The Toronto Local Appeal Body (TLAB) has ruled that a developer can proceed with establishing a daycare in Cabbagetown, a plan which has been in the offing for several years.
The building in question is located at 459 and 461 Sackville St., on the South East corner of Sackville and Amelia Streets. The original application for variances was rejected by a City Committee of Adjustment in April 2018, as committee members were concerned that the lack of parking spaces for child drop-off /pick-up at the daycare would lead to traffic and safety problems in the immediate neighbourhood.
The interim decision and order from TLAB Member Stanley Makuch, in allowing the zoning variances stated that, “This proposal provides an opportunity for a reuse that benefits and supports heritage conservation. ” However, it also said that, “Having made a finding that the variances should be granted there are nevertheless issues of implementation.”
While the development has now successfully passed the appeal related to its initial variances, this remains an interim decision conditional upon the owner getting the required approvals from the city and the province. Another TLAB hearing has been scheduled for December 3, 2021, so that the applicant can report back to TLAB to confirm they have successfully obtained the requisite approvals, including, among others, that:
- Street parking is approved by City council for 4 or 6 dedicated on street (permit) parking spaces in the morning and afternoon for drop-off/ pick-up.
- A provincial license is obtained demonstrating that such matters as street parking, play areas, garbage and stroller storage, and access and egress have been properly addressed.
- A site plan is approved by the Chief Planner, including such matters as a landscaping plan addressing conversion of green space to hardscape paving and City approval and lease to use the boulevard/right of way.
Assuming the TLAB determines that the above conditions have been satisfied by the December 3, 2021 hearing date, TLAB’s interim approval will be final and in force on December 10, 2021. However, one of the involved parties may still request a TLAB Review of Decision, and after that proceeding, a party may also seek leave for a Judicial Review in Ontario Divisional Court. So, the ongoing efforts to establish a daycare in Cabbagetown could continue for some time.
Update from Doug Fisher at the Cabbagetown Neighbourhood review:
Ward 13 Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam wants more daycare in her Ward but says “The problem with the application is that it doesn’t address how day to day operations of a daycare of the size being proposed could safely function given existing conditions.” The City Solicitor is now reviewing the decision with the possibility of pursuing more legal appeals – an approach that the Councillor supports.