WHAT HAPPENED AT THE LAST #YEG PUBLIC HEARING
The June 12 public hearing had a total of eight applications (eleven agenda items), including five infill applications.
Approved unanimously with no debate: 1) a small scale rezoning in Elmwood Park to allow for row housing, and 2) a rezoning in Belgravia to allow for low-rise multi-unit housing.
An application in Queen Alexandra to extend the 3 year sunset clause in a direct control zone was approved unanimously following questions to Administration and the developer. Sunset clauses in direct control zones set a deadline (usually 5 to 10 years) for construction to begin, and in some cases, require that the zoning revert back if the deadline is not met. Key take-way: a 3 year sunset clause is probably not realistic.
Situate’s application in Grovenor to rezone a lot on the 149 Street Secondary Corridor to the RA7 low rise apartment zone was selected for debate by Councillor Knack (the ward councillor) in case the folks who wrote letters in opposition also came to speak (they didn’t). After a few questions to Administration and a final note from Councillor Knack that Council’s been supporting RA7 rezonings on arterial roads for years, the rezoning was approved unanimously.
An application in Tweddle Place to rezone from the RF1 single detached residential zone to CNC neighbourhood convenience commercial zone had the most speakers in opposition of all the items at the public hearing. The rezoning would allow for convenience commercial and personal service uses.
Much of the debate centred around parking, traffic, site size and location, and addressing the short-term tensions (like parking) that arise when striving to implement the long-term vision of City Plan. Ultimately, the rezoning was approved with Councillors Principe, Rice, Rutherford, and Tang in opposition.
MEMORABLE QUOTES 💬
🕑 🚘 👉 “When I think about “Why Now”, I think about the scale — the time scale of city building […] — because city building is a really iterative process. It happens over long time horizons. Communities and neighbourhoods are constantly evolving and constantly changing and […] if we are waiting for the perfect location for these types of uses and […] changes, I don’t think we’re going to achieve the goals that we have set for ourselves in City Plan. So when these types of opportunities do arrive in front of us, it might not be 100% perfect but if it is 80% [or] 90%, I think we have to be comfortable moving forward with that.” – Ashley Salvador, Councillor
WHAT’S UP AT PUBLIC HEARING NEXT WEEK
The June 26 public hearing has a total of nine applications (twelve agenda items), including six infill applications.
Four of the infill applications are small scale: one will allow for row housing in the RF3 zone (Glenora), another will allow for row housing in the RF5 zone (Parkview), one is an administrative cleanup to rezone a small triangular lot to a park 🍃, and another will rezone the Magrath Mansion in Highlands for heritage preservation.
WHAT WE’RE WATCHING 🍿
👉 A DC1 to DC1 application directly east of the Stadium LRT station in Boyle Street is intended to facilitate an additional tower, increasing the floor area ratio (FAR) in the zone to 7.2 (from 5.5), increasing the maximum density to 600 dwellings (from 366), and adding two greenways connecting 106a Avenue with the LRT corridor. The rezoning triggers additional community amenity contributions, which are required in DC1 and DC2 zones based on how much the FAR is increasing. Community amenity contributions can be things like park and sidewalk upgrades, new park space, public art, family oriented housing or heritage preservation.
👉 A DC2 application in Ritchie proposes to rezone a site (currently zoned RA7/DC2) to allow for two buildings separated by a public open space/plaza area. The maximum building height of the two buildings would be 65 metres (approximately 19 storeys) and 23 metres (approximately 6 storeys) respectively, with a maximum floor area ratio of 5.5, up to 230 new residential dwellings, up to 350 square metres of commercial floor area in the east building, and a maximum tower floor plate of 675 square metres for the east tower building.
Watch it live on Edmonton City Council’s YouTube channel; the action starts at 9:30 am on Monday, June 26.
NEWS FROM SITUATE
To commemorate IDEA’s 10 Year Anniversary, the latest episode of IDEA’s In Development podcast (sponsored by Situate!) features three Edmonton city builders, Chelsey Jersak, founder of Situate and past president of IDEA, Tegan Martin-Drysdale, and Mariah Samji. They share their stories of IDEA’s beginnings and celebrate the many pivotal moments of driving positive change for infill in our city and beyond. Watch it on YouTube!
NEWS YOU NEED TO KNOW
📣 In the major news of the week, this past Tuesday the Urban Planning Committee of City Council heard from over 70 people about their thoughts on the draft new zoning bylaw. Situate’s own Chelsey and Jeff were there along with other members of IDEA to speak in support of the bylaw. At the end of a long day, the committee decided to keep the new zoning bylaw on track for final approval at City Council Public Hearing on October 16. Read the Edmonton Journal’s take on it here.
📣 Earlier this month City Council voted against studying whether it should impose rules about property owners cutting down trees on private property. In short: no new rules. At least not now. Read more: Your Tree, Your Choice.
IDEA 10 Year Anniversary Gala… is tonight! We hope to see you there.
Better Buildings, Better Communities: On June 29, 2023, Councillor Michael Janz is hosting Michael Eliason, a Seattle-based architect and green building expert for a guest lecture and Q + A on Point Access Blocks—the idea that excessive stair requirements limit building potential. RSVP here.
Hey, thanks for reading this far! We send this newsletter in the hopes of making it easier and more fun to understand (1) what’s going on at #yeg city council public hearings on land development and (2) zoning, infill, and the land (re)development process in general. If there’s a topic you’d like to know about let us know and we’ll do our best to write about it!
Zone In is created by Situate Inc. and is for informational purposes only. The content in Zone In is not to be construed as planning, zoning, real estate or any other professional strategy or advice.