July 27, 2020
I have seen the plans for new development on the north section of Armour Road and find it very difficult to understand how Peterborough Council good approve such a development.
It is completely inconsistent with the surrounding area. A 7 story building on Armour Road. No other buildings in the northern part of East City is higher than 3 stories. In addition another development with 2 buildings of 6 stories in height.
How City Council could approve such a development is just beyond comprehension. In addition there is only one road through this part of East City with no opportunity to provide additional through traffic. There is already a problem at the north end of Armour Road.
How a city planner could allow such developments defies all logic. It is my expectation that City Council will come to realize these projects as currently proposed are not in the best interests of the residents in East City.
Sober second thought is always better in decision making. My expectation is that City Council will in fact realize this is not the path to follow.
July 23, 2020
I lived for over 20 years at Frances Stewart Rd. The house I resided in has a direct sightline toward the proposed 7 storey structure on Cunningham and Amour. My mayor concern is with the height of the structure. Anything above 4 storeys destroys the natural pattern of development within the area. The intrusion of that building over the natural skyline is simply put, extreme. In fact it totally destroys the established harmony of all the developments within the area.
Council has to ask themselves are serious questions here: ” Are we responsible for a harmonized development of the city? Are we responsible for the beauty and attraction of the city? ” If you don’t think this is important issue I suggest you lack the vision for the future of the city. Up till now our city has been unique in location, attractive living, and charm. Do not jeopardize all this due to haphazardous further development.
It all comes down to this: “Is Council responsible for the future development of the city or do they abdicate that responsibility to the individual developer and his financial interest?”
July 12, 2020
Good morning Mayor Therrien
It is our belief that more thought has to be put into both proposed developments along Armour Road.
The road is only two lanes and already sees a legion of school buses twice a day to our high school. It is a road block in the morning and again mid afternoon.
The University requires a traffic officer to keep the vehicles moving in the morning.
There are only two ways off Armour Road, Parkhill and Nassau Mills. Both get very congested with the current level of traffic yet it appears that the City is prepared to authorize another possible 600 vehicles with these developments.
We have always maintained that everything in Peterborough is only 15 minutes away but if we have to exit Armour Road during the peak times we have to double our expectations.
The height of the proposed high rise buildings at Cunningham as well as the density indicated near Francis Steward does not fit the existing neighbourhood.
Obviously money talks and the tax revenue must be enticing but lets put people first. Lets have cohesive planning not just fill the available space to a maximum capacity.
Keep Peterborough central desirable to the people who live and bought here in good faith.
Keep the high density to the perimeters where people purchase new homes and understand the proposed conditions.
Susan and Steve Davies 28-1121 Armour Road
July 6, 2020
City of Peterborough zoning bylaw meeting
File number O1902 and Z1909
Submitted by: Greg and Janis O’Heron, 1149 Armour Rd
Thank you for giving us the opportunity to voice our opposition to the re-zoning of the subject lands known as 1176 and 1182 Armour Rd. As we are a direct neighbour to the subject property, just 2 houses to the south for the past 23 years, we believe we have a vested interest in helping to maintain our unique community character while building a positive and vital future. We have studied the Auburn North secondary land use plan and schedule N, of the official plan and would like to voice the following 5 concerns:
- Loss of neighborhood commercial site
- High density Infill
- Road, traffic and safety
- Future implications
One of the most important objectives of the Auburn North secondary plan as stated 10.4.2.2 is to protect the unique natural environment of the Auburn north planning area including the Otonabee river and Thompson Creek corridor by establishing buffer zones along water courses and promoting informal passive recreation opportunities. In addition, the developmental policies stated in 10.4.3.3 mentions adjustments can be made…, provided the general intent and purpose of the plan is maintained.
We strongly believe that the purpose of the Auburn corridor plan is to maintain the unique natural setting and to preserve the original flowing landscape between river and creek. We often see deer and other wildlife crossing between this section of Armour road as it is the shortest route for accessing the river in this area. The close proximity to the creek by this massive structure will certainly impact the shade and balance along the river bed.
- Loss of neighborhood commercial site
The second objective in the Auburn North plan as referenced in 10.4.2.1 is to establish a residential community including those uses which are integral to and supporting environment. And in addition the developmental priority mentions in 10.4.3.9 the commercial block located at the north east corner of Armour Road and the new collector street can develop as a local commercial block but will have the potential to become a neighborhood commercial site.
We strongly believe our community would greatly benefit the use of a neighborhood plaza to support our families with practical services and reduce transport outside of our boundaries. We have viewed the signage at this intersection for well over 5 years suggesting commercial space was coming. The importance of such a plaza is integral to building a strong community.
