By Chris Lewis | Oct. 8, 2020
A potential new development in Conception Bay South has some heads turning.
A property often referred to as ‘the old doctor’s house’ near Manuel’s Bridge has been for sale for a number of years. However, without much interest in the land, it remained vacant. But, over the last few weeks, the property has seen some landscaping improvements, allowing for the potential construction of a new building.
And a new building is precisely what the proponent has in mind, but the specifics are still a bit of a mystery.
CBS Mayor Terry French confirmed the lot was slated to house a “place of worship,” but beyond that description, neither he nor council are aware of what exactly that means.
“It’ll be, I suppose, some sort of church-type facility,” French said. “Everybody says their prayers a little differently.”
He added the planned development dates back to March 2019 when an application was submitted to change the property from residential to institutional. That sort of thing, he said, would not come into discussion in the council chambers — it is a regular process that does not require a vote from its elected officials.
Construction permits were issued in October of the same year. Like the previous application, the permits did not need to be approved through a public meeting or a committee meeting.
“Now, they’ve got what looks to me like a small parking lot there,” French said. “They could get a small number of cars in the area they’ve got cleared off. To be very frank, I’ve got no idea what religion it is at all. I don’t even know if we even inquire about that sort of thing.”
French also noted that the specific use of a designated ‘place of worship’ is not the business of the Town as long as building regulations are followed.
The Shoreline did follow up on rumours that a Mosque would be built at the location.
After reaching out to the Muslim Association of Newfoundland and Labrador (MANAL), however, it was clarified by secretary Kamrul Islam that the Association was not aware of any plans to construct a Mosque in Conception Bay South, and that the only plans currently in place for any facility beyond the Mosque on Logy Bay Road is for a multi-purpose facility, set to be located in Torbay.