Weston Bakery Looks To Cash In

If Weston has its way, its Leslieville bakery could be redeveloped into a live/work space. Photo by Francis Crescia.

If you live in Leslieville near Eastern and Logan avenues, the smell of fresh bread wafting from the long-established Weston Bakery is likely a familiar scent.

That could change soon if the city approves an application to redevelop the bakery and a parking lot across the street for mixed use.

Owners of the Weston Bakery, which according to city staff has been in operation since the 1800s, have made two redevelopment applications: for the existing property at 462 Eastern Ave. and for the parking lot across the street at 459 Eastern Ave.

Because the area is zoned as an employment area in the city’s official plan, the applicants must ask the city to rezone it “live/work.”

Staff must now examine the applications and then make a recommendation to the planning and growth committee.

Ward 30 councillor Paula Fletcher noted it’s very early on in the process.

“The plant hasn’t even closed,” she said. “It’s not like there’s a pressure to have it redeveloped tomorrow.”

The application for 462 Eastern Ave. asks for a seven-storey mixed-use building with a food store at grade and 266 dwelling units. There would be 288 underground parking units.

For 459 Eastern Ave., the application asks for a four-storey non-residential building fronting onto Booth Ave. and a six-storey mixed-use building fronting onto Eastern Avenue.

The six-storey building would have two floors of retail and office use and 71 live/work dwelling units above. The site would be served by 41 surface parking spaces and 137 underground.

The southern portion of Eastern Avenue was previously the site of a contentious development proposal to build a large Smart Centre retail facility.

The applicant eventually appealed to the Ontario Municipal Board, who, in the Spring of 2009, sided with the city and quashed the proposal.

Fletcher said she expects the north side to have an easier time with the rezoning amendment because it is already adjacent to many homes.

She said it’s her understanding the property owner, George Weston Limited, plans to reopen the bakery in another part of the city.

George Weston Limited could not be reached for comment by press time.

Fletcher said she plans to hold a community meeting sometime in fall to discuss concerns such as density and shading.



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