ZZap, on behalf of Timbercreek Asset Management, applied to permit a 534-unit apartment building at 210 and 214 Willet Street, Halifax. Apartment buildings are a permitted use in the R-4 (Multiple Dwelling) Zone, but the proposal does not meet the Zone’s current regulations (e.g., population density, angle controls, open space, and parking). The proposal cannot be considered under existing Municipal Planning Strategy (MPS) policies.
The applicant requested a site-specific MPS and Land Use By-law (LUB) amendment to permit their proposal.
The applicant is proposing to replace existing buildings at 210 and 214 Willett Street with a large development. The major aspects of the proposal are:
• Three apartment buildings (8, 13 and 19 storeys) with a total of 517 units;
• Three two-storey townhouse buildings with a total of 17 units;
• At-grade residential units along Willett and Dunbrack Street;
• Vehicular access from Willett Street; and
• Approximately 315 underground vehicular parking spaces and 320 bicycle parking spaces.
Concerns about the R-4 zoning regulations are not unique to these two properties but are general to the larger neighbourhood. For example, there are many R-4 zoned properties near Willett Street and Dunbrack Street that contain aging apartment buildings and have similar site characteristics.
Staff recommended a process to review the MPS policies and LUB regulations for all R-4 Zoned properties near Willett and Dunbrack Street. Specifically, the following R-4 Zone regulations will be reviewed:
• Population density;
• Angle controls;
• Open Space;
• Parking standards; and
• Other regulations pertaining to site, building, and pedestrian-oriented design.
On November 12, 2019, Regional Council agreed with staff’s recommendation and began a process to review the Halifax MPS and Halifax Mainland LUB for the R-4 Zone near Willett Street and Dunbrack Street.
Planning staff are undertaking a detailed review of the project, in partnership with other municipal teams and external partners. Once staff’s review process is complete, they will prepare a recommendation report for Regional Council to consider.
Before Regional Council make a decision on Case 22332, a public hearing shall be held. Additional information on process can be found in staff’s initiation report to Regional Council.
An open house for Case 22332 was held on Thursday, February 27, 2020 from 6:00 - 9:00 p.m. at Our Lady of Lebanon Church Hall (3844 Joseph Howe Drive, Halifax). The purpose of the open house was to receive feedback about the case. The posters below were available for attendees to view.
Poster One – Study Area
Poster Two – Population Density
Poster Three – Building Mass
Poster Four – Building Mass Alternatives
Poster Five – Vehicular Parking
Poster Six – Landscaped Open Space
Municipal planning staff and at the applicants were at the open house to discuss the case.
Documents Submitted for Evaluation
The applicant has submitted plans and documents. Staff note these documents are not the focal point of Case 22332. Regional Council started an amendment process that focuses on about 85 R-4 zoned properties. The details of this application may change before consideration or approval by Regional Council.