Charlottetown moves closer to reconsider asphalt plant decision

The City of Charlottetown has taken the first step to reconsider its decision on asphalt and concrete plants.

After a heated residents meeting Wednesday night, Mayor Philip Brown sought the advice of planning staff who told him a reconsideration was possible. 

The group of residents who have been fighting the change formally submitted a request for reconsideration Wednesday evening. 

"Staff at planning and development will take a look at it," Brown said. 

"They won't use the same planner that come up with the recommendations so we can be objective. We'll vet it through our legal counsel and then staff from planning and development will come to council to make a recommendation to reconsider or not to reconsider."

Residents relieved

Last month council made the decision to allow asphalt and concrete plants in heavy industrial zones in the city. There are currently two of those zones in Charlottetown — in the West Royalty Industrial Park and sections of Sherwood Road. 

Since that decision, groups of residents have been protesting, asking council to overturn the decision. So they were relieved to hear that could now be a possibility. 

Brian Higgins/CBC

"Very happy to hear that," said Cathy Feener, a spokesperson for the group. "This is what we have been asking from the very beginning.

"The public's voices have been heard. This is the right decision for the city councillors and the mayor to do."

Decision could come soon: Brown

Brown said there are no rules about timelines for a decision from staff, but the vote on their recommendation doesn't have to wait until the August council meeting.

That can be done through a special meeting, which Brown said he is ready to call as soon as planning is ready. 

"Expediency will be applied to this issue because as you know last night there was a lot of emotions," he said 

Natalia Goodwin/CBC

"Everyone sees their home as their castle … so we want to address it in a very timely fashion."

The group of residents had filed an appeal with the Island Regulatory Appeals Commission (IRAC). That has now been put on hold until the process with council is complete.

If that process doesn't go the residents' way, the group can — and Feener said they would — move forward with IRAC. 

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