A proposed 24-unit apartment in Picton crossed another hurdle Thursday.
At their Aug. 23 committee-of-the-whole meeting, councillors supported a motion to approve a site plan and site plan agreement for the 3 Spring St. development and remove a holding symbol on the property. The motion and a bylaw to authorize the agreement will come forward to council at their next meeting on Aug. 28.
Council approved a zoning bylaw amendment for the three-storey development back in May to allow it to move forward with a reduced interior side yard, reduced maximum landscape coverage, and increased unit density to 75 units per net hectare.
A staff report presented to committee Thursday says County staff reviewed the proposed site plan drawings and site plan control agreement and ensured items such as lot grading and stormwater management, municipal servicing, signage and lighting, parking, entrances and exits and compliance to County zoning were all appropriately addressed.
The report says the Picton Secondary Plan establishes a target maximum density of 25 units per net hectare, but allows for increased density in exchange for community benefits under Section 37 of the Planning Act, referred to as density bonusing. Under the density bonusing agreement for the development, the owner has agreed to pay the municipality $7,500 to be used for the provision of affordable housing. The owner has also agreed to replace the entirety of the existing four-inch water main that spans from 14 Spring St. to West Mary Street with a new 10-inch main.
“Under the Planning Act in exchange for allowing a greater number of units on the property, which is an increase in density, the County is able to obtain some community works,” said engineering, development and works commissioner Robert McAuley. “In this case what the arrangement is is the applicant will pay the County $7,500 toward its affordable housing initiatives in exchange for the increased density that is being permitted on the property.”
McAuley said the agreements are common in other municipalities, but the County hasn’t entered into such an agreement before.