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General Infill Discussion

Wonderful to see and much progress over the last decade. Well deserved COE.

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Open for business: City of Edmonton’s Client Liaison Unit works with developers, builders and investors

by City of Edmonton | Posted on January 20, 2022


From the link above:

Open Sky Developments, is one of the CLU’s clients. The Vancouver firm is building a $34-million, 17-storey residential tower, The Jameson, on 102 Avenue and 121 Street in the Oliver neighbourhood.

“When you work with the City of Edmonton, you know they’re open for business,” says Robert Horvath, principal with Open Sky. “With a lot of other municipalities, you might apply for a building permit and it goes into a giant stack of other applications or you need some help and people don’t respond to your phone calls or emails. In Edmonton, you know the City wants to work with you and that’s refreshing.

“The Client Liaison Unit has always helped with anything we needed. They also told us what was expected of us and what we needed to do to file a quality application. If we’re not doing a good job, that doesn’t help the City. It works both ways.”
 
Wonderful to see and much progress over the last decade. Well deserved COE.

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Open for business: City of Edmonton’s Client Liaison Unit works with developers, builders and investors

by City of Edmonton | Posted on January 20, 2022

This sounds like a very good idea. I suspect the process can be daunting particularly for smaller businesses/individuals and those new to projects here. This sounds like a good way to helps people manage/navigate through it all.

Development to some degree is political. One of the advantages is Edmonton doesn't currently have the extreme pressure to develop everywhere that also results in a lot of NIMBY push back which is happening in some other places and ultimately can make the rules/development process very complicated. I suspect part of the ease can also be choosing a site well suited for the type of development planned in a neighbourhood that is ok with it.
 
Developers out of vancouver and Toronto are often amazed at how quickly entitlements can be gained in Edmonton. In my dealings with the client liaison unit, they have always been very helpful in answering questions and maneuvering through the City's numerous departments.
 
Developers out of vancouver and Toronto are often amazed at how quickly entitlements can be gained in Edmonton. In my dealings with the client liaison unit, they have always been very helpful in answering questions and maneuvering through the City's numerous departments.
I wonder what @archited thinks about the COE planning staff getting kudos from private industry!
 
From the link above:

Open Sky Developments, is one of the CLU’s clients. The Vancouver firm is building a $34-million, 17-storey residential tower, The Jameson, on 102 Avenue and 121 Street in the Oliver neighbourhood.

“When you work with the City of Edmonton, you know they’re open for business,” says Robert Horvath, principal with Open Sky. “With a lot of other municipalities, you might apply for a building permit and it goes into a giant stack of other applications or you need some help and people don’t respond to your phone calls or emails. In Edmonton, you know the City wants to work with you and that’s refreshing.

“The Client Liaison Unit has always helped with anything we needed. They also told us what was expected of us and what we needed to do to file a quality application. If we’re not doing a good job, that doesn’t help the City. It works both ways.”
This is interesting given their Jameson project was delayed for weeks due to waiting on various construction permitting to be approved.
 
Pardon me if this was posted and discussed elsewhere, as it is a couple weeks old now. I had a thought this morning as to how we are doing with infill vs. greenfield development. It's good to see the 25% and that there is a further goal of reaching 50% share of new units built as infill by the time the city reaches 1.5 million. I am guessing we could get to 50% well before that point as currently under construction neighborhoods start to be completed and new areas even further afield create longer commute times.

"This will help the city get ready for the next lofty goal, of 50 per cent of new housing to be infill units by the time the population reaches 1.5 million people. "

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/edmonton-city-council-1.6432014
 

I like how the planning expert from UBC Patrick Condon says this:
The problem of affordability is not the number of buildings we have or don’t have, it’s not the cost of construction, IT'S NOT THE DRAG OF THE PERMITTING PROCESS, it’s the inflation that has occurred all across Canada and all across North America, particularly in major cities, on the price of land.”

And then we have a city councillor say this in the same article:
Coun. Anne Stevenson said for market-affordable infill housing, there’s a focus on reducing delays for permits and rezonings to streamline development.
“Increasing more opportunities for infill, and decreasing those barriers also help to drive down that cost,” she told Postmedia.

Certainly reducing the permitting process is a goal I think the city should continue to strive for but how much does that impact affordability?
 
I still think using Blatchford and Griesbach for the 25% infill goals is cheating. They may not be greenfield, but they're such large brownfield sites that they don't face the same NIMBY and land price challenges of other infill.

Edit: Also curious as to where all these Glenwood row houses are being built, and why it's so much more than anywhere else.
 
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I still think using Blatchford and Griesbach for the 25% infill goals is cheating. They may not be greenfield, but they're such large brownfield sites that they don't face the same NIMBY and land price challenges of other infill.

Edit: Also curious as to where all these Glenwood row houses are being built, and why it's so much more than anywhere else.

I am fine with using Blatchford toward infill targets as it is a city driven large scale infill project, which does fit the true definition of infill. I don't believe Griesbach should be included as it is a standard greenfield neighborhood with higher architectural controls that happens to be inside the Henday.
 
I still think using Blatchford and Griesbach for the 25% infill goals is cheating. They may not be greenfield, but they're such large brownfield sites that they don't face the same NIMBY and land price challenges of other infill.

Edit: Also curious as to where all these Glenwood row houses are being built, and why it's so much more than anywhere else.
I live in west jasper place, right next to glenwood. The trend in our neighbourhoods is to tear down corner lots to build 4 townhouses with legal basement suites. So 8 units. A lot of them look really great. I imagine many corners will become these. And because a lot more homes are run down in our area, it’s probably financially feasible to do these townhomes and sell for under 450k vs in an area like Crestwood.

I really like them!
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