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Amica expansion awaits permit

By Craig Campbell, Dundas Star News

Site plan approval has been received for a 74-unit expansion of the Amica Mature Lifestyles retirement home at the corner of Hatt and Ogilvie streets in central Dundas.

Amica vice-president Michael Hayward confirmed last week the expansion will bring the facility’s existing 132 residential units up to a new total of 206-units.

“We received site plan approval in April, and are now beginning the planning and development process, leading up to a building permit application,” Hayward said. “The application should be submitted in the spring and, if all goes well, we hope to break ground on the expansion before the end of the year.”

He said the project includes a plan for 12 new surface, and 58 underground, parking spaces – but that parking scenario is subject to change during the ongoing development and permit process. That’s in addition to the existing 45 underground and eight surface spaces already provided.

The addition will be five storeys in height, and variances will be needed for balcony encroachment into the Hatt Street setback, City of Hamilton planning staff said.

According to the company’s 2013 Annual Report, the Amica at Dundas expansion is one of six key projects for the 2014 fiscal year.

“During the year ended May 31, 2013, the Company transferred $1,110,000 of land to development properties for the Amica at Dundas expansion project,” the report states. “To maximize the probability of success, most of our resources will be dedicated towards our 24 operating communities, the Amica at Oakville development, the expansions at Amica at Swan Lake and Amica at Dundas, and other internal growth opportunities.”

The existing building opened in March 2008.

Hayward said projecting a completion date for the 74-unit expansion would have to wait until building permit approval is finalized, but suggested “fiscal 2016” as a potential opening.

He said the addition will be similar to the existing building, with a variety of suite types including studio, one bedroom and two bedroom units.

“The plans for the expansion include updated features such as in-suite laundry and full kitchens,” Hayward said. “This will certainly be our finest building when it opens.”

He said there is a waiting list to rent a suite in the existing Amica at Dundas building.

“Those currently living in the community, or on our committed wait list, will have the first opportunity to move into the expansion when it is ready,” Hayward said.

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