LDA20-0123 106a Street RA8 Rezoning

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Consultation has concluded

a black and white map of the area around the property that is proposed to be rezoned (8515 106A Street NW, 8521 206A Street NW, and 8523 106A Street NW), with a grey box on the property, labelled "RA7 to RA8".

***The discussion has concluded and a What We Heard Report will be posted here when available.***

Thank you for participating in engagement activities for this rezoning application.

The application is expected to go to City Council Public Hearing for a decision, with the exact date still to be determined. For more information, please visit these FAQs(External link) for Council meetings.

***The discussion has concluded and a What We Heard Report will be posted here when available.***

Thank you for participating in engagement activities for this rezoning application.

The application is expected to go to City Council Public Hearing for a decision, with the exact date still to be determined. For more information, please visit these FAQs(External link) for Council meetings.

Tell us what you think about the application

Please let us know what you like and what could be better about this application. What should Council know as they decide whether or not to approve the rezoning? Other people that visit this part of the site will be able to see your comments.

CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.

I am a resident who lives in East Garneau and I strongly oppose the proposed rezoning application on 106a street.

- I am concerned about this and all development applications requesting rezoning in this neighbourhood. There is no place for a 6 - 7 story building on 106a st. If approved, it sets a precedent for the other rezoning applications in this neighbourhood and gives developers the message that zoning in the Garneau can and will be changed anytime requested. The zoning is already established in the GARP and should be followed for this and all developments.
- The Garneau is already a high density neighbourhood, and has seen more than its fair share of requests for rezoning. While some development is acceptable, it should follow the GARP. In this case town houses or a 3 - 4 story walk-up would be in accordance with the GARP, but it would not change the character of the neighbourhood. It would still be a significant increase density.
- A 6 – 7 story structure would negatively affect the character of this quiet residential street which is something that we want to preserve. As well, adding the proposed commercial/retail activities would not be appropriate here. It would be disruptive to this quiet residential street and would increase the parking congestion that already exists.
- The height is not consistent with transitioning regulations in the GARP and is taller than all nearby buildings.
- There are not enough details about what the developer would build. There is no building design nor any studies completed.

I respectfully request that rezoning of this property not be allowed.

Sincerely, Ellen Armstrong

Ellen over 1 year ago

I also support this rezoning application. A 4-storey low-rise apartment building does not provide enough financial incentive for the developer to create more parking spaces or underground parking, so it will actually rely more on street parking. In contrast, a 6-storey building will make underground parking economical and likely reduce the pressure on public parking. Those who are opposed to the application because of traffic concern should think it through before commenting.

C.M. over 1 year ago

I live in Garneau on 108A Street and am strongly opposed to changing the zoning of this site from RA7 to RA8. It does not align with the Garneau Area Redevelopment Plan (ARP), which requires that building heights decrease from north to south. The site should be developed with its current RA7 zoning, which would achieve the increased density that the City of Edmonton is working towards. The Garneau ARP should not be altered for this development or any other development in the Garneau area. The Garneau ARP exists for a reason and helps to maintain the character of the overall Garneau community. If the City starts to approve changes to the Garneau ARP, the floodgates will open for other sites in the neighbourhood to be overdeveloped. Additionally, the traffic and parking density in our neighbourhood is already of concern. Overdevelopments like this one will increase these issues. Development with the existing RA7 zoning is the responsible choice. I ask that City Council reject this proposed rezoning.

AS over 1 year ago

I am opposed to this rezoning. The parking situation in the area is already worsening without newer larger buildings being added. It's not unusual to find yourself parking 3 blocks away from your home as it is, anything that concentrates the population even more in this community isn't for the better.

J. over 1 year ago

My wife and I own a condominium in Garneau Estates, a few blocks to the west on 108A Street. We are strongly opposed to changing the zoning from RA7 to RA8 for the three lots on 106A Street.

The proposed re-zoning would negatively affect the character, traffic patterns, safety for pedestrians and cyclists, and parking of our neighborhood. The proposal is inconsistent with the Garneau Area Redevelopment Plan (GARP) and in particular, we oppose the approximately 65% increase in density this proposal would allow above the current RA7 zoning. The current RA7 zoning allows a density increase that is consistent with both the GARP and the City Plan.

