3431 St. Clair Ave E



There is a new development proposed for the corner of Birchmount Rd. and St. Clair Ave. A mixed use, 16 story building is proposed with 388 units. 

View proposal documents submitted to the City of Toronto. 

Read below for a resident-drafted development summary and neighbourhood impacts.



3431 St. Clair Ave. Development Summary by Scarborough Junction Community Group



The Scarborough Junction Community Organization is a newly formed organization dedicated to giving local residents, community groups and other stakeholders a voice and influence in the decision making concerning the wave of development in our neighbourhoods and ward. It is made up of local residents, representatives of local community groups, local school communities including members of the Danforth Gardens Neighbourhood Association.  For more information please email: info@scarboroughjunction.org.

Proposal by Atria Development: 

The City Planning Division has received an application to ament the Zoning By-law for the property at 3431 to 3449 St. Clair Ave. East to permit a 16-storey mixed-use building consisting of 27, 801 square metres of residential uses (388 residential units), and a retail space of 414 square metres, resulting in a Floor Space Index of 7.26.  A total of 257 vehicular parking spaces and 413 bicycle parking spaces are proposed. 

The proposal calls for a 16 storey condominium or rental building and a 10 storey townhouse complex attached.

Planning staff have expressed concerns with the height, scale and density of the proposed development and provided guidance on the form of development appropriate for the site and planned context.

Policies that must be followed include using an integrated approach to infrastructure planning, achieving complete communities, walkable communities, retaining employment lands, minimizing climate change impact and watershed protection. Development must also conform to efficient use of land, adequate infrastructure and public facilities, employment strategies, range of housing options, sufficient recreation and green space, appropriate development standards and appropriate scale and transition of built form to adjacent areas.

This development falls under the Major Transit Station Area pertaining to Warden Station for increased density.

The developers are looking for amendments to zoning. The land is currently zoned commercial and does not allow for residential.  The land is currently zoned for a maximum height of 11m and the development is looking to build 16 storeys.

The proposal requires an amendment to the Zoning By-law to permit residential uses and establish, among other matters, development standards including use, building height, massing, stepbacks, setbacks and density, number of vehicular and bicycle parking spaces. 

Staff to review entrances and exits, if development is providing adequate setbacks and soft landscaping within the street and any required buffer.

Staff will review whether capital improvements will be required under the Community Services and Facilities. 

The Official Plan provides for the use of Section 37 of the Planning Act to pass by-laws for increases in height and/or density not otherwise permitted by the Zoning By-law in return for Community Benefits in the form of capital investments. Staff are currently reviewing this.

Staff are reviewing application to determine if there is sufficient infrastructure.

During the pre-application consultation meeting with the applicant, planning staff expressed concerns with the height, scale and density of the proposed development that is not contemplated in the existing and planned context.


Specific Neighbourhood Issues Pertaining to 3431 St. Clair Ave Atria Development

Preliminary feedback from residents of the Danforth Gardens Neighbourhood Association there are some areas of concern:

1. Traffic Infiltration into the Danforth Gardens Neighbourhood.

2. Parks Dedication and In-lieu-of Parks Payment

3. Pedestrian Friendly Streetscape on St. Clair Ave.

4. Impact on Local Schools.

5. Impact on Infrastructure – Infrastructure Servicing Capacity, Community Services and Facilities, Community Benefit Section 37.


1. Traffic Infiltration into the Danforth Gardens Neighbourhood.

The Issue:

The development proposal for 3431 St. Clair Ave. E. calls for the entry/exit for a 257 car parking garage for the development to be on Elfreda Blvd.  The concern is that cars entering/exiting the development will cause increased traffic and congestion on Elfreda Blvd., Newlands Ave., the neighbourhood entry/exit intersections at Elfreda/St. Clair, Newlands/Birchmount and Santa Monica/St. Clair and throughout the entire neighbourhood. Increased traffic will negatively impact pedestrian, bicycle and vehicle safety on streets that are main routes for children going to school. There is already major congestion on Elfreda Blvd., Newlands Ave. and Santamonica Blvd. at morning and afternoon rush hours with school parents using vehicles to drop off/pick up children at school and parking on these streets.

The developers and City Planners prefer the Elfreda exit because an exit on Birchmount would be too close to the Birchmount/St. Clair intersection and an exit on St. Clair would be difficult and be a potential pedestrian safety hazard.

The Problems:

An exit from the parking garage that allows cars to turn up Elfreda Blvd. will turn Elfreda Blvd. and Newlands Ave. into thoroughfares rather than the residential streets they currently are.

This development is on St. Clair Ave. and the traffic should be directed onto St. Clair Ave. rather than into our neighbourhood.  If this development had been in the middle of a block then there would be no choice but to put it out onto St. Clair Ave. E.

The parking garage exit onto Elfreda Blvd. benefits the developer, the prospective new residents of the development, the City Planners and the Councillor but is of no benefit to the residents of our neighbourhood.  In fact, it has  significant negative traffic, congestion and safety impacts.

