Category Archives: NHH City Square

Durand NA Defends CIPA Boundaries + Events! Events! Events!

Hi Duranders,

On March 23, New Horizon Development Group made another plea to the General Issues Committee to allow the expansion of the CIPA (Community Improvement Project Area) zone to include the development at the Thistle site (City Square).  The CIPA plan was put in place with boundaries to entice builders to invest in areas of the downtown that were desperate for greater residential density.  In order to ensure success of fledgling businesses downtown, greater population density is needed to kick-start economic activity.  Durand is already a very densely populated neighbourhood, and doesn’t require financial incentives (taxpayer-supported) — indeed, we are “built-out” meaning there is no developable land remaining.  So the DNA decided to make a delegation to the City in support of maintaining the existing boundaries.  Staff reporting on the issue agree with the Durand NA on maintaining the boundaries, so it is likely New Horizon will not be successful in their lobbying efforts.

The minutes for the March 23 GIC meeting are not yet available, but can be found at this link: in a few days.

Now, onto the fun stuff.  There are many, many events coming to the Durand.  Following are dates and links (if available) for more information.

April 16 – Alleyway Clean-up!  Join your neighbours for a fun and satisfying few hours of spring cleaning.  Help to clear out winter clutter (litter) and keep our alleyways beautiful.  More information here:

Sunday, May 1 – Bike for Mike — Ride a little or a lot to help raise money for bikes for kids!  This fun annual event is being held the first Sunday in May.  Get your biking muscles going for this great community event.

Saturday, May 7 and Sunday May 8 are jam-packed with things to do in our neighbourhood and city.

Jane’s Walks will be held all weekend.  There is more information below, but keep checking back as more walk leaders are confirmed.  You may be interested in a walk led by our own Janice Brown in the Durand Neighbourhood and/or Kevin Love who plans a walk of an alleyway network that will expand your options for getting around.

WHAT (?)  West Hamilton Artist Tour — This free annual event features fine artists living around the Locke Street area.  Held on both Saturday and Sunday from 10 to 5, you will not want to miss this opportunity to view some fabulous local art and talk to the art creators at the same time.

Doors Open — Planned again for the weekend of May 7 and 8.  Find out more here:

Now, the event EVERYONE is waiting for is the Grand Durand Garden Tour.  Held only once every three years, this fabulous garden tour is planned for Saturday, June 18.  Better than ever, but still only $20 with an advance ticket, you will not want to miss seeing the spectacular gardens hiding behind the beautiful homes in our neighbourhood.  Don’t miss out.  Last time, tickets sold out.  Get yours online today:


Please see the letter that the Durand Neighbourhood Association submitted to the Planning Department regarding New Horizon Home’s latest proposal for a 17 storey tower on Block 3 and our reasons for denying this application. I have also posted for your reference the MOS from 1996.

DNA – May 2013 Letter to Planning Committee re Thistle

DNA – Minutes of Settlement January 1996

Duranders Tell New Horizon Homes “NO” to 17 and “YES” to 4 !

Over 100 Duranders attended the information meeting last night Thursday, May 9th to tell New Horizon Homes and more specifically Mr Paikin that 17 storeys is not acceptable.  To NHH’s credit,  the presentation was brief as Duranders certainly knew what the original proposal  called for. For over 90 minutes, Duranders expressed their dismay, their anger, and outrage with the application to amend the zoning bylaw to allow for 17 storeys.  They questioned both the planner and Mr Paikin and it was obvious Duranders were not buying the song and dance.

Thank you to Nicholas Kevlahan, who presented an overview of what exactly this developer bought into when he partnered with Dundurn Edge to develop the former Thistle Site.  Mr Paikin continued to deny that he was aware of the “Minutes of Settlement” signed in 1996 which outlined height restrictions for this property and that was 7 storeys, 8 storeys and 4 storeys on Park Street South.  Would this not be  “due diligence” on the part of New Horizon Homes?

And for those of you who were not there last night, Duranders were informed that on previous occasions New Horizon Homes and Mr Paikin had come to the DNA to share his plans to request  2 additional storeys on each of the 2 Towers.  The DNA was supportive even though several Duranders were upset with our decision to not go to Committee of Adjustment to deny his request.  However, for whatever reason New Horizon Homes never bothered to contact us with the new application for 17 storeys and we did not become aware  until one of our Board members happened by the sign posted at Robinson and Park South and  an email from a resident who had received a notice to attend this very meeting last night.  Quite a change and certainly for the DNA and Duranders, disrespectful of our neighbourhood.

