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Plan in works for Corydon-Osborne

Development plan to guide growth for next 20 years now regaining momentum

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The Corydon and Osborne neighbourhoods are on track to get a plan which will dictate development in the area for the next 20 years.

On Nov. 13, a public meeting was held at Gladstone School to discuss the plan, which is still in its early stages.

"It’s a very desirable place to live and there is a desire to increase density," said Coun. Jenny Gerbasi (Fort Rouge-East Fort Garry). "The challenge is to increase density, but stay compatible with existing development."

The Corydon-Osborne Neighbourhood Plan will help guide and direct developers east of Stafford Street, west of Donald Street, north of Fleet Avenue, and south of Yale Avenue and Gertrude Avenue.

"The plan isn’t there to stop things from happening, it’s there to guide development," Gerbasi said, adding developments must be compatible and appropriate for the neighbourhood.

The idea of a neighbourhood plan is not a new one, Gerbasi said, and it’s important to have to maintain the integrity of the area, in terms of how it’s developed.

"Most cities have this, some think ‘Well, we should be able to do whatever we want’ but it’s not like that in the world," Gerbasi said. "It’s not that they can’t do what they want, but we need something with bylaws, guidelines, and rules."

The plan could include restrictions in the size of future developments, maintaining the historical integrity of the neighbourhood, as well as a beautification factor.

"I don’t know exactly what will be in this plan yet because we haven’t done it yet," Gerbasi said. "It’s not a complex design process that’s going to decide (what guidelines will be in the plan), but I would expect there would be some sort of guidelines about materials used, just something to reduce some of the ‘uglification’ that happens if you just let anything be developed."

The plan will be built using community input as well a consultant from Peter J. Smith & Company, an urban design and development firm with offices in Fort Erie, Ont., as well as Buffalo, N.Y.

"This consultant will come up with basically . . . present something that will have to be considered by council," Gerbasi said. "But people do come together for planning processes. They sit across the table from each other and people have more in common than people realize."

Gerbasi said while developing plans, it can be difficult to please everyone.

"At the end of the day, there will be some developers that aren’t happy, there might be some residents that aren’t happy," Gerbasi said. "But if there is a high level of comfort with it from a lot of people then (the plan) can proceed."

Gerbasi said with the right input and the right consultation, the Corydon and Osborne neighbourhoods will continue to be a great place to live.

"We want to keep it that way," Gerbasi said. "Change is coming, (the plan will) guide the change that’s going to be positive, a positive experience for people, to attract people to the neighbourhood, while still finding ways to increase density."  


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