Stop the Queen Street Rezoning
Stop the Queen Street Rezoning
Dear City Planners,
In response to the request to rezone a site on Queen Street West as an 11 storey mixed used residential zone (file OZS-2021-0009), we are submitting an objection with the below rationale for your consideration. Specific negative impacts will and could include:
- Adjacent impact to two heritage listed properties 127 Queen Street West and 10 Byng Avenue, which are confirmed to have design or physical value, as well as contextual value. Impact may include:
- Potential for destruction of heritage attributes, as a result of accidental damage during the construction process.
- Alteration of the adjacent lots which detract from the visual context of the surroundings and is incompatible in scale, massing and height relative to 127 Queen Street West.
- Isolation of 127 Queen Street West from the surrounding context and environment. Potential to alter the viability of the existing trees
- The creation of a negative precedent for the preservation of heritage properties, land use of areas of historical and cultural significance.
- Encroachment on and destruction of an already mature and established neighbourhood along Byng Avenue and Mill Street.
- Shade that will block the afternoon sun across a mature neighbourhood, tree canopy and number of heritage buildings on Queen Street, Mill Street and Byng Avenue.
- Loss of privacy for properties on Queen Street, Mill Street and Byng Avenue. Per The Official Plan: "When considering new development within an established residential neighbourhood, consideration must be given to the massing, scale and height of development such that it is compatible with that permitted by the zoning provisions on neighbouring residential properties. New development must allow adjacent properties to maintain their access to privacy and sunlight. Adequate separation between new and existing buildings is required, along with the use of comparably mature landscaping and fencing in order to maintain privacy and character.
- Height exceeding recommendations set out in the Phase 2 findings of the Queen Street West Land Use Study that proposed to "ensure that the character of existing and well-established residential neighbourhoods is maintained and enhanced by ensuring that development and redevelopment is compatible in terms of built form with the character of adjacent buildings and neighbourhoods." Specific to Character Area 1 of the Queen Street West Land Use Study: Western Section:
- Building height, massing and setback in infill sites must respect adjacent buildings and residential neighbourhoods - generally three to four storeys in height.
- Transitions in scale and use of landscape buffers are required where redevelopment abuts stable residential areas.
- Retain and integrate heritage and/or valued buildings along Queen Street West within redevelopment proposals. Retain views of Christ Church steeple, an important landmark for the street.
- A change in FSI from the recommended 2.0 as set out in the Secondary Plan to a proposed FSI of 5.10. This is a higher FSI than all other areas in the Downtown Brampton Secondary Plan, which at most allows for a maximum FSI of 3.5 in the Four Corners Area only. The current Secondary Plan allows mixed-use development in this area (west of Elizabeth Street) with a maximum density of 2.0 FSI.
- Per the Queen Street West Phase 2 Land Use Study, it was recommended that “the lands on the north side of Jessie and Byng Streets no longer be designated for higher density mixed-use development but that they be re-designated for low density residential uses to reflect the existing land use.”
- Lack of setback for development transition between a mixed use and stable residential neighbourhood. Proposed setback is 0 metres for interior and exterior yard. The applicant has not defined a rear setback against the neighbouring heritage property of 10 Byng Avenue. Per the City of Brampton Comprehensive By-law Zoning Review:
- "A building setback of at least 7.5 metres shall be established from any affected rear or interior side lot line and shall not include any land area provided by an abutting public rear lane;
- A minimum landscape buffer strip of 3.0 metres shall be included within the setback, abutting any affected rear or side lot line. The 3.0 metre landscape buffer shall provide the opportunity for substantial tree planting and appropriate privacy fencing"
- Increased negative impact to available usable greenspace.
- The removal and/or destruction of 19 mature and healthy trees to accommodate development.
- Impact on mature tree canopy located directly behind on Byng Avenue per s220.127.116.11 of The Official Plan: "The mature tree canopy in neighbourhoods within the Central Area should be protected, to the extent practical, to assist in maintaining the character of an area. Where development or redevelopment is proposed, healthy trees should be protected to provide a buffer between new development and redevelopment and existing neighbourhoods"
- Development not in keeping with the existing character and design of the neighbourhood, per the Brampton 2040 Vision: "A beautiful heritage community is at the south end of Downtown. This will be the area to protect the existing ambience with only modest, delicate infill. Its image serves the entire downtown. A more-or-less consistent pattern of mid-scaled heritage commercial buildings occupy the centre of the whole district along with the recent City Hall and the theatre and museum complexes. This is a place for re-use and infill of buildings."
- Lack of existing infrastructure in downtown due to cancellation of water main, sewer and other utilities upgrade project resulting in even more water main breaks.
- Lack of parking at proposed development with a rate of only 0.50 spaces per unit and no visitors parking. The vehicle ownership in Wards 3 is 1.4 vehicles per household per the last TTS survey. This will have a negative impact on nearby streets as residents and visitors seek additional above ground parking.
- Interim and ongoing volume of high pollutant construction and service vehicles.
- Lack of transit infrastructure to support higher densification and leading to increased road and public transit congestion, per the Queen Street-Highway 7 Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Initial Business Case (IBC).