Following a one-week delay for council and the proponent to work out an outstanding issue, Home Hardware can proceed with building an outdoor, seasonal, retail space on two parcels of land adjacent to the existing building.
At council’s July 14 regular meeting, Town staff recommended approving the development permit with a number of conditions one of which was to have Home Hardware consolidate the two parcels on the corner of Third Avenue and King Street.
CAO Alan Harris explained that if the parcels remain separate, the Town would have to register development permits against each property requiring Home Hardware to submit another application because different conditions would apply to each property. Consolidation was a much cleaner solution, Harris said.
Theo Bandstra, the owner of the property, was against consolidation saying it was cost-prohibitive at approximately $10,000. Staff disagreed saying the consolidation could be accomplished for as little as $100.
A motion was made and seconded to remove that specific clause and approve the application, but in the ensuing discussion, it became clear the motion would be defeated.
All the councillors present expressed support for the project, but Coun. Casda Thomas said she would prefer staff to come back with more information on the consolidation issue.
Deputy Mayor Gladys Atrill said council had an obligation to take staff recommendations very seriously and considered calling a vote on the motion.
But CAO Alan Harris warned council that defeating the motion would mean denying the application and the process would have to start over again. Council decided to postpone the vote until a special meeting July 21 and directed staff to work with the proponent and come back with more information.
“I don’t think it was anyone’s intention that the project be denied,” Atrill said.
At the special meeting, Bandstra said after exploring the consolidation further with staff, he was willing to go ahead with it.
The motion that had remained open following the July 14 was withdrawn and council unanimously approved the permit with six conditions.
The proposed enclosure will be a 50-foot by 87-foot fenced area with gates facing Third Avenue and the alley between Third and Second Avenues and be accessible through the store.
The intended use is for seasonal items including soil, fertilizers and gardening equipment.
In addition to consolidating the two parcels, Home Hardware must: submit a landscaping plan; modify the door on the side of the building to meet accessibility standards, if it is to be open to the public; not paint any part of the fence in light fluorescent or light metallic colours; submit a sign application before attaching any commercial messaging to the fence; and not attach anything to the fence that would impede intersection visibility.
The application also provided various options for fencing and the new motion included a requirement that the fencing would be the wrought iron option.