Thursday, July 23, 2015

Borden Street residents approach Council regarding proposed lane closure

One of a number of Borden Street
residents who spoke to Council
on Monday evening
A number of residents of the Borden Street area of the city were in attendance at Monday's City Council session, taking advantage of the public commentary opportunity of the Committee of the Whole session to outline their concerns over a proposed land closure in their area.

The topic of concern involves property located at the corner of Park Avenue and Five Corners, which residents are concerned may one day feature some form of development, though at the moment no actual development plan has been presented to the City for the land in question.

What was up for discussion on Monday was the process of closing a lane in the area, with the area resident using that opportunity to outline for the city that they were planning on being quite active in protecting their home investment in the area.
Council gave first reading Monday
related to a bylaw to close a lane in the
Park Avenue/Borden Street area of the city

The topic dominated the public comment session with four of the Borden street residents taking they turn at the microphone to outline their concern over any potential development of the area directly in front of their homes.

Councillor Mirau, who was acting as the Chair on the evening reminded the delegation that the issue at the moment was that of a lane closure and that any future development would require the normal process of consultation.

When it came time to discuss the Borden street land closure many of the evening's discussion on land use concerns were repeated.

As part of Council's review of land use through the evening, Councillor Thorkelson expressed her concerns over making decisions without having any background on what may or may not be planned for the area in question.

She spoke has spoken to the land in question on Park Avenue as part of her review of the proposed condo development on Bill Murray Way. Noting that the City might even give consideration to purchasing the land on Park for its own uses, suggesting a park or for use as a site for the city's proposed Emergency Services building.

"I'm worried that we're going to agree to close a lane, which is going to be a further discussion going on and for what? We don't have any project in front of us,  we have some ideas for projects in front of us ... we're going to consolidate a property for a project , but what kind of development do we want coming into our town. Maybe we should be looking at buying that land and putting up a park or an edifice or a statue .... or put an emergency services building, maybe that's the spot for that " -- Councillor Joy Thorkelson taking issue how the City is approaching land use in the community

To bring the discussion to an end, Councillor Mirau reminded Council as well as those from the Borden Street area in attendance that there would be a process of future engagement between the public and the developer when and if any request for rezoning and a development permit came up in front of Council.

With that, Council then voted to give adopt the motion, with Councillor Thorkelson continuing with her announced intentions to not vote in favour of any land use zoning issues, until a larger conversation on the topic is held with the public.

Some background on the proposed land closure can be found from the City's Agenda from Monday, starting on page 77.

A review of the Borden Street residents presentation to Council can be found on the City's Video Archive starting with the opening of the evening session and continuing on for the first thirteen minutes.

Council's review of the land closure amendment starts at the one hour fifty four minute point and continues on until the two hour five minute point.

Further information on housing and land use concerns can be found on our Housing archive, while more background on Council discussions can be reviewed from our Council Discussion page.

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