How do you move the needle on how your city evolves? Sometimes it's hard, sometimes it's easier. Commenting on Committee of Adjustment applications can be an easy one*.
The way CoA works is you have to show up to the meeting (April 15th in this case) in order to have legal rights in the process (notification of the written decision, the ability to appeal the decision to the OMB, etc). That said, if you email firstname.lastname@example.org they will forward your comments to the Board, and the Board does take those comments into consideration.
So if you care a lot about an application, you should probably show up.
But if you care a little about an application, sending an email is still worth it.
I happen to support a shift to lower minimum-parking requirements across the board. Our current rules were written for another era and are slow to adapt. So anytime I see an application that asks for permission to put in less parking, I'll email COFA and say "yup, sounds good." And anytime I see someone trying to cram more parking in, I'm likely to email COFA and say "nuh-uh, that's against city policy, etc'.
I invite you to take a few minutes and review the CoA applications for April 15th and send in even the most brief comment imaginable. You're likely to move the needle.
On Mon, Mar 30, 2015 at 1:04 PM, COA Staffer wrote:
Good afternoon Mr. O’Donnell,
We have received your submission. It has been circulated to the Committee Members for their review.
Committee of Adjustment | City of Ottawa
Committee Coordinator/Coordonnatrice du Comité de dérogation
I support the applicant's request for a Minor Variance from the Zoning By-law to permit four vehicle parking spaces (0.5 spaces per classroom) whereas the By-law requires a minimum of twelve vehicle parking spaces (1.5 spaces per classroom).
Please confirm my comments will be forwarded to the Board for review prior to the meeting.
* Well, commenting on CoA applications is easy once you know CoA applications exist.