At Empire, we are always looking for cues from city policy to get an idea of how we can expect to see the area grow and change over time. Over the past decade, Scarborough has transformed from undeveloped land to an urban hub; and recent approvals to Scarborough Centre Secondary Plan makes community building in this area an even more exciting opportunity.
Following the completion of the Scarborough Centre Secondary Plan in 2005, the city began working on detailed studies to direct development in four ‘sub-precincts’ of the plan. The Scarborough Centre Secondary Plan is intended to be developed as a mix of retail, government, institutional, cultural, employment and residential uses that take advantage of the desirable positioning along the Highway 401 corridor. The sub-precincts in turn serve to focus development and best serve the identified need of each precinct. The McCowan Precinct for example has been identified as an area with considerable employment potential.
After an extensive study process with community and landowner involvement, the McCowan Precinct Plan, urban design guidelines and a concept plan was approved in June 2014. The plan’s vision includes a finer-grained streetscape, promenade design linking the Precincts along Town Centre Court and Bushby Drive as well as streetscape and cycling infrastructure improvements.
The McCowan Precinct Plan has been and will continue to be used to inform redevelopment in the area; identifying opportunities for improving public and private realm, transportation and community services.
TRANSIT INFRASTRUCTURE INVESTMENTS
Other exciting investments in Scarborough include investments in rapid transit to better serve the area. Currently, the City and the TTC are working together on a proposed Scarborough Subway Extension. The study process includes determining a route, station locations and construction methods. Toward the end of 2016 we can expect to see recommendations, which will be informed by public input obtained through this study process. There is a clear intention to better serve transit users in Scarborough by delivering fast and reliable transit that extends the Bloor-Danforth line north from Kennedy Station. The Precinct Plan, coupled with investments in transit infrastructure will help transform the area into a livable and vibrant community.
Large scale infrastructure investments, such as subway extensions are huge milestones within the GTA, and also great indicators of investment opportunities. Proximity to transit infrastructure has a significant impact on rental rates and property values. RealNet Canada data showing 190 different 2014 condos sales in Toronto suggest a positive correlation between proximity to the subway and price per square foot value. Empire is excited to be creating our incredible Ten88 community in an area that is growing rapidly and will be continuing to experience growth as the city and region continue to support development and infrastructure investments.