City passes Broadway rezoning plans
Plans to overlay architectural controls in one of Saskatoon’s most vibrant streets were approved Monday evening.
Councillors voted unanimously to rezone Broadway Avenue in order to preserve the core characteristics of the area despite concerns expressed by some developers.
The city is capping its potential for high-density development in the area, said John Kearly, vice-president of the Millennium III Group of Companies.
Kearly, who is also the former chair of the Broadway Business Improvement District, warned city council that future investors will likely “vote with their feet” and choose to develop in other parts of the city where there are fewer restrictions.
But Coun. Charlie Clark, who has been an ardent proponent of the development strategy, said the plan is necessary if the city aims to add 50,000 more people into its core areas.
This is an “absolutely a forward thinking” plan, said Clark. “This is pioneering work.”
Plans for new developments on Broadway will now be required to pass design guidelines that determine elements such as height and the types of materials that can be used.
Architectural controls have been successfully introduced in many other cities across Canada, including Winnipeg’s Osborne Street and Edmonton’s Whyte Avenue, city council heard.
“These areas have not suffered” and in fact, it’s widely recognized that the reason they are thriving is because of the architectural controls, said heritage advocate Peggy Seargeant.
Tim Steuart, Saskatoon’s city planner, added that the guidelines are “quite flexible” and give architects adequate design flexibility.
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