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It isn’t often that Toronto is presented with the opportunity to redevelop large swaths of land in one shot. The Honest Ed’s redevelopment, aka Mirvish Village was the most recent large site development in the city. Now, there are two new sites coming down the pipeline.

The first is Canada Square at Yonge and Eglinton, which is already fairly developed, but where developer Oxford is looking to redevelop the large site. A forthcoming blog post will tackle that exciting plan.

The second, and the focus of this post is 2280 Dundas Street West. The large 10 acre site currently holds a Loblaws, LCBO and some smaller retail units. It also

The zoning in these areas is certainly restricted. 2280 Dundas West is currently zoned under the midrise corridor zones, but I am not sure if the site itself has distinct and unique zoning. Let’s hope so because it would be an absolute shame if the entire 10 acre site had a peak of 12 stories!

My request to city planning is straightforward – let the applicants amend the zoning with their applications if the above zoned heights include all two, three, or four-bedroom units. That is to say, let the developers build as high as they like, if we get large units. In my opinion, this sort of trade-off is good for affordability and helps create more complete communities.

Think about it, how often do you see a new building application along the lines of 300 units – 25 bachelor, 175 one-bedroom, 50 two-bedroom, 25-three bedroom. I totally made those numbers up, but this is not out of the ordinary for Toronto condos/apartments. And why? Well, the developer’s ultimate goal is to make money, and due to restrictive floor plate zoning bylaws, towers need to include a large percentage of one bedroom units.

Let’s shake that by letting 2280 Dundas West go high, 40, 50, or even 60 stories – with the requirement that any units above the current zoning height consist of multi-bedroom units.

This is one of the best and most appropriate places for large development. It is close to a subway station which also features two streetcar routes, and is close to a GO and UP Express station. Bring on 1,000 units! Plus, let’s hope for a sizeable chunk of office space here as well.

I will be making this point at the community consultation on June 14 if possible, and will report back if there are specifics given at the June 14 meeting.

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