LDA20 - 0378 Windsor Terrace Mixed-Use Tower

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Consultation has concluded

A colour rendering of the proposed building.

***The discussion has concluded and we have written a "What We Heard" document that will be shared with Council when they make their decision at Public Hearing.***

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 for Council meetings.

***The discussion has concluded and we have written a "What We Heard" document that will be shared with Council when they make their decision at Public Hearing.***

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 for Council meetings.

Tell us what you think of 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.

As a resident of Windsor Park, I feel this sets a precedent for bait and switch by developers. The original zoning application for an 8 story building was contentious and accommodations were already made. Now that the original density is not financially viable, an even larger building (50%+ taller 8 —> 13) is being considered, that would probably have been turned down back in 2015. Will other developers follow this business model across all infill developments? Developers take a business risk, and the onus is on them. If they fail to do the proper study to determine what is financially viable, then it shouldn’t be up to the city or impacted residents to make them whole. There is an approved zoning bylaw already, let the market decide how best to deliver within those boundaries. Worst case, refill the hole, and the developer is out a few hundred thousand - lesson learned; or sell the land to someone else who can make this work.

Concerned WP Resident 1 over 1 year ago

I think that this building is too tall. It has been compared to Lister hall, but Lister hall is closer to other large buildings, much more set back and further from single family residential housing.

David Cubitt over 1 year ago

I can add nothing that my neighbours haven’t already said, nonetheless, I will reiterate some salient points:
- Going from about 30m to 40m is understandable from a developer’s perspective but difficult to accept from an existing resident. I felt thirty metres was already too high for the character of the neighbourhood and proximity to the elementary school but the City’s planning department determined it aligned with relevant regulations and bylaws. I suspect there is nothing in the zoning bylaws prohibiting the first high-rise in Windsor Park to now be 40m in height. This development will inalterably change the character of the neighbourhood and I am, again, urging the planning department to consider the impact a 40m building with 160 units will have and not approve the changes proposed by the developer.
- The proposed site is not ‘consistent with the heights of the nearby site’. The nearby site the Urban Design Brief refers to is University of Alberta property, not subject to City of Edmonton’s Master Plan. The highest building in Windsor Park is next door to the proposed site – 4 stories, roughly 30% of Windsor Terrace.
- No set back on 87th or 118th? This is not just poor planning but dangerous and irresponsible. Drivers won’t be able to make a left turn onto 87th from 118th without creeping almost into 87th to check for westbound traffic, blocking pedestrians walking on the north side of 87th. The speed limit on 87th will remain 50km with a few meters separation between a 40m building and the street. Serious accidents will happen here unless traffic modifications accompany the construction of this paean to densification.
- Three family oriented units out of 160? I would like to see a development that creates space for families to rent, rather than own in our community. However, the Terrace is designed not to house long-term rentals but apartments that will mostly be inhabited by transient U of A students.

Sad WP resident over 1 year ago

I do not support this project. The proposed building is too large, way too high. It is too near the school.

GR over 1 year ago

Hello, City of Edmonton representatives and planners:

I live with a 60-m distance of this proposed rezoning location; as such, I have several concerns and requests to bring to your attention.
1. I am strongly opposed to a structure greater than 10 storeys in height; this is already much higher than the previous 8-storey height, but I understand that 10 storeys is potentially the point at which the development is profitable; however, increasing the height to 12 or 13 storeys is not justifiable. Using the U of A residence buildings as a comparison is not suitable, since the U of A controls what height of buildings may occur on its own property. There is absolutely no precedent for a building over 10 storeys in height in our neighbourhood.
2. I am very much in favour of including the commercial/retail spaces on the ground floor of the proposed building. However, if the developer wants to build to 10 storeys in height, I would like them to be REQUIRED to provide the street-level commercial/retail spaces. (I am concerned that, if their request for 13 storeys is whittled back to 10 storeys, they may reduce the commercial/retail spaces to get more residential units/more profit.)
3. I request assurance that noisy equipment (fans, motors, etc.) will NOT be located on the roof of the structure, but will instead be underground or within the building (to avoid noise pollution for residents located very nearby).
4. I request that the developer be required to include more than 3 family-sized (i.e., 3-bedroom) units in their design, to support both the local school and the ability for larger families to reside in the neighbourhood without purchasing a single-family house.
5. I am pleased to see that the landscaping includes trees as well as shrubs/plants and lower height vegetation. However, I request that the inclusion of trees be required, not open to changes later in the process. Also, I request that the developer has a fixed/firm date by which the landscaping must be completed and in place; we experienced lengthy delays in the installation of landscaping with the 4-storey development adjacent to this proposal, to the point where we needed to complain to the City before the landscaping was finally completed.
6. I am pleased to see the underground and street-level parking included in the proposal. I am also happy that the street-level commercial units face 87 Ave. and 118 St. (rather than facing either of the alleys).
7. I wonder if the City is able to require that this developer leaves us with reasonably smooth alley pavement once they are done with their construction, instead of leaving existing residents with sunken spots and rough pavement (as did the adjacent 4-storey developer).

