iNTERIM CONTROL BY-LAW STUDY
RÈGLEMENT DE RESTRICTION PROVISOIRE
1. That the Planning and Environment Committee:
a) Direct the Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Policy Branch; Community and Protective Services, By-law Services Branch; and, Public Works and Services Department, Traffic and Parking Operations Branch, to work with the Queensway Terrace North Community Association to undertake a public education initiative with respect to informing residents of existing City’s by-laws that relate to secondary dwelling units and parking on private and public property;
b) Direct the Public Works and Services Department, Surface Operations Branch, to initiate a tree planting plan, in consultation with the Queensway Terrace North Community Association, for locations where trees could be planted to improve the streetscape in the area located north of Harwood Avenue and Henley Street;
c) Direct the Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Policy Branch, to contact owners of all duplexes within the study area, and encourage those with existing third units to regularize their units to meet the new requirements by making any necessary changes to ensure Zoning and Building Code compliance;
d) Direct the Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Policy Branch to provide the Queensway Terrace North community association with information on the issuance of building permits for new dwelling units within the area shown on Document 1 on a yearly basis until the end of 2010;
e) Direct the Community and Protective Services Department with the support of the Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Policy Branch, to consider the Community Characteristics Table contained in Appendix 7 of Document 3 in the preparation of the Neighbourhood Profile template;
f) Direct the Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Policy Brach, to consider the Development Review Mechanism model, proposed by the Queensway Terrace North Public Advisory Committee and described in Document 3, as part of addressing the interpretation and implementation of the City’s intensification objectives during the five-year review of the Official Plan in 2008; and
2. That Planning and Environment Committee recommend Council:
a) Approve an amendment to the former Ottawa Zoning By-law, Ottawa Zoning By‑law 1998, to permit limited front yard parking in the Queensway Terrace North study area, subject to a number of performance standards, as well as to prohibit rear yard parking, unless there is a side yard access to a rear yard detached garage, as detailed in Document 2.
b) Repeal Interim Control By-law 2005-18.
RECOMMANDATIONS DU RAPPORT
1. Que le Comité de l’urbanisme et de l’environnement approuve ce qui suit :
a) Demander à la Direction des politiques d'urbanisme, d'environnement et d'infrastructure, Urbanisme et Gestion de la croissance, à la Direction des services des règlements municipaux, Services communautaires et de protection, et à la Direction de la circulation et du stationnement, Services et Travaux publics, de collaborer avec l’Association communautaire Queensway Terrace-Nord afin d’entreprendre un projet de sensibilisation des résidents aux règlements municipaux existants ayant trait aux logements secondaires et au stationnement sur les propriétés privées et publiques;
b) Demander à la Direction des opérations de surface, Services et Travaux publics, de créer un projet de plantation d’arbres, en consultation avec l’Association communautaire Queensway Terrace-Nord, à des endroits où des arbres pourraient être plantés afin d’améliorer le paysage de rue dans le secteur situé au nord de l’avenue Harwood et de la rue Henley;
c) Demander à la Direction des politiques d'urbanisme, d'environnement et d'infrastructure, Urbanisme et Gestion de la croissance, de communiquer avec les propriétaires de tous les duplex du secteur d’étude et d’inciter tous ceux qui possèdent un troisième logement à régulariser leur situation afin que ce troisième logement soit conforme aux nouvelles exigences, en effectuant les changements nécessaires, conformément au zonage et au Code du bâtiment;
d) Demander à la Direction des politiques d'urbanisme, d'environnement et d'infrastructure, Urbanisme et Gestion de la croissance, de fournir à l’Association communautaire Queensway Terrace-Nord de l’information, chaque année jusqu’en 2010, sur la délivrance de permis de construire pour les nouveaux logements situés dans le secteur illustré dans le Document 1;
e) Demander aux Services communautaires et de protection, avec le soutien de la Direction des politiques d'urbanisme, d'environnement et d'infrastructure, Urbanisme et Gestion de la croissance, d’examiner le tableau des caractéristiques du quartier figurant dans l’appendice 7 du Document 3 pour la préparation du modèle de profil de quartier;
f) Demander à la Direction des politiques d'urbanisme, d'environnement et d'infrastructure, Urbanisme et Gestion de la croissance, d’examiner le modèle de mécanisme d’examen de l’aménagement proposé par le Comité de consultation publique sur Queensway Terrace-Nord et décrit dans le Document 3, pour ce qui concerne l’interprétation et l’atteinte des objectifs d’intensification fixés par la Ville, au moment de l’examen du Plan officiel prévu pour 2008;
2. Que le Comité de l’urbanisme et de l’environnement recommande ce qui suit au Conseil :
a) Approuver une modification au Règlement de zonage de 1998 de l’ancienne Ville d’Ottawa, afin d’autoriser le stationnement limité dans la cour avant dans le secteur d’étude de Queensway Terrace-Nord, sous réserve d’un certain nombre de normes de rendement, et afin d’interdire le stationnement dans la cour arrière, sauf en cas d’accès par la marge latérale à un garage isolé dans une cour arrière, tel qu’exposé en détail dans le Document 2;
b) Abroger le Règlement de restriction provisoire 18-2005.
Assumptions and Analysis:
An Interim Control By-law was passed in January 2005 to prohibit conversion of duplexes to triplexes within the Queensway Terrace North (QTN) neighbourhood while a study was undertaken of the issue. This area is one of a few post-war neighbourhoods in the city where there is a concentration of duplex dwellings (two dwelling units separated horizontally) and over time, many of these duplexes have created a third unit in the basement. In the past, there have been individual rezoning applications to legalize the third unit, but some concerns have been raised about the existence of other illegal third units. Subsequent to the imposition of interim control, a city-wide zoning amendment was passed to permit secondary dwelling units, including adding an additional unit in the basement of a duplex dwelling; however this was not implemented for QTN area pending completion of the interim control study.
