Rossland council grants amendment to allow two duplex lot

Rossland council passed a bylaw amendment allowing two duplexes on a property on Georgia Street Monday.

Council voted unanimously to rezone the above property to allow for two duplexes.

The city passed a bylaw amendment allowing two duplexes on a property on Georgia Street Monday. Three residents spoke against it.

Monday’s council meeting began with Jackie Drysdale stating her case during a special public input period for bylaw 2526, which allows K2 contracting’s Kevin Fairweather to build two duplexes on the lot, which he owns.

Drysdale, who lives nearby, worried that the map doesn’t give the full picture of the properties slope.

“On a map, you don’t always get that consideration,” Drysdale said, adding her real concern is access through the alley in winter driving conditions, as the residents in that area don’t use Fourth Avenue because it gets too icy and is steep.

Drysdale said that for the past 36 years the road has had to accommodate the neighbourhood and more cars would cause problems as she said they will be using a lot of the lot.

The city has requirements for snow storage and off-street parking and the mayor said that these have been addressed by city staff.

John Dougall, who also lives on Georgia, said that despite the requirements, there may not be enough space on the lot to account for a heavy snow year.

“There are parking issues,” Dougall said, bringing up an illegal bed and breakfast  in the area last year, which ended up causing parking problems.

His other issues were lack of green  space and the ability of the orchard on the property to absorb water run-off.

Dougall said he spent a lot of money on water removal. He also commented that the area is difficult to access for fire and ambulance and other emergency vehicles.

Kevin Fairweather, who owns the property in question spoke in favour. He noted that he is very near to the area would not need any bylaw amendments to go from R-1, residential to R-2S small lot duplex, meaning he would not have to come to council.

He also had no concerns that the property would sell and would also make work for are the community.

He said he would be giving  about 1,100 sq. ft. to the city to be used as a bike trail or foot path, and that any trees in the way would be relocated. Of the 5,000 sq. ft. on the property, his building would only take up 1,000 sq. ft., he said.

Mayor Greg Granstrom said that any major concerns he had were addressed by staff, so he had no problems passing the motion,which eventually was voted in, all in favour.

Coun. Kathy Moore had initial concerns about green space, but ended up supporting the amendment.

Moore said she believes the city needs to increase density and prevent sprawl.

Coun. Tim Thatcher said he agrees with it.

“It’s a good lot for making a duplex,” Thatcher said, though his biggest concern was that of access as well. “The access isn’t that good.”

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