Despite the small meeting room, there was a great resident turn-out for the Committee of Adjustment public meeting concerning #52 Garden Drive!
The property owner intends to tear down the existing building and replace it with a new 16.85m x 23.012m (55x75ft) two-storey dwelling. This is an older neighbourhood filled with quaint (small) one-storey bungalows with single car garages, or none at all. The proposed home will be approximately twice the depth of surrounding homes (average 10m) and the only one on that end of Garden Drive with two-storeys.
While the builder countered that the second storey portion (700 sq ft) will only be above the (large) double garage at the front of the property, it will change the character of the neighbourhood and Planning Staff recommended for a variety of reasons that the application be denied. The Committee of Adjustment chair noted that neighbourhoods are changing and infill development can only go up and that this application is the first of many and are a sign of the times that people will need to get used to.
Residents voiced their concern that the development would be similar to a “monster home” compared to the others on the street. There were cordial calls for the builder to try to rework the design to one-storey and modify/increase the depth to accommodate some of the square footage removed from above the garage. It was suggested that perhaps the large 400 sq ft covered porch at the back of the home could be converted to usable space in-lieu of the second storey and a smaller outdoor amenity area be provided. The builder and homeowners were not agreeable to removing the second storey but would consider a small reduction to the lot coverage (from 35% to 32%, where the zoning maximum is 25%).
The Committee of Adjustment passed a motion to defer back to the homeowners to attempt a rework of the design to address the issues of height and lot coverage to be more palatable to the neighbourhood.
It will be brought back to Committee of Adjustment on Tuesday, June 13 at 7:00 PM. As always, members of the public are welcome to attend.