Residents of Norview Lodge in Simcoe may soon have new neighbours.
Norfolk County has received a development application which – if approved – will bring an entirely new neighbourhood to vacant land at the south end of Rob Blake Way.
The application has been filed by Warren D. Sinclair Construction Ltd. of Kitchener. The developer wants to build a five-storey, 48-unit apartment building and 61 townhouses on 9.5 acres adjacent to the south-west corner of the county’s long-term care facility.
The developer is represented by the planning consulting firm IBI Group of Hamilton.
In his justification report, IBI senior planner David Galbraith says there is much to recommend the proposal. This includes a development that is consistent with provincial planning policies, intensification of development within the urban boundary of Simcoe, a mix of housing options and densities, the efficient use of infrastructure and municipal services, and environmental sustainability.
With regard to the latter, Norfolk planner Jennifer Catarino says the developer’s objective is to create as small an environmental footprint as possible.
“The townhouse development is contemplated as a `net zero’ development and is aiming to achieve a high standard of environmental sustainability,” Catarino says in her report to council.
“The apartment development is also anticipated to achieve a similar level of environmental sustainability.”
The proposed five-storey apartment building is symptomatic of a growing trend in Simcoe of developers wishing to build up as well as out. As a result, shadowing issues in traditional low-rise neighbourhoods are an increasing subject of discussion at Norfolk’s public hearing committee.
In her report, Catarino says the developer’s plan is to keep the apartment building sufficiently distant from Norview so that shadowing is not an issue at any time of the year.
Sinclair Construction has filed a complete application. The package includes an archaeological site assessment, a concept plan, a draft plan of condominium, an environmental impact study, a servicing report, a geotechnical report, a planning justification report, a stormwater management plan, and a traffic-impact study.
Catarino notes that Norfolk’s planning department has yet to hear any public feedback regarding the proposal. The Sinclair project is one of several housing applications on the agenda of Tuesday’s council meeting.
The June 1 hearing was for the purposes of fielding public input and concerns regarding items on the agenda. It also provides an opportunity for members of Norfolk council to get answers to any questions they may have.