By July 1 all site plan control application approvals would be delegated to City staff
The City’s Planning Committee today endorsed an approach to developing a new Zoning By-law for Ottawa. Council endorsed a new Official Plan for Ottawa in 2021, with ambitious targets for intensification. Developing that new by-law will be critical to encourage the construction of more housing units as well as the development of 15-minute neighbourhoods.
The proposed objectives and strategies were informed by a review of best practices for zoning, completed last year. Staff would use the approach to introduce progressive zoning provisions as they develop an efficient, effective and equitable new Zoning By-law over the next three years.
A revised work plan, also approved today, would see a first draft of the new by-law released in Q3 2023, a second draft in Q3 2024 and the final draft for Council approval in Q2 2025. The new Zoning By-law will require extensive community engagement, and the approach outlines a robust public consultation process for each of those major milestones. Public consultations would begin this summer with the release of a series of discussion papers.
The Province’s Bill 109, More Homes for Everyone Act, received royal assent in April, requiring the City to make changes to several of its processes around the review of development applications. By July 1, all site plan control application approvals would be delegated to City staff, removing Council’s authority to approve such applications. The proposed changes are intended to speed up the development review process to get housing developments started more quickly. The Committee also approved extra staffing resources, to support development application review and further improve timelines.
Staff will bring forward additional reports in the next year recommending further changes to site plan control, the Zoning By-law, planning approvals, development charges, heritage matters and planning appeals, all to ensure the City remains compliant with provincial legislation.
Larga Baffin could soon build a six-storey residential care facility on Hunt Club Road east of Albion Road after the Committee approved Official Plan and zoning amendments for the facility. The overall concept would see the facility built facing Hunt Club Road and a future, four-storey residential building to the south, along Sieveright Avenue.
The organization provides accommodation and transportation services to residents from the Baffin Region of Nunavut seeking medical services in Ottawa. The new facility would be closer to the airport and medical services than their current location, and would increase capacity from 195 to 350 patients and their travel companions.
The Committee also approved a public realm plan for Stittsville Main Street. The plan would guide upgrades to walking, cycling and transit facilities, including improvements to infrastructure and street furniture along with complete-street elements, such as accessible sidewalks, cycle tracks and bus stops with shelters. Enhanced landscaping, protected intersections and new pedestrian lights are also included. While there is no immediate plan to begin work, having an approved plan would ensure work could begin when funding is identified.
Recommendations from today’s meeting will rise to Council on Wednesday, July 6.