Item - 2024.PH9.13

Tracking Status

PH9.13 - Committees of Adjustment and Minor Variances

Decision Type:
11 - University - Rosedale

Committee Decision

The Planning and Housing Committee:


1. Directed the Chief Planner and Executive Director, City Planning to review and report back to the Planning and Housing Committee by the fourth quarter of 2024 on whether the City should adopt a by-law under Section 45 of the Planning Act to establish criteria that would limit what qualifies as a minor variance when applicants request additional height for large-scale multi-storey development proposals that already hold site-specific zoning permissions as an outcome of a private application for rezoning.


(January 15, 2024) Letter from Councillor Dianne Saxe


My constituents have observed a pattern of Committees of Adjustment making significant changes that appear to undermine the City's zoning bylaws and the public consultations on which they are based. Some of these decisions permit changes that seem far from "minor", such as granting additional height and density to a large-scale multi-storey development despite the city and community having successfully negotiated site-specific zoning  for a less intrusive building.

In one recent example, a Committee of Adjustment permitted a 27 storey building at 316 Bloor Street West to add 8 more storeys, (a 27.6% increase) just a few years after the developer had negotiated approval for its building by accepting a 27 storey limit. Just weeks before, another Committee gave the opposite result in the very similar case at 300 Bloor Street West, a few doors away. Such apparent inconsistency and lack of clarity undermines public confidence in Toronto's land use decision-making, and in the worth of the consultation processes that we invite the public to. See, for example, the enclosed letter of concern from the Annex Ratepayers’ Association.

Section 45 of the Planning Act allows a municipality to adopt a by-law that establishes criteria for a minor variance in addition to the tests in the Planning Act.

Background Information

(January 15, 2024) Letter from Councillor Dianne Saxe on Committees of Adjustment and Minor Variances
Attachment 1: Letter from the Annex Ratepayers’ Association, December 28, 2023


(January 22, 2024) E-mail from Adam Rodgers (PH.New)
(January 24, 2024) Letter from Geoff Kettel and Cathie Macdonald, The Federation of North Toronto Residents' Associations (FoNTRA) (PH.New)
(January 22, 2024) Letter from Ian Carmichael and John Caliendo, Co-Chairs, ABC Residents Association (PH.New)
(January 28, 2024) E-mail from Colleen Bailey, More Neighbours Toronto (PH.New)
(January 29, 2024) Presentation from Mark Richardson, Housing Now TO (PH.New)


Rita Bilerman
Adam Rodgers
Geoff Kettel, Federation of North Toronto Residents' Associations
Mark Richardson,
Councillor Dianne Saxe


Motion to Adopt Item moved by Councillor Frances Nunziata (Carried)
Source: Toronto City Clerk at