New six-plex eyed for Sunnyside Road in Rideau Lakes Township

A proposed six-plex for senior living was approved by the planning and advisory committee of Rideau Lakes Township during a regular meeting on Feb. 28, 2024. – Screengrab/Rideau Lakes Township documents

A unique, low-profile six-plex got the nod of the planning advisory committee of Rideau Lakes Township during their regular meeting on Feb. 28.

The unit will be geared to seniors with a price point of $1,800 a month, which includes heat, plus hydro, and is slated to be built at 278 Sunnyside Rd., near Rideau Lakes Golf and Country Club.

The proposal for a zoning bylaw amendment for the 4.56 acres from rural, to rural special exception was approved by the committee, with conditions: the driveway be made of concrete, asphalt or crushed stone; that a vegetative buffer along the side lot lines be established and include tree planting at three-meter intervals, and that the drinking water is tested regularly.

The land is owned by Kaitland and Nigel Jones, with Scott Blair (construction) seeking the zoning amendment.

Two neighbouring property owners from Golf Course Road voiced concerns. One spoke about privacy, more vehicle traffic, and excessive noise from heating/cooling units. The other expressed concerns about the property lines that were drawn that looked to include a small slice between their property and the property seeking the zoning amendment. They also asked if it would have an impact on their property value, and how a proposed septic will affect well water of adjacent landowners.

Another question asked was about the purchase of a portion of the property in question to enlarge their own parcel of land. (That would be for discussion between the landowners and another proposal to the committee.)

Coun. Deborah Anne Hutchings said she could see both sides of the issue, but felt the building may be in the wrong area. “It seems misplaced to me,” she said. “I wouldn’t want it behind me either. I know we have to have affordable housing, but there are places of land in Rideau Lakes where we can have (one type of dwelling).”

Coun. Paula Banks said she would support the application, as there are a lot of people in the township who can’t afford their own home. She didn’t like the idea of segregating affordable housing from the rest of the township.

“I think putting in this type of building in our township makes it affordable for seniors to stay here, which right now it isn’t,” she said, as she is aware of several people who have had to move out of the area and they’re paying $2,800 a month.

“If this keeps seniors or some of our residents in Rideau Lakes, I’ll be supporting it,” she said.

The unit will look like three separate two-unit dwellings, joined by a mechanical room. The entire build will be situated diagonally on the property. Blair said he thought it would look more like a single-family building with that positioning.

Coun. Joan Delaney, chair of the planning and advisory committee, said the design is “intriguing.” She said she was picturing a motel strip block.

There is a similar style four-plex at the other end of Sunnyside Road.

The committee passed a motion to support the proposal with conditions, and it will come to a future meeting of council for final approval.

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