January 27, 2000
To: Toronto Community Council
From: Acting Commissioner of Urban Development Services
Subject: Preliminary Report: 852 -860 Yonge Street and 21 Scollard Street - Application 199037 for Official Plan and
Zoning By-law Amendments to permit a 27 storey building, an 11 storey building and stacked townhouses containing
residential uses and an underground parking garage with access from public lanes off Yorkville Avenue and Scollard Street
To introduce to Community Council, a proposal to redevelop a 5,012 square metre property north-west of the intersection
of Yonge Street and Yorkville Avenue and on the south side of Scollard Street for a 27 storey building, an 11 storey
building and stacked townhouses containing residential uses (338 dwelling units) and an underground parking garage.
Financial Implications and Impact Statement:
There are no financial implications resulting from the adoption of this report.
It is recommended that:
(1) I be requested to hold a public meeting in the community to discuss the application, and to notify owners and tenants
within 300 metres of the site, area residents and business associations and the Midtown Ward Councillors; and
(2) the owner be advised that, prior to final reporting on this project, the owner will be required to submit a Traffic Impact
Study, a Shadow Impact Study, a Noise Impact Statement and additional information regarding environmental conditions
on the site, including any soil and ground water contamination.
The proposal applies to two adjoining lots on the west side of Yonge Street, north of Yorkville Avenue, and the south side
of Scollard Street as shown in the attached Key Map. The combined site area is 5,012 m2 with frontages of approximately
58.5 metres on Yonge Street, 64.3 metres on Yorkville Avenue and 60.7 metres on Scollard Street.
The existing structures and uses are proposed to be replaced by a residential development containing 338 dwelling units
with a gross floor area of 33,100 square metres or 6.6 times the lot area. At its main roofline, the height of the proposed
tower on Yonge Street reaches 84 metres (27 storeys), while the height of the proposed building on Scollard Street is 35
metres (11 storeys). The proposed fourteen stacked townhouses are 13.5 metres in height.
Staff of Urban Development Services have met with the applicant and expressed concern about a number of aspects of this
proposal, including excessive height and non-compliance with the angular building plane on Yonge Street, lack of ground
floor retail, poor relationship to the heritage buildings, lack of public open space and the failure to improve the location of
the lanes. The applicant has agreed to revise the proposal to address these preliminary concerns prior to the recommended
community meeting. Additional concerns may be identified during that meeting and during more detailed review of the
proposal. Had the applicant not agreed to submit revised plans, I would have recommended that the proposal be refused in
its current form.
2. Site and Surrounding Area
The site consists of two parcels municipally known as 852 to 860 Yonge Street and 21 Scollard Street. Currently, the parcel
at 852 to 860 Yonge Street contains a vacant one to two storey building previously used as grocery store. The parcel at 21
Scollard Street contains a vacant one storey building previously used as a night club.
1.2 Surrounding Area
Current uses and structures surrounding the site include, to the:
North: on the north side of Scollard Avenue, Frank Stollery Parkette, a lane closed to vehicular traffic, several vacant lots
used for parking, a row of late nineteenth century townhouses with a mix of residential, retail and office uses and a recently
constructed 15 storey residential building with ground floor retail and office uses;
North-east: south-west of the intersection of Yonge and Scollard Streets, three, two and one half to four storey buildings
with narrow street frontages with retail, restaurant, office and residential uses; these properties occupy the remaining
Yonge Street frontage between Yorkville Avenue and Scollard Street not included in this application;
East: the five storey Toronto Reference Library; north of Collier Street, four, two to three storey buildings with a mix of
residential, retail, restaurant and office uses; a proposed twelve storey residential building, with a four storey presence (the
bottom two with commercial uses) on Yonge Street, on the north-west corner of this block;
South: on the south side of Yorkville Avenue, all buildings, except for a 9 storey residential building at 11 Yorkville
Avenue with ground floor retail uses, are mixed use and between two and four storeys in height; south of Yorkville
Avenue, on the west side of Yonge Street, there is a well preserved row of late nineteenth/early twentieth century three
storey mixed use buildings;
West: a one and one half storey commercial building (36 Yorkville Avenue), extending from Yorkville Avenue to Scollard
Street, containing auto repair and office uses; west of this building is vacant land being used for parking; and
South-west: on the north side of Yorkville Avenue, two historic buildings (at 22 and 34 Yorkville Avenue) used as a public
library and a fire station.
3.0 Applicable Planning Controls
2.1 Official Plan
The designation in the Official Plan for the former City of Toronto of the 852 to 860 Yonge Street parcel is "Low Density
Mixed Commercial-Residential", while the 21 Scollard Street parcel is "Low" and "Medium Density Mixed
Commercial-Residential". Both designations permit a range of commercial and residential uses provided that the density of
the development in the Low Density zone does not exceed 3 times the lot area and in the Medium Density zone it does not
exceed 4 times the lot area.
