A planned seniors apartment complex in the west end got council approval Monday night but that wasn’t exactly what the residents of the area were hoping for.
After a lengthy debate, council voted in favour of a three phase development off Korah road and Second Line by a recorded vote of 9 to 3.
The property surrounded by single detached homes will be built directly behind the Shopper’s Drug Mart and No Frills Grocery Store on Second Line by developer, Grammi Developments Ltd.,will include a four storey 40 unit building in the first phase, followed by three three storey buildings for a total of 137 units.
Neighbours are up in arms about the development which required council to rezone the property from single detached to multi-level apartments. One resident who spoke to council said that the development would alter the entire neighbourhood, while ward 6 councillors Ross Romano and Joe Krmpotich voted against the proposed development citing they didn’t buy into the developer’s idea that seniors would pay $1,200 to $1,400 a month for the unit and that the developer wasn’t interested in building two storey town homes instead, something the neighbours would support.
Ozzie Grandinetti, of Grammi Developments ltd., told council there is a need for senior housing and this location would be suitable for this kind of development. Grandinetti – a former ward 6 councillor lost his bid in the last municipal election said the development would bring in $285,000 annually in taxes to the city’s coffers and provide about $25 million into the local economy through construction.
Paul Cassan, lawyer for the applicant told council that the proposed apartment has been reduced from five floors to four “these aren’t towering skyscrapers overlooking the neighbourhood”
Residents affected by the proposal say they bought into the neighbourhood knowing that only single detached homes would be built on the property
“No fence will prevent those units looking into my backyard” said Mary Lou MacDonald – a long time property owner on Prentice Ave. MacDonald was one of several homeowners who don’t want the plan to go ahead as is.
“No buffers or fences will stop those units looking into my backyard or my neighbours,” said Mary Lou MacDonald, a long-time Prentice Avenue resident.
The rezoning and Official Plan amendment comes with a number of conditions and additional phases of the project must be approved by council despite the vote of confidence on the project as a whole.