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Communal housing to be on town agenda for third month

Councillors awaiting discussion with town planner


Published on September 12, 2017

ALBERTON -- Two property owners looking to develop communal style housing units in Alberton will have to wait at least another month for Town Council to decide on their applications.  

Town Council shelved the applications Monday for a second consecutive month. Council wants to meet with their town planner before deciding on the applications and was hoping that meeting would have been held prior to the Sept. 11 Council meeting.

Councillor Blair Duggan now wants to insure it happens prior to the October meeting stressing that the developers want to house temporary foreign workers.

“If they are going to be coming, if they are not in town, they will be in another town or another village,” he pointed out. The developments propose private sleeping quarters but shared washroom and dining facilities.

Town administrator Susan Wallace-Flynn pointed out there is currently no zoning in the town’s bylaws that permits that type of housing.

Councillor David Cahill enquired about the process for making a zoning change and suggested it might be costly to the town to go through the process, and especially so if the developers did not subsequently follow through with their plans. Mayor Mike Murphy suggested it would be up to the developer to request the zoning change.

“It’s something that your planner doesn’t recommend,” he advised.

Both Cahill and Duggan expressed an interest in having a discussion with the planner about the process

“We’ve got to think of the future,” said Councillor Alan Curtis. “Some of the bylaws were written many years ago and this is 21st century. Maybe we should change our thinking a little bit.”  He said he is also in favour of looking into the possibility of zoning changes, with the help of the town planner.