A Public Advisory Committee (PAC) was established to review the various issues of concern in the neighbourhood as a result of the Interim Control By-law. A report prepared by the PAC containing some 15 recommendations is attached as Document 3. The PAC report includes requests for proactive enforcement and an education campaign on City by-laws; changes in zoning to deal with parking; downzoning of 807 Maplewood; acceptance of secondary dwelling units throughout, except for prohibition of any new dwelling units on Pinewood Avenue; additional trees, traffic calming and curbing; the monitoring of development activity in the area; the review of key community indicators, including a survey of residents (upon a 20% increase in dwelling units from the January 2007 base level) to determine if intensification activity has had a negative impact on the community; and if necessary, to request Planning and Environment Committee to reassess the nature and direction of the development activity in the neighbourhood.
Staff have provided a review and response to the PAC recommendations. Staff first supports an educational campaign to promote compliance with City by-laws before considering increases in staff resources to underake pro-active enforcement; zoning changes which will recognize those front yard parking situations where there are no alternatives to park a vehicle elsewhere on the property, and generally prohibiting rear yard parking in the community; permitting secondary dwelling units throughout the neighbourhood, including Pinewood, and to require an additional parking space for secondary dwelling units in a duplex; the planting of trees to improve the streetscape; and the provision of building permit data. However, with respect to the model proposed by the PAC to monitor and reassess the impacts of intensification on a community, staff feel that this issue is better dealt with on a City-wide basis through the Official Plan review in 2008.
All the recommendations of the staff report can be dealt with through existing resources. Funding for Recommendation 1b) is subject to capital budget approval in the 2007 capital budget under the Tree Planting program as part of the joint community initiatives.
The QTN PAC was established for the purposes of this study and a public meeting was held in the community to present the PAC recommendations, which were generally supported by those attending the meeting.
Hypothèses et analyse :
Un règlement de restriction provisoire a été adopté en janvier 2005 afin d’interdire la transformation de duplex en triplex dans le quartier Queensway Terrace-Nord (QTN), en même temps qu’une étude était réalisée à ce sujet. Ce secteur est l'un des rares quartiers d’après-guerre de la ville où l’on retrouve une concentration de duplex (deux unités de logement séparées horizontalement) qui ont vu, au fil du temps, leur sous-sol être transformé en troisième unité de logement. Des demandes individuelles de rezonage ont été déposées dans le passé afin de légaliser ce troisième logement, mais certaines préoccupations ont été émises à propos de l’existence de logements illégaux. Par suite de l’imposition d’une restriction provisoire, une modification de zonage générale a été adoptée afin d’autoriser les logements secondaires, y compris l’ajout de logements supplémentaires dans le sous-sol d’un duplex; cette modification n’a toutefois pas été appliquée dans le quartier QTN, dans l’attente d’une étude de restriction provisoire.
Un comité consultatif public (CCP) a été créé afin d’examiner les divers points de préoccupation dans le quartier par suite de l’adoption du règlement de restriction provisoire. Un rapport, préparé par le CCP et contenant une quinzaine de recommandations, est joint comme Document 3. Le rapport du CCP fait état de demandes d’application proactive du règlement et d’une campagne de sensibilisation aux règlements municipaux, de changements de zonage visant le stationnement, de la dédensification du 807, Maplewood, de la régularisation de tous les logements secondaires mais de l’interdiction de tout nouveau logement sur l’avenue Pinewood, d’arbres supplémentaires, de mesures d’atténuation de la circulation et de l’aménagement de bordures, de la surveillance des activités d’aménagement dans le secteur, de l’examen des principaux indicateurs, y compris un sondage mené auprès des résidents (en fonction d’une hausse de 20 pour cent des logements par rapport au niveau de base de janvier 2007) visant à déterminer si la densification a eu des répercussions négatives sur la collectivité et, au besoin, d’une demande au Comité de l’urbanisme et de l’aménagement de réévaluer la nature et l’orientation des activités d’aménagement dans le quartier.
Le personnel a examiné les recommandations du CCP et y a réagi. Tout d’abord, il soutient l’organisation d’une campagne de sensibilisation afin de promouvoir le respect des règlements municipaux avant d’envisager une augmentation des ressources en personnel pour appliquer de manière proactive le règlement. Il soutient également les modifications de zonage visant à tenir compte des cas de stationnement dans une cour avant où il n’existe aucune solution de rechange sur la propriété, l’interdiction, d’une manière générale, de stationnement dans une cour arrière dans le quartier, l’autorisation des logements secondaires partout dans le quartier, y compris sur Pinewood, et l’exigence d’une place de stationnement supplémentaire pour les logements secondaires des duplex, la plantation d’arbres afin d’améliorer le paysage de rue et la mise à disposition de données sur les permis de construire. Toutefois, en ce qui concerne le modèle proposé par le CCP afin de surveiller et de réévaluer les répercussions de la densification dans un quartier, le personnel estime que cette question peut être mieux prise en compte globalement, lors de l’examen du Plan officiel prévu en 2008.
Répercussions financières :
Toutes les recommandations du rapport du personnel peuvent être prises en compte avec les ressources existantes.
Consultation publique / commentaires :
Le CCP du quartier QTN a été constitué aux fins de cette étude et une réunion publique a été organisée dans le quartier pour présenter les recommandations du CCP, qui ont été globalement appuyées par les personnes présentes.
This staff report and the report prepared by the Queensway Terrace North (QTN) Public Advisory Committee (PAC) (as attached in Document 3) are in response to Interim Control By‑law 2005-18 which was enacted on January 12, 2005. The intent of this by-law is to prohibit the conversion of duplexes to triplexes within the study area, comprising Carling Avenue to the north; the Transitway along the Pinecrest Creek Corridor to the east; the Queensway to the south, and Pinecrest Road to the west (Document 1) until a study on the appropriateness of the conversions in QTN is completed. This prohibition was requested due to increasing community concern over the number of residential triplex conversions within the QTN community that were not in compliance with Ottawa Zoning By-law 1998, and the long-term impacts of such incremental intensification within this neighbourhood. The Interim Control By-law was extended for a year and will expire January 11, 2007.
