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Cobourg's manager of Town Planning, Rob Franklin, told Cecelia Naismith at Northumberland Today that he couriered "A sizable package, containing 'every piece of paper, map, drawing and comment received by the town'  to the Ontario Municipal Board before Christmas".  This was in response to the application by Amit Sofer immediately after the Dec 9 meeting when his application was delayed.

On the application form, Sofer (TVM Cobourg Inc) checked: "Application for an amendment to the Zoning By-law — failed to make a decision on the application within 120 days" as the reason for the application.   In his application, Sofer gave his "brief explanatory note" to the OMB as follows:

Proposal to amend the zoning bylaw from Main Central Commercial to a site specific exception zone to permit the development of a six storey mixed used building housing a new Royal Candian Legion and 59 residential suites.

Sofer estimated that the hearing would last 2 days and that witnesses would include Town Planning department Staff and the Heritage impact report author.

He noted the history of the case.

  1. Notice of complete application received May 22, 2013
  2. Moved by Council to receive comments and authorize staff to prepare the by-law to amend existing bylaw to allow for development of a six storey mixed use building on Sept 23, 2013.
  3. Moved to Committee of the Whole to pass the proposed by-law on Dec 2, 2013
  4. Deferred by Council to March of 2014 rather than affirm the by-law - Dec 9, 2013.

He checked off that the matter would not benefit from mediation or from a prehearing conference.

The OMB web site notes that the application has been received and has given it case number: PL131367

Franklin told Cecilia that he estimates:

".. that the OMB hearing (would be) four to 12 months into the future. Any party to the matter, including those who have submitted comments, will be notified of the date about a month in advance.

As well, Franklin added, the date will be posted on the town website and Facebook page.  Perhaps he is responding to criticism that, in sending in the "sizable package", he acted without Council permission or notifying the public.

At the next Council Meeting (Committee of the Whole on Jan 6, four more letters from citizens objecting to the development as it stands will be tabled and the OMB application document will be tabled - for information.

Updates will also be on this site.  You can access updates from OMB here.

Update Jan 7, 2014

Glen McGlashon told 107.9 Radio news that the re-zoning dispute that was referred to the OMB could be resolved before any hearing by pre-hearing discussions.  He was therefore hopeful that a resolution would be sooner than otherwise expected. This despite the fact that Amit Sofer's application checked off that "the matter would not benefit from mediation or from a prehearing conference."

Update Jan 11, 2014

Council needs to decide if it will take a position on whether the rezoning application should be approved by the OMB or not.  It has chosen to make this decision in a closed doors session at Monday's regular council meeting (Jan 13).

Update Jan 27, 2014

The OMB hearing of case # PL131367 (135 & 136 Orr Street TVM Cobourg Inc. - mixed use Condo) will be heard starting at 11:00am 26 May 2014  in the Council Chambers at Victoria Hall.  Hearings are scheduled to last 4 days.

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