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Support for north Tillsonburg townhouses

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New townhouse rental units could be coming to north Tillsonburg by mid 2021.

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Hayhoe Rentals Ltd. applied for a zoning change, from high density to medium density residential, at the July 27th Town of Tillsonburg virtual council public planning meeting to permit the development of 59 street row townhouses, on an internal private street south of North Street East.

Oxford County planning staff reviewed the application for the 6.4 acre lot (4.6 acres will be developed), and recommended support.

In a report, the Town Development Commissioner noted affordability has been a concern and will likely be even more acute as the economy recovers from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Enabling townhouse style developments is expected to lower the entry point for home buyers, particularly new home buyers. It was suggested the proposed development would assist in achieving an adequate distribution of affordable housing for low and moderate-income households, and that this form of development is typically more affordable than traditional single detached dwellings, which is the predominant form of housing in town.

Noting the applicant is Hayhoe Rentals Ltd., Councillor Penny Esseltine asked if they will be rentals or units that people buy.

“Yes, at this time, this development is contemplated that the residents that live there will do so on signing a tenancy agreement,” said Will Hayhoe.

“So that’s your plan at the current time. Is that likely to change?” Esseltine asked.

“We don’t anticipate that changing,” said Hayhoe.

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Councillor Pete Luciani asked if the townhouses will be one, two or three-storey.

“There is a mix of one storey and two storey,” said Hayhoe. “The greater proportion is one-storey, but two-storey would be the maximum.”

“Are all of the rental properties going to be market rent or will there be subsidized rentals as well?” asked Councillor Chris Parker.

“All of the homes will be offered at market rental rates,” said Hayhoe.

“When could we as a Town expect the occupancy to occur, providing everything goes smooth?” asked Deputy Mayor Dave Beres.

“At this time we would like to do the underground infrastructure in October/November this year, and we would anticipate building permit applications in early 2021 for the first residents to occupy in July 2021,” said Hayhoe, who noted they have offered rental communities in St. Thomas for the past eight years.

Town Council approved supporting the zoning change, subject to an official plan amendment from Oxford County.

cabbott@postmedia.com

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