There is concern within the QTN community that there are no policies within the new Official Plan setting limits as to when intensification is too much; that is, there is no way to monitor the progress of development and the incremental changes it is having on its context. Since there are number of possibly illegal triplexes within QTN, the community is concerned about the inability of the new Official Plan to protect QTN, and other communities within the City, from excessive and/or negative intensification.
The goal of the interim control study was to conduct a review of the likely form, location and appropriate level of, and limits to, intensification within QTN; the ability of existing infrastructure to accommodate growth; and the potential impact of evolving City Council intensification policies on this neighbourhood. City staff, the QTN Community Association, community residents and property owners, and the Ward Councillor participated in the study, with the community association preparing its response to the Interim Control By-law, and putting forward its recommendations as a result of the study that was undertaken, as detailed in Document 3.
Policy and Zoning Context
Part 3 of Document 3 provides the policy context and description of existing zoning for this interim control study. In implementing some of the intensification objectives of the Official Plan, existing Zoning By-laws and the City’s draft Comprehensive Zoning By-law must try to ensure that compatible forms of intensification are permitted within each type of residential neighbourhood. Residential zoning regulations would need to recognize the impacts associated with intensification, and ensure that regulations are in place to offset any negative land use impacts.
Generally, in low density residential zones throughout the city, intensification without rezoning is limited to:
i) conversions or redevelopment of a lot from one permitted dwelling type to a higher density permitted dwelling type (e.g. in an R2 zone, from a detached to a duplex or semi-detached dwelling);
ii) infill on vacant lots;
iii) permitting up to three rooming units within permitted dwelling types; and
iv) the creation of a secondary dwelling unit within a dwelling.
In advance of the approval of the draft Comprehensive Zoning By-law, City Council directed staff to implement the Official Plan policy to permit secondary dwelling units in all single, semi-detached and duplex dwellings. Creating an apartment within a dwelling represents the smallest form of intensification, and is promoted as a way to provide affordable rental units while making efficient use of existing dwellings. The implementing by-law, passed in September 2005, captures many existing triplex units which were illegal prior to that date, and now defines them as duplexes with a secondary dwelling unit. A number of properties were identified by the PAC as possibly being illegal triplexes, and were submitted to the Ward Councillor for investigation regarding their conformity with former Ottawa Zoning By-law 1998. In particular, the QTN Community Association wishes to confirm whether these properties are three-unit residential buildings, and if they would comply with land use provisions and all applicable standards, namely, those of the implementing by-law. As previously indicated, the Interim Control By-law currently in force in QTN prohibits the legalization of the secondary dwelling units in a duplex, but existing duplexes with a subsidiary third unit, such as a basement apartment, would become legal uses once the Interim Control By-law lapses.
The QTN PAC report contains a number of important concerns and issues of the community and provides recommendations for the City to consider. The following section provides a staff response to the PAC recommendations. For the exact wording of each of the PAC recommendations, please see Document 3. The PAC recommendations have been combined to reflect the PAC’s four fundamental concerns and requests:
1) pro-active enforcement of the City’s by-laws, particularly as it relates to the existence of possible illegal third units within duplexes, and the additional parking problems that have been exacerbated by these additional units;
2) amendments to the current zoning standards;
3) right-of-way improvements, including curbing, tree planting, and traffic-calming measures; and
4) monitoring the impact of intensification and reassessing development controls when deemed necessary.
1. PAC Recommendations – Enforcement
PAC Recommendations 1, 2, and 6 deal with the requests for pro-active enforcement of City by‑laws and on a priority basis on Pinewood Crescent; and for assistance by City staff to undertake public awareness campaigns for these by-laws.
Over the course of the study period, staff observed some of the chronic by-law violations reported by the PAC, most notably front yard parking on private residential properties (with paved parking pads created parallel to the street, or gravelled angled parking across the front yard, or parking immediately in front of the dwelling), and paving over and parking within non-designated City rights-of-way. PAC correctly identified front yard parking as the single most visibly disruptive and prevalent form of Zoning By-law violation within the QTN study area, and was particularly concerned with the situation on Pinewood Crescent.
Site visits confirmed that front yard parking was most prevalent in the northern half of the study area in the R2C Zone. There, front yard parking is exhibited by a large majority of residential dwelling properties, including detached and semi-detached properties, in addition to the duplex houses that were of primary concern to the PAC. It is probable that many of the lots have grandfathered front yard parking rights, since much of the housing stock was constructed prior to the former City of Ottawa Zoning By-law of 1964, while others are likely in violation of the Zoning By-law. This in addition to the right-of-way parking practices that have permeated the neighbourhood. Without regular enforcement, these have become the neighbourhood norm.
In light of this unique parking pattern, Planning and Growth Management staff proposes amendments to the parking standards on private property that would be applied to the QTN study area, as explained and detailed under number 2 below, and which to some extent, would recognize the existing parking situation on private property in the neighbourhood.
The By-law Services Branch has advised that to undertake proactive enforcement of existing parking and zoning infractions in this neighbourhood would require two additional FTE’s (Full Time Equivalents) in that Branch and additional staff resources in the Legal Services Branch. However, to do so would set a precedent that would most likely have City-wide implications, as this neighbourhood is far down the list of neighbourhoods that would benefit from proactive enforcement. For example, in the first half of 2006, By-law Services Branch received seven by-law complaints in Queensway Terrace North as compared to 1,481 in the entire Bay Ward. In the future, proactive enforcement could be a possibility within the existing staff component if the Province provides Enforcement Officers with the ability to ticket offenders rather than taking them to Court. The City has already mentioned the merits of this to the Province, however nothing has been forthcoming. Therefore, staff do not support the request for pro-active enforcement due to the costs associated with the additional FTE’s.