Conclusion:

Therefore, if the parking garage exit is to be on Elfreda Blvd. then it is the opinion of this committee that the following should occur:

a) That no left turns be allowed from the 3431 St. Clair parking garage exit be allowed south on Elfreda Blvd. and all vehicles be directed north towards St. Clair.  This would be accomplished by signage, a curved parking exit driveway that curves towards St. Clair and traffic calming barrier to prevent left turns onto Elfreda Blvd. 

b) That a new traffic light be placed at the intersection of Elfreda Blvd. and St. Clair Ave. E.  This would alleviate safety and congestion issues on what is already a difficult and dangerous turn onto St. Clair Ave E. from Elfreda Blvd. 


2. Parks Dedication and In-lieu-of Parks Payment

The Issue: 

Every new development must provide greenspace and parkland associated with their building(s). If they do not then they must make an In-lieu-of Payment that must be used to create new nearby parks and/or improve existing ones.

The Atria 3431 St. Clair Ave. E. development has no park or green space planned so they will have to make an In-lieu-of Payment. The 683 Warden Ave. development is planning a park and greenspace that does not completely fulfill their obligation so they will have to pay a partial In-lieu-of Payment.  There are also additional funds from other nearby developments that should be applied to our neighbourhood.

Conclusion:

It is the opinion of this committee that a new parkland, greenspace trail be created in conjunction with the 683 Warden developers plan to build their Parkland Dedication along the old abandoned railway line that runs behind Santamonica Ave. Our proposal is that the city extend this trail towards St. Clair Ave. E. over St. Clair Ave. E on the unused railway bridge and continue beyond Warden Hilltop C.C. and the Upper Summerside Development. This parkland rail trail would connect the Oates Park Neighbourhood, the new 683 Warden development, the Danforth Gardens neighbourhood, the Warden Subway Station, St. Clair Ravine Park, Warden Hilltop C.C., Upper Summerside Neighbourhood and the schools and parks beyond that with a multi-use trail and greenspace. This trail would initiate at Pilkington Ave. and continue to St. Clair Ave. E., over the bridge spanning St. Clair Ave. E.  and north beyond Hilltop Community Centre and Upper Summerside.

In addition, In-lieu-of Funds should be used to improve Danforth Gardens Park and Oates Park which both would see increase usage from these developments.


3. Pedestrian Friendly Streetscape on St. Clair Ave.

It is the position of this committee that the community be consulted during design process and final design of the streetscape along St. Clair Ave. E. to insure it is pedestrian and community friendly.


4. Impact on Local Schools.

It is the position of the committee that the TDSB, the City Councillor, The City Planning Department and the Developer work together to insure that school infrastructure keeps pace with the development and that they communicate their plan to all interested parties including Danforth Gardens Public School Community  and School Council, the Catholic Elementary School Community and School Council and local residents. The expectation of the committee is that students and families currently attending local schools are not negatively impacted by the use of bussing and portables to address increased demand on already at or near capacity schools. The committee would also like to see the schooling plan for children of new residents and how their need for living in a “complete community” is addressed. 


5. Impact on Infrastructure – Infrastructure Servicing Capacity, Community Services and Facilities, Community Benefit Section 37.

The committee would like to have a community meeting with the City Councillor, the City Planner and the Developer to learn the plans for infrastructure keeping pace with development and how Infrastructure Servicing Capacity, Community Services and Facilities, Community Benefit Section 37 relate to our neighbourhood.


Community Petition

1. Traffic Infiltration into the Danforth Gardens Neighbourhood.

If the parking garage exit is to be on Elfreda Blvd. then I support that the following should occur:

That no left turns be allowed from the 3431 St. Clair parking garage exit be allowed south on Elfreda Blvd. and all vehicles be directed north towards St. Clair.  This would be accomplished by signage, a curved parking exit driveway that curves towards St. Clair and traffic calming barrier to prevent left turns onto Elfreda Blvd. 

and

That a new traffic light be placed at the intersection of Elfreda Blvd. and St. Clair Ave. E.  This would alleviate safety and congestion issues on what is already a difficult and dangerous turn onto St. Clair Ave E. from Elfreda Blvd. 

2. Parks Dedication and In-lieu-of Parks Payment

I support using the Parks Dedication and In-lieu-of Parks Payment to create a new rail connector trail from Pilkington Ave., over St. Clair Ave. E. and beyond Warden Hilltop C.C. I also support using In-lieu-of Parks Payment to improve Danforth Gardens Park, Oates Park and St. Clair Ravine Park

3. Pedestrian Friendly Streetscape on St. Clair Ave.

I support the local community consultation on the design of the streetscape on St. Clair Ave. E. for the 3431 St. Clair Ave. E. development. 

4. Impact on Local Schools.

I support a complete, coordinated, transparent and well-communicated plan by the TDSB, The City of Toronto and the Developer to address the impact of increased density on already at-capacity local schools.

5. Impact on Infrastructure – Infrastructure Servicing Capacity, Community Services and Facilities, Community Benefit Section 37.

I support having a community meeting with the City Councillor, the City Planner and the Developer to learn the plans for infrastructure keeping pace with development and how Infrastructure Servicing Capacity, Community Services and Facilities, Community Benefit Section 37 relate to our neighbourhood.