More apartment buildings being considered for approval

At the recent Saugeen Shores Planning Meeting, a presentation was brought forward regarding the construction of two more apartment buildings in the community.

The two four storey buildings will house 124 rental units on the vacant land adjacent to Country Road 25 (CAW Rd.).  According to the developer JK Construction, ten percent of the units, or 12 to 13, will be considered affordable as the developer has been working with the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), which sets out the formula that determines household income to what is considered ‘affordable’ housing.


The developer has requested for relief however, when it comes to parking and wants to reduce the number of visitors’ spaces from 31 to 12.  Under the By-law, one visitor space is required for every four units which means that 25 per cent of units could have visitors all at one time, which is unlikely.  Therefore, according to the planner, a reduced parking standard for visitors should be adequate.  “To meet the parking standard would mean that the number of units would have to be reduced which would mean the number of affordable rental units would also have to be reduced.”

According to planner Ron Davidson representing the developer, “If we are to resolve the housing crisis, it will have to be through higher density that only apartment buildings can provide.”

For larger view, Click on image

According to Knifton, the two-bedroom unit rents will be from $1,800 to $2,200 per month with one-bedroom units slightly below and three-bedroom units above.

He also explained that there would be 24 three-bedroom units for families. “There may be instances where there could be two cars per unit, but also others may have no cars and it balances out.  There will be a lot of Bruce Power employees who will be renting and may want to car share.  Therefore, I am convinced that parking will not be an issue with one spot per unit.”

Two residents with homes that back onto the proposed project property expressed concerns however over the proposed project.

John Ens, publicly represented his mother who lives immediately south of the proposed development, and said that the development will only be 1.7metres from the residential property line.  He also expressed concern that there would be balconies and a loss of privacy.

The developer, John Knifton, said that there would be balconies but, given the height of the buildings, there would be no shadow affect and that parking would be in the front of the buildings.

Knifton also said that he would be willing to meet with Ens and would be happy to build a buffer berm or privacy fence of eight feet. Vice-deputy Mayor Mike Myatt said he would also like to see a row of cedar trees in front of the fence as an added buffer.

According to Knifton, the project will be developed in two phases with the first building to the north of the property being phase one to “test the marketability”.

Councillor Mini Jacques, who questioned the accessibility factor of the units, was assured that there would be units designed for accessibility with wider doors for wheelchairs, grab bars in bathrooms, fridges with bottom freezer compartments and space for medical scooters.

Councillor Cheryl Grace also questioned if there would be e-vehicle charging infrastructure and, although the developer said there would be, the number of charging stations is yet unknown.  “Charging stations are the way of the future,” said Knifton, “and we are currently having them integrated in our developments in Exeter and Peterborough.”

Vice-deputy Mayor Mike Myatt expressed his concern that visitor parking relief from 31 to 12 was being requested.

Mayor Luke Charbonneau said that, regardless of the proposed application, any decision when it comes to zoning extends forever. “Our key consideration has to be whether it is appropriate to have the density and parking relief not just for this development but all future development on-site.”

He also questioned that fact that zoning requires 90 units/gross hectare in a zone 4 (high density) area but that the parcel in question for the proposed development restricted use to 36 dwelling units.  “Why is this restriction here?”

It appeared that no one could answer the question.  The developer’s planning consultant Ron Davidson said that he had enquired of town staff but no-one seemed to know why the restriction was in place.

Jay Pausner, Supervisor Economic Development, confirmed that he also didn’t know why the restriction was in place but that it had probably been the previous owner, who had drafted it.

“This restriction is notable and was intentionally done for some reason,” said Mayor Charbonneau.  I want staff to find out if there is a reason for the restriction.”

To read the full presentation to the Planning Committee, CLICK HERE.

For more information, or for a decision, contact or phone the County.