Rossland council will face an upcoming decision on whether to allow a zoning amendment at 926 Black Bear Drive.
Monday’s meeting began with a public hearing on the bylaw, which would see a portion of the property’s designation changed from residential R-1 (Residential Single Detached) lot to C-2 Commercial Services.
Mayor Greg Granstrom explained zoning amendment 2539, was a part of Section 890 of local government act.
“The hearings are held to allow for any person present to voice their concerns if they will be affected,” Granstrom explained.
Richard Migneault wrote in to council, saying that he has a machine shop in the old recycling building and there is a portable saw mill across the street.
Migneault said the experience with these noisy machines has turned him against the proposal.
““Believe me the noise carries across the highway more than you think it would,” Migneault said in the letter.
“I am sure the immediate residencies and the Rossland Motel owners would not want any business that would make excessive noise.”
Sure enough, Jen Gilhula, who manages the Rossland Motel, said she was against the idea of changing the property’s designation.
“I do not want to see the lot next door to me rezoned to C-2,” Gilhula said. “A noisy, potentially smelly, business moving next door to me will devastate my business. My guests enjoy the quiet of the motel and a lot of my guests are workers who work shift work and need to sleep during the day.”
She noted that with the noise from a machine shop or other operation, she would not be able to do business.
She also said that she has mountain biking contracts for the summer and guests pick her location because it is quiet and relaxing, and that could be lost if the amendment goes through.
Earl Dawson, who has lived at 950 Black Bear Drive for the past 46 years was also against the rezoning.
“ It would definitely be a deterrent factor to where I live,” Dawson said. “It would definitely be a noise problem, and I’m definitely against it.”
Curtis Nichols, current owner of the property and the one asking for the amendment, said he saw no problems with the proposal.
“When I purchased the area three years ago, it was my intention from the beginning, because it was a potential commercial area with light industrial across the street, the motel being also commercial zoning,” Nichols said.
“I feel like there are not enough commercial properties in the area and I’d like to see more businesses come to Rossland.”
Nichols said he didn’t see the noise becoming a problem, and that he intends to live on the part of the property that would remain residential.
“I feel like I would be directly affected , but I don’t feel there is a problem, whoever the property owner is, whether it is me or sold to someone else, they can take the right actions to make it as quiet as possible and make it good for the residents to live around there,” he said.