The Ontario Municipal Board will now consider Leaside buildings’ fate in Nov.
By Kris Scheuer
(Originally published Aug. 17 for Town Crier.)
Those wanting a swift conclusion to the long battle over preserving Leaside’s Talbot apartments will likely wait until the new year for a decision.
The Ontario Municipal Board has rescheduled the case from Aug. 24 until Nov. 2.
The municipal government sought the adjournment because during the 39-day strike city planning lawyers were redeployed to other duties and witnesses were walking the picket lines.
OMB member Marc Denhez delivered the oral decision to postpone the case at the end of a July 31 conference call with representatives from all three parties, according to Carol Burtin Fripp, a director with the Leaside Property Owners Association, which is participating in the hearings.
“It’s given us more time to get our statements together from residents who are participants,” she said following the postponement.Context Development Inc. appealed its case to redevelop the site at 1325, 1351 & 1365 Bayview Ave. to the OMB and fought against rescheduling the hearing.
“Context is resigned to the fact that this is one of many matters involving the City of Toronto that has been delayed because of the municipal workers’ strike,” stated Lewis Poplak, director of planning and development for Context.
The hearing is scheduled to wrap up on Nov. 23. The OMB will then decide if Context can tear down the three existing apartments and build 54 townhouses plus an eight-storey tower.
Councillor John Parker said the city wanted to proceed as scheduled to get the case off the books, but the strike made it necessary to seek a delay.
When it comes to a decision, it may be 2010 before the OMB releases a ruling.
Leasider Fripp agreed.
“Often it takes three months or more to get a judgment, concluded Fripp. “We’d rather have the right decision rather than a quick one.”