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Anger over 81 Wellesley condo plan

Anger over 81 Wellesley condo plan

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Proposed 29-storey tower would cast shadows on Church-Wellesley Village
A 29-storey tower could soon loom over the Church-Wellesley intersection where the former Wellspring Cancer Centre once stood if developers have their way. However, opposition from community members and Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam may yet derail their plan.
 
Icarus Developments is planning a 93.6-metre building made of two towers that step up from a six-storey brick podium. The plan calls for retail at ground level and 200 residential units in the tower, including 20 “family-sized” three-bedroom units. It would have 75 parking spots and 200 bike parking spots.
 
The 19th-century building was torn down in January in a move that caught the community by surprise. It was on its way to being listed as a heritage property before the wrecking crew levelled it, but the project manager for the development says the owners had been planning to demolish since they took possession in April 2011.
 
“They were always planning to tear it down,” Kevin Chan says.
 
Community members invited to a Oct 16 consultation on the condo plan were vocal about their opposition to the building.
For Paul Farrelly, an active member of the Church-Wellesley Neighbourhood Association, the entire proposal is doomed by the owner’s destruction of the Wellspring building.
 
“The nature of the owner of this property is un-civic,” he says. “It was immoral, un-civic and a blast to the community.”
But the proposal faces several other obstacles. Although Wellesley Street is generally zoned for tall buildings, 81 Wellesley itself is considered part of the low-rise Church Street zone, which has a maximum height of 18 metres.

Additionally, the official plan calls for towers to be set back at least 12.5 metres from the street, which would push the tower right off the site.
 
Another concern is that due to the narrowness of the site, drivers would enter the parking lot from the front of the building, descend to the lot by car elevator, and exit via the building’s rear laneway.
 
As that laneway is frequently occupied by trucks making deliveries to the businesses along the east side of Church Street, there’s concern that the additional traffic would not fit through the lane or would force deliveries to be made along Church itself.
 
Residents in the adjacent buildings are also concerned that the building would block sunlight, given that the podium is being built right to the lot line. However, even if the tower proposal is scrapped, the developer has the right, under current zoning laws, to build a six-storey building right to the lot lines.
 
Councillor Wong-Tam says she “will not be supporting” the proposal and says she does not believe the site is appropriate for a tall building.
 
Icarus has not submitted its proposal to the city formally, but Chan says it will be forthcoming in the next month.
 
In other neighbourhood development news, a contentious proposal to build two 58-storey towers at 501 Yonge St, between Alexander and Maitland, appears to have hit a snag.
 
The design review panel, a committee of architects that evaluate the merit of new buildings on Yonge Street, told the developer and community on Oct 16 that the proposal needs to go through a redesign.
 
Members of the panel said the site is too close to an adjacent building on Maitland to allow two towers to be built, community members report.
 
“I always felt there was too much massing on the site, and I’ve repeatedly asked the developer to bring the density down,” Wong-Tam says.
 
 
  
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Comments

Cry me a river KWT
Get a life KWT! Stop crying all the time. The city is growing. Don't like it, head to Bolton.
Icarus?
Kind of an ironic name for a condo development company, don't you think?

Hopefully this tower won't be built to close to the sun. And in turn come crashing down around us all.
Dog Tolilets on Public Land
Or what Wong-Tam calls "green spaces" http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/article/1278120--growing-up-pets-in-the-city
Not so simple
Christopher, the BIA has nothing to do with development application approvals. And many members of the BIA would be wise to oppose rampant development: as shiny new towers go up, so do property values, property taxes, and therefore commercial rents. Many independent businesses won't be able to afford rents on Church no matter how many new patrons are living above them.
BIA is no longer gay friendly
Let's face it folks, this deal is going to go through, regardless of what anyone thinks. The BIA is no longer interested in supporting what was once the gay village. All it is looking at now is the increase in commercial revenue that will be coming in with each new condo erected.
Shame is a funny thing...
it sneaks up on one without one really being aware of it (maybe it's the flouride) when one becomes enslaved by shame internalized oppression is only relived by being just like one's oppressor suffering a bottom version of Stockholm Syndrome, and then apologizing for "dirty" gay male sexually charged posters, while seriously "believing" that what obviously anti-gay male power tops say is true. That's fine. Children are children. They don't know any better. To each his own. I still suck cock though. War is peace.
Outing myself as the texter
I'm outing myself as the resident who sent Kristyn that text on the fateful morning when the owners of 81 Wellesley East moved so quickly to destroy that beautiful heritage property. I write "heritage" with a small "h" because oh-so-curiously, the owners tore the place down before Kristyn's recommendation to make it a capital "H" Heritage property, passed a couple weeks earlier, was able to be acted upon. Suspicious, wouldn't you agree? I'm therefore extremely wary of Icarus Development operating with any kind of good faith. We residents of Church-Wellesley need to be realistic that as a central, downtown Toronto area, a certain amount of vertical development needs to happen. But we also need to be vigilant! If you see something puzzling (such as a building being tore down with no notice!), contact Kristyn's office. Also, as Greg Hannah mentions above (among his many other good comments), take the initiative of submitting your feedback to our City Councillor. My experience with her is that she's always open to hearing opinions.
Futile pole wrapping
The BIA's plan to put "wraps" on utility poles on Church Street in order to prevent people from putting up posters, is futile. It will not achieve the desired outcome of a more tidy-looking street. People will continue to put posters on newspaper boxes, mail boxes, electric utility boxes, street signs on a thin pole, etc. The street will continue to look dirty unless local business owners regularly wash the stains off the sidewalks in front of their business (e.g., stains that occur when someone spills a beverage or food or when a person or animal urinates, etc.) and regularly sweep the dirt, dust and litter that accumulates at street curbs. It’s a dirty street.
Tourism industry
Church and Wellesley gay village is a designated tourist area, known all over the world. Something the local residents seem to forget. They seem to think its their patch and nobody else matters. The Councilor and BIA, should be supported in their efforts to make it an attractive place for out-of-town visitors. Keeping the grunge is remaining a ghetto, beautification will attract more visitors. World Pride is only a year away, lets put our best face forward and clean up the Village, for the world to see.
Get a grip
The pole wraps have NOTHING to do with sexually charged images and EVERYTHING to do with tattered, neglected streetscapes. The BIA has installed POSTER BOARDS, paid for out of their own POCKETS! You can see as many naked men as you bloody well please. In fact, they are far more prominent than before.

I can't believe the stupidity of this community sometimes.

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