Hello Happy Citizens!
A double-header of a roundup for you today. Busy times in
our shop, and we got behind!
From the September 3rd
- Matching reality in Shea Heights: A small area
of Shea Heights, around Beaver Pond, is being rezoned for
residential development. There are already houses there, in fact,
which don't conform to the existing zoning - since those aren't
going anywhere, the zoning change will make life easier for
- More expansion for the west end of downtown:
The necessary amendments were approved to allow for a 6-floor
addition to the building on Water St. West that now houses Stantec.
This one's getting build without added parking - they're paying
into a fund instead.
- House to office on Oxen Pond Road - It looks
like this house (http://goo.gl/maps/CtS4n) will
be getting converted into offices for Don Cherry's restaurant next
- A new model for affordable housing: The City
is pursuing a zoning change for 163 Blackhead Road, to allow it to
be developed for housing. They're proposing a model that's a bit
uncommon here: the city, as owners of the land, would issue a
request for proposals and pick one based not on the highest bidding
price, but instead on the city's goal of securing a mix of housing
types and affordable units. This also involves the city applying to
itself for a zoning change. Neat!
- Art! The city's Art Procurement Jury submitted
their recommendations for how to spend their $20,000 annual budget,
and also recommended that Council consider increasing the annual
Art Procurement budget by $5,000 per year over the next four
years. They also recommended that Council additionally
consider increasing the Art Procurement budget by $100,000 over
three years, specifically to acquire art for the new St. John's
Convention Centre. Finally, they recommended that the city work
with a curator to organize an annual exhibition of the art in its
collection. Those recommendations are going to Finance Committee
for a think
From the September 9th meeting
Movement at the Virginia Park Plaza: The
now-empty plaza on Newfoundland Drive is headed towards
redevelopment as condos, with a small commercial/office building
attached. There's some rezoning needed first. Staff are
recommending approval, but planning staff note that to fit with
past practice, it might make sense to head to a public meeting
chaired by a council member. Once a rezoning happens, the city
loses some ability to influence the shape of the project, and there
are some local concerns about things like parking. There was
some heated debate about this one at the council, but it looks like
the decision will be deferred. One thing that did come out of
the meeting: a notice of motion to make public consultations
mandatory, so that council doesn't need to debate these sort of
case-by-case consultation questions.
- It's infill time: staff are also recommending
the approval of an infill house at 52 Pennywell Road.
- Keeping up with the zoneses: A developer is
looking to build a new infill development at 12-20 Mt. Cashel Road.
This would be a 27-unit development with an internal road
maintained by the condo. The alternative would likely be a few
large houses with deep lots, so this would bring some density to
the area. It does, however, make for an awkward fit with the
existing zoning - so the City directed staff to design a new zoning
category that would fit it. That has now been done, and the project
is set to move forward.