Zone In Holiday Edition
Hello and welcome to the holiday edition of Zone In!
It’s our last edition of 2022 and we’re here to tell you about what happened with the infill files at the last public hearing on December 6 and reflect on our newsletter this past year.
THE ‘WHY’ BEHIND ZONE IN
We created Zone In to make it quicker and easier to find out what’s happening at City Council public hearings. Zone In focuses on applications related to infill and urban redevelopment.
DECEMBER 6, 2022 PUBLIC HEARING AGENDA RECAP
Let’s start with a recap of what happened at the December 6 public hearing.
The agenda had a total of nineteen applications (twenty-eight agenda items). Of the nine redeveloping area (infill) applications, eight were approved unanimously without debate.
If you’d like to review the details of the files approved with no debate, check out past Zone In Issue #17. The file selected for debate is summarized below.
Item 3.25/3.26/3.27/3.28 was an application to rezone four lots totaling 1,944 square metres in McKernan located on 114 Street on the north and south sides of 78 Avenue. The application was submitted by Precision Buildings on behalf of Pinto Properties Inc., and proposed to rezone the site from the RF1 (single detached residential) zone to a DC2 (site specific development control provision). The rezoning would allow for the development of two mid-rise buildings with commercial uses fronting on public open spaces. The rezoning required amendments to principles, policies, and figures in the McKernan-Belgravia Station Area Redevelopment Plan (ARP) and two road closures. The site is located within the 114 Street Secondary Corridor and is adjacent to the north tip of the McKernan-Belgravia LRT platform with access to the station through a shared use path.
The file was debated at the September 13, 2022 public hearing and was referred back to Administration. Following that public hearing, Administration met with community members and worked with the applicant to revise the application to reduce conflict between waste service vehicles and private loading areas and increase the green spine width while subsequently reducing the side setback.
At the December 6, 2022 public hearing, there were three speakers in favour (the applicants and property owner) and eleven speakers in opposition. The speakers in opposition primarily raised concerns regarding alignment with the ARP, building height and setbacks, greenway size and safety, among other concerns. During the debate, Ward Councillor Janz stated concerns with ARP alignment, suitability of the site location, and that community concerns were not sufficiently addressed. Councillors Salvador, Stevenson, and Tang reiterated that the ARPs are a vision for the future that are adaptable and not rulebooks, and there is opportunity through the district planning and implementation of City Plan to clarify how future land use plans are interpreted and implemented. They and Councillor Hamilton also noted that the application would provide more housing diversity. Councillor Knack further noted that densification in mature neighbours is incremental and important for implementation of City Plan. The application was approved with ward Councillor Michael Janz in opposition.
THANK YOU AND HAPPY HOLIDAYS
Thank you for reading this far! Whether you’ve been reading since Zone In’s first edition or you’ve joined along the way, we appreciate your support.
We started this newsletter in February when Chelsey was interviewed on the Infill Development in Edmonton Association’s podcast, In Development. At the end of the episode, Chelsey’s call to action was for Edmontonians to chime in at City Council on projects and initiatives worth supporting. The planning decisions of Council lead to incremental change that make our city more liveable and we think it’s important for Edmontonians to know what those projects and resulting decisions are.
But we know that most people, most of the time, don’t have time to read public hearing agendas. So we thought we’d try and do something to make it easier to find out what’s going on at Council. And that was the beginning of Zone In! As 2022 comes to an end and we reflect on the evolution of our newsletter, we hope that it has made it easier for you to stay informed about infill projects and provide you with the information you need to let City Council know about the projects that you support.
The format and content of the newsletter has changed since the first few editions. We’re providing more background information about key infill applications and high level summaries of Council’s debate. We’d love to hear your thoughts about Zone In, its current format, and how we can make it even better in 2023. If you have any feedback for us, hit reply and let us know! Please also share this newsletter with others who might find it useful.
Thank you again for your support of Zone In. The Situate team wishes you a happy holiday season!
THAT’S A WRAP
The next public hearing is on Monday, January 23. Watch your inbox for our first issue of 2023 to find out what’s on the agenda!
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