Neighbourhood concerns

Proposed building on McNamara raises concerns about existing development next door

Paradise town council is taking measures to address residents’ concerns about a property across from the Town Hall on McNamara Drive.

The concerns were raised after the Town advertised a Discretionary Use Application for a proposed development next door to the property that residents are concerned about.

The Rotary Club of Avalon Northeast is proposing to lease land from the Town at 19 McNamara Drive to erect a new building and lease space within it to a church group. That sparked an opportunity for some residents living in a nearby subdivision to complain about the building that would neighbour the Rotary Club development.

At last week’s council meeting, Councillor Deborah Quilty, chairperson of the planning committee, motioned for council to approve a clean-up order for that property at 15 McNamara Drive.

Following council’s unanimous approval of the motion, Councillor Allan English, co-chair of the planning committee, remarked he was pleased to see the motion pass due to the issues raised by residents.

“There’s another development coming up in that area and there is some negativity around it,” said English. “It all seems to be generated from that area…kudos to whoever decided to bring this forward.”

“Absolutely, I’ve seen the e-mails as well and I think you’re absolutely right,” agreed Mayor Dan Bobbett.

After the meeting, Bobbett clarified the clean-up order required the owner of the property at 15 McNamara to move a dilapidated excavator. Bobbett noted the excavator had already been moved by the time the order was ratified by council.

English later explained that residents had expressed concern about the unoccupied building at 15 McNamara Drive and that led to further concerns about how the proposed Rotary development next door would be handled.

“That building has been under construction for years,” said English of the structure at 15 McNamara. “(It’s) somewhat dilapidated looking… (Residents are) concerned that another building would go there, go on for years (under construction) and be an eyesore.”

English said residents were also worried about the possibility of increased traffic created by the new development, which would be located near a proposed school site next to the Dianne Whalen Soccer Complex.

“It’s in an interesting location because it’s backing onto residential properties,” said English. “The thought process in that area is that traffic is going to escalate.”

Councillor Paul Dinn stressed the importance of communication with residents to address their concerns as the application moves forward.

“I think we need to get some information out to residents as it becomes available in terms of what’s going there and what we’re doing to mitigate these issues,” said Dinn.

By Kyle Reid

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