We also oppose the commercial/retail development proposed for this site such as those mentioned: Health Services, Retails Stores and Food Services. 106A Street is currently a quiet residential street with traffic that is predominantly local residential traffic. Commercial/retail development at this location on 106A Street would completely change the feel of the neighborhood, and lead to a substantial increase in parking congestion, and traffic from outside the neighborhood.

We are concerned the negative impact a 23m height would have on adjacent properties and that a 23m height contradicts the height transition requirements of GARP.

We are concerned that approval of this proposal would have a broader negative impact on the neighborhood by allowing sites nearby to have increased height and density, sites adjacent to these sites to be allowed increased height and density, and so on.

Re-development on these 3 lots would be welcome but re-zoning to RA8 should be denied.

The Miazgas

garneau12 over 1 year ago

I strongly support this application.
I grew up in the neighbourhood, a few blocks away from these houses. I always like the mature tree-lined streets and the proximity to Whyte ave, downtown and the UofA, but always hate the houses and buildings in this area– they are mostly small, unloved/run-down, and lack of character. If someone is telling me that this is what they want to preserve, they must be out of their minds. By the way, I like the other side of the 109 street where the TRUE Garneau is though. They have bigger and more historic houses which deserve preserving.
My folks later moved to the suburb for something bigger and newer, but I always want to move back to this neighbourhood because it is closer to where my wife and I work. Unfortunately, we don’t have a million dollar to purchase an old house, knock it down and build a new one. Currently, affordable, bigger and newer housing where people can raise a family is almost non-existent in the area – now a relatively new 2014-built, 2 bed & 2 bath condo on the 106 street is listing for $425K with an outrageous monthly condo fee of $583! At a matter of fact, all the 2bed-2bath apartments listed in the area charge a condo fees of $500-$600+ a month alone! If the city cares about lower income families and more sustainable living, they should increase the population density a lot more in these mature neighbourhoods. A 4-storey low-rise building only means hundreds of dollar a month on condo fee and only well-off families like the ones who live in those new single-family houses across the site could afford it (who of course are opposed to the rezoning). And family like mine will be always priced out of the neighbourhood. Although a 6-storey building does not guarantee there will be affordable bigger housing units, but I can 100% guarantee that a 4-stroey will rule out affordable housing completely.
As one of the opponent pointed out, they only like those “beautiful HIGH-END duplexes and single-family dwellings” developed in the area because these projects will not decrease their property value – of course! Guess what? A couple blocks away from the site, a beautiful newly-built house is listed for $1.4 million now – tell me how many families can afford that? Dear Mayor and council members, don’t make this area an exclusive playground for these wealthy families only!
There have been quite a few small-scale infill projects popping up in the neighbourhood in recent years, so the amount of land available for redevelopment is getting smaller. Excluding those single or double lots trapped between two low-rise apartment buildings, this means only a few pockets of lands potentially can be developed into medium density housing in the area. So let’s start with this project. Relax the height restriction a little so that it can provide more affordable housing units to the market – this aligns with what most people need in this area, but more importantly, aligns with the long-term City Plan of attracting and sustaining two million people living in this great city we call home.

KenW over 1 year ago

There has been no compelling reason to increase the height that is already allowed under the GARP for this site.
The current zoning allows an increase in density that meets the policy goals of both the GARP and the City Plan.
This rezoning contradicts the height transition maps in the GARP and sensible height transitions of good planning.
This rezoning does not guarantee that there will be affordable housing units within the development nor that there will be units with three or more bedrooms. If houses are going to be replaced (and they need replacing), units that can home similar sized families must be part of what replaces the houses.

