Developer says no legal basis for city of Charlottetown to halt housing project

·2 min read
Developer Tim Banks says there's no basis for the stop-work order city officials issued last week for his Sherwood Crossing project. (Kirk Pennell/CBC - image credit)
Developer Tim Banks says there's no basis for the stop-work order city officials issued last week for his Sherwood Crossing project. (Kirk Pennell/CBC - image credit)

A P.E.I. developer is considering legal action after the city of Charlottetown halted construction at a major housing development project until more meetings can be held.

The city issued a stop-work order the week of Aug. 16 for Sherwood Crossing, a development near the Charlottetown Mall that is estimated to be worth $95 million. Work on phase 1 of construction, which would see 18 townhouses built out of a planned 36, was then halted.

"Staff will continue to monitor this property to ensure that no unauthorized work activity is occurring on the site," Alex Forbes, the city's manager of planning and heritage, said in a statement to CBC News.

The city says the development didn't have a valid building permit.

Kirk Pennell/CBC
Kirk Pennell/CBC

Pan American Properties president Tim Banks, who partnered with Killam Apartment REIT on the project, says they decided to add basements and upgrade the exterior look of the townhouses to include brick.

The city says the changes mean another review of the project must take place before construction can proceed. But Banks says there is no legal basis for the stop-work order.

"They agreed that we could start construction as long as we presented them with the plans and the application fees and the application themselves for the building permits, which we did," Banks said. "And the city could easily issue us a foundation permit. It's done on 90 per cent of the projects of this scale in the city."

Forbes said in a statement that a building permit for the project can't be issued until the city council "approves the revised architectural design of the proposed townhouses."

The revision to the project is one of the items on the agenda for a public meeting planned for Tuesday night at 7 p.m.

The matter must then go back before the council so that it can make a final decision on whether a building permit should be issued.

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