SM Biro over 1 year ago

I agree with the many who have already expressed concern and opposition to the proposed height of the Windsor Terrace, the disproportionate (small) number of larger (three bedroom units) planned versus studio units, the inadequate underground, visitor and commercial parking , the inadequate set back along 87ave and 118st, the invasion on the privacy of adjacent homes as well as the shadowing into their yards, the potential hazards to school children and other pedestrians due to the increased traffic.
I am not against all development at this site. I would welcome an architecturally attractive high-rise of about 8 stories with main floor retail space. I would be delighted to have a cafe, bakery or small restaurant with the potential for an outdoor patio that might become a meeting place for the neighbourhood.

erm; long time Windsor Park resident

erm over 1 year ago

I am opposed to the rezoning of this site.

As Edmonton moves ahead with density proposals for older neighbourhoods like Windsor Park (the earliest Windsor Park home dates from 1909), it is essential to build at a height and scale that respects the existing neighbourhood character and streetscape. The current Site-Specific Control Provision (DC2) already allows for a mid-rise mixed use building of around 8-storeys: an 8-storey building is more than high enough for this location. A 13-storey, 160-unit construction should not be allowed to tower up metres from the property lines of small 1-unit, 1-storey bungalows and the appropriately scaled Bentley Condominiums. No structure this tall exists anywhere along the north side of 87th Avenue - not even on the University of Alberta Campus.

It was in the fall of 2015 that Windsor Park residents were first officially surveyed about development of this old Esso gas station site. More than 250 responses were received. 92% of respondents opposed the proposed rezoning. Building height was recorded as the major concern. A clear majority - 64% - were adamant that 4-storeys was "the maximum acceptable height." And yet . . . the City gave its blessing to a 6-storey and then an 8-storey building for this location in 2016.

The City of Edmonton says it is "committed to involving the people affected by the decisions it makes." "Engaging the public is a priority for the City of Edmonton." "Share your voice. Shape your City." But over the last 7 years, despite the community's vigorous engagement, this project has morphed from 6-storeys to 8-storeys, and now a 13-storey Tower is proposed. Its time for the City to put some muscle behind the public engagement rhetoric and to act on the community's good-faith input. Its time for the City to draw the line: no 13-storey Tower here.

PL over 1 year ago

I have already stated my opposition to the proposed rezoning in an email to Stuart Carlyle on Dec 18, 2020. Like others here some of my gravest concerns are the impact of the proposed building on traffic in a congested area right opposite a public school, and the impact of the shadow imposed particularly on the neighbouring Bentley Condominium. I wish to reiterate that the proposal also flies in the face of the City's desire to introduce more young families to Windsor Park. One of the few people excited by this proposal in a statement below is from a student who looks forward to the university campus being extended westward. But this is precisely the problem. The proposed building is not designed with units for young families and their children, but for single occupancy. And so the building would not serve to house people laying roots in Windsor Park and taking advantage of the school opposite. Rather it is designed to house what may largely be a transient student population. If the City is serious about rejuvenating the community of Windsor Park, they should oppose the developer's proposal.

brs over 1 year ago

Thank you for taking the time to notify us of the developer's plans for the current lot. I am an owner and resident of the Bentley Condominium which is to the east of the proposed development.

I am opposed to the proposed increase in height, occupancy and resultant number of parking spots.
This is too dense of a population adjacent to a school when you consider the traffic congestion.
The number of suites will result in a very condensed population within a small footprint. The pandemic has taught us that populations living in close proximity have an increased risk of spreading of viruses and disease.
The alley pavement is not suited for heavy traffic.
Noise from the increased traffic will be disruptive.
Increased traffic will make getting around more difficult
The height discrepancy between Windsor Terrace and the Bentley will not be aesthetically pleasing and will look out of place in this neighborhood.
Thanking you in advance for your kind consideration of our input.

Donna Bernes
Bentley Condominium, Unit 301

Donna Bernes over 1 year ago

We are Windsor Park residents and are deeply concerned with the impact of the increase in size proposed for Windsor Terrace. I agree with many of the concerns that have already been expressed, i.e. traffic, shadowing, set-back, inappropriateness to neighbourhood, property value decrease (with likely no tax concessions to reflect the decrease), etc.

We agree with the recommendations that the WPCL have made.

