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Sam Biasucci moves to reboot Pointe Estates development

Luxury yachts-and-docks estate project would now also offer affordable housing
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SalDan's proposed Horizon Landings development. Supplied image

SalDan Developments Ltd. is hoping to relaunch a bigger, better version of the stalled Pointe Estates development, using a controversial political override that's raising concerns in other parts of the province.

SalDan's president Sam Biasucci is asking the city to approach Steve Clark, Ontario's minister of municipal affairs and housing, asking for a minister's zoning order allowing the luxury yachts-and-docks project to proceed with at least 15 per cent of its residential units designated as affordable housing.

The original request for rezoning from Jeff and Dr. Patricia Avery for a 91-lot single-detached rural estate subdivision was denied by both City Council and the Ontario Municipal Board.

Now, Biasucci is proposing a larger development, adding part of the Airport Development Corp. property around Mary Ann Lake.

His new project, branded as Horizon Landings, would include a total of 200 residential units, including an 85-lot single-detached subdivision, 25 town homes and a 20-unit retirement home on the former Pointe Estates property, as well as a 10-lot single-detached subdivision, 20 town homes and two 20-unit apartment buildings on Mary Ann Lake.

The combined development would be serviced by a communal water and sanitary sewer system located on the airport property.

While the minister of municipal affairs and housing can unilaterally change the zoning on a property using a minister's zoning order (MZO), the subdivision plan and condominiums will still require City Council approval.

MZO's have traditionally been only rarely used in municipalities that have existing zoning bylaws, but the province's New Democrats say Doug Ford's Progressive Conservative government has issued 38 MZOs in the past year, more than were issued in the entire previous decade.

Jeff Burch, the NDP's municipal affairs critic, says at least 19 of this year's 38 MZOs are benefitting PC party insiders.

"MZOs are a nuclear option that ignores local decision-making processes," Burch said in a news release.

A resolution from Ward 5 Coun. Matthew Scott and Ward 1's Sandra Hollingsworth, to be debated at Monday's City Council meeting, proposes that the city endorse SalDan's request for an MZO for the expanded Horizon Landings development.

Monday's City Council meeting will be livestreamed on SooToday starting at 4:30 p.m.

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David Helwig

About the Author: David Helwig

David Helwig's journalism career spans seven decades beginning in the 1960s. His work has been recognized with national and international awards.
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