Steve Newman

Building developers looking for relief from town’s development charges

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Developers of an affordable housing project proposed for Pickering Dr. are hopeful the town will give them some relief from development charges.

Steve Newman represented the group aiming to build an affordable housing apartment building at 182 Pickering Dr., a building that will be known as South Pointe Apartments. It would be a 32-unit apartment building for seniors and Newman said the roughly $170,000 in relief from the town would help offset $300,000 in upgrades to the proposed building to make it more energy efficient.

Other municipalities assist in relieving or offsetting development charges and if Amherstburg were to do so, Newman believed it would send a “clear message” that the town is embracing affordable housing.

Newman stated that according to the central housing registry in Windsor, there are 3,504 people on the waiting list for affordable housing in the region with 520 – or 15 per cent – being in Amherstburg. Town council has asked administration to come back with a report on the subject including a development agreement incorporating the request.

Town hall signWEB

“We’re about to start construction. We’re in the design phase,” said Newman. “We hope to be open for business in a year.”
The proposed energy efficient additions are over and above the Ontario Building Code requirements, he said, as he and his partners are looking to provide a high quality of life for residents.

CAO John Miceli called Newman’s request “commendable,” noting that electricity is a key concern of many, including seniors

“They want to demonstrate to council they are going to offer further savings for the community if we help them offset the costs,” said Miceli.

Miceli called the 520 people in Amherstburg on the affordable housing list “staggering.”

Some councillors questioned how they would satisfy the request, with Councillor Leo Meloche suggesting a letter of credit for the value of the development charges. The letter of credit would be held until all conditions are satisfied, he offered, calling it a “safeguard” for taxpayers. Councillor Rick Fryer said there has to be a development agreement, with Newman replying the proponents would be prepared to give the town whatever assurances they would need.

Newman said the original plan for the site was for an apartment complex but they were originally denied an affordable housing project during an RFP process. An effort to turn the site into a condominium development was shelved with another application made during another round of affordable housing submissions, with the latter application being accepted.

New condo project officially launched in Amherstburg

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

A new condominium project has officially been launched in Amherstburg.

The South Pointe Condominiums are now officially on the market with the new six-floor development being proposed for 182 Pickering Dr., next door to the Wesview apartment building. The building is being developed by John Lajoy and Steve Newman with John D’Alimonte of Re/Max Realty and Ron Deneau of Bob Pedler Real Estate Realty handling the sales.

The marketing campaign for the new South Pointe Condominium development has been launched. From left: John D'Alimonte and Steve Blais from Re/Max Realty, developer Steve Newman, developer John Lajoy and Ron Deneau of Bob Pedler Real Estate.

The marketing campaign for the new South Pointe Condominium development has been launched. From left: John D’Alimonte and Steve Blais from Re/Max Realty, developer Steve Newman, developer John Lajoy and Ron Deneau of Bob Pedler Real Estate.

The new building will have 26 units with the possibility of a 27th unit. D’Alimonte indicated the zoning on the property suits the new development.

“Everything is done. The site plan is completed,” he said. “We are now going into the marketing phase.”

Deneau spoke highly of the look of the building, noting the floor-to-ceiling windows and style of the proposed structure.

“There’s been nothing built like this in town,” said Deneau. “It’s got a Toronto flare to it.”

“It’s a contemporary design that is trending in other communities,” added Lajoy.

Deneau said home values are starting to move up and that could allow the condominiums to be attractive to homeowners and renters.

Lajoy pointed out he and Newman own adjacent property, the former Wesley United Church lands at 365 Sandwich St. S. He said what attracted them to propose building a new condominium development on Pickering Dr. is that there appeared to be a need for it within Amherstburg.

“We had heard and seen there was a lack of new residential condominiums in town,” said Newman. “It comes right at you.”

“There hadn’t been a new development here for several years,” added Lajoy.

Prices start at $229,900 with Deneau noting many will range in the mid-to-upper $200,000’s. The average size of a unit is around 1,200 square feet with some going as high as 1,608 square feet.

As for when shovels will go into the ground, Lajoy indicated that is dependent on sales as the building will begin after 60 per cent of units have been sold. There will be an information session Feb. 29 at 7 p.m. at Riccardo’s Italian Restaurant, with those interested in attending having to pre-register first.

People can register by going to www.southpointecondos.ca.

Newman added they have been using local firms on the project, including engineers and architects from the Windsor-Essex County area.

“There’s really strong local talent,” he said.