Thursday, April 16, 2015

Proposed Annunciation lane closure, prompts parking concerns from United Church

A delegation from the United Church
appeared at Council on Monday,
expressing concerns on a proposed
lane closure
It has become an ages old discussion between the two churches in the city and a proposal to close the lane between the two churches has once again stirred up the theme of parking in the area.

At the heart of Council's Monday discussions was a bit of housekeeping required regarding a land exchange between the City and Annunciation parish, with one of the items related to it the request of Annunciation to have the lane access closed.

Part of that request according to the city might be related to potential expansion of the School on the property, which is where the United Church seemingly has seen a red flag. With the prospect that those parishioners who used the school playground for parking on Sundays and for other events will suddenly be flooding the neighbouring streets with cars.

Council found itself in the midst of what appears to be an issue that has been a long running thorn between the two churches, and on Monday did its best to try and be a moderator of sorts on the issue, though while maintaining that the lane closure bylaw under discussion wasn't of particular concern to the larger issue of the parking concerns.

To try and deliver a bit of clarity on the topic, the City Manager Robert Long offered up some background on the past conversations related to the issue and noted that for the City the issue is a simple road closure issue and that Annunciation had made a fairly legitimate case for that to move forward.

A proposed lane closure between Annunciation and
the United Church is proving to be a bit contentious

The delegation from the United Church offered up their concerns and belief that Council is required to hold Annunciation to its parking requirements, regardless of the change of the status of the lane in question and any future plans that might take place.

On that theme Council heard from City staff, that should Annunciation have development plans in mind for the property, they would require a building permit and that the parish would have to address the parking requirement issue at the time of any development permit stage.

Monday's discussion provided for a range of potential scenarios that could be in suggested for Annunciation to address the parking concerns, a number of which might require the purchase of nearby property to keep to the spirit of the parking issue.

The topic of parking will most likely remain a lively one, not only between Annunciation and the United Church, but with City Council with a number of Council members looking for further clarification on the issue.

As for the lane closure bylaw, Council voted on Monday to approve the motion.

The topic receive two overviews on the night, the first came from the presentation from the delegation from the United Church, which can be found on the City's Video Archive at the 43 minute mark.

The second was the review of the report from the Engineering Department and the review of Council on the issue, it can be found at the one hour eighteen minute mark.

More background on the topic of Monday evening can be found from our Council Timeline feature.

For further notes related to City Council discussions can be found on our Archive page here.

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