Some architectural renderings were enough to tip the scale in favour of Cumberland’s council granting a development permit for a secondary dwelling.
A month ago, a majority of council voted to deny a development permit for the proposed accessory dwelling unit (ADU) at 2522 Dunsmuir Ave. because of numerous concerns around sightlines and privacy, as well as the historical character of the neighbourhood at what was Camp Road.
While not approving the permit, council requested the applicant provide a design more sensitive to the scale, mass and form of adjacent buildings in the area. At the April meeting, council members Sean Sullivan and Jesse Ketler were the only one voting in favour, arguing the proposal met development permit and zoning guidelines and that it had been approved by the village’s advisory planning commission (APC).
Once again, they cited the need for more rental housing in the community and thanked the applicant for providing the additional drawings of the proposed home. The new renderings show photos with the proposed structure added behind the main house.
This time, Mayor Leslie Baird provided the swing vote, saying the latest architectural drawings showed the sightlines compared with the height of the main house, which persuaded her to vote in favour of the development permit.
“It certainly brought the ADU into perspective for me,” she said.
Council members Vickey Brown and Gwyn Sproule voted against the motion to approve the development permit.
“This looks to just be new photos that are Photoshopped,” Brown said. “The applicant has not revised their plan at all. The drawings are the same, so my concern is the same.”
The proposal had generated a noticeable response from people in the area opposing the application. The village had received eight written submissions prior to the April 12 meeting and nine additional ones following the meeting. The issue was the subject of a lengthy debate among council members at the time, but the discussion at the May 10 meeting lasted a little over 10 minutes.
Permits for Maryport property
Council also approved development permit and variance applications for an ADU at 2781 Maryport Ave. at the May 10 meeting.
The owner was asking to legalize an existing structure at the rear of the property. It had been built as a garage in 1984 and renovated by a previous owner, who added an office or living space, along with a bathroom. The work had been done without a building permit or development permit.
A staff report noted the application and supporting documents comply with all of the development permit area guidelines, and that the APC also supported it. Council voted unanimously to approve the applications.