- High density infill
The official plan section 22.214.171.124.3 outlines the Infill Housing as follows: Infill housing is housing which is developed on vacant land in an existing residential area which makes use of existing infrastructure and has a form and scale compatible with the surrounding area. The first point mentions that the guidelines are to ensure that infill housing projects are sensitive to the scale and physical characteristics of development in the surrounding neighborhood. The second point mentions that infill housing should be sensitive to the continuity of the existing residential street scape.
In addition, the official plan quotes high density scale to be considered as in point 126.96.36.199.2.3 High density developments shall be cited so as to minimize their effect on neighboring lower density residential land uses particularly with regard to traffic generation reduction of sunlight and the views presently enjoyed by neighboring residence.
Given these 3 points from the official plan, we believe the subject site is far too close to existing low density residents and would not compliment the physical characteristics of our neighborhood. Not to mention that the subject site is only 2 doors down from an historic site which we believe the apartment would interfere from the preservation of the historical landmark and landscape setting. Fig A.
A 7 storey apartment would be out of place and would tower over our current landscape causing unsightly parking lot and modern architecture that is unsuited, plus would obstruct the view of Thompson creek natural beauty. In addition, we note the future Auburn North subdivision will have plenty opportunities to infill medium density where existing residents won’t be a factor.
- Road, traffic and safety
The first point of concern surrounds the lack of arterial road. The Auburn North plan sites objective 10.4.2.4 which is to establish a realigned North/South Arterial Street (Armour Road) through the planning area in order to resolve access limitations and enhance developmental potential. And further in the development policies point 10.4.3.2 states development of the planning area will proceed in a logical sequence having regard for the adequacy of the street System.
Proceeding with a high density apartment prior to the realignment of Armour Road will result in increased volume to the north at Nassau bridge where we already have major traffic flow issues, and to the south at the Parkhill intersection where morning congestion is a constant pain point.
The second concern in this area is about public safety. In the official plan, section 5.5.4 states The City will require that development proposals be designed to facilitate for easy access to public transit by:
c) requiring that sidewalks and other pedestrian facilities connect major traffic generators to public transit.
There is already a very obvious lack of sidewalks and curbs along Armour Rd for current residents to ensure safe passage to public transit. We would strongly urge that a logical first step in any development in this area first addresses the current sidewalk situation connecting existing sidewalks between Armour at 1149 up to the Cunningham entrance at a minimum. See Fig B.
- Future implications
On page 6 of the 26 page detailed report it mentions The Growth Plan requires municipalities to focus growth within the delineated Built-up areas to support the achievement of communities that feature a diverse mix of land uses convenient access to local stores services transportation options and public service facilities .
This is the main, issue- we don’t have convenient access to local stores or public services. We are an island!
Looking at this one project before council in isolation would be foolish and detrimental to the overall official plan. However, there is also other very large plans just south on Armour road at TASS becoming evident that must be factored into the total incremental traffic volume and community impact.
We must ensure the vision and integrity of our official plan is not steamrolled for profiteering and carelessness. The official plan allows for harmonization of current residents with reasonable infilling of new and diverse land uses to achieve a prosperous future for all Peterborough citizens.
In summary, we recommend the re-zoning of the subject site be denied and that we continue to leverage the official plan as set out by city professional planners. Furthermore, that any development along Armour Road must coincide with the reconstruction and realignment of Armour Road and that any developers be forced to offset costs to pay for the Class Environment Assessment required to move the Auburn North corridor from vision to reality.
To Peterborough City Council
July 15, 2020
Dear Diane, Keith, Gary, Caroline, Henry, Don, Kemi, Dean, Andrew, Stephen, Kim, and Lesley
My husband and I strongly oppose the rezoning and proposed Parkview development of the land at Cunningham and Armour. It is definitely NOT in line with the character of this community. We live in River Park Village, a quiet community of 41 condo bungalows. We love living here with the peace and quietness, surrounded by many green spaces, not “wastelands”, and enjoy watching Nature. Along Armour Road there are many bungalows, some two story family homes and a few three storey apartment buildings. The present zoning here of the Official Plan is good.
We understood this land was going to be developed for commercial use. Indeed the billboard still says “Future Commercial Development” and the picture shows one level of offices/store with one level of apartments above. FOUR WEEKS AGO, we heard that a 7 storey apartment building was to be approved on that site! This would be totally out of character with all the buildings in this area between Parkhill Road and Nassau Road. It seems that this development has been in the works for over a year, yet the sign for “Commercial Development” has been left up. The deceit of Parkview Homes is deporable!!
