LPAT decision clears the way for 26-storey tower in Burlington’s downtown

It looks like the battle over a developer’s proposal for a 26-storey high rise in Burlington’s downtown core is over.

ADI Development Group will be permitted to start construction on Martha Street and Lakeshore Road despite objections by the city.

The Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT) has turned down its request to review a previous decision by the then Ontario Municipal board (OMB) that would allow the tower to be built, stating the city failed to present a “convincing and compelling case.”

In its request, the city argued that the OMB improperly applied the growth plan with respect to height and density limits. It also claimed there was improper regard for council’s decision to refuse the initial and revised proposal from ADI.

Mayor-elect Marianne Meed Ward, who recently campaigned against intensification in the downtown core, says the building will be precedent setting.

“What we’ve seen is that every tower breeds more towers, like dandelions. Every new application will reference every other application that has already been built or approved,” she said.

The 26-storey tower will be framed by buildings less than half its size, according to Meed Ward.

“This will fundamentally change the character of downtown,” she said, acknowledging that the city has run out of options to prevent this specific project.

Her next course of action, she says, is to work with city council and the province to push for changes to the urban growth and mobility hub designations as well as height and density limits under the official plan.

The hope is that it will push investment and growth closer to areas like the Burlington GO station on Brant Street.

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