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Recent action at the OMB

Sometimes it seems as if Leaside resembles an urban battlefield rather than the small town in Toronto (that it’s sometimes called). With a red-hot housing market, it seems as if developers and speculators are desperate to demolish existing and build new, always attempting to maximize the square footage.

That often leads to a Committee of Adjustment hearing and then maybe the Ontario Municipal Board. Here are some recent examples of what’s happening in Leaside.

At 73 Donegall the owner applied for variances which were rejected by the committee. However the owner has applied to the OMB, and the hearing is set for June 12. In that case, the city solicitor will be there to defend the committee decision, with strong support from the neighbours.

At 28 Rumsey the owner applied for variances which were approved by the committee. The neighbours appealed to the OMB. The decision is awaited.

At 1 Rutherglen the owner applied for variances which were approved by the committee. The neighbour is appealing to the OMB,

262 Bessborough (the Thomas G. Elgie House) involves both planning and heritage applications. The owner applied to sever the property into three lots and for several minor variances. The committee denied the application, and the owner appealed to the OMB. The heritage matters have also landed at the OMB.

A recent OMB approval involved Scenic, the condominium development east of Brentcliffe, which asked to increase the total number of units permitted on the three-tower development to 1,063 from 965, an increase of 98 (10.2 per cent), and a reduction in parking from 395 spaces to 360 spaces.

The Committee of Adjustment had agreed with the LPOA and the Leaside Business Park Association that changes to the project and required amendments to the zoning bylaw were not minor, and would have significant but currently unexplored impacts on the neighbourhood. However, the OMB approved the change.