The application to sever the property at 100 Main St. W. has been withdrawn.
The Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board applied to the city's committee-of-adjustment to sever the land where the Education Centre now sits. The site is the future home of the McMaster Downtown Health Centre, scheduled to open in 2014.
The application was to be discussed Thursday but McMaster told CBC Hamilton Wednesday afternoon that the university had been advised to wait until after it took possession on Aug. 1.
“The university sent a letter to the city to defer the severance request until it takes ownership of the property,” said Gord Arbeau, director of community and public relations at McMaster.
The board is selling the property to the university for an undisclosed amount of money. One of the conditions of that sale was that the property be severed, and also that the board obtain a demolition permit for the 46-year-old Education Centre building at Bay and Main Street West.
The severance, if approved, would have seen the portion of the property facing Main Street West zoned commercial for the McMaster health centre. The portion facing King Street West would have been zoned residential/institutional.
The city received the request on Tuesday to withdraw the application, said Scott Baldry, secretary-treasurer for the committee of adjustment. School board spokesperson Jackie Penman said she believed the board was notified today.
When the city approved its up-front $20-million contribution to the $80-million McMaster project last year, it included a condition for a development on the King Street West side of property.
“There are no firm plans at this stage about what that development will involve,” Arbeau said.
Coun. Jason Farr said council's $20-million contribution held back $1 million until the north side of the land was developed. The land will likely be sold, he said.
Farr envisions a mixed-use development that enhances the streetscape.
“I'd like to see ground floor commercial. If hotels work, if suites work, that's good too. It could be condos. I always want to see more people living downtown.”
The Ministry of Municipal Affairs website says the reasons for requesting a severance of land as being to “sell, mortgage, charge or enter into any agreement (at least 21 years) for a portion” of the property.
The city's total contribution to the $85-million project is $47 million.
The board is moving its new headquarters to its Crestwood location at 50 Millwood Pl.