Wednesday, March 26, 2014

a developing story

And so begins the development on the waterfront. This site was previously a motel that, in the end, no one was sorry to see demolished. It has been about 20 years in the making - and not without a lot of controversy. About eight years ago approval was given for a variance for extra height to build a 22-storey and 7-storey condo plus a 7-storey hotel. There is already a hotel on one side of the lot and an old motel with a rather nice house on the other. 

I can see the appeal of living right on the waterfront, but I don't think that should happen. Especially not right downtown, as this is. It has been nice to be able to see out onto the water from each of the north-south streets and to not feel hemmed in by tall buildings as you walk or drive alongside the lake. And there are the daily sunrises over the lake...








Not many of us who live in the downtown core are happy about having a high rise on the waterfront.  We haven't been too happy about these high rises (below), either. Then again, I live in what was the first high rise in town and people possibly weren't too happy about it, either. and I wouldn't blame them.

above, on the far left you can see the 6-storey hotel and a bit of the empty space where the new development is being built. on the left photo (both taken last spring, before the pier was finished), the red roofed Ascot motel








Below are some artists renderings of the future. The only possible saving grace is that there will be public access to the waterfront ... even if the public won't be able to see it from the street.


And if you look carefully, you'll see a building positioned directly opposite the 22 storey bit. that is the 'green' glassed condo building in the 3rd picture above. They will lose their view.

...and prices will likely start at $1,000,000

18 comments:

  1. The old hotel looks charming. I don't think I would be too happy about the lake view being ruined either. One of your city's charms will be gone forever.

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    1. at least there is the park farther down the street. that will always be there!

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    1. and it will create so much more traffic!

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  3. Wow, how nice of them to grant the public access to the lake.

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    1. yes, well, it was actually a coup. there will be retail space as well, which may be at the back (I'm not sure)

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  4. So sad that it is being replaced with high rises. It is hard for people that remember areas as they used to be. One good thing is that pictures of the before will stay in our mist forever. On an offside though, I would love to live in one of those condos but would never be able to afford such luxury.

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    1. I do feel for the people in the other condo buildings that will have their views seriously compromised. though they knew about development when they bought.

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  5. Sadly, this must be the new trend as I see it happening in several U.S. cities, as well. I do like the image of the Ascot Motel.

    ~Lindy

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    1. we're not sure what will happen to the Ascot when the owners decide to retire. it's doubtful someone else will take it on as is.

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  6. Too bad the high rise building is going to block the view and light from the neighborhood. This has happened in many cities. Chicago's Burnham plan, which laid out the future for development, banned high rise buildings along the shore, but several got built in the "air rights" above railroad right of way access. Fine photos.

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    1. developers will always find a loophole! here, they are making the waterfront more accessible than it was before.

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  7. The Ascot Motel looked great! It seems impossible to stop these towers along the lake. Will this block your view of the lake?

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    1. it won't block it, exactly, but it will be sticking up over the trees, I think. those photos are from a friend's apartment higher up than mine.

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  8. If you are ever in the Town Of Ajax head down to the waterfront. The have preserved the lands for public use. Any high rises are set back considerable amount from the water.

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  9. That's too bad - there are too many big buildings blocking beautiful nature as it is.

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  10. i can understand why people are unhappy, i would be too...i love that old ascot motel!

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  11. At least they are trying to do some "city planning".

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