28-storey building proposed for Martha/Lakeshore

28-storey building proposed for Martha/Lakeshore

  |   Development, Downtown & Waterfront   |   14 Comments
374 Martha Adi Development

Rendering of proposed 28-storey building at Martha/Lakeshore

Public meeting Oct. 9, 7pm, Art Gallery of Burlington

ADI Development Group has submitted an application for a 28-storey apartment at Martha & Lakeshore, with 226 units, 5 levels of underground parking, 3 levels of above ground parking, and ground floor retail facing Lakeshore.

The site – currently a parking lot – is zoned for 4 storeys, with provision to go to 8 storeys if “community benefits” under Section 37 are provided to help mitigate the impacts of the extra height.

The proposal would require an Official Plan Amendment, as well as a Zoning By-Law change.

A public meeting hosted by city planning staff to provide information on the proposal is planned for Oct. 9, 7pm, Art Gallery of Burlington. The developer will attend to explain their proposal.

No planning decisions have been made by city staff on this project. Staff are required to process any application made; hosting the public meeting should not be interpreted as an endorsement of the project but simply an effort to inform the community of the application and provide residents an opportunity to ask questions and share comments.

Further information and background studies about this proposal can be found on the City’s web site at www.burlington.ca/374Martha

You are invited to submit written comments about this proposal to:

Rosa Bustamante, Development Planner
e-mail: rosa.bustamante@burlington.ca
phone: 905-335-7600 ext. 7811

Written comments should be submitted by: October 24, 2014

Planning process

The application will be reviewed by staff and a number of city departments and external agencies; staff will prepare an information report for the city’s Development & Infrastructure Committee and City Council. The public can attend and share your views. Based on feedback at these meetings and any additional analysis, staff will prepare a report recommending either: 1-approval; 2-approval with modifications; or 3-refusal. The report will go first to the D&I Committee, then City Council, who makes the final decision. Residents can attend and speak at all of these meetings.

This process typically takes at least six months. However, the developer can appeal to the Ontario Municipal Board if a decision is not rendered within 180 days.

On another project in Burlington, this developer waited out the clock and took their project directly to the OMB, and that may well be what happens in this case.

If it goes to the OMB, staff will still prepare a report and council will still have an opportunity to review and vote on the project. The staff report, and council’s vote, would be sent to the OMB to inform the board’s ultimate decision.

My Take:

This is complete overdevelopment of the site, and little more than an intensity grab. A building of this scale would overwhelm the neighbourhood, which primarily consists of 3-storey towns. Our existing Official Plan and Zoning already account and provide for downtown urban intensification requirements under the province’s Places to Grow plan. We can intensify the site by following the existing OP and Zoning – which have been approved by three levels of government, including the city, Region and province. Until we as a council take our own Official Plan and Zoning seriously, developers won’t, and we will continue to see proposals for out-of-scale developments.

Your Take:

What are your thoughts on this development? Leave a comment online below or email me at mariannemeedward@bell.net

  • Steve | Sep 23, 2014 at 10:52 pm

    Is there really any chance this will get approved? I’m sure most people are thinking there is no way it will get approved.. Hey, don’t get too comfortable with the city of Burlington’s municipal government or our so-called “Official Plan”.

    This same government recently approved a 6 story senior’s condo on New Street, at Pine Cove. The city actually changed the Official Plan to allow this condo to get approval. That’s right, the Official Plan called for a 3 story building. But overnight, they amended and approved a zoning change to a 6 story maximum.

    Even though the area residents were strongly opposed to allowing this amendment. Th city said too bad, so sad. By the way, local residents are fighting this by going to the Ontario Municipal Board…..stay tuned.

    But to even entertain a 28 story building when the zoning only allows for a 3 or 4 story, is just ridiculous.

    Come Goldring and the rest OUR municipal govt. Stop this madness and intensification. We don’t want it.!

    Speak up fellow Burlingtonians….

