By Alison Taylor
The long-awaited council decision on London Drugs could be coming as soon as the next council meeting.
Councillor Ralph Forsyth alluded to the rezoning report being included in the Feb. 19 agenda at Monday’s council meeting.
When asked after the meeting Mayor Ken Melamed confirmed the rezoning report is on its way.
“Staff has suggested that it may well be (on the next agenda),” he said.
London Drugs had asked to put their application on hold while the municipality worked on its Sustainable Retail Strategy.
A draft version of the strategy was presented at an open house in late January.
“The suggestion has been talked about now that it’s kind of hard to get on with the retail strategy with London Drugs hanging over our heads,” said the mayor. “It was obvious at the open house that London Drugs was dominating the conversation. We couldn’t really have a conversation about the retail strategy so it may well be that London Drugs comes first and then we deal with the retail strategy.”
London Drugs has submitted plans for a two-storey store in the heart of the village. The lower level needs to be rezoned to allow retail.
This week council received dozens of letters from residents, some voicing their support for the London Drugs rezoning, others their opposition.
Lakeside Park to get public hearing
Council has removed one of two commercial boat drop off points from the latest plans for Lakeside Park.
Monday night’s change to the plans created debate at the council table and ended in a 4 to 3 vote.
Councillor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden led the charge in removing a second commercial boat access which would have allowed the commercial operator to drive through the Alta Vista neighbourhood twice a day to unload boats.
Councillors Tim Wake, Bob Lorriman and Gord McKeever voted to keep the access in place. Wake argued there was a safety concern in allowing the operator to unload the boats at the parking lot and handcart them down the Valley Trail to the water.
“I’m concerned about removing the secondary access,” he said.
But there was not enough support on council for staff’s plans.
The amended plans were given first and second readings at the meeting. There will now be a public hearing before council moves the park plans ahead any further.