OttawaCitizen.com: Councillor almost convinces council to block builder adding units to Westboro triplexes

10 05 2019

Councillor almost convinces council to block builder adding units to Westboro triplexes

A councillor on Wednesday came up just short of convincing council to send a message to builders about being upfront with neighbours.

Falsetto Homes, the owner of the triplexes at 348 and 350 Winona Ave. in Westboro, wants to add a fourth unit to each. The buildings are southwest of the Westboro transit station.

Kitchissippi Coun. Jeff Leiper told council that the city’s reputation on defending zoning rules was on the line and he wanted colleagues to reject the application for the fourth units.

According to Leiper, the developer built the triplexes with the community of adjustment’s approval. The fourth units were roughed-in, with the developer knowing it would eventually come back to the city for permission to add the fourth units, Leiper said. However, the community was told they would only be triplexes.

The planning committee last month heard from a consultant representing the property owner who said triplex developers are using a two-step process to quickly generate revenue before going through with a costly planning approval process to get the fourth units. They do this knowing full well they might not get the fourth-unit approval from council.

Leiper warned councillors that the developer strategy won’t be a problem only affecting his central-west community.

“This is an issue that’s coming to your ward soon,” he told them.

Council voted 13-10 to allow the fourth units.

Innes Coun. Laura Dudas, who was the acting mayor while Jim Watson recovered from an eye procedure, voted at council to approve the fourth units after voting in opposition with Leiper and Stittsville Coun. Glen Gower at planning committee.

“I want to send a clear message to developers that they have to be forthcoming to our community,” Dudas said after the council meeting.

“They have to respect our communities, but at the end of the day, is this something we have to stand up for? Yes, most certainly, but I know that we also need to have infill in our communities. We need to build up around our transportation systems. We need to make sure that we’re providing people places to live close to transit priority areas. At the end of the day, after speaking with staff and seeking that clarification, I wanted to make sure I was making the right decision. We still need to be firm with developers and make sure they understand that having that dialogue with our community is essential, but I wanted to make the best decision for our city and for that community.”

Councillor almost convinces council to block builder adding units to Westboro triplexes

 


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