It was February 2018 when the Vrancor Group first proposed redevelopment of the land currently occupied by the Solid Gold strip club in Aldershot. By the time the proposal is actually dealt with, more than three-and-a-half years may have passed.
The Ontario Land Tribunal (OLT) decided on Tuesday to set a hearing date of October 31, 2022 to finally deal with the application.
Vrancor is proposing demolition of the existing building at the corner of Plains Road East and Cooke Boulevard, followed by construction of two mixed-use, buildings of 10 and 12 storeys with retail and commercial uses at street level and 450 residential units above.
A decision on the application was delayed for a variety of reasons related to the Region’s need to convert employment designations on part of the property, the City’s Major Transit Station Area planning process and Burlington’s new Official Plan.
In May 2021, Vrancor appealed the City’s failure to make a decision on its application within the statutory time frame. This was followed by an OLT case conference in December 2021 and another this week. Lawyers have now agreed to a nine-day hearing starting on October 31, 2022.
There have been two public meetings about Vrancor’s proposal. One was held in the neighbourhood in March 2018. Over a hundred people attended. Another was a statutory public meeting sponsored by the City in June 2018. A variety of issues and concerns were raised including parking and traffic, contamination on the site, the height of the proposed buildings and the failure to include a specific grocery store.
The October hearing will focus on Vrancor’s request for amendments to both the City’s Official Plan and Zoning Bylaw needed to permit the development. The City has identified concerns such as insufficient parking, too little amenity area, too much density and too little landscape area.
At this week’s case conference lawyers for all sides, the City, Region and Vrancour, indicated that some settlement discussions had begun and they were hopeful some of the issues in dispute could be resolved before the October hearing.
By Rick Craven