Two Yonge-Eglinton towers headed to OMB
Helendale community members hopeful proposals can be consolidated
This kind of development is just wrong.”
Local councillor Karen Stintz and residents around the Helendale Avenue and Yonge Street area are still hopeful two proposed tower projects there will be combined into one.
One project, at 31–37 Helendale Ave., by the Pemberton Group, proposes a 24-storey residential building with 231 units and four levels of underground parking. The other, just to the east of the first at 2360–2378 Yonge St., by Knightstone Capital Management Inc., proposes a 28-storey, mixed-use building with 147 parking spaces in five levels of underground parking.
Due to Toronto City Council’s delay in making any decision on the proposals, both went to Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) preliminary hearings earlier this year, and another preliminary hearing is set for later this July. Coun. Stintz is getting less hopeful as those hearing dates approach, but she stands by her desire to see the two proposals combined into one to lessen the impact on the neighbourhood.
“This kind of development is just wrong. We have an opportunity to build something remarkable there for the city, but as these are proposed, it’s completely unsatisfactory,” she said. “The city has expressed what a consolidated solution may look like, but at this point it’s still going to the OMB.”
She said the height of both towers is a concern, and she would rather see a single, consolidated tower constructed with about a 10-storey maximum at the Helendale-Yonge intersection, stepping up in height down Helendale to 20 or more storeys. Stintz said she has concerns the current plans would cast too much shadow on the neighbouring patios and added that neither proposal has enough setback from the street. SERRA (South Eglinton Ratepayers’ and Residents’ Association) member Terry Mills said his organization is concerned about protecting public realm. He said that by consolidating the proposals it would eliminate the need for things like multiple parking garage or lobby entrances, which consume public lands.
“We have quite a cluster [of tower proposals] around this intersection, and you have to wonder if the infrastructure can handle it,” Mills said.
Representatives from the developers did not return calls by press time.
Opponents of two tower proposals want more public realm included