Opponents of the hotly contested Capitol Condo project proposed for downtown Kingston have once again appealed the revised development plan.
The two opposing groups, Building Kingston’s Future and the Frontenac Heritage Foundation, have filed an appeal with the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT) for a now 12-storey project.
It’s the second time citizens have banded together to fight IN8 Developments. The two grassroots groups claim the 12-storey project is still too tall for the surrounding neighbourhood.
At an Oct. 6 Kingston council meeting, city councillors voted eight to five to support the rezoning application from IN8 for a 12-storey, 169-unit building on the site of the former Capitol movie theatre at 223 Princess Street.
The initial project’s 16-storey design was rejected by the LPAT in November 2018, following an appeal by the same opposing groups.
In late 2018, the LPAT ruling said the development did not follow Kingston’s Official Plan or zoning bylaws, which call for four-storey maximum on Princess Street, a six-storey limit on Queen Street, and for buildings in the heritage district to maintain the heritage feel of Kingston’s downtown core.
The tribunal decided the tower proposed by IN8 represented “a visual intrusion that disrupts the streetscape and an identified cultural heritage resource and is over-development that results in adverse impact.”
In a news release sent out Thursday, opponents of the 12-storey proposal said they believe IN8’s new plans will once again be shot down through the appeal process.
“History is on our side,” said Samantha King, president of Building Kingston’s Future.
“The Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT) has twice rejected a proposal by developer IN8 for a 16-storey building on the site, first at an eleven-day hearing, and then when the LPAT dismissed IN8’s request for a review of the first decision,” she added.
Darryl Firsten, president and owner of IN8, said this time, he feels they have a much stronger planning argument to take to the board, especially with the recent rezoning by council, and arguing that the building is half the size of the initial proposal.
He said he was disappointed by the two groups’ decision to appeal, but he believes the LPAT will land on IN8’s side this time around.
“We will build this building,” Firsten said.