Plan for 39- and 30-storey residential buildings in Hamilton rejected and appealed


Published October 5, 2023 at 3:50 pm

117 jackson street east hamilton

A proposal for two mixed-use residential towers in Hamilton was rejected but there are hopes the much-needed development can be revived.

The two towers, proposed for 117 Jackson St. E., would be 39- and 30-storeys with 741 residential units and 297 square metres of commercial floor area on the lower level.

The property is currently a parking lot.

The application was first received in December of 2022 and there was a community meeting in March.

While the developer has met public meeting requirements, Hamilton Ward 2 Councillor Cameron Kroetsch said the public meeting was poorly attended with only one community member. Kroetsch indicated there should be more public consultation given the many developments proposed for the Corktown area.

The development is desperately needed, said Councillor John-Paul Danko. This intensification and density is needed to avoid urban sprawl.

“It is the kind of major infill development we need in the downtown core,” said Danko at the Planning Committee on Oct. 3.

City planners recommended denying the proposal and the developers appealed to the Ontario Land Tribunal for non-decision in September. The Ontario Land Tribunal can override municipal decisions.

Planners don’t oppose development on the property but recommended denying the project for several reasons.

Building heights for this property are restricted to 89 to 93 metres, and the developers are proposing 96 to 122 metres. The building base height proposed is 16 metres up from 7.5 metres permitted for this property.

The height of the proposed buildings would exceed the escarpment and cast shadows on Prince’s Square, 50 Main St. E., a primary gathering space, said city planner Daniel Barnett at the Oct. 3 Planning Meeting.

Both buildings would exceed the height of the escarpment, Barnett added.

117 jackson street east hamilton

The developers were working on a resubmission over the summer but before they could get it ready the city came forward with a recommendation to deny the proposal, said David Falletta, a planner with Bousfields who is handling the application on behalf of the developer.

The resubmission would have addressed many of the city’s issues.

“We were a bit frustrated to hear the application was being brought forward to a planning committee,” Falletta said.

The location is great for intensification as the property is large and “under-utilized” with great access to transit, said Falletta.

Falletta said they want to continue to work with the city on the application but that will likely be done at the Ontario Land Tribunal.

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