McCauley Community League Update

Zoning Issues

Yet again, much of the energy of the McCauley executive is being consumed by planning issues. Theoretically, we’ve achieved agreement that continuing to concentrate non-market housing and services is wrong. This is huge progress but has not yet reduced the pressure on our community as we are still dealing with several projects funded before this was acknowledged as an issue.

Current major zoning committee issues:

Pre-application notification of intent to rebuild and expand the bottle depot on 111 Avenue has been sent. The zoning of this land is intended to facilitate a pedestrian oriented commercial strip and, as such, a light industrial use such as a bottle depot would require rezoning. Recently, the rumour is that this application will not be made but that a nearby site may be purchased on which a bottle depot is considered a discretionary use.

Crown Liquor at 107A Avenue and 92 Street: many residents have expressed concern over this latest attempt to add another liquor store to the area. I encourage you to write and call planning and your councilor. This site is zoned to allow a liquor store but a bylaw prevents new liquor stores within 500 m of existing stores. According to our interpretation of the bylaw it is within 500m of Target Liquor in Cromdale but according to Planning it is just over 500m. The differing analysis depends on whether you measure “site to site” or “door to door.” The technical nature of this argument may require legal intervention for our argument to be successful.

At 101 Street and 105A Avenue we have just been presented “The Edmontonian,” which is proposed to be a 40 story 253 unit building with a commercial main floor.

Our greatest concern at the moment is the Ambrose Place project by Niginan Housing Ventures at 9629-106 Avenue. It is 28 units of supportive “harm reduction” housing and 14 units of some type of affordable housing. The main floor is entirely committed to support services and management. We are of the opinion that it does not have a valid Development Permit which makes any construction on the site illegal. A permit was issued in 2008 for this project but they expire after one year. We will be challenging this at the Subdivision and Developmental Appeal Board.

On a potentially more positive note are three proposals for market condos that should be moving forward with attempts at rezoning. One is a 24 unit project at 84 Street and 112 Avenue which is four stories with underground parking.

At 101 Street and 105A Avenue we have just been presented “The Edmontonian,” which is proposed to be a 40 story 253 unit building with a commercial main floor.

Most exciting of all is the proposal to expand Pacific Rim Mall onto the parking lots to the west of the current mall (105 Avenue and 98 Street) with two floors of commercial, several floors of parking and office space, and two condo towers potentially of 30 and 40 stories. The existing alley would be incorporated into the structure and the older portion of the mall would be re-clad to match.

Whether any of these projects goes forward or not remains to be seen but they do point out a somewhat desperate need to update our neighbourhood plan for this area as the current zoning does not allow for the high-rise development that is clearly the future for some of this land.

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