The application for phase one of the Shannon Estate development at 57th and Granville goes before the city’s Development Permit Board July 16.
Council approved the rezoning of the Shannon Mews site almost a year ago—at 2 a.m., July 29—following three days of contentious hearings that went late into the night. Of the 179 people registered to speak, 85 were opposed, four were classified as “other,” seven were in support and 83 didn’t speak.
Phase one of the Wall Financial Corporation project includes three new buildings ranging from three to seven storeys, two levels of underground parking and restoration of three designated heritage buildings.
The Shannon Mews Neighbours’ Association outlined concerns it has about the project in a June 20 letter to the city, including issues about density being transferred from phase one to phase two, parking and safety problems that might crop up during construction, and questions about how the city will monitor the project.
“There is a huge concern in the community. We’re all upset about it. We realize we lost hugely with the council decision in July 2011,” said association member Gunther Schrack. “So the concern has not gone—not at all, of course not. It’s still a spot rezoning no matter how you look at it.”
Schrack said traffic during construction could be a major issue, depending on how it’s handled. The association is also worried about the project being split up into two phases.
“It leaves open all sorts of issues, which are not being addressed at all regarding the second part of the project… Initially, they talked about the fact that of course they’d have to do it in stages, particularly since they have tenants there, but there was never any talk that it would be officially split into two parts—that is a different matter now,” he said.
Vicki Potter, the city’s director of development services, said developers typically have to provide a detailed site management plan to address traffic, parking, material delivery and noise regulations. She said some disruption is unavoidable.
“We always would require a construction management plan at a minimum before we issued a building permit,” she said.
Bruno Wall of Wall Financial Corporation couldn’t be reached by the Courier’s deadline. Dan Wilson, a representative from the corporation, couldn’t speak about particular project details, but he noted every construction job has an impact on a neighbourhood.
“As developers and builders, we try to minimize its impact on local residents,” he said.
Wilson noted the project is in two phases to meet city requirements.
“We are demolishing rental units in the first phase—and the city requirement is to build out our rentals units, move people who are in phase two, who are renters, into phase one to occupy those units and then we would start phase two,” he said.
The Development Permit Board meeting at city hall starts at 3 p.m., July 16.
The board includes three voting members—the director of planning, the deputy city manager, and the general manager of engineering services—and Potter, the non-voting chair. The board also has an advisory panel.