We are also concerned with infrastructure issues. When the City allowed 'skinny' houses to be built on our street, the added impact on services resulted in a transformer blowing, which had to be replaced with a larger unit. All the storm sewers from the houses to the street are blocked with tree roots and basically non-functioning. Although increasing density may sound like a good philosophy, I feel the City has not taken into consideration all the practicalities involved, such as upgrading infrastructure. We are suspicious that higher density equals higher tax base is more of a consideration than well-being of the community. We feel that these kinds of mega-developments will have a very negative impact on quality of life for our community residents. Our family moved to the Windsor Park area because it was quiet and had single-family housing. All the reasons for moving to this community are fast disappearing. It fells like the old 'bait and switch' trick.

We are very concerned with the trend the City seems to be taking in appeasing property developers with disregard for community input. Why ask for community input if you never plan to follow through on any of the recommendations, or the changes are so minor that they have virtually no impact to the overall final development? It seems to be a mere formality. It is very discouraging.

Discouraged WP Residents over 1 year ago

I support the WPCL Development Committee recommendations. The proposed increase in height for this site is disproportionate with the neighbourhood. I support significantly increasing the number of three bedroom units to attract families. A community of young families will add vibrancy to Windsor Park and make good use of the nearby school. Ground floor retail that would appeal to the community is also convenient.
Thank you for the opportunity to comment.

MME over 1 year ago

I don't understand how the city, in its commitment to Vision Zero, has photo radar trucks on the same stretch of 87 Ave near daily, but then is ok approving a project with no setback on 87 or 118st severely limiting visibility and keeping pedestrian traffic so close to the road.

This is an issue both for traffic passing through or turning at the intersection , as well as all the cars from the 160 units that will have to pull well into the sidewalk of 87 Ave in order to see cross traffic. Pedestrians will be hit.

There must be more setback especially on 87 Ave.

Neighbour over 1 year ago

I am excited for this project and support it. As a past student at the U of A, it would have been amazing to have this type of development to consider as a place to live. This street is also underutilized and it would be great to have some of the campus feel extend West. I hope this development can help make business more viable along this corridor, including a grocery.

Daniel3 over 1 year ago

I concur with all the comments which others have made with respect to the proposed building being much too high for the area. The developer should be denied approval for a building taller than that approved on two previous occasions ie 29.8 m and 8 to 9 storeys.

The proposed development has street level commercial space, 160 apartment units and three levels of underground parking. The first development for this site approved by the City had 121 apartment units. The second development for this site had 78 luxury condominiums. In both cases there was four levels of underground parking. So the latest proposal reduces the underground parking by 25% and increases the number of units by 32% and 105% over the two previously approved buildings. Although there is grade level parking on the east and north side of the proposed development, I believe there is a serious shortage of available parking for tenants, their visitors and people accessing the businesses in the ground level commercial space.

There have been a number of comments made about reducing the number of single bedroom units and increasing the number of two or three bedroom units. The idea is to make the building more attractive to families who will be active members of the Windsor Park community. While this suggestion certainly has merit, I believe that the vast majority of people living in the building will be students. Students have no problem sharing accommodation to minimize their costs. Multi bedroom units would allow several students to occupy each unit.

No one should think that if the building is occupied by a large number of students that the problem with insufficient parking would disappear. Students do have cars and in many instances nicer cars than many faculty and staff at the University.

Traffic in the Windsor Park area is already very heavy due to its proximity to the University and the University Hospital. The additional traffic resulting from tenants living in Windsor Terrace makes a bad situation worse and increases the risk for students attending Windsor Park School. The City should close the west end of the lane north of building to reduce traffic on 118 St where the school is located.

hkp over 1 year ago

We agree with others who have expressed serious concerns about, and opposition to, the proposed height of the development. It is completely out of scale with the neighbourhood, and indeed, with much of the development along 87th Ave. Furthermore, in our view, the building, as depicted in the applicant's rendering, is extremely unattractive, and certainly does not reflect any of the architectural spirit of Windsor Park. Our primary concern, however, is with the height. We urge rejection of any proposal that exceeds 8 storeys.

JP/ES over 1 year ago

Thank you for the added documents.
1) In the urban design document it states that "the proposed height of Windsor Terrace is consistent with the heights on the nearby site." This statement attempts to suggest that Windsor Park already has high rises. However, the highrises are on UofA property and have a very large setback. If you wish to compare to existing UofA highrises then please compare setback plans to UofA's as well. It would seem the height is extreme and inappropriate for the available land. Outside of UofA property, 4 stories is the current highest in Windsor Park. Perhaps a climb to the 8 stories that was previously permitted is a reasonable compromise. It is natural for developers to wish to maximize profit by building higher and wider; it is up to the City employees to introduce a sense of aesthetic and fit with the community.
2) In the sun study document performed by Hodgson et al, the shadow extends beyond the shown area at times. It is not clear why the full extent of the sun shadow is not reported.
An additional comment is the west side of the UofA has always been a quiet side of the campus as opposed to the very high density on the east side (with numerous high rises, LRT, grocery stores etc). The new very tall building does not seem to fit in with the west side, which has just one moderate height 4-story building.