Instead of proactive enforcement, it is suggested that public education initiatives targeting this neighbourhood would be the most effective use of staff resources. Experience tells us that many people are unaware of existing by-laws and the infractions that could be enforced. This problem should improve with time as the public becomes accustomed to using 3-1-1 for registering complaints. Moreover, with the recommended amendments to the parking standards and the legalization of the secondary dwelling units upon repeal of the Interim Control By-law (see number 2 below), there will be fewer violations and less non-compliance.
To implement the public education initiative, it is suggested that the appropriate staff be made available to attend a public meeting at the discretion of the QTN Community Association in order to explain the nature of traffic, parking and zoning infractions. Also, By-law Services Branch has prepared information flyers, which can be mailed out on request, and there is additional information regarding the nature of parking and zoning infractions on the City's website that is available to the public.
Recommendation 1a) in this report reflects PAC Recommendation 6. For that reason, no action is proposed to be taken in respect of PAC Recommendations 1 and 2 at this time. However, By-law Services Branch is prepared to measure the effectiveness of the public education initiative and would be prepared to request that City Council approve funds for additional FTE’s if there continues to be significant compliance problems.
2. PAC Recommendations – Modifications to Existing Zoning and Review of Development Applications
PAC Recommendations 3, 7, 9, 10 and 12 deal with requests for prohibition of rear yard parking, legalization of secondary dwelling units in duplexes but downzoning and prohibition of secondary dwelling units on Pinewood Crescent, the downzoning of 807 Maplewood and the review of development applications. For exact wording of the recommendations, please see Document 3.
One of the biggest concerns to residents with respect to the introduction of secondary dwelling units in the neighbourhood is the impact of vehicle parking as a result of the additional units. As previously discussed, many of the lots in QTN contain parking spaces that may not be in conformity with the Zoning By-law. Generally, zoning regulations prohibit front and corner side yard parking, as well as in portions of rear yards abutting a street. However, additional parking is permitted in a driveway passing through a front yard or corner side yard to a required parking space, in the case of detached, semi-detached and townhouse dwellings, converted dwellings and secondary dwelling units (note that this permission does not currently extend to duplexes or triplexes and will be corrected). Further, the rule applies only to driveways leading to required spaces and not to front yard parking on parking pads. Moreover, other than in the case of converted dwellings, these rules apply only to extra, non-required parking spaces, meaning that required parking must not be in the front yard.
Front yard parking occurs in a variety of ways, not only as spaces in front of a front wall of a dwelling, as is commonly recognized. A front yard is defined as that yard which extends across the full width of a lot, from one side lot line to the other, between the front lot line and the nearest point of the building. As such, it is not only that area in front of the front wall of the building, but the entire area within the defined front yard, where parking is not permitted under the Zoning By-law 1998 (see Figure 1).
The front yard parking spaces in QTN are located in what appear to be driveways, but which are paved areas, mostly to the side or in front of the front wall of the dwelling. In a number of situations, stairs attached to the side of the dwelling prohibit cars from parking entirely behind the front wall of the dwelling, or in other situations, the side yard is inadequate in width to be able to properly accommodate a parking space, resulting in some parking spaces ending abruptly at fencing (see Figure 1). In other situations, the driveway leading to a garage, carport or side yard parking space is extended in front of the building to accommodate the parking of two cars side by side.
Essentially, the problem is that many of the homes in QTN were built without access to a garage or carport, or in other cases without adequate side yard width to drive an average-sized car to the side or rear yard. Hence, residents must park, at least partially, in the front yards of their homes as there is no other place to park. While much of the housing stock within the study area predates the first City of Ottawa Comprehensive Zoning By-law AZ-64, adopted in 1964, it is unknown whether and which front yard paved parking areas might have been created prior to 1964 and continue to enjoy grandfathered rights by way of a legal non-complying status versus those which may have been created illegally post-1964. It is also unlikely that most lots within the neighbourhood sought minor variances to the Zoning By-law to ensure that these parking areas were made legally complying. Regardless, this parking pattern is prevalent, and therefore the norm within this neighbourhood.
Also of importance is the fact that any non-complying right to a front yard parking space is revoked once the use changes. Where a third unit has been added to a duplex, non-complying front yard parking rights are lost. In addition, while a parking space is required for a third unit in a triplex dwelling, when the provisions of the former Ottawa Zoning By-law come into force in the QTN study area, the third unit, when located in the basement, becomes the secondary dwelling unit, for which there is currently no parking space required by the Zoning By-law.
Parking in the rear yard is permitted in the Zoning By-law 1998 in all residential zones throughout the city, and is a common method of meeting the required parking on a residential lot where there is no garage or carport connected to the dwelling. Detached rear yard garages are common in these situations for detached and semi-detached dwellings with access provided directly from the side yard; but where there are additional units, the entire rear yard may be utilized to provide parking spaces and access to those spaces. However, as discussed, the parking pattern in QTN is front yard parking on paved pads that are neither in the side yards, nor in driveways that lead to a required parking space in a garage, carport, or the rear yard.
As such, staff concurs with PAC that rear yard parking should be prohibited within the study area because the rear yards have not been used for parking. Essentially, given that portions of front yards are being used, and are proposed to be formally recognized and permitted to be used for parking in specific situations; it would not be reasonable to permit parking to encroach into rear yards as well. Keeping the parking in the front, pursuant to QTN’s established character, will ensure that rear yards remain as privacy spaces, with no adverse impacts from parking areas interrrupting the cumulative effect of consistent rear yard privacy spaces. This will be particularly important as secondary dwelling units become permitted in the numerous duplexes, as well as in detached and semi-detached houses in the community.
