road West.
1098 and 1100 Main Street West
An interesting conversion on Main Street West as a commercial office building is applying to become an 11-unit student residence. The building is on the north east corner of Cline Avenue South and Main Street West.
The conversion enjoys the support of Ward 1 Councillor Brian McHattie.