Alan over 1 year ago

This is a very large project with major impact on the neighbourhood. The principles of urban density compete with established mature areas. My concerns are 3 fold (on top of the expected decline in property value this may bring):
1. The traffic patterns are an underestimate based on the more recently completed next door 4 story site as the area has undergone a marked increase in traffic over past few years. 160 new residences is a lot of people, and >40% will use cars. We already have substantial violations of traffic control (speed, one-ways, parking) that remain unaddressed and this will only compound this. I am very concerned about the school kids and this traffic increase - already a problem with it being across the street. Stricter traffic calming and enforcement would be valued.
2. Sunshade: the study of the building that is so large exceeds the squares shown.... My house I presume will be in darkness but cannot tell and would ask that the full data be shown. I would advise to limit this to a more reasonable height (such as that previously approved).
3. Limited family dwellings: there are only 3 mentioned, and this underscores a missed opportunity to aid family growth in the area. As it stands, we have plenty of University students, so it would be good to get a balance.

Is there a covenant on what types of retail can go in to this, so close to an elementary school?

justinez over 1 year ago

I do not support this at all! Let's recap what happened here. First, the city approved the original Windsor Terrace plan, submitted by a new developer with no track record whatsoever, despite very strong objections from nearly the entire Windsor Park community. At that time, the community would have supported another smaller multi-unit project, such as the Bentley building next door, but it rejected the Windsor Terrace plan almost unanimously. Yet, the city still approved it in its zealous quest for density -- without regard for the damage this would do to the surrounding neighborhood and the quality of life of its residents. After that was approved, the developer submitted changes that further increased the height of the Windsor Terrace building, and those were approved too without consultation. Now that the first developer seems to have gone bust (or has otherwise given up on the project) all we have left is a gigantic hole in the ground and a plan to increase the size of this monstrosity even further. Please, enough is enough! Windsor Park is a single-family residential area. This proposal is absolutely monstrous, does not fit in this community, and needs to be scaled back drastically. If this city wants more tall buildings, it should build them on any of the many hideous surface parking lots dotting downtown.

An angry WP resident over 1 year ago

I do not support this development, my neighborhood does not support it, and this development will have a negative impact on my wellbeing and mental health.

We are aware however, that this will most likely not stop you, just as it didn't when you first put in that joy-sucking eyesore in the first place.

If you go through with this hurtful and damaging development, please have commercial uses only on the ground floor and residential for everything above that + some accessible suites on the ground floor.

Also, make sure that everything is wheelchair accessible!!! Even how smooth the elevator is with the floor when it opens at a level is a small detail that, ignored, will make like awful for those in wheelchairs. In fact, for those suites? Please consult someone who is wheelchair bound. This is very important.

Additionally, if you must develop there, design with environmental responsibility in mind.

If you are going to harm all of us who live in this neighborhood, then at least minimize the damage that you do to the entire rest of the world with it.

Aria over 1 year ago

-The building height of 13 stories is too high for it's location and would not match any of the residental homes or even the 4 story appartment nearby.
- There will be signficant shadowing to the nearby homes as well as an invasion of their backyard privacy (as someone that lives north of the project the new building will look into my backyard and also into one of our bathrooms)
-The increased bike/car/delivery truck traffic from such a large building will also add danger to the many young kids (including my preschooler and kindergardener) that cross in those intersections to get to their preschool and elementary (and future spray park).
-There are no school buses for windsor park elementary so there is also considerable vehicular traffic from parents during drop off and pick up hours. Finding street parking in the area will definitely be an issue with a 160 unit building with retail and only 12 surface parking spots (not to mention that every house nearby is entitled to their two visitor parking passes for street parking).
-Having only 3 three bedroom units available in a 160 unit building turns away the families we want inhabiting the neighourhood
-Is there a need for such a large unit? There is another apartment/condo being built across the street as we speak as well as numerous aparments being built in the mckernan/belgravia neighbourhood. There are already also multiple dense garneau towers to the east of us for high density living
-the backalleys surrounding the area will have large blindspots due to the lack of setback in the west and south side, cars will need to encroach the high traffice sidewalks before they can see clearly
-retail in the main floor is appreciated

worriedparent over 1 year ago