14 buildings for Yorkdale mall called ‘daunting’
Oxford Properties is seeking an official plan and zoning amendment to accommodate three redevelopment scenarios for the Yorkdale Shopping Centre site over the next 20 years.
All three plans include a range of retail, office, hotel and residential uses with a network of private streets. Each includes an eight-storey hotel, six office buildings and seven residential buildings ranging between two and 38 storeys.
Councillor Josh Colle, of Ward 15 Eglinton-Lawrence, said residents are rightfully concerned about intensification due to the pre-existing transportation and access issues already surrounding the site. However, he noted that, although the proposal may be “daunting,” it has given Toronto’s city planners a glimpse of what the company’s long-term plan may look like.
“They’re trying to Amazon-proof themselves. That’s the trend I think you’re seeing around the world: what can you create to keep the business model going?” said Colle. “The city’s job is to make sure that whatever is built, whenever it is built, makes sense from a planning perspective.”
He said the proposal will require a multi-year, multifaceted community consultation. “The challenge of where we are right now is what do you consult on? These theoretical visions of what Yorkdale might look like is difficult,” he said.
Oxford Properties has also appealed the Dufferin Street Secondary Plan to the Ontario Municipal Board, although a hearing has yet to be scheduled.
“The proposal … is in the very early stages and many decades away.There’s a great deal of work to be done … as this proposal evolves,” said Adrienne Simic, spokesperson for Oxford Properties.