Council approves encroachment to allow for portico

This photo shows the former Queen’s Hotel in downtown Simcoe back in the day when the historic structure featured a post-supported portico on the Robinson Street-side of the building. This artist’s conception illustrates what Dundas developers Ken and Kevin Vanderlaan intend to build at the corner of Robinson Street and Talbot Street South in Simcoe. Their plan for the $1.8 million re-development includes a portico over Robinson Street similar to what was featured at the former Queen’s Hotel in the 1800s. “The encroachment agreement will be registered on the title of the property to protect the future interests of the county and to advise future owners of the property.“The landowner is required to maintain property insurance on a replacement-cost basis for any property and building(s) against fire and other such perils including liability in the amount of $2 million per each occurrence and to provide the (county) with a certificate of insurance at each annual renewal.”In the name of downtown rejuvenation, Norfolk has approved a number of exceptions for the building slated to go in this location. This includes street-level apartments. Vanderlaan’s C.S. Ltd. / Graphic The plan also calls for the construction of a street-level financial services office.The derelict structure at this location was demolished two weeks ago. Total estimated value of the pending construction is $1.8 million. The Vanderlaans continue to work with county planners on their proposal and have not provided a time line for reconstruction.MSonnenberg@postmedia.com Norfolk County / Photo Norfolk County normally doesn’t welcome encroachments on municipal property.Encroachments can impair county services while inconveniencing the public. Left unchecked, encroachments can also raise liability concerns.However, Norfolk is making an exception for the re-development of the former Maliboo property in downtown Simcoe. It is doing so in the name of local heritage.Tuesday, Norfolk council approved an encroachment agreement with developers from Dundas who plan to build a replica of the former Queen’s Hotel that stood on the corner of Robinson and Talbot Street South in the 1800s.The original design included a post-supported portico on Robinson Street facing north. To include this feature in the project, developers Ken and Kevin Vanderlaan needed the county’s permission to anchor it over the sidewalk.“The portico will be located on the site in an area that does not interfere with the existing services or existing traffic movement on Robinson Street,” county employee Kristen Demeulemeester said in a report to council.

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