Residents know where they do – and don’t – want tall buildings in the downtown: not on the Lakeshore or the core, but perhaps on Brant St north of Victoria toward Fairview.
At a recent workshop, residents had the option of picking one of four areas for tall buildings. Area #1 – North Brant – got the most interest, though some (myself included) have suggested moving the southern boundary to Victoria (or further up Brant) instead of Caroline, as shown.
Have your say on downtown development by taking the survey here: Downtown Mobility Hub
In general, residents have said so far:
- Respect existing character and scale of Brant Street
- Keep existing Official Plan permissions
- Downtown is pleasant because of the mix of heights
- Brant Street is critical to get right
- Future tall buildings should not be taller than what exists
- Land assembly requirements make development very challenging; not as many opportunities as it appears
Regarding development, residents have said:
- Focus growth to “North Brant Street” and the Brant Street “Spine”
- Mid-rise south Baldwin/Victoria on Brant Street
- Develop “North” Brant Street to preserve character of the “spine” of Brant Street
- John and Elizabeth Streets could have taller buildings of 6-8 stories
- South of Caroline Street, Brant Street should be 2-4 stories
- Towers should be set back/terraced from Brant Street
- Brant Street should not be lined, both sides, with tall buildings.
The workshops are part of the city’s Official Plan review. The review will create a new plan, to guide future development. There are several specific studies underway as part of the review, including development around “mobility hubs.” The city’s three GO stations, and the downtown, are mobility hubs, where a variety of transportation options exist, and the goal is mixed use development with green space.
Based on feedback to date, two high level concept plans were developed for the downtown, one showing tall buildings closer to Lakeshore, and the other showing tall buildings north on Brant. See the concepts here: Conceptual Building Heights Cross Section
Learn more about those concepts and share your thoughts at an upcoming Open House.
Downtown Concepts Open Houses
- Monday, July 10 at Central Library (Centennial Hall), 2331 New St. from 2 to 4 p.m.
- Thursday, July 13 at Burlington City Hall (room 247), 426 Brant St from 2 to 4 p.m.
You can also share your feedback directly with staff via email: email@example.com
Additional information is available online here, including staff and consultant presentations and supporting materials: Downtown Mobility Hub Study
Next steps are as follows:
- Staff present preferred concept and draft policy at public meeting, 7pm, Art Gallery of Burlington, 1333 Lakeshore Rd. W.
- Staff present a recommended land use scenario and associated Policy to City Council at Committee of the Whole meeting (public can attend, but not delegate). 1-3 pm, City Hall, Rm 247
- Staff deliver initial policy directions to be incorporated into the new Official Plan
- Staff present Final Downtown Area Specific Plan to City Council
Some key principles for me in any development of the downtown will be to enhance public parks, greenspace and street trees or other landscaping, ensure family friendly developments, preserve public access to the waterfront, conserve heritage assets during redevelopment, and promote a vibrant mix of retail, restaurants and commercial offerings. Tall buildings are better suited north on Brant, north of Victoria, where roads and sidewalks are wider, taller buildings already exist with ample space for setbacks, and there is easier access to the GO station, major roads and highways.