Kitchener-Waterloo

Cambridge councillors approve Gaslight District proposal

Cambridge councillors have given the Gaslight District proposal in Galt the go-ahead.

'Most citizens are excited about the proposal,' Coun. Pam Wolf says

A view of the proposed Gaslight District in Cambridge. Councillors gave their approval for the development during a committee meeting Tuesday night. (Grand Innovations/City of Cambridge)

The new Gaslight District in Galt is the "spark to ignite what's going to happen downtown," Cambridge Coun. Frank Monteiro says.

On Tuesday night at the city's planning and development committee, councillors voted 7-2 in favour of the development on the former Southworks and Tiger Brand properties.

The urban village is being created by HIP Developments and will include two residential towers of 17 and 18 floors each, as well as space for offices, restaurants, retail and artists.

"We know our downtown has been stagnant since the mid-70s," Monteiro said during Tuesday's meeting. "I think HIP is on the right track."

A 'transformational project'

There was some criticism of the development. In particular, Coun. Nicholas Ermeta worried the residential towers were too tall and would take away from the heritage skyline in Galt.

"They're on the right track," Ermeta said. "But I believe that on the heritage aspect, we're being short changed."

Pam Wolf is the councillor for the area where the development will go and said she heard similar concerns from residents.

"We have a very exciting and contentious proposal before us," she said, but added "most citizens are excited about the proposal" and it will be a "transformational project."

Wolf said Scott Higgins, president of HIP Developments, lives in Cambridge and she trusts he wanted what is best for the city. She said if the company walked away from the project, another developer could come in without the same attention to heritage that HIP Developments has shown.

The vote still needs to be ratified at the city's next council meeting.

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