Three applications for a total of 149 units in Robinson Village

Larry Newman

Three development organizations called Robinson Village I, II, and III Limited Partnership (RVI,II,III) have applied to construct three buildings in Robinson Village featuring a total of 149 units. These buildings will occupy the current addresses, 17, 19, 23, 27, 29, 31, 130, 134, and 138 Robinson Avenue. A typical building is shown at right.

Residents of Robinson Village met recently to discuss these applications. Two main issues were raised: parking and traffic, and accommodations.

Residents felt that parking is at capacity in Robinson Village. In winter, when snow is plowed and occasionally removed, Robinson Avenue turns into a one-way street. This problem is expected to be compounded by the addition of 149 more units with no allowance for resident parking at these buildings.

There is also the issue of location and access. Robinson Village is served by only one intersection with the rest of the world. With at least 149 more residents, even with no off-street parking, there will surely be more cars in Robinson Village. With more traffic, there will be long lines to access Robinson Avenue from Lees. Should there be a traffic light at this intersection? Should upgrading of this intersection be part of the application?

These RVI,II,III buildings have an amazing number of studio apartments. This means to residents that they will be facing the same problems that the rest of Sandy Hill is experiencing with bunkhouses: excessive noise and garbage and increasing lack of diversity. These buildings are essentially dormitories disguised as low-rise apartments.

The urban planners, Fotenn Planning and Design, state in the application that City officials had tasked them with creating a Robinson Village Community Building Plan “to provide additional context for future development proposals…in response to recent and anticipated development.” It seems clear to residents of Robinson Village that more development is coming. The big question is, “Why wasn’t the Robinson Village Community Building Plan created before this onslaught of dormitories?” And— is Fotenn not the fox asked to guard the chickens?

Fotenn has announced in their Planning Rationale that the Building Plan is in draft form at the present time and must traverse an evolutionary path through City Planning and consultation before release. More about this development will be reported when IMAGE gets a chance to see this plan.

Now is the time to comment on these applications. Call or write Planner Andrew McCreight,, 613-580-2424 x22568. Also, look for an announcement for consultation on these developments soon. It’s the next step.