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Policies for Tall Buildings

The Policies for Tall Buildings is a set of guidelines directing the built form & orientation of tall buildings throughout the City. These Official Plan policies clarify the City's priorities to the development industry, and allow staff to apply them when reviewing future development applications.

The policies provide Council, developers, and members of the public with guidance and direction for assessing the merits of applications for tall buildings. They facilitate development that minimizes the potential negative physical and visual impacts often associated with tall building height, while encouraging design that builds upon the strengths and assets of the local community. The policies are based upon the following principles:

  1. Minimize adverse building shadows on waterfront amenity areas, on pedestrian-oriented streets, as well as existing and future planned open space areas.
  2. Foster a pedestrian oriented environment that encourages street level activity.
  3. Protect views and access to the City’s waterfront.
  4. Integrate new development within the context of the local urban form,
  5. Minimize adverse microclimatic impacts on the streets.
  6. Retain views of the Algonquin Ridgeline to preserve Barrie’s “natural setting”.
  7. Protect views of major geographical landmarks, buildings, and principle viewing areas.
  8. Contribute to a visually interesting skyline for the City of Barrie.

On June 11, 2013, the Height Review and Tall Building Principles Staff Report was received by the Development Services Committee. This Staff Report reviews the performance of the existing maximum height permissions within the City of Barrie’s Comprehensive Zoning By-law 2009-141.  The Report recommends no changes to the existing height restrictions, instead proposing the adoption of a set of policies relating to the design, location, and orientation of tall buildings.  The subsequent Policies for Tall Buildings is a result of the recommendations of this Staff Report. 

An Open House was held on August 7, 2013, and a Public Meeting (including presentation) was held during General Committee on August 12, 2013,  in order to consider a set of draft policies as part of an amendment to the City’s Official Plan. 

On October 28, 2013, Staff Report PLN023-13 Policies for Tall Buildings was received by General Committee.  The Staff Report recommended the approval of an amendment to the Official Plan to replace Section 6.6 ‘Height Control’ with Section 6.6 ‘Tall Buildings’.  The Official Plan Amendment was approved by Council in November 2013.  A copy of the final approved policies can be found in the downloads section on this page.

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