Trinity Affordable Housing Phase 2 re-organized

In 1990, Trinity Housing opened a 20 unit apartment building at 25 James Street East (corner of John Street) for low income tenants with Rent Geared to Income.  But around 2018, an expansion of 27 units was planned and Trinity Housing of Cobourg Phase 2 (THCP2) was formed. Like phase one, the expansion would be a not-for-profit corporation owned by Trinity Church.  In January 2019, they asked Cobourg Council for financial support but only a fraction of their ask was approved.  Early this year, the managing board decided that “this endeavour has proved to be more difficult than imagined. The many drawings, plans and studies required resulted in many upfront costs and the estimate for the cost of construction has… Read complete articleTrinity Affordable Housing Phase 2 re-organized

RFP Issued for Development of Old CDCI West Playing Fields

Officially known as 117 Durham Street, the Town bought the land in 2022 but it took until March 2023 before Council directed what should be done with it.  And now, an RFP has been issued on February 23 to call for development proposals. Although the “primary objective of the call for proposals is to recuperate costs from the purchase of the property” it is also hoped it will help “address the housing crisis”. Council directed that “the lands be a balanced mix of parkland, market and affordable residential units.” Some of the property is “designated as an Environmental Constraint Area” but “Guidance on the developable limit has been informed by an Environmental Impact Study completed in February 2024”. That is,… Read complete articleRFP Issued for Development of Old CDCI West Playing Fields

Review of Selected Major Projects

At a recent Council meeting, Director of Planning Anne Taylor Scott issued her second annual report on activity in her department – it’s called “2023 Growth Trends Report – Planning & Building Departments”. Anne notes that a full complement of planning staff would be 6 people but there are currently 3 vacancies – that includes Rob Franklin who is on a 12 month leave of absence. Her report makes it clear that her department has been very busy in 2023 with 138 new applications and 141 approvals. They ranged from Heritage Permit applications to Official plan amendments. One big change is the public availability of the Development Dashboard based on the Town’s GIS data – this allows the public to… Read complete articleReview of Selected Major Projects

Cobourg’s Development Projects

Cobourg’s planning department seems to be overloaded and has many projects late.  However, they recently made a tool available that lists what they are working on.  The list is long and includes a good number of projects with new housing.  Below is a summary of the significant projects and a map showing where they are.  The table lists significant projects and summarizes the details – see the Development Dashboard in resources below for more details.  It’s not easy to add up the numbers but there’s well over 800 residential units “on the planning books”.  Many of the new units are townhouses or multiplex units so should be a lower price range if not fully “affordable”.  I hope that our utility… Read complete articleCobourg’s Development Projects

Council Gets Public Input on STRAs

At a public meeting on Monday, October 30, Cobourg Council once again presented their proposed rezoning and licensing by-law to legalize Short Term Rental Accommodation (STRA).  Currently, Hotels and Bed and Breakfasts (B & Bs) are legal but STRAs are not although the Town is doing nothing about these illegal establishments.  They are illegal because they are not permitted by zoning anywhere in Cobourg so the Town plans to remedy this by rezoning.  In addition, a By-law will require STRAs to be licensed and several STRA owners made it clear that the requirements of the proposed regulation could well make them no longer viable.  Director Brent Larmer presented a summary of the proposed requirements and highlights of these are provided… Read complete articleCouncil Gets Public Input on STRAs

Another Property Declared Unsafe to Occupy

Inspection by Town staff at 821 Battell Court started September 25 and “uncovered numerous Property Standards and health and safety concerns”.  Then on September 27 a second multi-agency inspection was completed with the result that a Property Standards Order was issued to address immediate deficiencies related to the Town’s prescribed property standards for occupancy. In addition to inadequate conditions involving ventilation, lighting, plumbing, heating, and electrical services it was determined due to safety reasons, that the building be secured to prevent occupancy until the deficiencies are corrected.  These inspections were a follow-up to “a multi-agency inspection of the property (that) had previously taken place in August to evaluate fire and municipal by-law concerns.” “As a result of this inspection, the… Read complete articleAnother Property Declared Unsafe to Occupy

Short Term Rental Accommodation in Cobourg

Originally thought of as “Home-Sharing”, AirBnb, VRBO and others have turned Short Term Rental Accommodation (STRA) into big business where investors buy properties specifically with the intent to rent them out for short terms – less than a month and as short as a day or so.  Neighbours are usually not happy with this; they say that renters often cause problems with community safety, parking, noise and litter, as well as degrading property values and destroying the sense of community.  There have been delegations to Council asking for action – in October 2021 and at Monday’s Committee of the Whole (C.O.W.) meeting. At Monday’s C.O.W. Grant Hayes, president of Guardian/Genedco Property Management, representing a large proportion of Cobourg’s Condo Owners,… Read complete articleShort Term Rental Accommodation in Cobourg

Council Negotiating with Second Street Developer

On Monday, 14 August, the Committee of the Whole meeting started with a special meeting to consider the 202 Second Street Lease Agreement.  In other words, to negotiate with the owner of the property commonly called the “Quigley lot” and now used for parking.  It was a closed session and not open to the public but at its conclusion, it was made open to the public and is now available as a video on e-scribe – see Resources below.  The open session started with a motion made by Mayor Lucas Cleveland to “allow the owners of 202 Second Street to charge for Parking for the next two weekends of August, 2023”.  Councillor Mutton seconded.  Lucas clarified that town-issued parking passes… Read complete articleCouncil Negotiating with Second Street Developer

Tannery Update

The “Tannery Project” has a long history and this needs to be understood before going further. There is a lot of misunderstanding about both its scope and practicality – but at the next Committee of the Whole (CoW) Council meeting, Rob Franklin, Manager of Long Range Planning, will ask council to give final approval for an enabling By-Law. If passed, the Official Plan and Zoning will then be modified to enable the Master Plan for the Area. The first thing to know is that the Master Plan covers an area much larger than just the vacant Tannery land; secondly, there is still pollution on the property and thirdly, there is no indication that any developer is interested in creating the… Read complete articleTannery Update

Council Decision Requested on old CDCI Property

In September 2022, the Town announced that they would be buying the old CDCI West playing field on Durham Street.  The purchase price was $2M and the deal closed in December 2022. At the Committee of the Whole meeting on April 3, staff will ask Council which of two options should they proceed with: 1) Keep all of it as parkland or 2) sell part of it to a developer on condition of including affordable housing.  In either case, changes to the Official plan are not required but residential housing would require re-zoning. The 2013 Parks Master plan would favour a park but the 2016 Downtown Master plan would favour the mixed plan. To help with a decision, staff spelled… Read complete articleCouncil Decision Requested on old CDCI Property