Speaking with a few developers this is how they view development projects:
- Developers purchase property based on risk = reward; nevertheless, most developers didn’t want to bid on this project due to the obvious disruption of a long-time, stable community and the inherent risk of push-back from the neighbourhood.
- They know it can take years before they get their investment back.
- In the Glenway example the rumoured $9.9MM acquisition price, if true, was a very good deal and allows Kerbel (ie. Marianneville Developments) to be patient.
- Glenway has a lot of infrastructure issues that complicate a development project: not in accordance to the Town’s Official Plan, sewage allocation and mid-term availability, traffic concerns, neighbourhood resistance ETC. In the words of one developer, “Glenway is messy”.
- Even a much smaller development project could bring a profit.
- They recommended that we, as a community group, need to have official, legal representation in order to ‘play in the same game’ as the developer when this inevitably goes to the OMB – regardless of whether the Town also will have legal representation.
Biggest planning issues for re-development:
- Sewage allocation (new capacity comes on-line in 2018/2020). Town controls this allocation regardless of OMB decision, and they would prioritize allocation to projects approved within the approved Official Plan.
- Traffic. Major congestion at all entrance/exit points. Alex Doner and Crossland Gate become what Millard is today. Millard becomes busy bypass alternative to Yonge or Davis. Davis Drive between Bathurst and Eagle should be avoided altogether. Development at the corner of Bathurst and Yonge will further congest and complicate traffic volume and neighbourhood access issues.
- York Regional District School Board has put a requirement for a new elementary school as part of re-development plan. Marianneville Developments has challenged the Board already as it is a major disruption to the proposal already submitted.
Town’s Perspective of Development
- The Mayor, the Regional Councillor and the Ward Councillor all reiterated their opposition to this proposal. It is a) Contrary to the Official Plan’s (OP) designation of these lands as open green space; b) Not required to meet provincial growth targets set for Newmarket; c) NOT NECESSARY AND NOT APPROVED.
- Town does not make any financial gain from development dollars versus cost of infrastructure; ie. development charges do not pay adequately for growth, therefore the burden inevitably falls on the local taxpayer.
- Town does not make any financial gain from new home tax revenue versus services provided.
- OP was created using our tax dollars and considerable input from Newmarket residents It conforms to the York Region Plan and Provincial Legislation and has been approved by all 3 levels of government.
- Town has committed to defend its OP all the way to the OMB. Newmarket residents, not developers, should decide our community’s future through our Official Plan.
- The Councillors in attendance (John Taylor, Chris Emanuel) have committed to helping us raise funds.
The Glenway Preservation Association is on track
- Our objective is to win at the OMB. Re-development of Glenway is NOT a done deal!
- We have researched the issues and understand how they impact our neighbourhood, quality of lifestyle and planning principles.
- We have verbal commitments from Town Council to defend its OP and oppose development of Glenway.
- Formal commitments from each member of the Town Council will be part of public interviews we are conducting before the end of the year.
- We require legal and planning expertise to most effectively present our case at the OMB. We have met with several experts and will short list before January.
- We stated our need for financial support of no less than $150,000 to fund our fight at the OMB. The vast majority of the 300 residents made a show of hands to provide an initial pledge of $250. 50 people pledged more than $15,000 that night with over 100 more taking pledge forms home. The Town is looking at contributing and Regional Councillor Taylor is looking to personally contribute. We have had a continuous stream of email support since adding to this support. We will put together a secure process whereby you can contribute either in lump-sum or on a ‘pay monthly’ approach depending upon your preference.
- THE STATUTORY PUBLIC MEETING WITH THE DEVELOPER IS TENTATIVELY SCHEDULED FOR JAN. 7th. We are looking for your presence at that meeting to help the community voice its disagreement over this proposal!
- We have a strategic plan and have many tasks to complete before this January 7th public Town meeting. We will be following up with residents on these many items and how they can help.