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  #221  
Old Posted Nov 29, 2017, 5:40 PM
buzzg buzzg is offline
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When they made the announcement, they said that they had discussed with all those mentioned stakeholders. Now obviously that may not mean formal approval (although maybe it did?), but this started over a year ago so it seems odd to me that the city would wait this long to say anything. Especially for a developer who has shown they are willing to take on some risk and cut margins to help redevelop the Exchange.

Something just smells a little off with this whole thing. Like maybe all parties agreed in principle and then someone pissed someone else off and now this is where we're at.
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  #222  
Old Posted Nov 29, 2017, 6:47 PM
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Originally Posted by buzzg View Post
When they made the announcement, they said that they had discussed with all those mentioned stakeholders. Now obviously that may not mean formal approval (although maybe it did?), but this started over a year ago so it seems odd to me that the city would wait this long to say anything. Especially for a developer who has shown they are willing to take on some risk and cut margins to help redevelop the Exchange.

Something just smells a little off with this whole thing. Like maybe all parties agreed in principle and then someone pissed someone else off and now this is where we're at.
I get what you are "smelling" on this one - but no official "yes" or "no" can happen until after all the paperwork has been submitted.
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  #223  
Old Posted Nov 29, 2017, 7:31 PM
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I get what you are "smelling" on this one - but no official "yes" or "no" can happen until after all the paperwork has been submitted.
This. The City may have provided supportive feedback based on the general concept, but that doesn’t mean the project is approved, much less the future design details of it are approved. I would think the applicant would have been aware the variances would be required (this isn’t their first rodeo), and that after applying for the variances would have been told by the planning department that they wouldn’t be supported before the decision to reject them was made.
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  #224  
Old Posted Nov 29, 2017, 9:05 PM
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Originally Posted by drew View Post
I get what you are "smelling" on this one - but no official "yes" or "no" can happen until after all the paperwork has been submitted.
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Originally Posted by wardlow View Post
This. The City may have provided supportive feedback based on the general concept, but that doesn’t mean the project is approved, much less the future design details of it are approved. I would think the applicant would have been aware the variances would be required (this isn’t their first rodeo), and that after applying for the variances would have been told by the planning department that they wouldn’t be supported before the decision to reject them was made.
And to both posts, but there is always tons of discussion that helps guides projects well before an official yes/no or submission of final paperwork. Furthermore if direction is actually unclear on a project, architects and developers only proceed if they consider the city's track record of responding to these situations.

When the city a) is part of the discussion and shoots a project down misguidingly late, or b) breaks its typical habits/patterns/behaviours, knowing full well that developers proceed based on their knowledge of how the city works, it's deceptive.

And here you have a project that's approaching on 20, twenty failed proposals and they pull THIS shit and waste people's time and money? Very shady, very condescending.
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  #225  
Old Posted Nov 29, 2017, 9:33 PM
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^ the City is anything but consistent on most things Permit related.

However, I think there must be more behind the scenes going on that we (the public) are not aware of in this case.

Ultimately the City holds the hammer, and sometimes personality conflicts between the City and Architects/Engineers/Developers can cause the City to, ahem, sharpen their pencils, or dig in.

Once they are dug in, well, good luck - every shade of grey is done.
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  #226  
Old Posted Nov 29, 2017, 9:35 PM
TimeFadesAway TimeFadesAway is offline
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Once they are dug in, well, good luck.
Cough, cough, Alexander Dock, cough, cough.
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  #227  
Old Posted Nov 30, 2017, 12:27 AM
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I'm not an expert on the matter by any means so please weigh in, but would they not have to have gotten approvals and permits for the project to start doing all the work on the building and site to begin with? Wouldn't that all be tied together?

As a somewhat aside, but maybe related, curious what any engineers think of what's happening at city hall/public service with the head engineers? A engineer in my family said they were floored by what's happening and the entire community is upset, because they're starting to lose good people.
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  #228  
Old Posted Nov 30, 2017, 3:03 PM
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I'm not an expert on the matter by any means so please weigh in, but would they not have to have gotten approvals and permits for the project to start doing all the work on the building and site to begin with? Wouldn't that all be tied together?
From what I understand, if a project requires any variances, these need to be approved before building permits can be issued.

They would have got the necessary approvals and permits for the first phase of the project (redeveloping the pumphouse building), but now need approval and permits for the second phase. So, once/if the variances are approved, the building permits can then be issued.
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  #229  
Old Posted Nov 30, 2017, 9:02 PM
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From what I understand, if a project requires any variances, these need to be approved before building permits can be issued.

They would have got the necessary approvals and permits for the first phase of the project (redeveloping the pumphouse building), but now need approval and permits for the second phase. So, once/if the variances are approved, the building permits can then be issued.
That's my understanding of it as well.

Well, although they're experienced, there is a chance the architect missed this.
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  #230  
Old Posted Dec 8, 2017, 7:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buzzg View Post
When they made the announcement, they said that they had discussed with all those mentioned stakeholders. Now obviously that may not mean formal approval (although maybe it did?), but this started over a year ago so it seems odd to me that the city would wait this long to say anything. Especially for a developer who has shown they are willing to take on some risk and cut margins to help redevelop the Exchange.

