Comment 110704

By jason (registered) | Posted March 30, 2015 at 09:23:21

very interesting issue here. Well written submission by the BNA.

Few random thoughts I have:

  • street context is hugely important. Old retail streets with the 2-4 storey street wall like Locke, James north of Wilson, Ottawa, Kenilworth, King East etc.. should maintain access to sunshine on the sidewalks while allowing new density. Think Queen West, Roncesvalles, Queen East (Beaches) in Toronto. In our climate, access to sunshine is important. Go to downtown Toronto in mid-winter on a sunny day. Dark, freezing cold and windy. Yet I'm all for new density in our city. It's imperative if we are to thrive again. I like this type of thinking on these streets:

  • as far as 'precedence' goes, we need to protect the heritage building stock on these streets and their historic retail sidewalks. One could use the same precedence argument if this proposal was 10 stories or 50. Mass demolitions and block-busting. It simply can't be allowed. At the rear of properties, or on parking lots, go for new density. Acclamation condos seem to get the scale correct for this district:

  • we need to build housing and buildings in Hamilton, not parking. Seeing that land space is being wasted on a parking stacker, instead of allowing a setback on the taller portion of the building is ridiculous. Hamilton needs to stop with the parking requirements. Had they been able to purchase the corner property, a taller tower could go at the corner of James/Wilson and step-back north along James:

Also, by using the available land for a larger footprint building instead of parking stacker, the same density could be achieved without impacting the street. Setbacks at the 6th, 8th and 11th stories:


I should add that I'm completely in favour of tall towers downtown where not in the middle of these low-rise retail/pedestrian streets. The Connolly could go 50 stories and I wish it were, if for no other reason than making some new bold statements downtown. Ditto for Connaught site, Vranich-ville etc....

A local example of a development fitting in perfectly with it's current street, while adding needed density would be this on King William:

This is a perfect modern interpretation on the Paris model. 6th floor set-back and everything.

Comment edited by jason on 2015-03-30 09:33:19

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