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With half-a-dozen redevelopment projects already in the pipeline for Aldershot’s Plains Road corridor, it should come as no surprise that the Downsview Plaza will be next in line.

Coletara Developments has announced a virtual public meeting at 7 PM on Monday January 31 in order to discuss its plans for the property.

“The redevelopment plans are commercial mixed-use which includes ground floor commercial and residential suites above. Additionally, the development proposes townhouses to the rear of each site, enhancing the transition to low-rise housing to the north. The majority of the parking will be located in the enclosed parking structure”, according to an e-mail from the company.

There was no reference to the building height but, in 2020 Coletara filed an appeal of Burlington’s new Official Plan as it relates to the Downsview neighbourhood.

“The policy stating that the maximum building height of six-storeys shall not be permitted on small sites with insufficient depth is vague and unjustified and should be removed. The policies requiring retail and service commercial uses within all properties within this designation is inappropriate and problematic as it removes flexibility to address the changing retail market”, according to the appeal letter.

The plaza, located on the north side of Plains Road just west of East Plains United Church, sits on both sides of Downsview Drive and has been a significant shopping destination in Aldershot for decades.

Councillor Kelvin Galbraith commented that redevelopment of the plaza has been expected for years.

Any redevelopment will certainly spark debates over height, retail space and the need to upgrade the nearby pedestrian traffic light on Plains Road to a full intersection signal.

Coletara is the same company that has approval to build a seven-storey building on Masonry Court at the foot of Clearview and St. Mathews Avenues. By Rick Craven

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