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Rezoning community not a good idea, say area residents


TRURO - A decision by Colchester County council to rezone Onslow and Upper Onslow is not good news, say area residents.

Paul Smith, senior planner with the Municipality of Colchester, made a presentation on Thursday night to county council regarding rezoning of Onslow and Upper Onslow from rural general to a growth centre. Council agreed to the initiative. Monique Chiasson - Truro Daily News

CUT 2: JoAnne Roode, a resident of Meeting House Road in Upper Onslow, said rezoning the Onslow and Upper Onslow community from rural general to a growth centre will be detrimental to the area. Roode voiced her opinion at a Colchester County council meeting on Thursday night. Monique Chiasson - Truro Daily News

 

About a dozen citizens attended the county's regular monthly meeting Thursday night in Truro to hear council discuss, and ultimately vote to rezone, that area. JoAnne Roode, a resident of Meeting House Road, wasn't pleased.

"I love my community (and) I'm not happy about the transformation from an agricultural community to a growth centre," Roode told council. "Every bit of land is in use; farm land is used more than it was before. It is an agricultural community and sustainability is important. I don't believe (rezoning) is going to protect me."

Senior planner Paul Smith said the "once tranquil community (that) grew at a low rate and development patterns were very sparce" has undergone a "considerable amount of change" in the last number of years.

"We couldn't guarantee (the area) would continue to exist as people knew it. So what can be done for land-use when higher density occurs?" Paul said.

Hence the idea of changing the area from a rural general zone (which now is designated as residential, some commercial and light industrial) to a growth centre, he said.

"Zoning will protect you from a gas station going there," county Mayor Bob Taylor said, as an example.

A staff report indicates a zone change will "afford a greater level of protection to property owners in the area from dissimilar land uses" and ensure future development occurs in a "predictable manner."

During discussion, Coun. Christine Blair asked if the change would indeed be beneficial.

"We are dealing with a number of residents. Is this positive progress or negative progress?"

The proposal has been ongoing for a while. Last fall, a detailed planning process involving the area took place. According to a staff report, it was motivated by significant development plans near Highway 102 and the completion of a central sewage collection project along Onslow Road, which will allow for higher development densities and

"brings about new risks concerning land-use

compatibility."

On Thursday night, council voted unanimously to approve amendments to the Central Colchester municipal planning strategy and land-use bylaw to introduce the growth centre rezoning. There is a 14-day appeal period once the project is advertised in the Truro Daily News.

mchiasson@trurodaily.com

Twitter: tdnMonique

   

Paul Smith, senior planner with the Municipality of Colchester, made a presentation on Thursday night to county council regarding rezoning of Onslow and Upper Onslow from rural general to a growth centre. Council agreed to the initiative. Monique Chiasson - Truro Daily News

CUT 2: JoAnne Roode, a resident of Meeting House Road in Upper Onslow, said rezoning the Onslow and Upper Onslow community from rural general to a growth centre will be detrimental to the area. Roode voiced her opinion at a Colchester County council meeting on Thursday night. Monique Chiasson - Truro Daily News

 

About a dozen citizens attended the county's regular monthly meeting Thursday night in Truro to hear council discuss, and ultimately vote to rezone, that area. JoAnne Roode, a resident of Meeting House Road, wasn't pleased.

"I love my community (and) I'm not happy about the transformation from an agricultural community to a growth centre," Roode told council. "Every bit of land is in use; farm land is used more than it was before. It is an agricultural community and sustainability is important. I don't believe (rezoning) is going to protect me."

Senior planner Paul Smith said the "once tranquil community (that) grew at a low rate and development patterns were very sparce" has undergone a "considerable amount of change" in the last number of years.

"We couldn't guarantee (the area) would continue to exist as people knew it. So what can be done for land-use when higher density occurs?" Paul said.

Hence the idea of changing the area from a rural general zone (which now is designated as residential, some commercial and light industrial) to a growth centre, he said.

"Zoning will protect you from a gas station going there," county Mayor Bob Taylor said, as an example.

A staff report indicates a zone change will "afford a greater level of protection to property owners in the area from dissimilar land uses" and ensure future development occurs in a "predictable manner."

During discussion, Coun. Christine Blair asked if the change would indeed be beneficial.

"We are dealing with a number of residents. Is this positive progress or negative progress?"

The proposal has been ongoing for a while. Last fall, a detailed planning process involving the area took place. According to a staff report, it was motivated by significant development plans near Highway 102 and the completion of a central sewage collection project along Onslow Road, which will allow for higher development densities and

"brings about new risks concerning land-use

compatibility."

On Thursday night, council voted unanimously to approve amendments to the Central Colchester municipal planning strategy and land-use bylaw to introduce the growth centre rezoning. There is a 14-day appeal period once the project is advertised in the Truro Daily News.

mchiasson@trurodaily.com

Twitter: tdnMonique

   

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