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Process of redeveloping former Sudbury hospital begins at April 29 meeting

Plans to redevelop the former St. Joseph’s Hospital on Paris Street in Sudbury are moving ahead, with the first stage of the approvals process taking place next week. (File) Plans to redevelop the former St. Joseph’s Hospital on Paris Street in Sudbury are moving ahead, with the first stage of the approvals process taking place next week. (File)
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Plans to redevelop the former St. Joseph’s Hospital on Paris Street in Sudbury are moving ahead, with the first stage of the approvals process taking place next week.

Panoramic Properties, which owns the site, is going to the city’s planning committee in two stages to get approval of its plans. Panoramic wants to build a total of 109 retirement home guest rooms, 421 multiple dwelling units, up to three levels of underground parking and 380 square metres of restaurant space.

The retirement home would be a maximum of 12 storeys, while the tallest building – an apartment building with 222 units – would be a maximum of 20 storeys.

The proposal goes to planning April 29 and will be followed by a second public hearing before formal approvals and other steps to move forward.

“This is a preliminary planning report intended to introduce the application, provide departmental and agency comments received to date, and obtain additional input on the proposal from the public and the proponents,” a staff report on the plan said.

Staff will review the report and come up with recommendations in time for a second public hearing. But neighbours in the area are already expressing concern.

Concerns include increased traffic and noise, that the development would block the view of Ramsey Lake and that it includes too many units.

“Though I would like to see the development of this site, I believe the significant number of units is far too many for this neighbourhood to maintain the nature of the community,” one person said.

Another person was upset about the lack of timelines, especially considering how long the city has waited for the redevelopment.

“The proposal contains no timeline for completion of the development,” another person said.

A mural painted on the former hospital site became controversial when the paint began to fade and no development work was being done. (File)

“Based on the progress over the last 10 or more years, that means Bell Park will be dominated by perpetual construction for decades.”

“A 12-, 16- and 20-storey building will have an obvious and negative impact on Bell Park,” another person wrote.

“This fact alone should be sufficient reason for Planning Services to reject the application.”

But one letter welcomed the long-anticipated project.

“In sending this letter of support we fully understand and expect: traffic restrictions and interruptions, some noise matters, some dust and general area ‘housekeeping’ matters and local movement disruptions throughout the development process and that this overall period may last a number of years,” a couple who live on Paris Street said.

“We respect this may/will result in some challenges from time to time with us as local residents but fully respect the work and approach here and will support this development in any feasible way we can.”

Read the full report on the project here.

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