My husband and I listened to the Council meeting a week ago. We thank Keith and Gary for speaking against the proposal and reflecting the feelings of the residents who have elected them. Ms. Zippel spoke about the Thompson Creek buffer and the water run-off in this area. These are very serious issues for us too. Thank You, Ms. Zippel! We appreciated Ms. Akapo voting against the proposal. We are most disappointed that the Mayor and the remaining councillors are totally ignoring the Official Plan and the concerns of the residents in the area, regarding this proposed rezoning and development.
Armour Road is not a straight, four lane highway like Lansdowne Street. At certain hours of the day when TASS and Trent are in session, the queues of traffic are considerable, hence the police directing traffic at Nassau. Adding many more cars from this proposed Parkview development will increase the problems. There are no food stores, hardware stores or pharmacies in the area, so people will drive.
Planned parking spaces for the cars at the Cunningham 7 storey development are inadequate. Most couples need a car each, as they go separate ways to work. Cycling is a dangerous option for most people during the winter months. Community gardens cannot legally be built on the buffer land to the creek. Parking spaces would have to be used. Where will all the extra cars park?
Please be responsible, uphold the Official Plan and vote against this Parkview proposal to rezone the property at Armour and Cunningham.
Sincerely, Ann Siddell
June 22, 2020
As home owners living just north of Thomas A. Stewart SS on Armour Road for over 20 years, we would like to raise concerns on the proposed subdivision before city councilors. Over the years we have seen much growth on Francis Stewart, Cunningham, Franmore and many condos by the Peterborough Golf course. This section of Armour Rd is mainly residential with older single dwellings, 2-3 story apartments and many 1 story retirement condos surrounded by lots of green space.
Our first concern pertains to traffic. The proposed plan would create 248 total new dwellings which would estimate close to another 500 cars heading either north to Trent or south to Parkhill each day. There are limited options to disperse traffic in this section of Armour Rd, which is basically an island between the canal and Otonabee River. The current infrastructure, including River Rd and the 2 bridges at Trent and Parkhill are barely getting us by today. We have major morning congestion at Parkhill and Armour intersection and horrendous parking issues during TASS special events. To the north at Trent University, is another highly congested area with known issues that this new project will only magnify.
Our second and more alarming issue has to do with the high density units being planned. The proposed plan shows 17 multi dwelling condos plus 2 – 6 floor apartment buildings squeezed into an area that was originally planned to hold 50 single homes. A crucial element that is lacking from the plan is a storm water management allowance. How is that? Do we not have subdivision regulations that require environmental controls such as this?
We have seen time after time, where we add in these subdivisions and provide no infrastructure. Case in point is Cunningham, with no turn lane off Armour Rd. Not even sidewalks along adjacent Armour Rd to reach it. Pedestrians taking city transportation have to walk on the shoulder of the busy road to reach the Cunningham entry.
We respectfully plead to you to NOT approve this plan as set out. We are all for helping with housing in Peterborough, but this charming neighborhood will absolutely be destroyed by this project as suggested.
Thank you for your service to Peterborough and continued work to harmonize our community.
Greg and Janis O’Heron
June 12, 2020
As I went by the corner of Armour and Cunningham early Saturday morning I could not help but stop and spend a couple of minutes looking at the sign for a future commercial development. The sign pictured an artist rendition of a small neighbourhood plaza. I closed my eyes and the plaza disappeared. All I saw in my mind was a seven storey, seventy-six unit brick of a building that dominated the skyline and destroyed the rural respect for nature of the surrounding community.
The construction of this seven storey brick requires re-zoning of the site. Any re-zoning required for an infill development has three interested parties. They are the developer, the local community, and the elected city council. In this case the developer has decided to request a re-zoning to allow for a high density residential structure. This is a planned intensification. The local community, aware and accepting of development, cannot rationalize the placement of this high density brick of a building. All the local residents want is for the development to be reasonable and to respect what is already there. The final outcome of the re-zoning application will fall on the shoulders of the elected city council. The purpose of council is to represent the local residents and to consider the future of the city. It is the duty of council to critically review the proposed infill development and accept only what they feel is appropriate at this time for that infill location.
It is council’s responsibility to be firm yet fair with respect to any proposed infill development. If a developer refuses to make what council and the local community consider appropriate adjustments to a proposed plan then council must reject that proposed plan. It is my understanding that an adjustment to the infill development plan was put forward. The adjustment was to reduce the number of storeys from seven to five. Seems more than fair to me. The proposed adjustment was dismissed by the developer’s planner. I would not allow more than three storeys at that location because of the time in which we live and to be respectfull to the surrounding community. Anyway, council must determine the outcome.
