July 9, 2018 9:31 pm
Updated: July 10, 2018 12:27 am

Edmonton City Council approves controversial Holyrood development

WATCH ABOVE: Supporters and opponents of a controversial redevelopment proposal in Holyrood are having their say at Edmonton City Hall on Monday. Quinn Ohler reports.

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After three different designs were proposed for the redevelopment of a site in Holyrood, each of which were rejected by the City of Edmonton’s design committee, city councillors voted to approve the latest version of Regency Development’s vision for the east Edmonton site on Monday evening.

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The Holyrood Gardens proposal to redevelop 8310 and 8311 on 93 Avenue into hundreds of residences housed in several buildings was first referred back to administration by council in November so planners could look at how to mitigate traffic backing up into the community, to reconsider the height and shape of the buildings and then to refer a revised proposal to the Edmonton Design Committee for review.

READ MORE: Holyrood Gardens is back with changes but neighbours still aren’t pleased

Watch below: In June 2018, Kim Smith filed this report about a contentious development proposed for Holyrood that’s already been revised three times.

Regency Development presented a tweaked version of its proposal at a public engagement session in May after working with the city and the Holyrood Development Committee.

Based on feedback from that session and the Edmonton Design Committee, more revisions were made that have resulted in the final version that is going to Public Hearing on Monday July 9, 2018 for a decision.

The most recent proposal saw Regency Development suggest:

  •  a maximum of 1,200 residential units in eight buildings that would be between four- and 25-storeys tall
  • a minimum of 10 per cent of the units being affordable housing units and at least 10 per cent of units being for families (two- or three-bedroom units with dens)
  • “select commercial uses in the base of the residential buildings” by the future Holyrood LRT station
  • a publicly accessible park and transit plaza
  • four walkways and two shared-use paths to link the future Holyrood LRT station with the rest of the community
  • the development’s buildings were narrowed to create more space between individual buildings

About 30 people were scheduled to speak at Monday’s hearing. Some community members told Global News they were pleased to see some of the improvements Regency Development made to its proposal but also wanted to see traffic mitigation in the form of one-ways by the development’s alleys and parking garages.

Following negotiations with the Holyrood Development Committee, which is comprised of community members, Regency Development agreed to include 120 family-sized units within the first four floors of the buildings. A spokesperson for the Holyrood Development Committee said he believes a good compromise was reached.

“It was fairly objectively a lot better [of a] proposal than when it started,” Dave Sutherland said. “We just wanted to try and get as much back to the community as we could and make sure that the traffic impacts would be mitigated or at least in a proactive way looked at.”

Because the Holyrood stop is designated as a “neighbourhood station” in the City of Edmonton’s transit-oriented development guidelines, the city says “higher density residential development with some neighbourhood commercial uses is desirable.”

 

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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