This proposed zoning amendment would:
i) recognize front yard parking spaces that are legally non-conforming (grandfathered rights) as being legally permitted under the Zoning By-law;
ii) permit two front yard parking spaces for duplexes, with or without a secondary dwelling unit, and allow the required parking spaces for this use to be provided in tandem;
iii) permit one front yard parking space only for those detached and semi-detached dwellings which do not have a garage or carport and where the existing side yard cannot properly accommodate the parking of a vehicle in compliance with the Zoning By-law;
iv) establish performance standards to reduce the impact of front yard parking; and
v) restrict rear yard parking.
Permitting front yard parking within the study area in those situations where there is no alternative to providing a legal parking space under the Zoning By-law (considered to be those situations where there is no garage or carport and the side yard is less than three metres) formally recognizes this neighbourhood-unique parking pattern and legalizes many of lots containing such parking patterns. The establishment of a number of zoning requirements with respect to the conditions in which front yard parking may occur, ensures appropriate and consistent design of these parking areas, avoiding large paved areas, and more importantly, excluding the most offensive types of front yard parking. Front yard parking pads parallel to and abutting the city right-of-way will continue to be prohibited.
The following performance standards for front yard parking are proposed:
- the front yard parking length may be reduced to accommodate smaller-sized spaces in the front yard;
- the front yard parking spaces must be entirely on the lot;
- the angle formed by the length of the parking space and the lot line abutting the
street must be at least 75 degrees but no greater than 90 degrees;
- in no case may the front yard parking area exceed 50% of the front or corner side yard, as the case may be, and no individual driveway may exceed a width of 5.2 metres; and
- that portion of the front yard and corner side yard not used for parking or occupied by projections permitted under the by-law, must consist of soft landscaped area, with or without architectural elements.
Tandem parking that leads to a required parking space will be extended to duplexes in order to accommodate the required or additional parking of two vehicles located one behind the other. Where a secondary dwelling unit is added to a duplex dwelling, an additional parking space can be accommodated in the front yard, provided performance standards are met (see Figure 2).
Permitted Dwelling Types
The R1 zoned portions of Pinewood Crescent (east side) were not downzoned by a previous City Council, as indicated in the PAC report (Recommendation No.12). Under old Ottawa’s former Zoning By-law Z-2K (the Zoning By-law in place prior to 1998), the area was zoned an R3 zone, but that R3 zone limited development to detached dwellings only. The current Ottawa Zoning By-law 1998, has retained the same type of zoning category for the area in question, but has renamed the zone to R1 to better reflect that the zone is meant to permit detached dwellings only, and such dwellings may contain a secondary dwelling unit. The west side of Pinewood Crescent is zoned R2 and includes a mix of detached, semi-detached and duplex dwellings.
While the QTN Community Association generally supports the legalization of the duplex units with secondary dwelling units identified in Appendix 3 throughout the neighbourhood, it also recognizes that these buildings may or may not comply with all of the new zoning regulations, which is to be expected when regulations for a new use are introduced into a Zoning By-law. The PAC has recommended that those illegally-built third units should have to comply with the new rules or be removed from the original building, and has also requested that development be capped on Pinewood Crescent to existing densities (ie. no new dwelling units, and in particular no establishment of secondary dwelling units in existing dwellings), until such time as their requested pro-active enforcement occurs followed by a Development Review along this street.
By approving the zoning amendments permitting secondary dwelling units on a City-wide basis, Council determined that it is better to recognize former illegal secondary dwelling units, so that developers and owners of these units no longer have to “hide” their units. By legalizing the use, it is expected that developers and owners will feel comfortable in approaching the City to determine what Building, Fire and Zoning rules apply, and that future new units will comply with all municipal by-laws.
Moreover, recognizing a formerly illegal use does not carry the legal non-compliance rights under the Planning Act, as these rights only apply to legally existing uses that do not comply with newly adopted rules. Therefore, if an existing unit does not meet one or more of the new zoning regulations, in order to bring the unit into compliance, the owner should either make modifications to the building or property to comply, or else seek a variance to the regulation(s) through the Committee of Adjustment.
While the new secondary dwelling unit zoning regulations cannot require that any existing unit be brought up to Fire and Building Codes, previously built units may eventually become known to the City for a variety of reasons - whether through a neighbour's complaint, a required disclosure by real estate agents at the time of sale, or upon the renewal of a mortgage.
Owners of secondary dwelling units across the city, including QTN, will have to meet the new rules. Should these rules not be complied with, enforcement by complaint is available to members of the community.
It is recognized that Pinewood Crescent exhibits a significant amount of front yard parking and parking along the right-of-way. This situation is more visible, perhaps because of the lack of curbing which would otherwise provide better organized on-street parking, and also because of the lack of street trees evident along this street. However, it is not felt that this is sufficient justification to exempt dwellings on Pinewood Crescent from the option of creating a secondary dwelling unit, if the performance standards can be met. As previously indicated, the QTN Community Association will undertake, in co-operation with the City, an educational campaign which will include residents on Pinewood Crescent. Further, any new secondary dwelling units in a duplex can have parking accommodated in the front yard provided that at least 50% of the front yard comprises landscaped area. It is also anticipated that the potential to add street trees along Pinewood Crescent will improve the streetscape and soften the appearance of the parked cars.
Further, given concerns about parking along Pinewood, perhaps the QTN community might review the on-street parking situation along Pinewood and approach the Traffic and Parking Operations Branch regarding possible solutions (e.g. addition of a no parking sign along one side of the road) to reduce the amount of on-street parking.
In addition, the PAC is concerned that property owners wishing to redevelop their properties might seek to maximize the building size or height permitted by the Zoning By-law 1998, which they feel would not be in keeping with the character of the community. As well, there is a concern expressed about the architectural incompatibility of new construction, particularly with respect to rooflines and setbacks.
The construction of detached, semi-detached and duplex dwellings in the City is subject to the provisions of the various existing Zoning By-laws, but these dwelling types are not required to go through Site Plan Control Approval or design control unless they are located in a designated heritage conservation district. The existing former Ottawa Zoning By-law 1998 provides for setbacks - front, corner side, rear yards, of 6 m, 4.5 m and 7.5 m respectively - and side yards that are a total width of at least three metres for both side yards. The maximum height permitted for these dwelling types was reduced to a maximum of eight metres with the adoption of the Zoning By-law 1998, to reflect the prevalent one and two-storey heights in the neighbourhood, and to prevent the construction of “monster housing”. The draft Comprehensive Zoning By-law that is currently under public consultation is generally carrying over these requirements, including the height limit.
As for townhouses and apartment building projects, these must go through the Site Plan Control Approval process. The Zoning By-law can regulate various urban design elements, such as height, massing, scale, bulk, setbacks, coverage, and so forth; however, its extent of architectural control cannot extend beyond those built form elements, as per the Ontario Planning Act; and therefore, regulation of such features as roof lines, for example, is limited.
Site Plan Control applications for new construction or substantial additions, as well as rezoning applications where applicable, are circulated to community associations, in addition to the posting of an on-site sign on the property. Therefore, the QTN Community Association should continue to participate in the City’s development review process.
Finally with respect to PAC’s concern regarding the proposed development fronting on Carling Avenue at 805 Maplewood (Recommendation 10), the strategic direction of the Official Plan is to manage new growth within the urban boundary, including on or near roadways designated “Arterial Mainstreets”. Carling Avenue is designated an Arterial Mainstreet and therefore the low-rise apartment R5A H(10.5) zone is appropriate for this site. Furthermore, Official Plan policy 220.127.116.11 prevents amendments to the Zoning By-law within urban areas to eliminate residential apartments as a permitted use.
A Site Plan Control application is currently under review for this property, proposing a three- storey, six-unit apartment building. Any concerns arising from this application will be dealt with through the development review process. Opportunities for public input have been, and will continue to be, provided as part of the process.
Recommendation 2a) of this report proposes amendments to the Zoning By-law, which includes the amendments contained in the PAC Recommendation 3. Further, Recommendation 1c) will support the PAC Recommendation 9. No action is proposed with respect to PAC Recommendations 7, 10 and 12, which have been addressed in the above discussion.
3. PAC Recommendations – Right-of-Way Improvements and Traffic Calming Measures
PAC Recommendations 4, 5 and 8 fall within the requests for rights-of-way improvements and traffic calming measures. For exact wording of the recommendations, please see Document 3.
In the north part of the neighbourhood roads were built without curbs, leaving wide boulevards of green space between the paved road and the abutting property lines. Although there is probably enough space in the boulevard to meet the demand for on-street parking, the lack of curbs removes the discipline and clarity as to where people are supposed to park or walk. The result is a helter-skelter and unkempt appearance along the roadway, which is offensive to some in the neighbourhood. This is a particular problem along Pinewood Crescent.
PAC would like curbing to be installed on streets where no curbing exists and where there has been a problem defining a public street edge where parking is appropriate. However, the City has an accountable system in place whereby the City will maintain roads and municipal infrastructure in its existing state. If property owners desire to upgrade the road or infrastructure, they must pay for the upgrades through a local improvement charge.
To launch this process, the QTN Community Association would:
- submit a request to the City to undertake a Survey of Interest in the affected community;
- the Survey of Interest would require that at least 50% of the benefiting property owners agree to proceed with the review;
- if they agree, City staff would investigate the needs and design features of the project and would inform the benefiting property owners of their apportioned share of the cost;
- a formal Local Improvement Petition would then be circulated;
- if two-thirds of the benefiting properties representing at least half the total assessed value sign the petition, then the project would proceed; and
- property owners would be charged the apportioned local improvement charge on their tax bill either as a lump sum or as a portion of the sum with interest over 10 years.
In addition, staff agrees with PAC Recommendation 5 in that tree planting can help define the public street edge and help mitigate the impact of parking on the streetscape. It is therefore recommended that the City initiate a tree planting plan, in consultation with the QTN Community Association, for locations where trees could be planted to improve the streetscape in the north part of the neighbourhood. In particular, additional trees along Pinewood Crescent, north of Harwood, would improve the appearance of the street since very few of the duplex dwellings have existing street trees, or trees in the front yards of these properties.
If the neighbourhood agrees to proceed with a local improvement project involving the installation of curbs and sidewalks, it is also recommended that trees be installed as part of that project.
The Public Works and Services Department has established processes in place for dealing with community traffic concerns. Requests relating to specific locations can often be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. Actions resulting from such requests will be based on established criteria such as minimum warrants for specific traffic control devices. As well, the Department has an Area Traffic management program in place for consideration of on-going community-related concerns that are not easily resolved on a case-by-case basis, including the consideration of physical changes to address driver behaviour concerns. A formal application is required for consideration as part of this program, and once that is received and the concerns raised have been confirmed, each request is prioritized against other requests for potential study. For physical traffic management measures such as speed humps to be considered as part of new road works, these would need to have been recommended and approved as part of a previously completed Area Traffic Management Study. Of note, funding for this program is limited and therefore studies will not be considered (and physical measures will not be considered) until the concerns raised have been confirmed and the request has been ranked as a priority study.
In order to implement the PAC Recommendation 4, that QTN Community Association must submit a written request to the City to undertake a Survey of Interest for local improvements to Pinewood Crescent or to all or some of the roads in Queensway Terrace North.
Recommendation 1b) in this report will implement PAC Recommendation 5.
In support of PAC Recommention 8, the QTN Community Association should forward any location-specific traffic concerns to the Traffic Operations Branch for consideration and further, should the QTN Community Association wish consideration of an Area Traffic Management Study, whether on an individual street basis or a community-wide basis, it should contact the Branch to obtain further details on submission of the required Area Traffic Management – Community Traffic Issue Reporting Form.
4. PAC Recommendations – Monitoring and Assessment of Development Activity
PAC Recommendations 11, 13, 14 and 15 deal with the community’s request for monitoring development activity to identify its impact on the community, and for providing a formal process to allow a reassessment of intensification in QTN.
The Queensway Terrace North community has experienced very little increase in the number of dwelling units, with but 16 new dwelling units created in the past five years, representing a 1.3% increase. This is in line with similar stable residential neighbourhoods such as Bayshore, Alta Vista, Ottawa East and Cedarview with a 0%, 1.9%, 2% and 2.1% increase in units over the same period respectively. It should be noted that these small increases took place in these areas while intensification policies were already in place, both in the former Ottawa Official Plan, the former Region’s Official Plan and the new Official Plan. The primary reason for this small growth is that these neighbourhoods do not have large tracts of vacant land that can be developed, while such areas as Kanata Urban Centre and South Nepean Centre, have experienced 21.6% and 42.4% increases in dwelling units during the past five years. Significant intensification through redevelopment is also occurring in the Central Area, which saw an increase in 38.3% in the same period.
In terms of what might happen in the future, staff anticipates that the combined take-up over time by owners to add a secondary dwelling unit will be moderate (perhaps about four to six per cent of existing dwelling units city-wide, although it is difficult to determine at this time). Other than that, the areas in the neighbourhood zoned R1 do not permit any additional dwelling units than currently exist, and while the R2 zone permits the redevelopment of existing detached dwellings to semi-detached or duplex dwellings, this is unlikely to occur primarily because of the low financial returns of demolishing good quality detached homes to construct a new building with two or three dwelling units. There are a few areas zoned for triplexes and rowhouses in the community, but these are essentially developed to their maximum.
The draft Comprehensive Zoning By-law does not propose to change the uses permitted in QTN, nor the setback and heights, other than a minor increase from 10.7 to 11 metres for the current zones permitting triplexes and rowhouses (ie. existing R3 and R4 zones). The exception is the new permission of converting existing residential use buildings to a rooming house of a limited number of rooms on arterial or major collector roadways city-wide, including Carling Avenue and Pinecrest Road. Again, as with secondary dwelling units, it is not anticipated that there will be numerous conversions to rooming houses, due to the need to provide additional parking for such conversions, and the limited size of the properties to provide the additional parking spaces (0.5 spaces per rooming unit proposed). As well, there are few if any vacant lots to provide opportunities for infill development, and unless there is another school closure, there are no available larger tracts of land in the community.
The only significant opportunity for additional dwelling units to be constructed in the community is along Carling Avenue, which is designated an Arterial Mainstreet in the Official Plan. The current zoning for the street is R2A (one lot), I1 (institutional) for one block, and the rest R5A being an apartment zone with a height limit of 10.5 metres (about three and a half storeys). With this height limit (the draft Comprehensive Zoning By-law is proposing to retain the low-rise apartment zone along the street, with a minor increase to an 11 metre height limit), it is not anticipated that redevelopment of these properties with the height limit in effect would generate a significant number of dwelling units. It is recognized however that the Official Plan Arterial Mainstreet designation contemplates mixed-use buildings or stand-alone residential apartment buildings of six to eight storeys in height. There is the possibility that site-specific rezoning applications could be considered for development under this designation. In the future, it is anticipated that Planning and Growth Management would undertake a Community Design Plan for this street, as a tool to manage change.
Staff are of the opinion that under the current policy directions, existing and proposed zoning controls, and past development trends, it is unlikely that the QTN neighbourhood will experience the increase in the number of dwelling units anticipated in the PAC report through to 2021 (estimated by PAC to have an increase from 1211 to 1573 units). The PAC would like to see a Development Review of specific blocks in the neighbourhood (four blocks are to comprise QTN) when there is an increase of 20% within a block. For the entire QTN area this means an increase of 242 units. Staff are willing to provide the community with statistics on the number of additional dwelling units in QTN, as requested in PAC Recommendation 11c on an annual basis for the next five years, at which time it can be reassessed if this should continue.
A staff overview of key infrastructure capacities and conditions for the QTN community concluded that all basic servicing and transportation infrastructure including water supply, wastewater collection, stormwater drainage, utilities, and the road network is under-capacity and in generally good condition. Staff determined that water supply and pressure are adequate, however, in higher topographic areas (generally in portions of the northwest of the study area) there may be some limitations which require more analysis on a site-by-site basis. Further, stormwater and wastewater systems will accommodate limited conversion/infill type intensification without the need for any major upgrades. Higher density development on streets serviced by small diameter watermains may be found to have minor limitations that would need to be addressed. If more intensive development is proposed, such as mid- to high-density residential or the redevelopment of large parcels of land, then detailed evaluation of the affected infrastructure would need to be conducted, including structural conditions due to the age of the systems. Road capacities and condition, given existing and anticipated future volumes and use, do not present any concern.
In 2007, the Department of Community and Protective Services, in conjunction with the Department of Planning and Growth Management, will be preparing neighbourhood profiles, as background to the Neighbourhood Plans, for two pilot project areas. Depending on the outcome of these pilots, there may be a template for neighbourhood profiles available for other neighbourhoods. These profiles are likely to be similar in nature to the Community Characteristics Review contained in Appendix 7 of Document 3, proposed by QTN, in that they will quantify the social, economic and physical characteristics of each neighbourhood. It is suggested that the Community Characteristics Table contained in Appendix 7, be considered by City staff in the preparation of the neighbourhood profile template. Should the Neighbourhood Planning Initiative be approved for other neighbourhoods, and QTN is deemed as a priority area, a Neighbourhood Profile for QTN could be prepared.
