Save Victoria Park from large scale development.
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Tell City Hall that you want developers who give value to the city of London, not take it away.
The City of London's Downtown Design Manual states: "Victoria Park is an important focal point of the Downtown, particularly because of events that attract a significant number of visitors to the area. The park also serves a way-finding function in the Downtown, allowing pedestrians and vehicular traffic to navigate the surrounding blocks with ease. Views into and surrounding Victoria Park should be protected and enhanced as much as possible." (p.29)
"We want a downtown with charming streets and sidewalks and a handsome streetscape that celebrates our heritage."
This development proposal is not suitable for this location because:
1. It does not conform to the Official Plan for London, the Zoning By-laws or the Woodfield Heritage Conservation District Plan. This is not a site that the City of London has planned for high rise development.
2. There are other sites in the downtown core that could benefit from the added value of a high rise condominium.
3. It does not fit in with the historic neighbourhood, in design or size. Even the developer admits the building "diverges from the general massing and height pattern of the surrounding neighbourhood".
4. The water level under this site only allows for 2 levels of underground parking, so the building then needs to put 3-1/2 floors of parking above ground, making the bottom portion of the building unfriendly to the street. A smaller building “fits” the site better as it would require less parking.
5. It sets a precedent for other developers to construct more high-rise developments around the park.
6. There is the potential for wind tunnels and lack of sunshine in the park (especially if more buildings follow), creating adverse conditions for festivals and events as well as the trees.
7. It will create more traffic congestion around the park and make it more difficult to close the streets around the park for various events.
According to the Ontario Planning Act, anybody can propose to build any kind of building, anywhere in the city. It is up to City Council to agree or not. City Hall staff ask for public input in preparing a report to take to City Council for a vote. This report will also identify all of the ways this development does not conform to existing zoning or official plan conditions. However, if there is not much opposition to a project, council may take this into consideration when voting. We need to provide LOTS of input in this process so that City Hall staff know the magnitude of opposition to this project.
Some say this is a chance to be more like Central Park in New York City. Central Park is 842 acres. Victoria Park is 18. There is no comparison. Central Park has the size to absorb large scale development along its periphery. Victoria Park does not.
Say NO to large scale development around Victoria Park.
Please sign this petition.
Contact your city councillor (don't know how? visit www.london.ca and click the link to City Hall, then City Council for a list and maps)
Contact the city planner, Mike Davis at 519-661-2500 ext 4650
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