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ADI revises application to 26 storeys; hearing March 14

ADI Development Group will be asking the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) to consider a revised proposal for a 26 storey building at Martha/Lakeshore in downtown Burlington, instead of the original proposal of 28 storeys.

The revisions to the original proposal include:

  • The elimination of the above and below grade encroachments on to City property;
  • A reduction in height from 28 storeys to 26 storeys (8 storeys is the maximum permitted in the Official Plan);
  • A reduction in the unit count from 226 residential units to 192 residential units;
  • A reduction in the number of underground parking levels from 5 levels to 4 levels;
  • A reduction in the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) from 12.5:1 to 11.1:1 (FAR of 4.0:1 is the maximum permitted in the Official Plan and Zoning By-law); and
  • A reduction in the number of vehicle parking spaces from 218 to 196 (240 spaces are required in the Zoning By-law).
City staff have indicated in a report to the Community & Corporate Services Committee (C&CS) Feb. 16 that they do not support the revised 26-storey proposal.

The report states: “The changes that have been made in the revised proposal do not resolve or address the concerns raised by Planning staff in PB-23-15. The height, density and massing of the revised proposal is not appropriate for the site and does not fit with the existing and planned context for this area. The revised proposal does not achieve compatible intensification, represents overdevelopment of the site and does not represent good planning. Staff recommends that the Official Plan and Zoning By-law amendments required to facilitate the revised proposal be opposed at the Ontario Municipal Board.”

At the C&CS committee, council will have an opportunity to take a position on this revision, which will be conveyed to the OMB during the hearing.

The staff report states that the Ontario Planning Act contemplates that proposals for development may change as part of an OMB hearing. The Act allows the OMB to consider whether a further recommendation from the municipal council would be appropriate. In light of this section of the Act, staff are bringing forward this update and recommendation in advance of the hearing to update Council on the changes, to confirm the staff position has not changed with the most recent proposal, and to work in the spirit of advancing the hearing with a resolution from Council.

The C&CS committee meeting begins at 1 p.m. at City Hall and is open to the public, who can register in advance to speak at the meeting here: Register as a Delegation Recommendations from the committee will go to City Council for final approval Mon. Feb. 29, 6:30 p.m.

The position taken by City Council will be conveyed to the OMB at the hearing, which begins Mon. March 14, 10 a.m. at City Hall, Room 247.

My Take: I support the staff position that changes that have been made in the revised proposal do not resolve or address  the concerns of the project. The revised proposal represents overdevelopment of the site and is not good planning.

Written by Marianne Meed Ward

A Better Burlington began in 2006 after my neighbours said they felt left out of city decisions, learning about them only after they’d been made.

As journalist for 22 years, I thought “I can do something about that” and a website and newsletter were born. They’ve taken various forms and names over the years, but the intent remains: To let you know what’s happening at City Hall before decisions are made, so you can influence outcomes for A Better Burlington.

The best decisions are made when elected representatives tap the wisdom of our community members, and welcome many different perspectives.This site allows residents to comment and debate with each other; our Commenting Guidelines established in 2016 aim to keep debate respectful.

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  1. I agree with all those who question the development. As to the tax benefits, if I’m not mistaken these units do not help our tax base, it is business that helps. Can someone comment on this.

  2. One thing that really bothers me is how ADI has set up their sales centre on Brant, they put full page glossy ads and brochures in the papers and never mention anywhere that they are still awaiting approval and this isn’t a done deal. They imply strongly that this is “coming soon” and are seeking buyers. Seems like very low practices on many levels – to potential buyers who don’t know the whole story as well as to the City of Burlington that they want to be part of, yet don’t mind at all that the council and many citizens are against their plan and against their way of doing business.

    On that note, I assume they got told they had to take all those signs down from the building site? They went up and then disappeared.

  3. i personally think the 28 should have been allowed.

