Core Fuels drops LPAT appeal of Alma propane storage decision

ALMA – Core Fuels Ltd. has dropped its appeal of Mapleton council’s decision not to grant a zoning amendment for an underground propane storage facility on property the company owns in this hamlet.

The company’s application to add a provision for “bulk fuel storage” to the site-specific highway commercial zoning of a property at 6976 Wellington Road 7 was denied by council on Sept. 8, 2020.

Core Fuels was planning to add four 226,800 litre underground propane tanks to the site for the storage and distribution of propane, and to relocate its bulk storage operations to the Alma site.

Two tanks were proposed in the initial development.

On Oct. 13, Core Fuels filed an appeal of council’s decision to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT).

“Core Fuels believes their application was consistent with both the Provincial Policy Statement and the county official plan,” the township stated a press release at the time the appeal was filed.

A Jan. 18 letter to the township from LPAT registrar Becky Fong states the appeal by Core Fuels Ltd. was withdrawn via letter earlier that day.

“There are no outstanding appeals in this matter and our file is closed,” Fong states in the letter.

Mapleton clerk Larry Wheeler confirmed the withdrawal by Core Fuels ends the LPAT process and the appeal cannot be re-filed.

LPAT case coordinator Tamara Zwarycz stated in an email to the Advertiser that no reasons for the withdrawal were included in the letter.

Mapleton CAO Manny Baron said the township is not aware of the reason for the withdrawal and has not had any recent communication with Core Fuels representatives.

“We just found out it was withdrawn as well,” said Baron on Jan. 19.

The Concerned Citizens of Alma (CCA) group presented council with a petition signed by 210 local residents opposing the development.

CCA spokesperson Amanda Reid said the group is pleased the appeal has been dropped.

“The Concerned Citizens of Alma group are pleased that the decision to put a bulk storage propane in Alma has been decided against and the application to LPAT withdrawn,” she stated.

James Core of Core Fuels stated at the Sept. 8 council meeting the company opted for underground tanks because it felt they would be the safest and most aesthetically pleasing option.

Core did not immediately respond to a call seeking comment for this article.