Residents in the Orchard area of Burlington have launched an appeal of Burlington city council’s decision to approve a townhouse development at 5219 Upper Middle Rd and 2004-2005 Georgina Crt. with access through the Georgina Crt/Rome neighbourhood. The appeal will be decided by the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal, successor to the Ontario Municipal Board.
Council approved the development in a 6-1 vote (I did not support) on July 16, over objections of residents who spoke at the meeting. Residents supported townhouses only if access could be provided off of Upper Middle, which is a Regional Road. Regional staff denied access to the road, and it would require a Regional Council vote to override that decision. When it became clear Regional Council could vote to allow access, (the night before council), the clock had run on any meaningful opportunity to bring a motion.
The concerns raised by residents, and included in their appeal letter, include:
- Development should be accessed via Upper Middle Road via the existing turn lane and
entrance that exists. It was noted that ALL other townhome developments built within
the Orchard community are accessed from the main artery roads and not from within
existing developed areas. Upper Middle Road access eliminated all residents’ concerns
and was the preferred option from the developer as well. Option was never tabled as a
discussion item with the Halton Regional Council.
- Increased traffic is a safety concern. Traffic study submitted as part of the application
has questionable validity, it was completed during a short holiday week and did not
represent the daily traffic observed in the neighbourhood. 3rd party traffic engineers
consulted raised similar concerns. It was also noted that the extremely limited parking
locations within the Rome Crescent/Georgina Court area will also increase traffic flow.
- Privacy and sun blockage, 3 story townhouses provide inadequate privacy for neighbours
and blocks a substantial portion of the daily sunlight for the homes along Rome
- Inadequate park space, due to the distance to the nearest park space in the Orchard
Community neighbourhood kids play together on the street which will be a safety concern
with the additional traffic. City Staff inaccurately represented the distance to parks to
justify taking cash in lieu of a park within the proposed development.
- Inadequate visitor parking, City Official parking standards require 7 parking spaces for the
townhouse complex, approved plans have 4 plus 1 accessible space which will further
impact the expected parking issues throughout the neighbourhood.
- Parking, proposed homes do not have space for sheds or storage which impacts the
potential for garage parking. With all 20 proposed homes being single car driveway
homes, as we see in other areas around Burlington, there will be excessive overflow
parking to the streets. Once development is built as proposed there will be zero spaces
for street parking for any visitors for the existing and new freehold homes on Georgina
- Density, the population of the Rome Crescent/Georgina Court will increase by 50% but
that density will be focused into a lot of land roughly 20% of the size of the
Rome/Georgina area and is concentrated at the end of a Court.
In conclusion, the residents note: “The proposal fails to satisfy the policies regarding compatibility and residential intensification policies and, therefore, is not consistent with Official Plan policies and does not represent good planning.”
Read the appeal document: Letter of Appeal – 5219 Upper Middle Road and 2004-2005 Georgina Court R2
Read the supporting studies and staff report on this project: 5219 Upper Middle/2004-5 Georgina
My Take: I did not support the development as proposed with access through Georgina Court. I too would have supported a townhouse project with access off of Upper Middle, or a scaled back single/semi project with access into Georgina Crt.