Something just smells a little off with this whole thing. Like maybe all parties agreed in principle and then someone pissed someone else off and now this is where we're at.
no its red tape aka due process and as u work on projects in phases this is the sorta stuff u run into
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  #231  
Old Posted Dec 8, 2017, 8:36 PM
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This isn't red tape. It's a proper approval process. The City didn't like what was proposed for whatever reasons, so they denied it. Whether they may or may not have had agreements in principle, etc, etc, beforehand is irrelevant. They obviously didn't have the Cities sign off.
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  #232  
Old Posted Dec 8, 2017, 9:41 PM
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This isn't red tape. It's a proper approval process. The City didn't like what was proposed for whatever reasons, so they denied it. Whether they may or may not have had agreements in principle, etc, etc, beforehand is irrelevant. They obviously didn't have the Cities sign off.
It would be a very flawed line of thinking to suggest that the city is always super clear on what it wants, understanding if what they've asked for is met or not, sees the big picture while respecting private ownership, is the grand gatekeeper of good planning and taste, and never behaves unethically.

They're people too, and that's both good and bad.
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  #233  
Old Posted Dec 8, 2017, 9:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Wolf13 View Post
It would be a very flawed line of thinking to suggest that the city is always super clear on what it wants, understanding if what they've asked for is met or not, sees the big picture while respecting private ownership, is the grand gatekeeper of good planning and taste, and never behaves unethically.

They're people too, and that's both good and bad.
I get what you are putting down here - but, the developer for the Pumping Station is not some greenhorn fresh into the big city for their first kick at the developer can. They know the drill.

I suspect the reasons behind the release of the render, and what is seemingly a late road block by the City - would make for some good listening.
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  #234  
Old Posted Dec 8, 2017, 9:56 PM
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Wolf, my point was they must not have had a signed agreement. The City can't deny because one guy doesn't like where the door is placed. They had legit reasons IMO.
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  #235  
Old Posted Dec 11, 2017, 4:41 PM
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Originally Posted by drew View Post
I get what you are putting down here - but, the developer for the Pumping Station is not some greenhorn fresh into the big city for their first kick at the developer can. They know the drill.

I suspect the reasons behind the release of the render, and what is seemingly a late road block by the City - would make for some good listening.
They do know the drill. This is a unique project with unique challenges, so I wouldn't be surprised if the developer was more cavalier this time. I also wouldn't be surprised if the city promised greater flexibility to help this along, which is why yanking their support on a seemingly small matter seems petty to me.

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Wolf, my point was they must not have had a signed agreement. The City can't deny because one guy doesn't like where the door is placed. They had legit reasons IMO.
Call me a cynic, but yes, cities absolutely WILL find any and all justification to deny projects they don't like... They may not like the door, so they'll dress up other concerns that clash with bylaws that actually don't bother them to shut it down.

Some of my clients say it's infinitely worse in other markets... they don't like one tiny thing? shut down. They ask for reasons or metrics, and get a vague response in return... ergo, a lot of developers feel they HAVE to spar in order to get anywhere, create some tension so the bargaining and horse trading can lead to project approval. While Winnipeg isn't this bad, I can imagine that this is part of a potential approvals strategy on a contentious, difficult heritage site.




I could be wrong on this project, this time... but we all know the bad rep developers get from cities and joe-schmoes... but the developers I know and talk to generally have a a very cynical and shady opinion of how cities deal with them and spin situations publically. Not saying they're right, but planning departments aren't always the gatekeepers of good sense. They can be veeeeeery petty. I'm not speaking specifically to Wpg alone, though.
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  #236  
Old Posted Dec 11, 2017, 11:18 PM
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This does feel political to me.

For instance, one of the reasons for the denial has to do with the parking stalls not being wide enough. But they're no smaller than the ones at Ashdown or other places nearby. And the only reason all that parking is being added anyhow is because the city for some reason demands it as part of the downtown development grant.

So we literally have the city leaning on the developer to... what, devote more space to making truck-sized parking spots in the exchange? WTF?!
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  #237  
Old Posted Dec 12, 2017, 10:23 PM
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This does feel political to me.


So we literally have the city leaning on the developer to... what, devote more space to making truck-sized parking spots in the exchange? WTF?!
Exactly. They're using a "real" issue that nobody could give two shits about to mask a grievance of theirs that they might not be able to substantiate.

I don't know for sure, but I've seen our city and other cities (more aggressively) do this.
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  #238  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2017, 4:22 PM
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Sounds like the appeal by the architect was approved by the Council's downtown standing policy committee this morning. So the project is moving ahead.
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  #239  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2017, 5:55 PM
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Sounds like the appeal by the architect was approved by the Council's downtown standing policy committee this morning. So the project is moving ahead.
That's good news..

The planning department, city and developer / architect need to create a more streamlined system of timely communication to mitigate last minute project rejections and appeals like this.

Projects similar to this end up on the covers of architectural digest and belong front and centre in a city's urban revitalization efforts.

Take a page out of the urban play book from Amsterdam, Berlin or Antwerp not Regina or Brandon Manitoba ...

Good luck with the project!
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  #240  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2017, 6:40 PM
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Exactly ^
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