This site is in the Yonge/Yorkville Area of Special Identity designated in the Part II Plan (North Midtown) of the former
City of Toronto. In this Area:
Council shall employ its available powers of regulation and review in order to encourage development that is compatible
with the existing historic buildings and uses of this area. Structures on Yonge Street are primarily historic, three-storey
brick-fronted buildings built to the street line, with frequent entrances to shops at the street level and some have apartments
above. New buildings along Yorkville Avenue should be compatible with and enhance the Yorkville Public Library and
Yorkville Fire Hall which are landmarks in the area and listed by Council as having architectural and historical merit.
Designated views of the Fire Hall tower should be maintained as shown on Map B. New buildings proposed in the vicinity
of Stollery Park should not unduly overshadow it. Development abutting Scollard Street should also complement existing
listed and other houseform buildings. With redevelopment, opportunities exist to reinforce the character, improve views
and streetscapes, and improve upon the quality of the pedestrian environment of the area. (Section 6.5)
3.2 Zoning By-law
The Zoning By-law for the former City of Toronto zones the 852 to 860 Yonge Street parcel, CR T3.0 C2.5 R3.0, and the
21 Scollard Street parcel, CR T3.0 C1.75 R3.0. These zones permit a mix of commercial and residential uses to a total
density of 3.0 times the lot area, subject to density limits on commercial uses (2.5 times the lot area on the Yonge Street
parcel and 1.75 times on the Scollard Street parcel) and residential uses (3.0 times on both parcels).
The maximum permitted height in the Zoning By-law on both parcels is 18 metres.
The Yonge Street frontage of this site is a street subject to sunlight standards (Section 12 (2) 260) which require that any
building above 16 metres in height must be set back within a 44 degree angular plane from the Yonge Street lot line. Both
the Yonge Street and Yorkville Avenue frontages are priority retail streets (Section 12 (2) 259) where at least 60% of the
frontage of these streets is to be used for "street-related retail and service uses".
3.3 Site Plan Control
The site and the proposed development are subject to site plan control. No application has been submitted for site plan
2.4 Urban Design Guidelines
The site is subject to the general and area specific Design Guidelines for North Midtown, which have been adopted by City
3.1 Reasons for the Application
An amendment to the Official Plan would have to be approved to permit the development because the proposed density
exceeds the permitted Official Plan maximums. The proposed buildings, at 6.6 times the lot area, exceed the permitted
maximum of 3.0 times in the Low Density area and 4.0 times in the Medium Density area. Put another way, applying the
permitted density maximums to each parcel would result in a maximum permitted gross floor area of approximately 15,740
m2, which equals 3.14 times the lot area. The proposed building, at 33,100 m2, is 6.6 times the lot area.
An amendment to the Zoning By-law would be necessary because the proposed development exceeds permitted maximum
density and height limits, projects into the angular building plane on the Yonge Street elevation and does not conform to
the priority retail street requirements. The proposed density of 6.6 times exceeds the permitted maximum of 3.0 times on
both the Yonge and Scollard Street parcels. The proposed height of the buildings, at 84 and 35 metres, exceeds the
permitted height limit on the Yonge Street parcel by 66 metres and on the Scollard Street parcel by 17 metres. The stacked
townhouses are within the 18 metre height limit. The Yonge Street building projects considerably into the 44 degree
angular plane from the sixth storey up (above 16 metres). Further, there is no commitment to retail uses on the ground floor
along the Yonge Street and Yorkville Avenue frontages.
Once the revised application has been received, it will be circulated to civic officials for comments and it should be the
subject of a public meeting within the community.
I am advised by the applicant that the revised proposal will include the following changes:
- a meaningful reduction of the height of the Yonge Street tower;
- appropriate stepping back of the building from Yonge Street;
- a reduction in density;
- provision of some at grade retail/commercial space;
- elimination of some or all townhouses adjacent to the library; and
- addition of public open space adjacent to the library.
These changes make the application suitable for circulation and community review. However, this revised application will
have to be evaluated to determine the adequacy of the revisions in addressing preliminary concerns raised by staff and
issues that may be raised by the public at the recommended community meeting and in achieving the City's planning
objectives for the area.
The following issues will require review and resolution prior to final reporting.
A. Density, height and massing: At 6.6 times coverage and 83.51 metres in height, the proposal is substantially larger than
permitted by current planning controls. The revised proposal is expected to be lower and less dense. However, the
acceptability of allowing extra density and height are issues which must be assessed relative to the area context and to the
City's planning and built form objectives. The massing of the development must also be assessed against the Part II Plan
and the Yonge/Yorkville Area of Special Identity policies, particularly in terms of view of the historic buildings,
relationship to low rise commercial development on the Yonge Street frontage south of this block and quality of the
B. Shadow impacts: The proposal will have shadow impacts on adjacent areas, including Frank Stollery Parkette. A
Shadow Impact Study will be submitted by the applicant for staff review.
C. Streetscape: The project has three prominent frontages: Yonge Street, Yorkville Avenue and Scollard Street. Highly
animated street-edges and an appropriate at-grade relationship are important planning objectives. The application will also
be assessed in terms of the priority retail street policies set out in the Zoning By-law.
