A Leader in Canadian Construction since 1989.
What We Do
We are a full-service turnkey company, providing Project and Construction Management services to Property Developers and Homeowners. Backed by more than 35 years of diverse attention to meticulous planning, we have extreme depth of experience in the construction of residential condominiums, rental apartment buildings, townhomes, custom homes, commercial and institutional projects.
Our specialized and extensive industry experience enables us to participate fully and knowledgeably in every stage of the project. Our insistence on “getting it right” during the pre-construction stage take us and our clients to a higher level of productivity and profitability.
Who We Are
We are a Project Management Company that offers considerable experience and expertise in the construction of residential, commercial and institutional projects. Our extensive knowledge and understanding of specific requirements needed by developers, residential, commercial, and institutional owners enables us to execute projects to the highest standard.
Our Condominium Development Process
This is the Limen outline/process of how to get a site approved and under construction in 10 stages:
Stage 1: Decide if you’re going for gold. Your first decision after acquiring a development site is to determine how easy or hard the approvals process will be. If easy, design a building that mostly complies with the current zoning. If that doesn’t give a big enough building to make the project viable (and it usually doesn’t), then you need to go the hard route.
Stage 2: Design a proposed massing. Once you know how much floor area is needed, the next step is to come up with a proposed “massing”. That’s architectural language for the form your building will take.
Stage 3: Attend meetings. Lots of meetings. Your approvals process starts with meetings – meetings with planning staff, with the local councilor, and with your neighbours. Here’s where your proposed building is presented – defined enough so that it looks appealing, but not so much that it looks like a fait accompli. Be prepared for some nastiness and changes.
Stage 4: File your zoning application. The actual building approval process you go through is very city-specific. In Toronto, it could be by minor variance for small changes; a rezoning where city staff or the councilor is on-side; or (at least until recently) the OMB, for substantial contentious changes. This is the riskiest part of the approval process where it could all go wrong.
Stage 5: File for Site Plan Approval. Site Plan Approval (SPA) is the city’s process for approving all technical aspects of the building. You need a planner to push through this
process. Previously you would receive numerous bankers’ boxes of documents, which immediately went into storage. Fortunately today, they come as digital PDF documents.
Stage 6: Get comments and respond. Repeat. Filing the SPA application unleashes a back-and-forth with numerous city departments: planning, urban design, transportation, transportation planning, environment, civil engineering, water, parks. All have their own agendas. This is a lengthy process.
Stage 7: Negotiate your “Section 37” contribution. Unique in Ontario is the concept of “Section 37” contributions, in which a developer pays the city a public benefits contribution in return for density above the zoned amount. This contribution is negotiated with your local councilor.
Stage 8: Secure tie back rights. Tie-backs are rods that are installed under your neighbour’s property, to hold your shoring in place. These rods have no permanent impact, but if your neighbours believe they have leverage over you, you could have problems. But, there are alternatives; they are just more costly and time-consuming.
Stage 9: Apply for your building permit. Like your SPA, filing for your building permit requires a substantial quantity of documents – consultants’ drawings and forms; geotechnical, stormwater and servicing reports; energy checklists and green standard forms, to name just a few. This is so the Buildings Department can confirm that you have everything covered before they issue you a permit.
Stage 10. 99.8% is a failure. Getting your building approved and a permit to start construction involves ticking off a thousand boxes. Every one of them needs to be ticked. Only 100% gets the approval you need.
From contracting to complicated design-build and P3 projects, Limen brings the right solutions at the right time, with the right people, to turn your vision a reality.