The Ontario Land Tribunal hearing about Official Plan Amendment No. 49 of the District of Muskoka and Official Plan Amendment No. 56 of the Township of Muskoka Lakes concerning the Resort Village of Minett was heard last week. The appeals were filed by 225311 Ontario Inc. (JW Marriott) and The Rosseau Group – TRG-KFH (Lakeside) Inc. (Legacy Cottages).

The parties include both appellants as well as the District of Muskoka, The Township of Muskoka Lakes, 2084311 Ontario Limited (which owns Clevelands House and neighbouring properties and is headed by Mitch Goldhar) and Friends of Muskoka (represented by Ken Pearce).

By December, 2023, the parties had resolved all but two of the 20 outstanding issues (in our view favourably). At the 11th hour, the night before the May 15th hearing, the parties agreed on policy requiring Legacy Cottages and the JW Marriott properties to connect to municipal services when they become available and the conditions of connection (financial and otherwise) have been agreed between those entities and Mr. Goldhar.

The sole issue that was heard by the tribunal was raised late in the process by the JW Marriott. It concerned the percentage of residential units permitted on lands zoned resort commercial. The JW Marriott requested to have up to 50% residential units on the waterfront (on lands zoned resort commercial) when connected to municipal services, despite never having brought this up during the OPA review process. The previous official plan provided for up to 50%. Mr. Goldhar, the Township and FOM all agreed to set a new limit of up to 30% since these lands are intended for commercial use.

After a two day hearing, the Tribunal Chair reserved their decision. We will inform you when we know the outcome.

The OLT’s December decision, upcoming dates, the remaining issues and order of evidence is available here.