vicjones over 1 year ago

Subject: LDA020-0123 Proposed Re-Zoning of 8115, 8521 & 8523- 106A Street from RA & to RA8
Dear Mayor and Council Members:
My wife and I live directly across the street from the properties proposed for re-zoning and we are very much opposed to this action. We also strongly associate ourselves with the submissions made by Dr. Gary Nash and Prof. Mike Flannigan who are also directly affected by this action. When my wife and I retired to this home after the 2016 fire in Fort McMurray, we understood that the zoning allowed for 4-storey apartments, but I was extremely disappointed when the Notice of Re-zoning was placed on the property. This will clearly impact our property value, the amount of sunlight we receive, the traffic and the congestion in the area and the general downgrading of the neighborhood.
I immediately expressed my strong disagreement to this action in May last year in an e-mail to Andrew Sherstone and I received only a cursory reply that my concern had been added to file for City Council consideration. I registered to speak at the January 26, 2021 Council meeting but the matter was referred back so the city administration could consult on the Garneau Area Redevelopment Plan.
This property has a bit of history. In 2016-17, the developer had possession of one lot (8523-106A Street) and had wanted to put a five-unit apartment on a single residential lot. Variances had been requested for front entrance and parking and this was under active consideration by city administration. There was strong reaction from the community and the development did not move forward at that time. The developer has now subsequently acquired the two adjacent lots and is now requesting rezoning that would allow a 50 % increase in the height of the building. Once again, the city is indicating their support for this developer’s latest application.
First of all, I would like to note that there have been numerous infill developments in this immediate area and the developers have done a commendable job in creating beautiful high-end duplexes and single-family dwellings. They have done so within the existing rules for zoning and aligned with the area plan to increase density. It hardly seems like fair play when this current proposal would grant a special re-zoning for one developer. An island of RA8 in a pool of RA7, just for them, special.
Secondly, the administration makes some very strange assertions in its support of this application:

a) “From a high-level perspective, it is concluded that this proposed mid-rise building is in support of the infill objectives if The City Plan.” I would point out that the current zoning achieves the same objective, without the destroying the character of the neighborhood. To assert that the re-zoning of this property will help preserve Edmonton’s footprint and reduce the need for annexation is, well, just pure high-level nonsense.

b.) “Administration recognizes that the locational criteria for Mid Rise Apartments in the Residential Infill Guidelines is likely too restrictive, when there are multiple high rise developments within a block north of the site. As such, these guidelines are not an effective reference tool in this case.” Again, I would point out that there have been high rises on Saskatchewan Drive along the entire width of Old Strathcona since I was in university and I am now retired. It is curious that a reference tool that has been used for 40+ years is now deemed ineffective when it comes to supporting the re-zoning of this individual development.

c.) The “sloping” effect. I know my neighbors have challenged this issue, so I will limit my comments. This development will be 50% higher than the two apartments on 106A Street that are closer to the high rises on Saskatchewan Drive. The height of this building will stick up like a “pimple” in the whole area.

d.) In referencing the Garneau Area Redevelopment Plan, the administration cites “This is demonstrative of the more modest definition of medium density development when the Garneau ARP was written versus current expectations or medium density” They then go to say that while they don’t intend to change the “general residential policies”, they conclude: “ Allowing for 6 storey development on this site (emphasis mine) would meet the land use objectives of Sub Area 2 as well as be in alignment with the with the general policies of the Garneau ARP” Once again, the guidelines become outdated with “current expectations” when they don’t align with city’s support of this current individual development. The existing zoning also fully meets the objectives of the current Garneau ARP. Now the city wants to change the Garneau ARP to make a single exception for this individual development. Concierge service indeed.

e.) A number of individuals have expressed support for this development based on increasing density and generalized safety concerns. However, RA7 allows for a significant increase in density. No one disputes that replacing 3 older homes with new development may revitalize the area. But respectfully, allowing an individual developer to build to 6 storeys instead of 4 will have no impact on community safety.

Finally, I served for a number of years on the Wood Buffalo Subdivision and Development Appeal Board in Fort McMurray, so I have modest appreciation of this process and the competing equities involved. I understand that developers will seek to maximize their return for their investment but the purpose of municipal governance is to temper that drive, to ensure fair play and look to what is the public interest in any exceptions. I can see no public benefit to the proposed change that is not already being achieved by the existing RA7 zoning.

Therefore, I respectfully request that City Council turn down this application for rezoning.

Thank you.

Fred & Ann Hurley

FJHurley over 1 year ago

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FJHurley over 1 year ago

I highly support this application and welcome the added density it would provide. RA8 is entirely reasonable for the area - central, desirable, close to the university / transit hubs / major commercial districts. Recent developments in Oliver have shown that RA8 height is extremely compatible in areas with a high volume of older 3-5 story walkups.