  • Elaine | Sep 24, 2014 at 7:39 am

    It’s getting ridiculous down there. Traffic along lakeshore is already congested, and downtown is in danger of becoming a wall of high rise buildings. Stick to the original plan. I’m completely opposed to this. With all this intensification our downtown is losing the very thing that makes it appealing. Enough already !

  • Steven Brown | Sep 24, 2014 at 9:33 am

    In addition to the issue of height is the issue of architectural quality. Based on the artist’s rendering being shown, this building is going to be the standard hideous hunk of glass that is now littering much of downtown Toronto. That’s the last thing our downtown needs. The new retirement building at Pearl and Pine has a brick motif that blends in with the existing structures. But erecting a 28-storey block of glass would destroy the classic feel of the downtown core.

  • Megan | Sep 24, 2014 at 9:53 am

    I cannot even fathom why this is even been allowed for debate. 28 stories on that site is absolutely ridiculous. The current zoning is completely within reason and allows a new building to be intergrated within an area that could support a 4 story structure. I am quite sure that the developer does not live within the core or even near the site. My family and I have lived in the core for 10 years now…although I dd grow up in the area. One of the many reasons we chose the core was the distinct and unique feel to the area. To allow a 28 story building to be built in this area is utter madness and greed run amok. I understand that with more units come more money in taxes for the city,however,the area is already brimming with condos and townhouses. I know that the traffic and increase in population has exploded n the 10 years since we moved to our house in the core. The congestion has increased and I can only imagine what 28 stories would bring…..the infrastucture was NOT meant to accomodate such density. All of this seems like common sense-especially to those of us that actually live in the core. Although it seems that dollars trump common sense these days. This development cannot be allowed to be built. Keep to the original zoning…PLEASE!

  • Tony | Sep 24, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Will this get approved? Unfortunately and eventually yes. I just don’t see how traffic calming initiatives with urban intensification makes sense. Maybe the plan is to drive people to insanity. This will only result in even more grid lock which makes downtown Burlington unappealing to begin with.

    Now if this were an application for a 28 story office/commercial building that actually is leased out to capacity I would be for it. At least during the day employees could get their hair done, have lunch or walk along the lake during their lunch. The big benefit is that they are spending their dollars in local businesses during the day.

    It’s easy to have developers knock for residential proposals and it’s easy to approve for the quick short term benefit. It’s MUCH harder for Burlington to brand itself as a place for medium and large businesses to call home.

  • Keith and Janet Sadler | Sep 24, 2014 at 11:15 am

    Just another High Rise building to an already unsightly downtown……just walk along the Pier and look back at the city landscape…just a lot of High Rise buildings of all heights and colours ….why is this council allowing these to ruin the Burlington Skyline ????

  • Tom Gwinnett | Sep 24, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    I couldn’t agree more with your ‘Take” this is a completely overblown use of that site. It is ironic that people want to live downtown because they see it as walkable, human sized and pedestrian friendly, but the developments to accomodate them destroy the very atmosphere they want. Council has to say “No” at some point, let’s start here.

  • Gary | Sep 24, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    The official plan is done about every four years. It is a forward-looking document that uses the latest provincial “rules” and best planning foresight at the time to craft the City’s rules for development for the next four years. As such, it defines what the City will allow and promote. With an intensification mandate already built in, it conforms to the Province’s dictates.

    Thus the zoning in this case for a four storey building meets the intensification mandate. That a developer, knowing the rules in place, would not just try and stretch them slightly (say to five storeys) in an application, but jump into the stratosphere with a 28 storey request would be beyond belief in a sane world. But we do not live in a sane world. The official plan is there to be mocked and disregarded in the developer’s world. Demand 28 storeys and “settle” for 20 at the OMB. It’s the way it’s done today.

    Why do we have an official plan? Why do we have an OMB? Are they just a make-work project for the former and a make-job project for the latter?
    It seems so when rules aren’t just meant to be bent, but meant to be battered, broken and tossed in a trash heap at citizens’ feet.

