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Old Posted Oct 12, 2016, 2:12 AM
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191 York Blvd | ? | 20 fl | Proposal

Mixed-income tower pitched for City of Hamilton land downtown

By Matthew Van Dongen
http://www.thespec.com/news-story/69...land-downtown/

A 20-storey mixed-income development envisioned on York Boulevard is among the first in an expected "wave" of proposals to turn city-owned land into affordable housing.

Councillors Chad Collins and Jason Farr will present a motion Oct. 19 calling on the city to gauge private sector interest in turning city-owned 191 York Blvd. — currently the leased, one-storey home of Community Living Hamilton — into a "high density, mixed use, mixed income" development.

Planners suggest the property could accommodate a 20-plus storey development with up to 400 units, but Collins stressed any project ultimately pitched by a developer would have to pass rezoning and public consultation "smell tests."

He said ideally, a redevelopment of the property at York and Caroline Street would include offices, parking, market rate and affordable housing — as well as new program space for Community Living Hamilton. The agency is keen on the prospect of new digs for its special-needs clients, who range from children to seniors, said executive director Sherry Parsley.

"From our perspective, it's appealing to think about a new building with space tailored to our programming needs," she said, pointing to a more accessible gym as an example.

"Being on a major bus route, on the edge of the downtown, it just seemed like an obvious opportunity to test what resources we can squeeze out of the private sector," said Collins, who also chairs the board of CityHousing Hamilton. "For a city that is land-rich but cash-poor, this is an obvious opportunity to explore."

It's not the only opportunity, either, said Farr, who suggested the pitch could be the first in a "wave of potential partnerships" explored in an effort to shrink a wait list of 6,100 individuals and families in need of a more affordable place to live.

The city is poised to sign off Wednesday on a special subcommittee to consider such partnerships in future. A separate land use "task force" is also taking a closer look at how to best use the city's 2,000 properties and 25,000 acres of public land.

Related public agencies are also busy exploring unique partnerships. For example, the city and public school board are in talks about the feasibility of building seniors housing above the Riverdale community centre, which is in need of major renovations.

Ward 4 Coun. Sam Merulla has also facilitated talks between the city's social housing agency and a developer interested in combining private land and aging social housing to create a new, mixed-income development that could add 700 units in the east end.

Farr said he's waiting for the results of a study on the possible redevelopment of under-performing municipal parking lots — about a third of which lost money last year.

A short list of candidate lots has not been made public yet, but Farr has pointed in the past to the potential of a municipal lot across from police headquarters. A Spectator analysis of parking revenue earlier this year showed the city lost $22,000 just maintaining the little-used municipal lot at the corner of Barton and Caroline streets.

But just because a city parcel is available doesn't make it simple to redevelop.

North End residents protested a 2012 effort to redevelop a 1.5-acre piece of green space at the corner of Bay and Strachan streets that Hamilton bought decades ago for a lower city ring road that never happened.

"Residents had used it as a park for decades," said Rae Pemberton, who was part of a group that gathered 1,100 signatures on a petition protesting redevelopment. Last year, the group officially opened a "cultural garden" on the site complete with engraved poetry in variety of different languages.

Farr acknowledged the groundswell of resident concern, but didn't rule out revisiting housing on the site if it's needed. "We committed to leaving it as a garden for the time being … It's by design a temporary use."

Pemberton said she supports the quest to create more affordable housing, but suggested green space shouldn't be first on the list of building sites.

