New TBM council to make decision on Abbotts rezoning

The new council for the Town of The Blue Mountains will make the decision on a proposed rezoning for the Abbotts Subdivision project.

At its committee of the whole meeting on Nov. 1, the current council deferred a decision on the rezoning matter to the next council, which will assume office on Nov. 21.

The rezoning would see a portion of the town-owned Bay Street road allowance rezoned from residential R1-1 to open space to allow for a tree protection zone. The rezoning was a requirement of a recent Ontario Land Tribunal decision on the subdivision project. The town held a public meeting on the matter on Oct. 4 and staff recommended approval of the application.

Manager of Community Planning Shawn Postma said the approval of the rezoning did not mean blanket approval for the subdivision to move ahead. He said the proponent still must complete multiple reports including: a vegetation assessment and a vegetation management plan.

“There is still substantial work that needs to be completed to satisfy the town and County of Grey,” said Postma.

Mayor Alar Soever asked what would happen if council rejected the rezoning, which was a requirement of the tribunal’s decision on the matter.

“What are the consequences of that?” Soever asked.

Postma said a rejection of the rezoning would not do anything to stop the project. He said the development could still proceed with the existing zoning and the tree protection area would remain and would be recognized through the subdivision agreement.

After the staff presentation on the matter, council immediately voted to defer the vote for the new council to make the decision.

“This is probably best in the hands of the new council,” said Coun. Rob Sampson.

Council approved the deferral in a 4-0 vote (Deputy Mayor Peter Bordignon and Coun. Bill Abbotts were absent).

“It sounds like the new council is going to be busy,” Soever noted after the vote.

Chris Fell, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, CollingwoodToday.ca