    Stopping growth will kill this city. This city has a bright future that is younthful, and educated. The downtown was never going to be a little town downtown like Waterdown. There are plenty of small communities far away from the downtown where you don’t need to be in the “concrete jungle” (which I think is beautiful). Our skyline is growing and becoming something of recognition. Our community is finally getting on the map, and is becoming vibrant and growing our culture and our values to be centre to the city. Our city’s night life is expanding, and our day life is exciting and filled with events that a little town could not contain, like the Sound of Music with some of the biggest bands in North America visiting, Ribfest and other local events that keep growing. Our beach is one of the most lovely in Canada, and with a measly population it would likely be ignored.

    There are concerns for sure, but I think stifling growth would not be one of them. If someone can come up with a better reason for why this should not happen other than blocking views or killing culture, I’d like to hear it. Yes it goes against the outdated official plan, but the plan ignored the massive growth that the GTA would have and the part Burlington would play in that!

    I love this city, and with more affordable condos, I may be able to live here instead of leaving to find somewhere cheaper. We also need more people to pay taxes to keep all of our taxes lower as the city requires more money to maintain aging infrastructure and younger generations. Our transit will be much better with a few more thousand people riding it each year, and this can only get better.

    If you prefer a small town feel, Waterdown is an option, or North Burlington, or anywhere not downtown. Change and growth is a good thing! Embrace it! But please, please, make sure there is more parking downtown, because right now it’s difficult to find parking. This building should be made to have 2 full floors of public parking at least. That, is my biggest concern.

    • “Stopping growth will kill this city” WHY ???????? Continued Growth is going to kill this city. People will not be able to get around. Traffic will be at a standstill. There are cities in the US that have actually capped population growth. Burlington should be next… We need a city that is enjoyable to live in, not one that is growing for the sake of growing…

    • Chris, I feel for you and all of the other young people that have to pay horrendous rents. But this is the society that you and everyone else is buying into. We are driving up housing prices and the price of goods and services with our daily actions… then we complain about high prices when it comes time to buy or rent something… So sorry, but this has to stop… Burlington, like all other cities on this planet, has a FINITE amount of space. I would much rather have higher prices and more green space and less traffic than follow this insane Intensification plan that seems to be the goal of this city.

  4. This is not for the greater good of the city of Burlington. I only support 8 stories in accordance with existing planning. Continue the fight!!!


  6. ADI has made a token revision. Developers should not be able to flaunt the official plan at will. Council is completely correct on this one. The downtown is losing its character and becoming a concrete jungle. Eight stories is plenty …four stories is optimal.

  7. I do not agree with Burlington being a high rise city, especially on the lake side of Lakeshore Rd.. Downtown is already overloaded with traffic. I moved to Burlington in the 80’s because it was a great quaint city with mature tree lined streets and community spirit.

  8. The plan to go from 28 stories to 26 is an insult . The official plan at 8 stories suits
    this site better. Toronto has done a terrible job with all the Hugh condos shutting of
    the lake . This concerns me and other citizens , Burlington cannot go the same way..
    This is not progress.

  9. I don’t see the problem with a 26 storey building. Burlington has already shown its desire to be high-rise heaven while showing no interest in attractive streetscapes. The city should keep on building and collecting its token gifts from developers. The provincial government will also be appreciative for the city’s support of Ontario growth initiatives.

  10. To propose a 26-storey building for that site is outrageous. Developers should not have even been allowed to come to the table with it because the cost of fighting it will be on taxpayers. That lot size is so small that even an eight-storey building in that space will be tight.

  11. Can we stop building in Burlington? When is enough, enough? I am dreading that building next to the GO Station… Traffic is horrendous… right now…

    • I would hope you would not dread that building next to the Go Station. As a student trying to find an affordable place to move into in Burlington, those buildings were one of the last places in the city that are within my abilities. I look forward to having a home in the city I love, rather than moving somewhere cheaper like Hamilton or farther.

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