  • Natalie | Sep 24, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    I have to agree with most of the other people who have left a comment. A 28 story building is absolutely ridiculous. a building of this size opens the flood gates for more boring glass towers with poor quality finishings. I’m all for development in downtown Burlington but there has to be limits

  • Chris Ariens | Sep 24, 2014 at 10:10 pm

    I’m generally understanding of the benefits of intensification and think we should worry more about quality than height., But this is too much, in the wrong place. Landmark is 21 stories, nearby heights are 12-18. To the west is a 16 story building and to the east a 5 story, so something in between those levels (i.e. 8-12 stories) would fit in nicely. On such a small site, it’s probably not economic to do 8 with the city’s ridiculous requirement for parking, but something comparable in scale with the Baxter down the street makes more sense.

    What I worry about as much as the height is the fact that the building is also ugly as heck for something they want to sell to us as a “landmark building”. With the entire podium being parking garage it will not add “eyes on the street” at all, it will be covered with a fake facade that is not in keeping with the quality pedestrian environment of the Waterfront. I would like to see a quality development here, but no way, no how on what’s being proposed. ADI is doing some good work elsewhere in the city, and I commend them for including bicycle parking, so I hope they come back to the table with something more in keeping with the city’s and residents plans for the area.

  • Chris | Sep 26, 2014 at 11:33 am

    Thank god there is finally some development downtown. Growth at Burlington’s downtown only means good things for the city. For a little bit of traffic increase, we will have numerous new residents. This is good for local businesses, as well as the active nightlife in the downtown corridor. Anyone who opposes this should move to Georgetown. Burlington needs to move upward to keep growing, and any city with tall towers is always more active and cultural and open to all walks of life. Luckily in Burlington we can focus this in one area, rather than Oakville’s approach to throwing up towers all over the place, sometimes in areas of the city that it doesn’t really work in.

    This is the perfect place for growth, and this means more activities for families, more money going into downtown events, and more food, more stores, and more options for residents of Burlington. It also means that our bus system will have more money and therefore can improve to better accommodate our people. No city ever got worse because of growth, and I am excited to see Burlington moving forward.

    On top of this, the building is beautiful! Very modern, simplistic design with numerous windows which means a ton of natural light for the occupants. The thing I am most excited for though is definitely the height! There has been way too much push-back on height of Buildings in downtown Burlington. Hopefully this opens the gate to a slightly taller class of buildings. It looks awkward when a tall tower goes in beside medium buildings, but some building has to be the first tall one, and others will follow making a community that is close and has modern ideologies. Burlington is no longer in the dark ages!

  • Chris | Sep 26, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Huh? I love the skyline of Burlington, Toronto’s skyline is a perfect example of a beautiful and landmarked skyline! Burlington is well on its way to having the same beautiful modern skyline. I love walking on the pier with my friends and looking out at the lake, and then looking back at the magnificent city of Burlington which I call home.

    I’m not sure what type of skyline you’d prefer for Burlington? Trees? You can get that anywhere else my friend, try Acton or something similar. If you’d prefer a skyline of rooftops of the suburban neighbourhood, look no further than the escarpment! Shingles roofs galore!

    I really don’t understand the angry sentiment behind Burlington growing up. I’d much rather live in a city with development between Burlington and Toronto or Hamilton. Growth and an intense downtown means more nightlife and more events! It’s like you’ve never been to Toronto or Hamilton and enjoyed the life that is constantly there! And to anyone afraid that they don’t want their green grass, sprinkler, 10 meter driveway community ruined, just head North of Burlington. The great things about Burly is that we have both a built up downtown, and a quieter Northern part!

  • Les McDonald | Sep 27, 2014 at 10:29 am

    Why do you think the Council will abide by the official plan this time? They never have in the past. The “Official Plan” is a “Joke”

  • Ann]] Mason | Sep 27, 2014 at 11:14 pm

    This proposal is preposterous in scale and, even reduced in size, would be an eyesore to the streetscape. Given the scale of surrounding buildings in the neighbourhood and accounting for the need and inevitability of intensification in the area, the Official Plan and current zoning is more than adequate to satisfy any reasonable builder.

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