Originally Posted by Kitchissippi
The thing is that developers will constantly undermine zoning and community design plans no matter what. It is the game they play. Zoning often sets the value of land, so it is bought and sold with this potential in mind. By pushing past the limits that developers rake in the profits.
In #4, the councillor is simply saying that the site is probably already profitable at the current height limit, so granting approval would likely increase Claridge's profits exponentially without real benefit to the city which would be left dealing with the resulting traffic and parking problems.
If zoning is to be revised, it has to be approached from the big picture, it should not be driven by individual projects. While I am not against any of these projects, I can see that Claridge has driven a strategic wedge with the Tribeca project, setting a precedent from which to stand on. That cancelled Portrait Gallery was a coup for them, a withdrawn carrot that caught the rabbit.
To me this is very close to the developer is evil mentality. I know you are not saying that, but if the tower is taller there is more economic impact then just Claridge making a few extra dollars. The city receives more money in development fees and future property taxes, there is more work for local construction and design firms, and Claridge will pay taxes, both provincial and federal which finds their way back to us in services. I not saying there should not be more benefit to Ottawa directly, put to say there is no additional benefit in adding 15 floors is short sighted and ignores basic economics.
I would also have to argue the opportunity cost of not having an additional 100 houses built in Barrhaven to accommodate the units not allowed to be built beside the CBD and Transit (one extreme to the other...lol). Making money is not a bad thing and we should not be asking the developer to not try and make more, especially if we are getting projects that have look like this one.