County ap­proves draft plan for Seaglass de­vel­op­ment

St. Thomas Times-Journal - - FRONT PAGE - LAURA BROADLEY [email protected]­media.com

El­gin County coun­cil ap­proved the draft plan of Wastell Homes’ Seaglass sub­di­vi­sion in Port Stan­ley at Tues­day’s meet­ing.

The con­tro­ver­sial sub­di­vi­sion will add 146 sin­gle de­tached homes and four apart­ment build­ings with 360 units to the lake­side vil­lage.

A pe­ti­tion signed by about 300 peo­ple who op­pose the de­vel­op­ment on Ge­orge Street was sub­mit­ted to coun­cil along with op­po­si­tion let­ters by newly elected Cen­tral El­gin coun­cil­lor Colleen Row and Janet Kennedy, past pres­i­dent of the Port Stan­ley Vil­lage As­so­ci­a­tion.

Sally Mar­tyn, deputy mayor of Cen­tral El­gin, was the lone vote against ap­prov­ing the draft plan. Seven coun­cil­lors voted to ap­prove the sub­di­vi­sion and one ab­stained.

Mar­tyn told coun­cil she ini­tially ap­proved the sub­di­vi­sion at the mu­nic­i­pal level with the thought that af­ford­able hous­ing units would be in­cluded in a six­s­torey apart­ment build­ing.

“If not, I said I would not sup­port it. I would only sup­port four-storey apart­ment build­ings be­cause I think six storeys is quite a change,” Mar­tyn said.

The com­pany plans to build three six-storey high­rises and one four-story high­rise.

Steve Evans, man­ager of plan­ning, told coun­cil that af­ford­able hous­ing has “sev­eral mean­ings.”

“Af­ford­able in re­la­tion to the re­gional mar­ket area means the price in which hous­ing is sell­ing in the El­gin County area,” he said.

Evans said he thought the is­sue of af­ford­able hous­ing was not brought up to the plan­ning de­part­ment be­cause apart­ments are thought to be af­ford­able com­pared to sin­gle de­tached homes.

Mar­tyn said she was con­cerned Wastell would turn the apart­ment units into con­do­mini­ums, and con­sid­er­ing the units over­look Ket­tle Creek golf course, they would be at a pre­mium price and not af­ford­able.

Cen­tral El­gin Mayor David Marr told coun­cil the con­cerns about traf­fic were eased by a sec­ondary traf­fic study that con­cluded noth­ing needs to be done to the roads to pre­pare for the de­vel­op­ment.

“This is a nine-phase de­vel­op­ment. This is not like 146 homes and 360 apart­ment units are go­ing to be built to­mor­row,” Marr said.

Evans said in an in­ter­view there are a num­ber of con­di­tions Wastell must meet in the draft plan be­fore it can start con­struc­tion.

Mem­bers of the pub­lic have 20 days from re­ceiv­ing no­tice of coun­cil’s de­ci­sion to file an ap­peal with the Lo­cal Plan­ning Ap­peal Tri­bunal.

If there are no ap­peals, the de­vel­oper would have to ful­fil all of the con­di­tions of the draft plan ap­proval, Evans said.

“They have up to three years to com­plete all those con­di­tions.”

This is a nine-phase de­vel­op­ment. This is not like 146 homes and 360 apart­ment units are go­ing to be built to­mor­row.”

David Marr, Cen­tral El­gin Mayor

CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTO

El­gin County coun­cil ap­proved the draft plan for the Seaglass sub­di­vi­sion in Port Stan­ley. Wastell Homes plans to build 146 sin­gle de­tached homes and four apart­ment build­ings with 360 units on Ge­orge Street.

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