City of Regina
Saskatchewan CA

CC Committee Report
CR17-21

Proposed Towns Concept Plan Revisions (17-CP-01)

Information

Department:Office of the City ClerkSponsors:
Category:Committee Report

Report Body

REGINA PLANNING COMMISSION – MARCH 1, 2017

 

The following addressed the Commission:

 

-        Ian Cantello, City Planner I, gave a PowerPoint presentation, a copy of which is on file in the Office of the City Clerk; and

-        Jason Carlston and Evan Hunchak, representing Dream.

 

The Commission adopted a resolution to concur in the recommendation contained in the report.

 

Recommendation #4 does not require City Council approval.

 

Councillors:  Mike O’Donnell (Chairperson), Jerry Flegel and Barbara Young; Commissioners: David Bale, Pam Dmytriw, Phil Evans, Adrienne Hagen Lyster, Simon Kostic, Andre Kroeger, Laureen Snook and Steve Tunison were present during consideration of this report by the Regina Planning Commission.

 

 


The Regina Planning Commission, at its meeting held on March 1, 2017, considered the following report from the Administration:

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

1.      That Design Regina: The Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 2013-48 be amended by replacing Appendix A.1 (Towns Concept Plan) of Part B.16 (Southeast Regina Neighbourhood Plan) with the Towns Concept Plan attached to this report as Appendix D.1 and Appendix D.2.

 

2.      That the Towns Concept Plan, approved by City Council on April 25, 2016, through Report CR16-36: Regina Planning Commission – Proposed Towns Concept Plan

(15-CP-03) and Zoning Bylaw Amendment be rescinded.

 

3.      That the City Solicitor be directed to prepare the necessary bylaw to amend Design Regina: The Official Community Plan Bylaw 2013-48.

 

4.      That this report be forwarded to the March 27, 2017 meeting of City Council for approval.

 

CONCLUSION

 

This report addresses an application submitted to the City of Regina (City), to amend the Towns Concept Plan which was originally approved on April 25, 2016. The proposed amendments requested by the development proponent (Proponent) include: a reduction in the number of high density residential units; revisions to the neighbourhood hub; revisions to two of the parks and revisions to the block pattern and street network. The Proponent has indicated that the proposed revisions will result in a concept plan that better supports current and near-term market demands.

 

Following a review of the application, City Administration concludes that the revised Towns Concept Plan, resulting from the proposed amendments, is in accordance with Part A and Part B.16 (Southeast Regina Neighbourhood Plan) of Design Regina: The Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 2013-48 (OCP). City Administration further concludes that the revisions to the approved street and utility networks, resulting from the proposed amendments, are relatively minor in nature and that networks beyond the affected area will not be significantly impacted. For these above noted reasons, City Administration recommends that the proposed revisions be approved.

 

BACKGROUND

 

The Towns Concept Plan establishes a detailed planning strategy for a proposed new neighbourhood in the southeast (SE) part of the city and was approved by City Council on April 25, 2016. The concept plan area (Plan Area) is located immediately east of Woodland Grove Drive and north of Primrose Green Drive and is 130 hectares in size (see Appendix A). Contextually, the existing neighbourhoods of Windsor Park and Greens on Gardiner frame the west and south boundaries of the Plan Area; farmland is situated to the north and east. A segment of the Regina Bypass, which the provincial Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure (MHI) indicates will be completed in late 2017, will be located 400 metres to the east of the Plan Area.

 

The existing Towns Concept Plan supports the development of a new neighbourhood that includes a variety of housing types and open space, as well as a “neighbourhood hub” area that is intended to serve as an active, mixed-use, centrally located focal area (see Appendix B).

The Plan Area lands are owned by two landowners; however, the proposed amendments affect the east half only, which is held by one landowner. Within the amendment area, the Proponent is planning to redesignate a large portion of the high density residential housing area to low density residential and to adjust the road and block network accordingly. Furthermore, minor adjustments to the neighbourhood hub layout and two of the parks are being proposed (see Appendix C). The proposed amendments are expected to result in the following changes:

 

 

Existing

Proposed

Population

7633

7193

Density (people/ hectare)

58.9

56.3

High Density Units

1360

500

Medium Density Units

1070

1200

Low Density Units

900

1013

Land Reserved for Parks

9.6

9.9

Land Reserved for Roads

34.7

36.5

 

As a rationale for the proposed amendments, the Proponent has indicated that the “market demand” has changed since the Towns Concept Plan was approved: the demand for higher density residential housing has decreased; the need for commercial in the area has decreased due to recent approvals of commercial development elsewhere in the SE. The proposed new Towns Concept Plan still supports commercial; however, the intent is to shift the focus more towards mixed-use while still retaining opportunities for some stand-alone commercial development.

 

No development has yet occurred within the Plan Area; however, since the Towns Concept Plan was approved, large portions of the Plan Area have been subject to rezoning and subdivision approval, including the area subject to the proposed amendments addressed through this Report. Furthermore, a new neighbourhood plan (Southeast Regina Neighbourhood Plan) has since been approved for all lands located between Victoria Avenue and Arcola Avenue, east of Woodland Grove Drive (see Appendix A). The Plan Area is within the overarching plan area of the Southeast Regina Neighbourhood Plan (SENP); therefore, any revisions to the Towns Concept Plan must be in conformity with the SENP policies, as well as the OCP – Part A.

