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  |  Posted: Wednesday, Jul 02, 2014 06:00 am

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New homes for 10 acres

Up to 92 homes and 280 people could soon move into northwest Morinville now that town council has approved a tweak to its land use bylaw.

Council voted 5-0 in favour of the proposed conceptual scheme and land use changes for the proposed 10 acre site near 103 Avenue and 107 Street. Coun. Brennan Fitzgerald was absent, and Coun. Rob Ladouceur abstained due to a pecuniary interest.

The approval changes this 10-acre site near the public works yard from R3 medium-density to a mix of R3, R2 (two-unit residential) and parkland.

The conceptual plan submitted by Landrex Inc. envisions a U-shaped road connecting to 103 Avenue with 50 duplex units along the outside edge and 42 townhouses and a small park along the inside.

That could mean up to 160 cars at a time headed in and out of this crescent onto 103 Ave., said Donnie Mullen, who lives on 103 Avenue (a cul-de-sac at this location).

“It’ll be a danger to us and our neighbours when we back out of our driveways.”

Jim Sheasgreen, vice-president of operations for Landrex, said this development would have back alleys and garages to reduce on-street traffic.

Town planning and development director Greg Hofmann said staff looked at having the local road exit onto 107 Street instead, but found that would put too many intersections onto that street. Town staff would definitely look at parking issues here once this development reaches the subdivision stage, he added.

Noisy trucks by Tim Hortons

A town resident wants council to get truck drivers to stop using their retarder brakes by the local Tim Hortons.

Town resident Bernie Blouin spoke to town council last week about ongoing issues with noisy trucks on 100 Street between the Tim Hortons and Cardiff Road.

“For the last three years I’ve been listening day and night to various big trucks using their gears to reduce their speed instead of their brakes,” he said, adding that he lives across from this stretch of road.

“The noise is extremely loud and annoying.”

The brake use was disrespectful and unnecessary, given the road’s 60 kilometre an hour speed limit, he continued.

“They wouldn’t try this in St. Albert. They wouldn’t try it in Villeneuve.”

Blouin asked council to put up a “no retarder brakes” on the street, noting that Villeneuve and Spruce Grove addressed similar concerns with such a sign. He also submitted a petition of 12 names concerned about the noise.

Council asked administration to look into the issue.

Sports grants

Local volleyballers and a canoe polo player will be competing abroad this fall thanks to some help from town council.

Town council approved two community grants totalling $2,319 last week.

The first, for $1,620, went towards the Morinville Community High School’s senior boys’ volleyball team to send 11 players to a tournament in Hawaii this October.

The second was for $699 to help resident Kassandra Reaume, 14, compete this September at the 2014 World Canoe Polo Championships in France as a member of Canada’s U21 national canoe polo team.

Councillors Nicole Boutestein and Ladouceur opposed this grant, as it proposed to give one athlete $700 when they had just given 11 volleyball players about $100 each. Still, the grant passed with the support of the rest of council, with Coun. Barry Turner noting that a global competition warranted more support.

The deadline for the next round of grants is Sept. 30.

Offsite levies approved

Landowners will have to pay more for sanitary and stormwater lines if they want to build in Morinville now that council has approved its new offsite levy policy.

Town council approved the 2014 offsite levies bylaw last week.

The levies regulate the fees landowners and developers must pay to bring road, water, sewer and stormwater service to newly developed properties. It was last reviewed in 2009.

Landowners paid just $85,337 per hectare in levies for these services under the old law, said Andy Isbister, the town’s director of financial services.

Those levies did not include charges for sewer and stormwater. A report from Corvus Business Advisors suggests the town will need about $19.31 million in new sewer and stormwater lines to support projected growth in the next 25 years.

The new law hikes the town’s road levy six per cent and drops its water levy 26 per cent relative to 2009 levels. It also creates create levies for stormwater and sewer service.

Developers will now pay about $123,841 per hectare in offsite levies on average, Isbister said. Actual rates will vary from about $87,864 to $221,675 per hectare, depending on the property.

The town will now review its offsite levy rates on an annual basis, Isbister said.


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