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Letter regarding Langmaid Island Corporation

Date:    April 19, 2018

To:       Kirstin Maxwell, Manager of Planning, Town of Huntsville

From:   Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation

CC:       Melissa Halford, Manager of Planning, District of Muskoka

            Melissa Markham, Director of Planning, Township of Lake of Bays

            LBHF members, via newsflash

            Lake of Bays Association Board

Muskoka Conservancy

Re:       Z/11/2018/HTE (2596701 Ontario Ltd) Langmaid Island Corporation, and

            Z/12/2018/HTE(2596701 Ontario Ltd) Langmaid Island Corporation

This letter is submitted to the Town of Huntsville as the Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation’s (LBHF) initial response to the Planning Justification Report (PJR) and associated documents for the proposed Landings at 3933 South Portage Road and 4215 South Portage Road as water access for the lots specified in the redevelopment proposal of Langmaid’s Island in the Township of Lake of Bays.

LBHF is a community-based, not-for-profit organization committed to protecting the natural, built and cultural heritage of Lake of Bays. As a land trust, the LBHF encourages the protection of our heritage through education, voluntary stewardship, conservation easements, land donations and land acquisitions. LBHF owns and protects 170 acres and 6.5 kilometres of shoreline on the Lower Oxtongue River, a Muskoka Heritage Area, and stewards additional properties around the lake.

The Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation has previously provided comments to the District of Muskoka and the Township of Lake of Bays concerning the planning applications by Langmaid Island Corporation for an OPA to the Township of Lake of Bays OP, a draft Plan of Subdivision agreement from the District of Muskoka and Development Permit Bylaw site specific amendment. Since the applications to the Town of Huntsville for Zoning Bylaw Amendments for the two Landings at 3933 and 4215 South Portage Rd are key components of the redevelopment of Langmaids Island, LBHF is pleased to submit the following concerns and questions with respect to the Landings application documentation.

While LBHF’s primary interest in the Langmaids Island redevelopment application is to protect the features and functions identified in PolicyD.96 of the Township Official Plan, we recognize that it is important that we also comment on the adequacy of the proposals for the 3933 Landing and 4215 Landing to be used to access the island lots as access must be able to support the number of lots proposed.

 LBHF provides the following comments concerning these 2 applications:

  1. 3933 South Portage Rd
    1. The Concept Plan for 3933 South Portage Rd. provided by Planscape in the RiverStone Letter of Clarification, dated 22 March 2018, and the C.C. Tatham letter, dated 23 March 2018, indicates that the parking area intrudes well into the 20m setback for the front yard and that the parking spots in the row closer to the road have restricted use due to their inaccessibility at times when the other row of parking spots is accommodating vehicles and due to the fact that the 4m wide buffer alongside the main road reduces the effective length of these parking spots to 6m inclusive of the access lane and turning circle. It is also questionable whether the pervious nature of the parking surface will accommodate clear delineation of the location and number of parking spots to be available at this Landing.
    2. The location of the entrance is extremely close to a very dangerous curve on South Portage Rd.
    3. 4215 South Portage Rd.
      1. The ability of the concept plan to accommodate possible new tile fields and not impact the required area to be re-naturalized is questionable.
      2. We recognize that the maps on the parking note that the parking is subject to change but we remain concerned that there is likely to be no way all of the legally required spaces can be provided.
      3. The driveway that extends to the shuttle dock is described as “single lane” in the EIS dated January 8, 2018 and the turning area seems particularly restricted; both the driveway and turning area are adjacent to the area to be re-naturalized. The risk of vehicles interfering with the re-naturalization in the short term and generally making use of vegetated areas beyond the driveway appears high.
      4. Discrepancies between the Planning Justification report, the Environmental Impact Study and the Construction Mitigation and Stormwater Management report for each Landing:
        1. Discrepancies in the reports identified below give us concern that details of the proposal are not clear to the entire team of consultants. Given the need for clarity in the implementation stage we are not confident that all the details of the proposal will be accurately reflected in the wording of the planning decisions and resulting implementing documents. Examples, but not a comprehensive listing, of inconsistencies are:
  1. While the revised Concept Plan illustration for the 4215 Landing used in both the Letter of Clarification on the EIS (dated March 22, 2018) and the Stormwater Management and Construction Mitigation report by C.C. Tatham (dated March 23, 2018) shows the location of 6 rental units, the C.C. Tatham report refers to “constructing two cottages” (to replace two that will be removed of the current seven) and yet the revised Concept Plan shows only 1 newly located rental unit for a total of six units.
  2. While the EIS dated January 8, 2018 identifies on page 8 that “overland drainage from the subject property generally runs either toward South Portage Road or toward Lake of Bays, primarily through overland flow and via a permanent watercourse that crosses the property”, the C.C. Tatham report, dated March 23, 2018, indicates that “the 4215 Landing slopes towards Lake of Bays, with approximately half directed to the drainage channel, while the remaining area drains directly to the lake”.

Thank you for giving us the opportunity to provide preliminary comments to you about how the Landings applications aim to provide adequate access and parking for the development proposed on Langmaids Island. LBHF believes that it is important to consider all aspects related to the island proposal in the effort to ensure that any additional development preserves the values for which Langmaids Island is recognized in the Township of Lake of Bays Official Plan, namely “as a natural and undisturbed area”. In essence the details of the entire application, not just the details that address the different approvals sought, need to fit together like a carefully crafted and cut jigsaw puzzle where the total picture is more than just the sum of its parts.

Yours truly,

Judith Mills

President,  Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation

Our Results
  • Acquired over 50 per cent of the Lower Oxtongue River for permanent protection, including 6.5 km of shoreline.
  • Preserved one mile of natural shoreline and 47-acres of forest at Port Cunnington.
  • Partnered with the Ontario Heritage Trust to be the steward of the 100-acre Pyke property near Brown's Brae.
  • Recognized more than 30 building owners with plaques for heritage property protection.
  • Encouraged the Township to create a Heritage Committee of Council to encourage protection.
  • Rescued the Bigwin ferry from a sunken mooring in 1991 and conducted feasibility studies to transfer to the current Navigation Society for restoration.
  • Established the Harriet T. Weaver Memorial Trust which funds two bursaries each year to assist one student from each of Bracebridge and Huntsville high schools to help pay for their first year of university or college.
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Contact Us

Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation
P.O. Box 81
Baysville, Ontario
P0B 1A0