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Council approves six-storey apartment building on College Avenue

Project to replace current College Place Retirement Residence and two-storey home

A new six-storey, 110-unit apartment building is coming to College Avenue, with council unanimously approving the required official plan and zoning amendments on Monday.

“We believe this project will be a positive change,” said Hugh Handy of GSP Group, on behalf of the applicant, Pinemount Developments. “Pinemount is excited about this project.”

The 1.68-acre property at 166 and 178 College Ave. W. sits on the south side of the road, between Scottsdale Drive and Edinburgh Road South. It’s currently home to the one-storey College Place Retirement Residence and a two-storey house with a detached garage.

Handy noted Precision Health Group currently leases space for the retirement home, but that’s set to expire in October and efforts are underway to relocate residents to other facilities.

In approving the requested official plan amendments, council changed the property’s designations from low and medium density to high density. Several site-specific zoning amendments were also made.

Among them is an increase in density (to 180 units per hectare from 150) and a reduction from 169 parking spaces to 133 – 78 underground and at 55 surface level – as well as lessened common amenity areas and landscaped open space.

Though the motions received unanimous council support, it wasn’t entirely smooth sailing for the project. Councillors Leanne Caron and Phil Allt raised questions about the inclusion of environmentally friendly technologies that would help the project to be carbon neutral.

Handy said those efforts will be given more thought during the detailed design phase.

Nearby resident Joshua Redwood also raised concerns about the impact on seniors at the home, questioning whether they’d been “properly consulted” on the plan.

In response, the city’s senior development planner, Lindsay Sulatycki, noted the application has been around for “a couple years now.”

A previous application sought to include 116 units in the building, six more than was approved.

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Richard Vivian

About the Author: Richard Vivian

Richard Vivian is an award-winning journalist and longtime Guelph resident. He joined the GuelphToday team as assistant editor in 2020, largely covering municipal matters and general assignment duties
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