Key decisions of Council is a summary of major discussion items presented at Kitchener City Council meetings. It is circulated immediately following each meeting. Please refer to the minutes for an official record of the meeting. 

Council advances construction of up to 5066 residential units

Council approved applications to advance the construction of: 

  • 3,985 residential units at 321 Courtland Ave. (former Schneiders facility). The mixed-use development would consist of 13 towers ranging from five to 38 storeys; a block of stacked townhouses; a park; vehicle parking spots; and 1,720 bicycle parking spaces. Read the report.
  •  462 residential units on an L-shaped parcel of land at the southwest corner of Victoria and Park streets (97 and 101 Park St.; 186, 190, 192 and 194 Victoria St. S.) The mixed-use development would consist of a 45 -storey tower, 30 affordable housing units, which includes a six-storey podium; 807 square metres of commercial space; parking spaces located within three levels of underground parking and seven surface visitor parking spaces. Read the report.
  • Up to 277 residential units at Bleams Road and Gehl Place. Read the report.
  • 211 residential rental units at 130-140 Highland Rd. E. The mixed-use development includes a 17-storey tower; commercial space; ground-floor live-work units; and a parking structure with 121 spaces. Read the report.
  • 127 townhouses at 1000 New Dundee Rd. Read the report.

Councillors considered various types of applications, or combination of applications, including draft plan of subdivision; zoning by-law amendments; official plan amendments; and a draft condo application.

Reports for each property outline which application, or combination of applications, that property owners submitted.

Council streamlines development process in response to provincial legislation

In response to recent provincial legislation designed to speed housing development — specifically Bill 13, Bill 109 and Bill 23 — councillors approved measures including:

  • Updates to bylaws and policies;
  • Delegating to staff the approval for minor bylaw amendments;
  • Updating policies and regulations to permit up to three dwelling units on a lot, and to guide safe and functional sites for developments with 10 or fewer dwelling units; 
  • Adding staff positions to speed the development approval process

Changes to Official Plan policies adopted by council must be forwarded to the Region of Waterloo for approval. For a full list of measures that councillors considered, read the report.

Council gives go ahead for traffic calming measures

After extensive consultation with residents of Manchester Road, Council directed staff to implement traffic calming measures. The measures are expected to help reduce automobile speeds and improve safety for street users.

Speed humps proposed for the road will be installed after 92 per cent of respondents to a neighbourhood survey agreed with the recommended plan. The cost of the project is estimated at $30,000. Read the report.

Council approves identifying long-term home for Creative Hub

Council directed staff to prepare a request for approximately $234,000 per year in operating funds for the Creative Hub, at 44 Gaukel St., to be presented during the 2024 budget process. Council also directed staff to explore options for a long-term home for the Creative Hub as the building has reached a stage in its lifecycle where future improvements will be required. The City has established a model for supporting and cultivating a co-working space that serves artists, builds community, and supports new cultural experiences. Read the report.

Council supports heritage designation, approves permit

Council supported Heritage Committee recommendations to extend heritage designation to 97 Victoria St. N., the location of St. John’s Kitchen and Worth a Second Look Furniture and Housewares, for its design/physical, historical/associative and contextual values. Built circa 1927 in the Industrial Vernacular style of architecture, it's currently listed as a non-designated property of cultural heritage interest or value on the City’s Municipal Heritage Register. Read the report.

Council also approved a heritage permit application for alterations and the construction of a four-storey addition to the A.R. Goudie Eventide Home at 369 Frederick St. For details, read the report.

Council incorporates broad public feedback to plan for growth, affordability

Council directed staff to use recently completed public consultation efforts to inform how the City plans for growth and housing affordability on lands near ION transit stations.

  • Building on broad community engagement, Council directed Kitchener staff to consult on policy directions requiring affordable housing around major transit stations (a planning tool known as Inclusionary Zoning, or IZ). Staff are to bring an IZ framework for council approval later this year. Alongside other crucial initiatives and investments in affordable housing, the IZ framework would provide for new affordable residential units every year. Read the report
  • During six community workshops as part of the Growing Together project – which is looking at updates to land use and zoning in major transit station areas - more than 500 people shared input on where low, mid-, and high-rise buildings should be located. The feedback, along with technical considerations, will be used to inform the development of draft land use and zoning direction to be released in early summer 2023. Read the report.

Council accepts municipal excellence award

On behalf of the City, Council accepted the Excellence in Municipal Systems award from Municipal Information Systems Association (MISA) Ontario for the City’s Growing Together project, which is looking at updates to land use and zoning in major transit station areas.