"Brownfields? Parking lots? That sounds great," she said. "There are lots of other things you can develop that aren't parkettes."
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Old Posted Oct 12, 2016, 2:13 AM
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Old Posted Oct 12, 2016, 3:01 AM
Beedok Beedok is offline
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Would be solid if Carmens ever builds. Good either way though.
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Old Posted Oct 12, 2016, 5:13 PM
NortheastWind NortheastWind is offline
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Would be solid if Carmens ever builds. Good either way though.
To what Carmen's development do you you refer?
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Old Posted Oct 12, 2016, 6:59 PM
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They pitched some hotel/conference centre/condo a few years back with no solid plan or financial backing and the plan has since gone cold with no news for over two years.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2016, 12:26 PM
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They pitched some hotel/conference centre/condo a few years back with no solid plan or financial backing and the plan has since gone cold with no news for over two years.
Not sure how that would relate to this project.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2016, 1:31 PM
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Not sure how that would relate to this project.
They pitched it at Sir John A. Of course they don't own the property.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2016, 2:34 PM
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Not sure how that would relate to this project.
It's right across the street. Previously it would have been kind of off to have a new tallest so far from anything else tall. This would help make it more of a 'node'.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2016, 5:00 PM
eatboots eatboots is offline
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Sir John A. looks like a prison from the Hunger Games. I would argue that from Bay to York to Dundurn Castle to Barton is one of the worst areas in the city. It's bleak, charmless and worn out. On the upside there is a lot of space to develop.
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Old Posted May 2, 2018, 11:52 PM
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*cough*

Liberal MPP Ted McMeekin is making a housing-related announcement Thursday at 191 York Blvd. — a city-owned property identified by council as a candidate for a 20-storey "mixed income" development.

https://www.thespec.com/news-story/8...mountain-brow/
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Old Posted May 3, 2018, 2:08 AM
LRTfan LRTfan is offline
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hopefully they haven't consulted with any NIMBY, I mean, neighbourhood associations yet. Otherwise this will come in around 3 storeys.
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Old Posted May 3, 2018, 2:20 PM
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Proposed mixed income development tower will have to be at least 20% affordable housing and will include space for Community Living, which is a current tenant of #hamont at 191 York Blvd.

https://twitter.com/Mattatthespec
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Old Posted May 3, 2018, 3:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelTown View Post
Proposed mixed income development tower will have to be at least 20% affordable housing and will include space for Community Living, which is a current tenant of #hamont at 191 York Blvd.

https://twitter.com/Mattatthespec
kind of skinny on details -
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Old Posted May 3, 2018, 3:30 PM
LRTfan LRTfan is offline
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I like that it says 'towers' - plural. And retail. It's a large piece of land. No reason 2 buildings and retail can't fit together. Good potential here. Leveraging a key piece of land like this in a prime location for height will be dependant on non-NIMBYs showing up to the planning meetings to offset the usual cast of characters that will surely show up.
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Old Posted May 3, 2018, 9:45 PM
drpgq drpgq is offline
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Originally Posted by LRTfan View Post
I like that it says 'towers' - plural. And retail. It's a large piece of land. No reason 2 buildings and retail can't fit together. Good potential here. Leveraging a key piece of land like this in a prime location for height will be dependant on non-NIMBYs showing up to the planning meetings to offset the usual cast of characters that will surely show up.
It isn't in Durand, Corktown or Beasely so there will probably be less organized NIMBYs.
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Old Posted May 3, 2018, 10:07 PM
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Originally Posted by drpgq View Post
It isn't in Durand, Corktown or Beasely so there will probably be less organized NIMBYs.

Agree, its in no-mans-land , doubtful there will be any objections. Whoo is actually building it. Rentals?
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Old Posted May 5, 2018, 2:58 AM
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That stretch is embarrasing to Hamilton. Build towers. Make it a canyon of 30s. It's brutal.
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Height restrictions and Set-backs are for Nimbys and the suburbs.
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Old Posted May 9, 2018, 6:23 PM
NortheastWind NortheastWind is offline
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That stretch is embarrasing to Hamilton. Build towers. Make it a canyon of 30s. It's brutal.
Yes it could use some infill but I like the wide boulevard.
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  #19  
Old Posted May 10, 2018, 1:39 PM
LRTfan LRTfan is offline
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These one-storey buildings from Queen to Caroline have ample opportunity for large scale redevelopment. As does the Sir John A property once the new school on Cannon opens. Also, the city just purchased the parking lot facing Bay St across from Sir John A for an affordable housing development....one has to assume they will look to maximize that investment and go tall. No single family hoods on that block to whine about.
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  #20  
Old Posted Oct 5, 2018, 12:54 PM
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Looks like this deal is dead. The Spec said Ford has terminated the deal to sell Century Manor to the City, which the City would then sell it to Mohawk. The money from selling Century Manor would have gone towards this project.

https://www.thespec.com/news-story/8...dable-housing/
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