There are five housing developments in Cobourg’s East End either currently being built or planned. Supporting commercial developments include a plaza housing a Tim Hortons plus a supermarket at Wilmott although as usual there is no firm timeframe on these. As well as the County’s affordable housing re-development at 265 – 327 Elgin, East Village phase 5 is ongoing, the Mason Homes development at 425 King East has started, the Nickerson Drive development is proceeding and there are indications that the large development at Elgin and Brook is being started. Called the Villages of Central Park or the Rondeau lands, it calls for 1500 to 1700 homes in six phases with the first phase of 144 to 216 homes on the north side of Elgin just west of Brook. This will require significant earth moving and before that the removal of a whole lot of trees.
But tree removal requires a permit even though they will eventually be replaced so the developer is coming to Council on February 16 to request permission. They say that the request is urgent since they want to remove the trees “in advance of the migratory bird breeding season which begins in mid-April (April 15 to August 15 as per the Environment Canada guideline)”. The implication is that tree removal when the birds are nesting would not be permitted.
The request for permission is being made by Director of Planning Glenn McGlashon (see file photo) and (again) the implication is that he believes the project will be approved in 2021. He says that “the Phase 1 review is still underway and it is anticipated that the staff report on the final approval will proceed to Council later in 2021.”
Glenn’s memo also indicates some timelines:
Stage 1 – Tree Removal – March 2021
Stage 2 – Site Alteration/Earthworks (Spring, 2021 — Winter, 2021/22)
Stage 3 – Final Clearance of Conditions and Authorization of PreServicing & Subdivision Agreements (Winter, 2022 – Fall, 2022)
Included in Glenn’s memo is a comment about the trees being removed:
The Arborist Report has indicated that the majority of the existing trees to be removed are foreign or invasive (Buckthorn, Scots Pine), successional growth and scrub vegetation, are in poor health or condition, or are Ash trees that are infested with the Emerald Ash Borer and should be removed. There are some significant specimens being removed within and along the edges of fields (outside of protected EP areas) where protection was not feasible due to development impacts.
…. as part of the final approvals submission for Phase 1, the development will be subject to the implementation of a Landscape Master Plan which provides a comprehensive vegetation planting and compensation plan for the phase, including streets, parks and open spaces, stormwater management ponds, forest edge management/buffering, creek restoration and tree replacement/compensation. In total, the development of Phase 1 alone will result in approx. 900 — 1,000 trees and approx. 2,500 – 3,000 shrubs being planted.
There is a lot more room to expand in the East than in the West end of Cobourg – and expansion looks like it’s happening.
Documents from the Town of Cobourg
Related Articles on Cobourg News Blog
- Mason Homes Development News – 27 February 2019
- Housing Developments in Northeast of Cobourg – Villages of Central Park (Rondeau Lands) – includes Phase 1. And Nickerson Woods – 28 June 2018
- East Village – now at Phase 5 – 12 July 2019
- Tim Hortons Coming to East End – 27 January 2021
- Affordable Housing Gets Funding – 24 July 2020
Update – 17 February 2021
At the Committee of the Whole meeting on February 16, Council was asked to approve the project as described above. Jeff Solly represented Tribute who is a new partner of Rondeau and assured Council that the project would be proceeding and that Council would be kept informed. The motion to approve the request to remove the trees and proceed with the massive earth moving was carried.