 

The proposed new Towns Concept Plan must be in conformity with the applicable city-wide policies of OCP – Part A, as well as the recently approved SENP (OCP – Part B.16). The SENP provides a policy framework for the long-term growth and development of the entire SE part of the city, including the Plan Area lands. Although the Concept Plan forms part of the SENP, it can be amended via City Council resolution, as per Section 44(4) of the Planning and Development Act, 2007, which allows City Council to adopt or amend a concept plan by resolution.

 


DISCUSSION

 

Land-Use Considerations

 

The proposed amendments to the neighbourhood hub area include a repositioning of the centrally located park which is a key amenity feature, as well as a land-use reconfiguration. The intent of the reconfiguration is to provide better solar exposure to the park and to enhance the viability of the neighbourhood hub as an active, pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use focal area by replacing single-use commercial space with additional mixed-use development. The proposed amendments continue to support mixed-use or high density residential housing adjacent to the park, which is important for ensuring the optimal activation and use of this central open space feature.

 

The proposed amendments include a reduction in the amount of high density/multi-unit residential housing, as two large blocks currently designated for high density residential will be replaced with low density residential; however, a broad spectrum of residential types and densities is still supported in the overall Plan Area. As the population changes, resulting from the proposed amendments, may be considered relatively minor, City Administration does not expect any significant implications associated with the provision of schools, civic uses or amenities.

 

The proposed amendments continue to support a high level of permeability and interconnectivity, as the approved circulation plan (street network), which is based on a modified grid pattern, will remain substantially intact. Although a reconfiguration of the block pattern located immediately east of the neighbourhood hub is being proposed, this change will further enhance connectivity by breaking down two large blocks (high density residential) into a series of smaller blocks (low density residential) and associated streets. The proposed new residential blocks will include rear lanes which will provide for a suitable amount of on-street parking.

 

Servicing Considerations

 

The proposed amendments to the Towns Concept Plan will not significantly impact the servicing strategy for the Plan Area. The proposed network schemes for the major transportation and utility elements remain unchanged as a result of the proposed amendment. Furthermore, the proposed amendments will not introduce additional demands on the capacity of the planned servicing networks and facilities, as the expected total population will be less than what was originally anticipated. Considering the above noted factors, City Administration concludes that there are no significant servicing implications associated with the proposed amendments and that the original servicing schemes do not require further amendments.

 

RECOMMENDATION IMPLICATIONS

 

Financial Implications

 

Capital funding to provide municipal infrastructure that is required for subdivision and development in the concept plan area will be the sole responsibility of the developer. The municipal infrastructure that is built and funded by the developer will become the City’s responsibility to operate and maintain through future budgets.

 

Environmental Implications

 

None with respect to this report.

 

Policy/ Strategy Implications

 

As conformity with OCP – Part A was confirmed through the original approval, the most relevant policies that apply to this application are found in OCP – Part B (SENP). Relevant SENP policy sections include:

 

·           Section 4.2 – Neighbourhood Area: A portion of the proposed amendment area is located within an area, identified by the SENP as a “Neighbourhood Area”. According to the SENP: “Neighbourhood Areas should be pedestrian oriented, allow for diverse housing options and create a sense of community”.

The proposed amendments support the intent of SENP Section 4.2 and do not conflict with the policy, as the portion of the amendment area corresponding to the “Neighbourhood Area” will include a diversity of housing, including low, medium and high density.

 

·           Policy 4.2(d): “All concept plans within the Neighbourhood Area shall achieve a minimum of 50 persons per gross developable residential hectare”.

 

The expected density, resulting from the proposed amendments, will exceed the minimum requirement of 50 persons per gross developable residential hectare.

 

·           Section 4.10 - Neighbourhood Hub: A portion of the proposed amendment area is located within an area, identified by the SENP, as a “Neighbourhood Hub”. The intent of the Neighbourhood Hub, is to support: “…local goods and services and should support and facilitate community interaction and identity”.

 

The proposed amendments support the intent of SENP Section 4.10 and do not conflict with policy, as the proposed new Towns Concept Plan still supports an active, mixed-use node by including a diversity of land-uses, as well as active public space.

 

Other Implications

 

None with respect to this report.

 

Accessibility Implications

 

None with respect to this report.

 

COMMUNICATIONS

 

Through the review of the existing Towns Concept Plan, the City consulted with relevant stakeholders, including: school boards; applicable provincial ministries; Rural Municipality (RM) of Sherwood; utility providers; adjacent community associations, etc. As the proposed amendments to the Towns Concept Plan will not result in major shifts to the land-use configuration or overall population, City Administration suggests that additional direct engagement beyond the original consultation is not necessary. Notwithstanding the aforementioned, an advertisement announcing the fact that the application will be proceeding to City Council will be advertised as per legislative requirements.

 

DELEGATED AUTHORITY

 

City Council’s approval of OCP amendments is required pursuant to The Planning and Development Act, 2007.

 

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

REGINA PLANNING COMMISSION

 

elaine

 

Elaine Gohlke, Secretary