Recent Posts

Friday, February 25, 2011

Positive news re. Build Toronto and Quarry Lands

Hi everyone,

We're pleased to report positive news on the Build Toronto front.

Members of the CCQLD Board met Feb. 24 with Build Toronto COO Derek Ballantyne and other agency staff overseeing city-owned property on the Quarry Lands site. In contrast to earlier indications, we are now extremely encouraged with the direction and approach that Build Toronto is taking.

While plans are not complete, we were assured that Build Toronto has no designs for high rise or high density development on its property. Current thinking calls for a a mix of low rise / town-home style housing, with park space, and commercial / retail development integrated appropriately into the site towards the northwest corner. Again, this would not be a high rise development in any way. In our estimation, the preliminary ideas that were shown would be consistent with the character of the surrounding community.

We stressed the importance of Build Toronto communicating its plans directly to area residents and the need for residents to provide broad-based feedback. To this end, Mr. Ballantyne promised that Build would present its ideas at a public community meeting this spring. We will let everyone know as soon as a date is set, likely sometime in late April or May. We also reiterated our concerns regarding the environmental sensitivity of the site. An environmental risk assessment will have to be done in conjunction with any development plans, and CCQLD will be watching closely and participating in the process to the fullest possible extent.

Overall, our ultimate goal remains the same: to ensure a coherent, responsible development over the entire 49-acre site that fits with the surrounding neighbourhood. While Gerrard Clonmore Developments and the City continue hearings over a site plan application and by-law amendments at the Ontario Municipal Board, we remain hopeful and optimistic that a better solution can be found -- one that links Build Toronto and GCD lands under an appropriate, environmentally-friendly, pedestrian-friendly design. Build Toronto did indicate they would be contacting GCD in the near future to continue discussions.

We will keep you posted as we learn of any new developments. In the meantime, though, please keep those 2011 membership renewals coming (and thanks to those who renewed at our Annual General Meeting in January). Membership in CCQLD is just $10, helps cover assorted costs is a strong investment in the future of our community. Cheques made out to 'Concerned Citizens of Quarry Lands Development' can be mailed to W. Longley, 63 Woodland Park Road, M1N 2X5.

Lawn signs are also available for $10; if you send the money and make a request when renewing membership we'll drop off the sign within a few days.

Thanks as always for your support,

Board of Directors,
Concerned Citizens of Quarry Lands Development

Monday, February 21, 2011

2011 Board Planning Next Steps

Hi everyone,

Thanks to those who came out to our Annual General Meeting in January. The elected Board of Directors for 2011 is as follows: Mark Brender, Karen Direkze, Tamara Hermann, Reg James, Sneva Lee, Wilf Longley, Joanne Smith, Tim Weber.

Several members of the Board attended the Ontario Municipal Board hearing on Feb. 17. This was a carryover from an OMB decision last years that in effect affirmed the existing zoning for the private developer (Gerrard Clonmore Developments) on the site. The hearing dealt with minor changes to GCD's proposal for buildings on 'Block 1' of its development, to better conform to the city's tall building guidelines. The changes with respect to unit sizes and would require a further by-law amendment; a date has been set for May 26 for the parties to return before the Board.

As we've said all along, Concerned Citizens of Quarry Developments does not agree that this is appropriate zoning and an appropriate development for the site. We are dismayed that the OMB is taking this direction and once again has sided with developers over the wishes of residents, elected officials and planning staff for responsible development. (see also Similarly, we remain deeply concerned about what Build Toronto may be planning for its large parcel of property on the Quarry lands site.

It all points to a very busy next few weeks and months and for the CCQLD Board, the membership and our community. We are considering next steps and will be back to you shortly.

CCQLD Board of Directors