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October 27, 2017 10:54 pm

Council Starts Deliberations on Otway

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 @ 8:49 PM

Prince George, B.C.- The  third  session of a public hearing on the  proposed  rezoning of  a piece of property on Otway Road started with a call for peace but  it was clear there would be more jousting before Council would make a decision.

Another 2 hours and  40 minutes of  comments and presentations were put before Prince George City Council on the matter of the  rezoning and amendment of the Official Community Plan to allow  a piece of property on Otway road to be used for light industrial  development.

In all,  there had been 10 hours and 40 minutes of public input spread over three  separate nights.

Robert Hillhouse  told  Council  he had been asked by both sides on this issue to otwayproposalspeak,  and  told Council “It pains me to see  so much controversy”.   He outlined some of the consequences  the City may face  no matter what the  final decision might be.   If  Council approves the rezoning, the City could face legal action from area residents as was the case  in the  rezoning of  a property in the Haldi Road area.

If Council denies the application, he suggested the  proponent  may suffer significant losses and may seek  some sort of  compensation.

Those  in favour and in opposition to the  industrial  rezoning  stated their cases in what one speaker  referred to as “excruciating detail”.

It had been  raised that the two  businesses  don’t have a ground water protection permit for the proposed  site.  David McWalter, speaking on  behalf of the proponents, said  the proponents are exempt from  needing such a permit because  of the “benign nature” of their operations.  He said  there will be a holding tank for  waste waters  and the holding tank will be  pumped out regularly so it poses  no danger to the  aquifer which is the main source of  the city’s water.

One  thing  is clear,  many of those who  oppose the  rezoning  want the City to  seize the opportunity to see the big picture of the value  of the Nechako corridor.  Jim Burbee  told Council,  “It’s not just about  a neighbourhood,  it’s about the entire City having access to that asset.”  He pointed out that  only  2% of the riverfront in this city is accessible.

The piece of property  under consideration  does not have  river access.  The property is on the south side of Otway Road,   while on the north side,  there are  CN tracks and another strip of land that  stretches to the river bank.

As one presenter  stressed,  “This  is a battle between the here and now and the future,.”

After taking a short break upon officially closing the public hearing City Council began its deliberations.

More to  come.





I wasn’t surprised with the vote. When this council does not ask questions it is a sure slam. Also the idea of looking into future plans of the areas along the rivers etc for the future? What is the OCP for? obviously nothing.

“If Council denies the application, he (Robert Hillhouse) suggested the proponent may suffer significant losses and may seek some sort of compensation.”

Since when does an applicant seek compensation for Council not approving a rezoning application? Makes one think of conspiracy theories, did someone in city hall guarantee the applicant a right of passage?

    No, that went our with the green regime; no, the green machine!

The proponent bought that land without it being rezoned light industrial. There was deal there somewhere. This reeks of corruption.

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