Details related to this pre-hearing conference event can be found here.
The first activity moving towards an OMB (now re-named LPAT – Local Planning Appeal Tribunal) hearing is the pre-hearing. The pre-hearing is a forum at which the duration and date of the eventual hearing is established. Much of that determination depends on what roles the various "players" will play at the hearing. At the pre-hearing, "players" seek status as either a party or a participant. Party status allows one to present witnesses and to cross-examine witnesses called by the other parties at the hearing proper. It also requires a commitment in terms of time (one is required to appear throughout the hearing which may last weeks) and cost (mostly for printed documentation and display boards). Participants need only appear at an agreed date/time and may incur little or no expense. They say their bit and may need to answer questions on cross-examination. Party status obviously allows one to participate more fully in the hearing’s outcome. Issues not raised by the City can be championed and issues dear to the hearts of participants can be supported. At the very least, party status satisfies this maxim … if you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu (quote thanks to Chris Glover).
The Local Planning Appeals Tribunal (LPAT) is the new body replacing the OMB. However this particular application was appealed before the OMB was disbanded and will be subject to the old OMB processes and rules, despite the name change.
No pre-hearing date has been set yet but the City has produced this REQUEST FOR DIRECTION REPORT outlining its stand going forward. It will be presented to the Toronto and East York Community Council on June 6.
This meeting followed the usual format with Joe Cressy's intro, the City planner's overview and the developer's detailed description of the project. Unlike other development presentations, this was the only one that evening and it received a full hour and a half rather than the usual hour.
This commercial (no condos) development is definitely complex with the retention of heritage office buildings (which will continue to operate during construction) and a set of overlays that bridge the various structures. From my perspective, the complexity was best visualized by a small 3D printed model ... kudos there.
I heard two major threads of objections about this development. One concerned the traffic on Portland and the other came from residents at the condominium at 461 Adelaide West, just to the east of the development site.
The traffic on Portland is, in everyone's opinion, a mess. 120 parking spots for this office complex will be managed via an automated parking system (http://www.klausparking.com/) with entry from Portland. One can only imagine what kind of queuing will occur weekdays on Portland as employees arrive for 9AM.
This is what City planning staff think about the submitted plans.
We should be seeing a notice for a community consultation meeting soon.
On June 27th we were treated to a pre-application presentation for a development at 590 King Street (the building that houses Lee Valley). It will be a commercial building (not a condo) and will maintain the heritage building and stretch north to Adelaide, incorporating the parking lot currently on the SE corner of Adelaide and Portland.
Because an application for this development has not yet been submitted to the City, there is no supporting documentation at this time. However, Christina Peltier, Urban Planner at KFA Architects and Planners Inc. forwarded these renderings for us to share: