There are many concerns with the current proposal. The major concern is that the subject property is currently zoned for low rise usage only. The applicant is requesting to change the zoning and city by-law to permit high-rise buildings on their land. They are also asking to amend the City’s Official Plan. If approved, this would be the ONLY high rise development in Thornhill Woods and would dramatically change the look and feel of our neighborhood.
Having a high density development will have a significant impact on traffic in our neighborhood. Not only will there be over 400 additional households, but there will be additional visitors, customers to the retail stores, and parents dropping off their children at the future school. Our neighborhood was designed for low density, low traffic volumes. The streets were not designed to accommodate such a large volume of additional traffic. Many of the neighborhood streets are narrow and some do not have sidewalks. Adding such a large volume of cars, especially during rush hours and when children are walking to school will make the situation unbearable.
The applicant is also requesting an exemption to the minimum standards for parking. The neighboring residents are already experiencing overflow parking from the current facility spilling onto their streets. This is partially due to a previous application that the Jaffari Centre submitted to the city requesting an exemption to the minimum parking standards. The previous application was accepted by the City and area residents are paying the price. The current exemption being requested is for less than half of the minimum standards. If this exemption is permitted, it will only make a bad situation worse. In addition, the future planned mid-rise building sits right on top of the proposed parking lot, meaning that once that application is submitted, the parking situation will be even further compromised. We cannot allow this situation to continue to deteriorate.
But this is not only about density. Residents have also expressed other concerns with the proposed development. For example, there is currently a large woodlot on the property which provides privacy and a noise buffer for the homes along Ner Israel Drive. The applicant wants to cut down the majority of this woodlot to build their townhomes. This neighborhood is called “Thornhill Woods” for a reason – we would like to preserve this green space.
There is also a Heritage Building located on the subject lands. This building dates back to 1899 and has been listed on the City of Vaughan Heritage Inventory as a building of architectural and historical value. The applicant has one of their 17-storey buildings right on top of where this heritage building currently stands. We do not want this building destroyed.
There are also environmental concerns and issues with the ability of the existing infrastructure to service a high density development.
Posted in: Jaffari Village Application