The request for staff to design a formal scientific-based survey of residents’ opinions of community characteristics, as detailed in PAC Recommendation 14, would require the allocation of a budget to be able to engage professional consultants to undertake this work. Staff are not recommending approval of this specific initiative as the City, through the Neighbourhood Planning pilot project, is working in partnership with the Federal Government, Carleton University and the United Way etc. to develop effective measuring tools for neighbourhoods throughout the city.
Staff understands the concerns of the QTN PAC with respect to the possible impacts to communities as a result of intensification, as is reflected in the community’s proposed model to monitor and assess that impact, as contained in PAC Recommendation 11 and 15. With the application of the new Official Plan policies in effect since 2003, we have identified that there need to be refinements to the Official Plan to assist in the better interpretation and implementation of the City’s intensification objectives. With the five-year review of the Official Plan set for 2008, staff are proposing that this policy and implementation gap be addressed city-wide, rather than committing resources to area specific reviews as is proposed by the PAC recommendations. QTN, as well as other community associations and the Federation of Citizen’s Associations, will be able to participate in this Official Plan review.
This report’s Recommendation 1d) accommodates the PAC Recommendation 11c and 11d.i. Report recommendation 1e) reflects the intent of the PAC Recommendation 11d.ii. As for the balance of the PAC Recommendations, Report Recommendation 1f) suggests that the proposed Development Review Mechanism model be considered as part of the review of the City’s intensification objectives through the Official Plan review in 2008.
There are no direct environmental implications to the recommendations contained in the report. However, in Recommendation 2a), the proposed zoning amendments which will restrict parking in rear yards and permit a limited amount of front yard parking (provided that at least 50% of the front yard is used for landscaped open space) are designed to limit the impact of parking on the environment. As well, Recommendation 1b), which proposes additional street trees in the neighbourhood, will contribute to improving the environment.
A Public Advisory Committee (PAC) was established representing a cross-section of the community. The composition of the PAC was determined in consultation with the Ward Councillor and the Queensway Terrace North Community Association. It consisted of nine people, including the Ward Councillor, and the project planner from the Planning and Growth Management Department.
PAC meetings typically occurred on a monthly basis beginning in November 2005 and terminating in June 2006. On May 23, 2006, the City and the PAC held a public meeting to present information gathered, and analysis and recommendations completed to date. Public advertising of the meeting was undertaken by a notice placed in the New EMC - Ottawa West Edition, the Councillor's monthly column (Kitchissippi Times) and Canada Post flyers delivered to each residential unit within the study area. There were 28 persons in attendance at the May 2006 meeting. Feedback was received at the public meeting and incorporated in the PAC's recommendations.
Recommendations 1a), 2a), 1c),
1e), 1f) and 2b): All listed Departments have indicated that undertaking
such initiatives can be covered through existing resources.
Recommendation 1b):Funding for Recommendation 1b) subject to capital budget approval in the 2007 capital budget under the Tree Planting program as part of the joint community initiatives.
Document 1 Location Map
Document 2 Details of Recommendations
Document 3 Queensway Terrace North (QTN) Public Advisory Committee (PAC) Report – Community Development Planning Process in response to Interim Control By-law (Issued separately to all Members of Council and held on file with the City Clerk).
Recommendation 1a) – to be jointly implemented by Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Policy Branch; Community and Protective Services Department, By-law Services Branch; and, Public Works and Services Department, Traffic and Parking Operations Branch.
Recommendations 2a) and 2b) – Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning and Infrastructure Approvals Branch to:
i) prepare implementing by-laws; and
ii) advertise the adoption of the amending by-law.
Recommendation 1b) – To be implemented by Public Works and Services Department, Surface Operations Branch.
Recommendations 1c), 1d) and 1f) – To be implemented by Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Policy Branch.
Recommendation 1e) – to be implemented jointly by Community and Protective Services Department, Housing Branch and Planning and Growth Management Department, Planning, Environment and Infrastructure Policy Branch.
The following provisions apply to all lots zoned R1, R2 and R3 and any subzone of those primary zones, except those lands located along Carling or Pinecrest Avenues:
(a) no person shall park a passenger vehicle in the rear yard, unless such parking is in a legally provided garage with direct access from the public street to the garage;
(b) front yard parking is permitted on a lot with an interior side yard less than 3 metres, which is developed with a detached house, a semi-detached house or a linked-detached house with no garage or carport, subject to the following:
- in the case of a detached house, a maximum of one parking space may be permitted in the front yard, and
- in the case of a semi-detached house or a linked-detached house, a maximum of one parking space may be permitted for each half of the semi-detached or linked-detached in the front yard.
(c) a maximum of two front yard parking spaces is permitted in the case of a duplex
house, with or without a secondary dwelling unit.
(d) In the case of a lot developed with a detached, semi-detached, linked-detached or
- the front yard parking space may have a minimum length of 4.6 metres;
- the front yard parking spaces must be entirely on the lot;
- the angle formed by the length of the parking space and the lot line abutting the street must be at least 75 degrees but no greater than 90 degrees;
- in no case may the front yard parking area exceed 50% of the front or corner side yard, as the case may be, and no individual driveway may exceed 5.2 metres; and
- that portion of the front yard or corner side yard not used for parking or occupied by projections permitted under the by-law, must consist of soft landscaped area, with or without architectural elements.
(e) Section 68 be amended to add a duplex house to those uses where additional parking may be located in tandem in the driveway.
(g) a tandem parking parking space may be considered to meet the required parking where a duplex house, with or without a secondary dwelling unit, is located on a lot.
3. Amend Section 15 – Exceptions, to add the following clause to exception numbers 24, 25, 18, 26, 27, and 891:
“ no person may park a passenger vehicle in a rear yard, unless such parking is in a
legally provided garage with direct access from the public street to the garage.”
4. Amend Section 15 – Exceptions to add the following clause to exception number 41:
“no person may park a passenger vehicle in a rear yard on lots fronting on Pinewood,
unless such parking is in a legally provided garage with direct access from the public
street to the garage.”