PG8.12 Townhouse and Low-Rise Apartment Guidelines Project

November 13, 2015

in 2015, FoNTRA Advocacy Positions 2012-2019


November 13, 2015
Ms. Nancy Martins
Planning and Growth Management Committee
10th floor, West Tower, City Hall
100 Queen Street West Toronto Ontario M5H 2N2

PG8.12 Townhouse and Low-Rise Apartment Guidelines Project

Dear Chair Shiner and Members of the Committee:
FoNTRA provides the following comments on the Draft Guidelines dated October 2015. In the Staff Re-port before the Committee, it is noted that FoNTRA’s letter of August 5, 2015 endorsed the Draft Guide-lines in principle as an important educational tool with the potential of informing all stakeholders, includ-ing developers, resident groups, politicians, and appeal bodies. The October 15 version provides an im-proved coordinated and comprehensive presentation of the information that will be helpful for residents and applicants, architects and designers and developers in the actual design and review of relevant pro-jects.

However in reviewing the latest draft document, FoNTRA remains concerned that the Guidelines insuffi-ciently refer both to the relevant Official Plan policies, and to the applicable zoning regulations through-out the document. Under Ontario’s statutory planning framework, design guidelines have no status be-yond assisting in the interpretation of the relevant policy and regulatory provisions. Therefore, more ex-plicit clarity is required.

When the Harmonized Zoning By-law was developed, the City repeatedly acknowledged that there was a need to refine it – in a second phase – with area-specific Zoning By-law amendments. In FoNTRA’s view, Design Guidelines, although valuable implementation tools, are no substitute for Secondary Plans with implementing zoning regulations that reflect particular neighbourhood characteristics.

Cathie MacdonaldGeoff Kettel
Co-Chair, FoNTRACo-Chair, FoNTRA
57 Duggan Avenue129 Hanna Road
Toronto, OntarioToronto, Ontario
M4V 1Y1M4G 3N6

Mayor John Tory and Toronto City Council
Ms. Jennifer Keesmaat, Chief Planner & Executive Director, City of Toronto
The Federation of North Toronto Residents’ Associations (FoNTRA) is a non-profit, volunteer organization comprised of 32 member organizations. Its members, all residents’ associations, include at least 170,000 Toronto residents within their boundaries. The 32 residents’ associations that make up FoNTRA believe that Ontario and Toronto can and should achieve better development. Its central issue is not whether Toronto will grow, but how. FoNTRA believes that sustainable urban regions are characterized by environmental balance, fiscal viability, infrastructure investment and social renewal.

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