D. Access, parking and loading: The application shows an underground parking garage, accessed via public lanes and
private roads, containing 203 parking spaces, including 182 for residents and 21 for visitors. The applicant will submit a
traffic impact study which also assesses the effect of the potential closure of the east end of Scollard Street on the proposed
development. The plans and study will be circulated to the Commissioner of Works and Emergency Services for comments
respecting the adequacy of supply and the impacts associated with the proposed parking, loading, access arrangements and
any potential traffic concerns.
E. Public lanes: The application makes use of existing lanes through the addition of a proposed connecting link. This link
jogs in order to connect the existing lanes, which are off-set, one from the other. Opportunities to straighten the lane
connection and provide a mid block pedestrian link between Yorkville Avenue and Scollard Street will be evaluated in
relation to this application.
F. Public Open Space opportunities: This area of North Midtown has been identified as deficient in public open space. An
opportunity exists with this application to create an open space area greater than 400 square metres in size, which
complements the historic buildings. This opportunity will be assessed in relation to this application.
G. Section 37: The Official Plan contains provisions pertaining to the exchange of public benefits for increased height or
density. In addition, City Council, on May 11, 1999, approved a resolution authorizing staff to immediately pursue, on a
city-wide basis, contributions toward the provision of affordable housing pursuant to Section 37 of the Planning Act for
increases in permitted height and/or density, with such contributions to be deposited to the Capital Revolving Fund for
Affordable Housing. In accordance with the existing Official Plan policies and the above Council direction, City planning
staff will be discussing an appropriate package of public benefits with the applicant, including a cash contribution to the
Capital Revolving Fund.
H. Public Art: Section 10.11 of the Official Plan of the former City of Toronto states Council's policy is to enhance
opportunities for establishing public art by achieving a public art contribution in all developments exceeding 20,000 m2 of
gross floor area, the cost of which is equal to one percent of the project's gross construction costs. The gross floor area of
this proposal exceeds 20,000 m2, and is therefore subject to this provision.
I. Site Plan: The applicant will be required to submit an application for Site Plan Approval to be reviewed concurrently
with the Official Plan Amendment and Rezoning application.
As previously noted, the application, as submitted, was found to be unacceptable by planning staff for a number of reasons.
Consequently, the applicant has committed to submit revised plans to respond to staff's preliminary concerns, particularly
with respect to building height. It is appropriate that these revised plans be the subject of a community meeting to receive
public input and that staff initiate discussions with the applicant respecting public benefits as per Section 37 of the
Planning Act and the public art policies of City Council.
Contact: Wayne Morgan, North Section
Telephone : 392-1316
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
Director, Community Planning, South District
[p:\1999\ug\uds\pln\to002106.pln] - st
List of Attachments:
Application Data Sheet
Figure 1 - Site Plan
Figure 2 - Ground Floor Plan
Figure 3 - East Elevation Plan
Figure 4 - South Elevation Plan
Figure 5 - North Elevation Plan
APPLICATION DATA SHEET
Site Plan Approval: No File Number: 199037
Rezoning: Yes Application Number: CMB19990053
O.P.A.: Yes Application Date: 11/29/1999
Municipal Address: 860 Yonge St, 852 Yonge St and 21 Scollard St
Nearest Intersection: Southwest corner of Scollard Street and Yonge Street.
Project Description: To construct a 27 storey building, one 11 storey building and 4 storey stacked townhouses residential condominium project.
Applicant: Agent: Architect: Owner:
Wallman Clewes Bergman Wittington Properties Ltd.
317 Adelaide St. W. 22 St. Clair Ave. East
Toronto M5V1P9 Toronto M4T2S3
PLANNING CONTROLS (For verification refer to Chief Building Official)
Official Plan Designation: Site Specific Provision: No
Zoning District: CR T3.0 C2.5 R3.0; CR T3.0 C1.75 Historical Status: No
Height Limit (m): 18 Site Plan Control Area: Yes
Site Area: 5012 Height: Storeys: 27
Frontage: 0 Meters: 84
Ground Floor GFA: 33100 Parking Spaces: 203 0
Residential GFA: 33100 Loading Docks: 2
Non-Residential GFA: 2600 Loading Docks Type: G
Total GFA: 33100
DWELLING UNITS FLOOR AREA BREAKDOWN
Tenure Type: Condominium Above Grade Below Grade
Rooms: 0 Residential GFA: 33100
Bachelor: 47 Retail GFA: 2600
1 Bedroom: 205 Office GFA: 0
2 Bedroom: 86 Industrial GFA: 0
3+ Bedroom: 0 Industrial/Other GFA: 0
Total Units: 370
Total Proposed Density: 6.6
COMMENTS Application received.
Current Status: Open Latest Event Target Date Actual Date Outcome
Data Valid: Dec 1, 1999 8:36:35 AM Planner: W. Morgan Phone: 392-1316
Area: Unknown Planning Office: Toronto