R4 Zoning Review Phase 2

R4 Zoning Review Phase 2

Proposed major changes to the “R4” residential zoning that covers most of the residential areas of Hintonburg will be considered at City Planning Committee on September 10th.

We need a range of housing choices in our community, especially affordable housing. However, when the outlines of the proposed new R4 zoning were presented by the City at an open house here in Hintonburg last winter, many serious concerns were raised about the proposed changes. Most of the provisions that caused concern remain unchanged.

The City only brought forth the final, detailed proposed changes for the R4 zoning Aug 17 and it was to go to Planning Committee on Aug 27. After objections to this very tight timeline, this has been pushed back till Sept 10 at 9:30am so people have time to look at the 108 page document of changes.

Attached are the City’s proposals. –  R4 Zoning – T. Moerman – Letter-2

Here is the response sent in by the HCA in May 2020 –  HCA comments R4 May 2020

On reviewing the R4 (Hintonburg will be predominantly R4-UB):

  1. Almost nothing was changed in response to any of our comments or those from the Federation of Citizens’ Associations (City-wide group of Community Associations)
  2. All the intensification is being targeted to a very small area of the city, while no changes are being made to other zones, even ones equally near the LRT. We feel this zoning should be put on hold until the City implements additional units in other zones. 
  3. 8 units will be allowed on all properties that are 10m x 30m or larger (currently, 4 units are allowed in lots 12m wide). Furthermore, there is specific language that would allow the Committee of Adjustment to vary the minimum lot sizes to permit apartments on even smaller lots as long as they provide a plan to deal with the garbage storage and removal. These buildings will cover most of these lots and allow for very minimal greenspace.
  4. Rooftop patios will be allowed as will rear balconies. These may cause privacy concerns and noise issues.
  5. At grade amenity space requirements for 8-unit apts are less than for any other building in residential areas. They will only require a consolidated area that is about the size of a parking space for the 8 units which could house 8-24 people. The lack of adequate outdoor landscaped amenity space is a concern.
  6. The City says these will be affordable units but they have no mechanism to require affordable rents.
  7. They say that good affordable units are not being torn down to build these new units – we know tenants are being evicted and buildings boarded for land speculation – we have a list of addresses.
  8. Some of the provisions to ensure good design that were previously in drafts of this proposal have been watered down, including the requirements for articulation of the front of buildings.
  9. R4 is targeting to add studio, 1 bedroom units and a few 2 bedroom units – in some cases this is replacing units where families lived.
  10. Hintonburg & Mechanicsville already has 5,000 new units approved or almost approved with many more developments coming forward. Almost all of these are units will be studio & 1 bedroom units. This will almost double our population. When the large Federal lands are developed (Tunney’s, Lebreton Flats, Somerset/Gladstone area) that will add another 10,000 units.

Here are the presentations to the Planning Committee from the HCA’s Planning and Development (Zoning) Committee

If you want to make any comments you can:

  • Register to speak at the Committee (online, by Zoom). Register for a speaking slot with the Planning Committee Coordinator ( by 9:00 AM on Thursday, September 10.


  • Send written comments to by 4:00 PM on Wednesday, September 9  and copy the Councillors on Planning Committee:

Chair Jan Harder

Vice Chair Glen Gower

Riley Brockington

Rick Chiarelli

Laura Dudas

Allan Hubley

Jeff Leiper

Scott Moffat

Tim Tierney

Also, please send us your comments at

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