Council not impressed with subdivision plan

BRUCEDALE – Guelph-Eramosa councillors have received an application for a new 40-home condominium subdivision in Rockwood, and they are not impressed with the layout.

The proposal from North Rockwood Developments Inc. is for a narrow strip of land between Sacred Heart Catholic School and Edgar Bonner Avenue, including a condominium road that will intersect with Wellington Road 27.

Each of the semi-detached homes is to have a two-car garage, plus two driveway parking spaces, but the seven-meter wide road will not allow for any parking. The end of the road will be in a “T” shape, requiring incoming vehicles to make a three-point turn to turn around.

The proponent is requesting exemption from several zoning regulations on yard setbacks, lot coverage, building height and driveway placement.

Council is not considering final approval and will receive another report and possible revisions to the plan prior to a public meeting.

Councillors voted on March 18 to deem the application complete, allowing it to move forward to the next stage, with comments from agencies and the public.

Corey Woods was the only councillor who did not support the motion, saying the application is likely to be different by the time it is acceptable to council.

“I don’t like people spending money for us to say no,” he said. “Looking at this, I’m going to say no.”

“I see several issues,” said Mayor Chris White.

“I don’t like that ‘T’ thing. There’s no visitor parking and only one entrance. Where does the snow go?”

Councillor Bruce Dickieson said, “It doesn’t seem right if there’s no parking.”

Township planning consultant Dan Currie said there could be various changes to the plan, but it is appropriate to proceed with the process since there is “the possibility of a reasonable outcome”.

The 1.45-hectare strip of land is currently vacant. Relief from the provisions of the village residential low density zoning have been requested. In the county official plan, single-detached, semi-detached and duplex dwellings are all considered low-density.

For this project, the developer has requested front yard setbacks of four metres instead of the normal six metres, backyards at 6.5 metres instead of 7.5m and interior yards at 1.2m instead of 1.8m.

The developer also wants lot coverage of 50 per cent instead of the normal 35% and a maximum building height of 10.6m instead of 9m.

The applicant has submitted the required studies, including a planning report and urban design brief, a traffic impact study, a noise study and a servicing and stormwater report.