By the way, that letter only goes to residents that live within 120 metres of the proposed application. Had it not been for those Duranders who delivered over 500 flyers this past weekend and our DNA blogs, most of us would have had no idea of this meeting.  Not only that those that have already purchased in Tower 1 and Tower 2 have no idea what they will be looking at.  We had in attendance 3 new purchasers  that got wind of this meeting.  They were very vocal about how upset they are and would not have purchased had they known that they could be looking at a 17 storey tower.  Not only that, they  have a clause in their agreement saying that they can not oppose any zoning amendments!

Besides the 17 storeys, visitor parking that was originally to be located on the west side of the property has now been moved to what was to be lovely gardens and green space between the 2 towers.  So those residents now will be looking at vehicles in the centre of their space and a black hole of 17 storeys.

This is just beginning.  On the way out of the meeting,  Mr Paikin informed me that no one would WIN!  We must stay the course.  If you have not already submitted your letters to to the planning department and Councillor Farr, please do so.  The next step is for planning to review, accept, deny or make recommendations to the developer.  It will then go to the Council members of the Planning Committee, where we will again have the opportunity to present our objections and  then to Council.  Should the developer be denied.  He can then go to Committee of Adjustment and then to  the OMB.  We, too can go to the OMB.  It works both ways.  It is imperative that Councillor Farr be aware of your objections and to have our City support the best interests of our neighbourhood

This could be a very long process!

The DNA will keep you informed by way of this blog. Thank you once again for your passion, your commitment for continuing the battle to preserve this fabulous historic southwest neighbourhood ” DURAND”.  Lets not let developers destroy what we fought so hard for.  Good Urban Planning!  Not walls of towers that Torontonians are trying to escape from.




Say No to New Horizon – May 9th Public Meeting

Join us on Thursday May 9th and have your say on the proposed zoning by-law amendment for a 17 story development which was first proposed as a 4 story building. New Horizons Meeting Info has all the details:

Ryerson Recreation Centre
251 Duke Street, Hamilton
Thursday, May 9, 2013
7:00 pm

We are still looking for volunteers to help us with our flyer drop.  If you are interested please email: (it only takes an hour or less to do the drop)

Also, please print and post this add where appropriate: Duranders Say No Poster.

This is a great opportunity for Duranders to help impact the fair and sustainable development of our neighborhood.  The more people we have attend, the stronger our message will be!


Lets give Mr Paikin and New Horizon Homes a very clear message.  We do not support his proposal for a 17 storey development. The original plans were for a  4-storey structure. Lets keep it that way!

Here is the Zoning Amendment from 2009 for Block 3 Park Street South

Block “3”
(xv) That the Maximum number of Class A dwelling units shall be 24.
(xvi) That notwithstanding Section 11.(2)(iii) of Zoning By-law No. 6593, the
maximum building height shall be 4-storeys. .
(xvii) That notwithstanding Section 11.(3)(i)(b) of Zoning By-law No. 6593,
the minimum front yard depth, including balconies, shall be 0.0
(xviii) That notwithstanding Section 11.(3)(ii)(b) of Zoning By-law No. 6593,
the minimum northerly side yard width, including balconies, shall be
1.7 metres, except that 0.0 metres shall be permitted for a 1-storey,
roofed-over unenclosed porch for the building entrance.
(xix) That notwithstanding Section 11.(3)(ii)(b) of Zoning By-law No. 6593,
the minimum southerly side yard width, including balconies, shall be
9.4 metres.
(xx) That notwithstanding Section 11.(3)(i)(c) of Zoning By-law No. 6593,
the minimum rear yard depth, including balconies, shall be 6.0 metres.

We need a few volunteers to distribute flyers throughout the neighbourhood to announce the meeting that New Horizon Homes has planned.  If you do not live  in the immediate vicinity of this development, you would not have received notice of this meeting.

New Horizon Homes is holding this  meeting on Thursday May 9th at Ryerson Recreation Centre, 251 Duke Street, from 7pm to 9pm.  Duranders, if you are concerned it is important that you attend and tell the developer that this 17 storey proposal is inappropriate. Lets keep it at 4- storeys

Flyers need to be delivered before the May 9th meeting.  We will have a small area map for your drop.  This will take no more than 1 hour of your time.

New Durander Tony Bradshaw has offered to organize our routes.  If you can spare 1 hour of your time , please contact Tony at 289 260-9234 or email the Durand Neighbourhood Association.

Also, you have until May 9th to get your written submission in to the City Planners office.  See the previous blog for details.