Rezoning prepares the ground for the hotel and offices of the Golf Links property

Reliable Northern Developments has secured rezoning approvals for a proposed hotel and office project on a Golf Links Road site originally intended to also house a football bubble.

THUNDER BAY — A developer has secured zoning permissions for a hotel and office development off Golf Links Road, a location that was originally intended to house a private football bubble.

Council approved an application submitted in March by Reliable Northern Developments for rezoning of the land, located near the southwest corner of Oliver Road and Golf Links Road, at a meeting on Monday.

A group of investors led by developer Robert Zanette had originally hoped to build a football bubble on the site with a hotel, and won council approval to do so in 2019.

A representative for claimant Reliable Northern Developments declined to comment on development plans for this story, although Zanette provided some details about the project in response to questions from Coun. Aldo Ruberto on Monday.

The proposal is for a 150-unit hotel, with a gross cost of about $25 million, Zanette said, estimating the project will take about a year to build.

The approximately 11,500 square meter property will likely only have road access from Burwell Road, as it is separated by a hydro right-of-way from Golf Links Road.

On Monday, council approved an application to remove an operating symbol placed on the lands, which are zoned IN6 – Prestige Industrial, to add an office and a hotel as permitted uses and to increase the maximum height of a hotel to 21 meters.

The maximum property height is 17 meters under the city’s 2010 zoning by-law, which remains in effect, and will be 15 meters under its new zoning by-law, which will only come into effect when several calls will be resolved.

“We are changing the 2010 bylaw because there is no certainty when appeals for the new bylaw will be heard,” lead planner Decio Lopes told council, an approach favored by the claimant to avoid delays. .

The operating symbol was placed on the property until municipal services were available on site, which is now the case.

The City’s Planning Services Division recommended approval of the application, noting that the addition of office and hotel uses is consistent with the Official Plan intent for the lands, and did not find no concerns about height change.

“The height increase is considered negligible given the wide hydroelectric transmission corridor that separates the property from Golf Links Road,” staff wrote in a report.

City plans to impose site plan control conditions, including plan submission requirements for lot grading and drainage, stormwater management, site servicing, erosion control and sediment, and connections to sanitary sewers and water.

Council unanimously approved the rezoning application on Monday.

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