The DRA LUC hosted a CALUC meeting on March 13th attended by the developer’s Architect, Mr Peter de Hoog and the public. The revisions to the proposed project were explained and feedback from the public was given.
The public was supportive of the following; • Reinstatement/restoration of the storefronts and clerestory windows to the original configuration, • The new floor plan enhanced building function. • Rehabilitation of the Heritage façade on Government Street, and • That the additional storey is set back from parapet at the front and sides of the existing building to reduce visual impacts especially from the front. • The proposed front façade colour scheme was more historically accurate.
Public concerns are; • That the additional floor added at the roof level be clad and have a paint scheme that will blend with the existing building and de-accentuate its presence. The submitted drawings proposed dark colours as utilized for the Government St. façade on the south elevation which would draw notice to the additional floor. It was suggested that the use of a monochrome colour scheme and materials to match the existing building elevations would further reduce visual impacts. • The northern elevation’s additional floor was proposed to be clad in brick to match the existing due to its closer proximity to the existing parapet. It was pointed out that the mortar should match as well and it would be advisable to repoint the existing façade to match the proposed and provide preventative maintenance. • The elevator has been repositioned from the center of the building to the northern building face. Even with the proposed brick cladding on all surfaces of the elevator penthouse it is not desirable visually. • The issue of affordability was discussed at length from the point of view of ongoing maintenance costs and what the developer can do to mitigate future repair costs to owners of an “affordable” heritage property. It was suggested only the most durable of cladding materials be utilised and the developer proceed with preventative maintenance such as repointing during the reconstruction stage. • The issue of granting variances to developers in exchange for amenities were also discussed. Concerns were voiced that if additional floor space was granted the developer must commit to a thorough and proper rehabilitation of the street level façade.
– by Ian Sutherland