There are two additional items to consider. The first is process. Any high density infill development that depends on re-zoning requires a great deal of reflection and discussion and debate. Such a thoughtful process takes much time and a great many face-to-face interactions. This process will not occur during this time of Covid-19. It is my opinion that high density infill developments that require re-zoning should not be considered at this time as the re-zoning proposal cannot be properly explored.
The second additional concern is probably most important. Re-zoning that allows for high density residential construction is not the direction smaller urban centers should be moving. The concept of urban intensification should be considered yesterday’s urban planning. Today there must be a new focus. Today the focus of any zoning must include “zoning for social distance.” The proposed seven storey, seventy-six unit brick of a building fails miserably in this context. This blatant lack of concern for residential health and safety clearly directs the re-zoning request be rejected.
It is time for Peterborough’s city council to be firm. The seven storey brick that is being proposed by the developer does not fit the location. A more than fair adjustment to limit the planned intensification of the re-zoning proposal has been rejected. The current pandemic restricts proper discussion and debate. There is no consideration of “zoning for social distance.” The proposal is clearly inappropriate for this time and for that location. It is time to reject this application for re-zoning.
Rejection of the re-zoning application will shift the decision making process back to the the developer. The developer will have three options. They can apply for re-zoning with a plan incorporating proposed adjustments put forward by council and local residents, they can leave the land vacant, or they can sell the land. It will be their choice.
For your consideration
To Maryam Monsef MP for Peterborough, Diane Therrien the Mayor and all of the councillors for Peterborough :
You may have seen the document labelled “Alarming Development” that I have attached. This proposed development is indeed alarming for all of the reasons that are mentioned in the attachment. A great many of the residents are extremely upset with the size and proportion of this development in this area. It is understandable that there is a need for more housing in Peterborough but there is no place for the density of housing that this development will bring to this area. The type of housing is not suitable for this area.
If this project is approved as proposed, there will be an enormous increase in the amount of traffic on Armour Road, add this traffic to the student traffic at TASS school ( almost every student drives a vehicle), there is the traffic from students at the university (already the traffic at the bridge over the Otonabee river is horrendous in the morning),
All this plus the regular traffic.
Please reconsider this decision, it is not practical and if it goes ahead it will destroy the area and the beauty of the trails. By all means build housing on the land but not at the proposed density. If you take a look at all of the housing in this area you will see how out of place this development is.
Yours faithfully Michael Edwards.
Note : Original comments were sent by email – February 1St , 2020
Sent To: Councillors Riel & Baldwin and Ms. Caroline Kimble, Land Use Planner
I am following up on the meeting held mid last week concerning the proposed development north of TASSS on the west side of Armour Road. Like many of the attendees I was quite surprised by just how intensive the developers proposed project was considering the surrounding community.
My comments are as follows:
1) I know developers will sometimes reach for the stars, when their actual intent is to settle for the moon, however this is quite an ambitious overreach even given that practice. The project as outlined would not just be a change from an R1 zoning not just to an R5 status but to a highly modified version – an “R5 on steroids”. The density, coverage, setback and height rules are being more than just stretched in the current proposal they are being crushed.
2) One resident, who is an architect, and was present at the meeting was correct in observing that due to steep grade of the land under consideration the height of the two tallest towers would actually be eight stories – six stories on top of two stories of parking – these would be right at the south end of the R1 homes on Ashdale West.
3) Clearly there was a broad consensus of the community members present that one of the key concerns revolved around traffic. Introducing several hundred more residents and the implied cars plus all the connected delivery and service vehicles will only add to the severe challenges already existing on Armour Road, as the high school’s experience over the last year demonstrates. At a minimum, even for a reduced size of development, a traffic light is a necessity. Though the most logical outcome of a light at Frances Stewart Road would be to funnel all access and egress to the two Ashdales – a solution that I recognize would have all current Ashdale residents out with the proverbial “pitchforks and torches”- I leave it to better planners than I to figure out a workable solution to that challenge. Interestingly the development and design people [of the developer] were a bit cagey about whether a traffic study has actually been done for this project. I recognize that a comprehensive East City study is contemplated but at a minimum there must be better focused information on Armour Road traffic patterns to find a solution to the challenges this development would create.
4) If the intent is indeed to have some of the proposed units family friendly has consideration been given to school access as I understand TASSS is already at capacity and the elementary school would seem to involve more busing than just that for TASSS.
5) Finally I would share the widely held opinion that this level and style of development is out of keeping with the current community.