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Good News! Harrington Agrees to OMB Mediation

Our efforts are starting to get some positive results.

All Parties to the OMB Hearing have agreed to Mediation regarding the 2265 Bloor St. West development proposal. This opens the door to constructive dialogue focused on finding common ground and reaching a mutually acceptable agreement.

OMB Mediation

The OMB has appointed a Mediator and the OMB Hearing scheduled for January 6, 2015 has been converted to a Pre-hearing Conference. This will be followed immediately by the OMB Mediation session. If we are unable to reach an acceptable agreement through this OMB Mediation process, then a full OMB Hearing will be scheduled at a future date.

In the meantime, please continue to spread the word about the importance of donating and subscribing to receive emails (http://goo.gl/4HbnPG) to stay abreast of the situation. Mediation still requires our legal and planning professionals attend the sessions. And, while we are optimistic that an acceptable agreement can be reached via the OMB Mediation process, there is still the possibility of a full OMB Hearing to ensure our community’s input is reflected in this development. This all requires more money.

We are within striking distance of our $40,000 goal by Christmas with over $35,000 already raised. With your continued help we can easily meet this goal. On January 10, 2015, the end of the Mediation session, we will have a better idea of whether this $40,000 is sufficient.

Participants still required on January 6 at 655 Bay St.

Thank you for signing up to be a Participant at the January 6, 2015 OMB Hearing. Even though this OMB Hearing has been converted to a Pre-hearing, it is important that you still show up at 10:00 am at 655 Bay St., 16th Floor. Although you will likely be dismissed fairly early in the day, showing up as Participants is critical to demonstrate widespread community concern about this development.

Great Turnout: 2265 Bloor Community Meeting

We had a packed room for the December 16th Community meeting to discuss 2265 Bloor Street West. Members of the 4 Residents Associations (BWVRA, SARA, Old Mill/Humbercrest, High Park) hosted a meeting to go over the current status of the developers proposal, and the community plan to fight it.

The agenda for the meeting covered:

  1. 2265 Proposal History
  2. Mid-Rise Guidelines 101
  3. Dec 9th Proposal Revision
  4. Funding Update

We are thrilled to announce that during the meeting we raised another $956 dollars at the meeting, bringing our total to $32,780 of the $40,000 we are targeting to raise. If you haven’t had a chance yet, please donate now!

Councillor Doucette attended the meeting and provided two updates:

  • The details of the motion (now published) she put forward and passed. Here are the highlights:
    • City Council direct the City Solicitor to attend the Ontario Municipal Board in opposition to the applicant’s December 9, 2014 revised drawings and further authorize the City Solicitor to retain outside consultants.
    • City Council further direct the City Solicitor to request the Ontario Municipal Board to consider the application as a candidate for mediation.
    • City Council direct the City Solicitor to settle at the Ontario Municipal Board if the following concerns are resolved to the satisfaction of the retained land use planning consultant by a revised proposal: reduced protrusion into the angular plane permitted by the Zoning By-law; a step-back on the third floor should be introduced on the north side; the below-grade parking lot should be located only underneath the apartment building, with the intention of reducing the number of parking spaces; Amenity Space should not be located in or outside the Residential house at 116 Durie Street.
  • An update on her overall progress in the neighbourhood with the planning tools we need to define what responsible development for Bloor West means. Councillor Doucette is organizing a February meeting to discuss these tools in more detail and Jennifer Keesmaat is invited to speak. We should know if the long awaited Avenue Study and Heritage District nomination have been prioritized for Bloor West. Regardless, these tools will not apply to 2265 Bloor as the application is already submitted.

The presentation is available for download if you missed the meeting and want to review the details:


2265 Bloor Developer Submits Revised Application

The developer for 2265 Bloor Street West submitted a revised application on December 9th in advance of the final City Council meeting before the hearing on January 6, 2015. Here are the now public details of that submission:

The changes were quickly reviewed and determined to not be sufficient. The details of the changes are outlined in the attached letter. We approached our councillor, Sarah Doucette, who agreed to take our concerns to City Council. A motion successfully passed. The motion is confidential and we are awaiting the details to be made public. At this point, we are assuming that the motion is positive and in favour of residents.

There is a community meeting December 16th, 2014 to discuss these latest changes.

This new proposal will be taken to the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) on January 6th. Our legal and planning team are working hard to revise our arguments in preparation for that meeting. Given the sensitivity of the material and the importance of putting forward a compelling argument, we will not be sharing the details of the objections we plan to raise publically.

Our objectives are clear: we want development in Bloor West Village and welcome developers into our community. The developments need to be in character with the village and respectful of the surroundings and we find the process is more productive when we can meet and work together. This revised application does not accomplish that.