Tuesday, March 5, 2013

New Tuxedo Housing Development

New Tuxedo development alongside Seasons of Tuxedo

Slender triangle lot that was not part of Seasons of Tuxedo

A good use of old CN Rail land
Pre-Con Builders has built many buildings over the years and had a little bit of controversy along the way. The multi-family dwelling they proposed along McGillivray caused Whyte Ridge to explode in anger despite the fact that the development was outside the fence line of the area and not even on an access road to the neighbourhood. Meanwhile, the massive St. Gianna's church gets built with a crypt inside right on access road by the fence and it escapes notice of those in Whyte Ridge.

Wisely, city council stood up to the hysteria and the development was approved.

For Pre-Con though, they no doubt figured there was easier developments to do that wouldn't result in hundreds of angry protestors. In the recent year, they focused on Wilkes Avenue in Winnipeg. The four story apartment Wilkes Place was recently completed near the Italian Caboto Centre.

It should be noted that former industrial and city land along Wilkes and Sterling Lyon has exploded in multi-unit housing in the last decade.

Pre-Con's Wilkes Place development
The city isn't wrong in thinking that some sort of public transit along this route to connect to the Parker Lands isn't out of the question. I don't know the merits of the dogear rapid transit skip over to Parker. Obviously, a full environmental study and further consultation needs to be done. What won't stand, however, is the demand to do nothing along Parker.

The neigbourhood has done all it can to discourage east and west traffic as well as keep the land along Parker to themselves. Parker Avenue could be the worst road in the city. The city can ill afford to overlook this land for the overall functioning of the city.

But back to Pre-Con and their building plans.

Companies such as Pre-Con have been looking at the potential pieces of land all over Wilkes and Sterling Lyon. The building of IKEA, Cabela's and the rest of the Seasons of Tuxedo site left one small 13 acre segment of CN Rail hands left to buy. It is a triangle section on the north side of Sterling Lyon Parkway east of Shaftesbury.

In the last couple of years, many a person has probably driven past that section and thought how it was ripe for development. My personal view was that it would be commercial development...shops and restaurants.

Pre-Con has taken a different view. Today they have gone before the Assiniboia Community Committee to ask for approval for building 592 multi-family units in seven different buildings. There would be three 7 story units and and four 4 story buildings. Also on site, some small commercial development possibly including  restaurants.

There are plans for two acres of landscaping and transit terminal for city buses.

This is a plan that should proceed as it re-utilizes industrial land using existing infrastructure, it increases density by probably a minimum of a several hundred people, it creates options for those looking to locate near work in the Seasons of Tuxedo area or Tuxedo Business Park or if people are downsizing from homes in Charleswood, Linden Woods, Tuxedo, River Heights and beyond.

All in all a fairly good project to proceed on.

One possible bone of contention: Shaftesbury Blvd. One traffic report has suggested it is a priority for a multi-million twinning. This project and a few others coming down the pike probably make this road an even higher use throughway.

Approve this project but don't ignore Shaftesbury. And for pete's sake, don't ask for a traffic light afterward for the development if no thought was given to turning lanes. I already foresee issues with people wanting to turn left and head east down Sterling Lyon from the site.

Building set up for new Tuxedo Yards development
There is a possible outlet to Seasons of Tuxedo and the traffic lights on their property. This could be a good possibility rather than adding yet another traffic light on Sterling Lyon.

In any event, an excellent project, good use of land and infrastructure, terrific on increasing density and creating housing options when so many other areas surrounding are single family dwellings.

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