On one hand it looks more modern and interesting than the other ghastly projects that have gone up around town the last few years, but it's still not as good as it could be with further refinements. It uses its budget to create something modern and unique, instead of using cornices and other faux-historic stuff that looks awful on a lower budget, which is good, I only wish it was a little less slab-like.
But yeah, compared to other student housing projects of its size in Waterloo, I actually quite like this! It's modern and a little bit Dutch... it will really come down to the execution.
To prove that I'm not insufferable, I'm going to give this design a thumbs up for its architecture. I see a little Dutch neo-modernist creativity at work here and I'll accept that! In terms of city-building, it doesn't get a thumbs up from me until I see more retail and other mixed uses at sidewalk level in these new student developments.
Last edited by SP!RE; 07-14-2012 at 08:12 PM.
This is a proposal by Schembri. At the Northdale public meeting, they argued against the neighbourhood rezoning, citing traffic and parking impacts of more people living there, and saying that there's too much student housing already. Then they asked for special exemption from the Northdale zoning to let them build this 5-bedroom-only student housing tower. Mayor Halloran subtly noted the hypocrisy.
To follow up on the above, this property was not given any exemption from the Northdale re-zoning. Now, I'm not sure what the timeline is on the Region signing off on the change, nor how the city can do development applications before that happens. It's also possible that someone like Schembri might appeal the Northdale plan to the OMB. But assuming the Northdale zoning is in force, this proposal is nowhere close to compliance. It would need active uses at street level, and would need to be reconfigured to have a podium and a narrower footprint for its tower.
I have to agree with SP!RE. I'd rather see something more for the general rental market but it looks a lot better than what's down the street--and WAY better than the Brutalist tombstone across the street. Will that thing ever be put out of its misery?
I have to say - looking up King Street from the South, these new buildings are covering up said tombstone rather nicely.
At last, a new building that isn't orange or brown!
I think this development looks pretty decent. That corner has looked pretty dumpy for the past 20+ years, so i'd be fine with pretty much anything taking its place, even if it is more student housing. I like the more modern design, the lack of surface parking and the fact that it comes right up to the road.
I'm not as crazy as most when it comes to ground floor retail, but at a major intersection like this, it'd be very nice to have. I think we'll start seeing more proposals with 1st-floor commercial once the properties exempted from the new Northdale zoning/design standards finish going through the approval process. In addition to this one, I think the only remaining properties left that haven't come before council yet are:
273 Lester Street
280 Phillip Street
313-315 Spruce Street
9 Hickory Street West
143 Columbia Street West
248 Sunview Street
This is now 22-storeys, up from the 18 posted on SRM Architects' site.
Demolition Control Application DC2012-19 – King & Columbia Inc. – 5, 7, 9, 11 Columbia St. W. & 357, 359 King St. N.
Report Number: DS2012-088 | Author: Sam Nabi | File: DC2012-19
Meeting Type: Council Meeting | Council/Committee Date: Monday, January 14, 2013
That Waterloo City Council receive Development Services report DS2012-088 and approve Demolition Control Application DC2012-19, King & Columbia, Inc., for the land known municipally as5, 7, 9, 11 Columbia St. W. & 357, 359 King St. N., in accordance with Section 5 of DS2012-088.
King & Columbia Inc. has submitted an application to demolish the existing six (6) buildings on the properties known municipally as 5, 7, 9, 11 Columbia St. W. & 357, 359 King St. N. (refer to Location Map). The subject lands contains six single detached dwellings with a total of 6 units and 39 bedrooms. The demolition has been requested to facilitate the construction of a 22-storey, 74-unit apartment building containing 370 bedrooms.
The subject property is located within the Area of Demolition Control as outlined in By-law No. 86-122 and therefore the dwellings may only be demolished with Council’s approval.
Staff supports the issuance of a demolition permit based on the following:
B. Financial Implications:
- the proposed redevelopment is in keeping with the Official Plan;
- the proposed redevelopment is in keeping with the Demolition Control By-law 86-122;
- the proposed redevelopment provides an intensification opportunity in an area planned for high density redevelopment; and
- the proposed building may provide an opportunity for affordable and/or rental housing in close proximity to existing transit services.
Staff are not aware of any municipal financial implications with respect to the requested application. Should the application be appealed, potential costs related to an Ontario Municipal Board hearing may be incurred.
C. Technology Implications
Staff are not aware of any technology implications with respect to the requested application.
D. Legal Considerations
Should Council support the application, the Chief Building Official may issue a demolition permit subject to compliance with the Ontario Building Code. Should Council deny the application, the applicant may appeal Council’s decision to the Ontario Municipal Board.
E. Link to Strategic Plan
The request for demolition control can ultimately support the City’s Strategic Plan as follows:
F. Economic Vitality
- Sustainability and Our Living Environment –Supporting intensification, growing up not out
- Getting Around- Transit supportive development through intensification
The request for demolition control supports the City’s economic vitality through:
G.Previous Reports on this Topic
- Increased tax revenue by means of increased property value;
- Job creation by way of the design, construction, and maintenance of the new building; and
- Development charges and parkland fees to be collected from the City.
Staff are not aware of any previous reports on this topic.
5 Columbia Street West
5 Columbia Street West
5 Columbia Street West
5 Columbia Street West
357 King Street North
359 King Street North
I rescind my previous comments. The new rendering = nothing more than garbage.
Suddenly, I go from noticing an ironic instance of these developments sporting a "maze" aesthetic on its exterior, and before the day is through it's the start of a trend.
Eventually, you can't go on not caring. You realize you have a voice.
I can't believe they seriously consider building such crap.
We have a city hall that will meddle in the minutest of details, down to controlling the height on King st. below four stories, yet let these monstrosities go by unopposed. Can they make up their mind for once? Otherwise just get out of the way like Kitchener has done. They have produced better nicer looking designs with almost no control than Waterloo has with its invasive overseeing approval process.
Last edited by BuildingScout; 01-14-2013 at 05:03 PM.
I'm not even convinced I don't like the abandoned, derelict houses that are there now more than this...
Wow. We're seeing in Kitchener what you should do with gateway intersections with One Victoria. Waterloo, get a clue.
"I'd rather see something more for the general rental market"...not goin' to happen; you have a ghetto created here like it or not...why would anyone other than students want to live in this wasteland; even some graduate students who I know shudder at the thought...sad indeed!
Just having a student dominated district does not create a ghetto, any more that Laurelwood is a starter family ghetto. With proper planning one can create a lively student district which other residents like to visit and even live in. However this necessitates mixed zoning so that businesses can sprout organically and some buildings nearby that are oriented a bit upmarket instead of five-bedrooms per unit buildings