GG over 1 year ago

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MikedF over 1 year ago

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MikedF over 1 year ago

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MikedF over 1 year ago

Our family is strongly opposed to the proposed rezoning that would allow a building up to 23m ( 6-7 storeys) in height and possible retail/commercial opportunities on the ground floor. This proposed rezoning on 106A Street is on a quiet residential street, with houses, a duplex, old and new walk-up apartments and condominiums. Our street runs from 85th avenue north to 87th avenue (the road is closed at 87 Ave due to construction on the Duggan Bridge) and 106A Street does not connect to Saskatchewan Drive but goes under Saskatchewan Drive when the road is not closed due to construction. Our opposition is due to the following:
1) Contravenes the current Garneau Area Redevelopment Plan – Policy 2.1 (Page 76 of the Garneau Redevelopment Plan) restricts the heights of buildings to walk-up apartments to ensure that future redevelopment is compatible with existing development among other reasons. This proposed rezoning is not compatible with existing development.
2) The administration report (Page 2 – Report Summary) states one of reasons to support rezoning is that this location is in close proximity to a major node ( University of Alberta), but we argue it is not close proximity. Google maps ( link below) has listed a 1.8 km and a 21-minute walk from 8515 106A St. to the Administrative Building (near the centre of the University of Alberta campus). If we were close to a major node, we would have restricted parking such as those areas near the UA west of 109 Street. There are no parking restrictions on 106 A Street.
3) The administration report suggests that a RA8 development at this location is consistent with the image (Page 6) from the Garneau Area Redevelopment Plan showing appropriate transition in heights ( - a trend from low heights – houses, to low rise buildings to medium-rise buildings to high -rise buildings). We state that this development is not consistent with the image as the proposed rezoning development will lead to medium -rise building (RA8) to low-rise buildings (RA7) to no buildings (Trolley right-of-way area) to a high-rise on Saskatchewan Drive.
4) This street currently is a short street that starts at a T intersection at 85 Ave then is closed at 87th avenue and almost all the traffic is local traffic. A building of this size with commercial/retail on the ground floor will lead to substantially more traffic.
5) A building height of 23 meters (RA8) would cast a significant shadow especially during winter with our short days and low sun angle. The shadow could be 100s of meters in length for many hours during the winter months when we need the sun the most.
6) This development would change the character of our neighbourhood something both Garneau and Old Strathcona want to preserve (Note this development is under the Garneau Area Redevelopment Plan but the location is deemed to be in Strathcona according to some City departments). We are not against responsible development or infill as there are infill homes, duplexes, low-rise walk-up apartments/condos on our street (106A St.) but these are consistent with the history and character of the neighbourhood. Currently, there are 3 single-family houses on the proposed rezoning site that could be replaced with a 3 or 4 storey (RA7) structure that would significantly increase population density without changing our neighbourhood.
Please preserve the character of our neighbourhood and reject this proposed rezoning.


The Flannigans

MikedF over 1 year ago

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nashco over 1 year ago

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nashco over 1 year ago

While the comments on safety by some on this thread are valid, they are already addressed by a new development in the existing RA7 zoning. The application is to rezone the site to allow an additional 7m in building height and the possibility of main floor retail development. A 50% increase in building height (2 extra storeys on an existing 4 storey limit) is very significant for the street massing and the shading of the existing residences facing the street side of the proposed development. So for those who think safety is an issue in the area (it has not been a significant problem in my experience as a property owner in the area for the last 9 years, but I agree it could be), the present RA7 zoning solves those concerns relative to the redevelopment of the properties at 8523-8515 106A Street. Thus, there is no need to rezone the properties based on a safety concern.

nashco over 1 year ago

I also support this rezoning proposal.

I agree with the responses regarding the safety in the area. During the summer months, there are always suspicious people wondering around or even “camp” in the bushes around those houses and surrounding area. Given the relatively high rate of sexual assault incidents (5 reported cases since the start of 2021 already!), hate crimes and other crimes in Garneau and Strathcona, I don’t feel safe at all walking by myself at night in the area. As a matter of fact, Garneau and Strathcona have one of the highest crime rate in the city! A brand new building in the current spot will definitely keep those people away and make the area safer and more pedestrians friendly.

It would be a shame if the city council decline the rezoning application and potentially kill this redevelopment project, just because of a concern over a mere 7-meter increase in the height. Extra two storeys could mean an extra dozen of affordable housing options for young families/professionals/university student renters in this good but could be better neighbourhood!

MegT over 1 year ago

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yeg over 1 year ago

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yeg over 1 year ago