DAN CEARNS The Standard
SCUGOG: Scugog residents have recently raised their concerns about a planned development of 20 residential lots, at 16941 Simcoe St. in Port Perry.
The developer, Lalu Peninsula Inc., recently met with residents to hear their concerns and to try to find solutions to those issues.
Scugog resident Dan Dunn said one of the concerns brought up at the meeting, was the monitoring of fill brought to the site.
“There’s a significant amount of material that needs to brought into the site to engineer the roads and backfill the homes,” Engineering Technician Lori Fox explained to The Standard.
Ms. Fox added that the Township expects to do “random tests” of this material.
“Some days, it may be several samples, other days it may not be as many. We like to do it randomly. We will hire our own consultant to do that.”
According to Mr. Dunn, another concern raised at the meeting was the scheduling of truck traffic. He said the developer told residents they would look into altering their truck schedule.
An additional concern noted by Mr. Dunn, was whether the houses would fit in with the area.
Ms. Fox told The Standard the Township has architectural control, so Lalu will be required to submit their architectural plans to the Township, for the Township’s control architect to review.
Janice Hamilton-Dicker, a Scugog resident, said she wished the property had been “saved” from development.
“Sure it would have been nice if a rich benefactor could have purchased the land and made it into a nature reserve. In the past agencies like Nature Conservancy, Kawartha Conservation, Scugog Lake Stewards Inc., and Ducks Unlimited were contacted to see if they could purchase the land. At that time [in 2016] the property was listed at $7 million, of course, no buyers were found. We had hoped that we could have saved this property from development, but unfortunately, we could not. Now that a large part of the forest has been removed, the property is silent. Gone are the sounds of the birds, the sounds of the coyotes at night, the leaves from the trees swaying in the wind.”
In April of 2004, Scugog Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment applications and the Plan of Subdivision for the site, were submitted to the Township and the Region of Durham. The Township passed the Scugog Official Plan Amendment in May 2006. It was approved by the region in June 2006, which re-designated the property to a Partial/Private Residential Service designation. The region granted draft approval of the subdivision application in March 2007. Then a rezoning application was approved by Council in 2012. CDM Realty owned the property at this time. That same year, they submitted engineering designs and reports to the Township, which were later approved by Scugog Township, in consultation with the Region of Durham and Kawartha Conservation Authority, in March of 2015.
Lalu bought the property in April of 2017 and presented the Township and the Region with updated reports.
Ms. Fox said for a developer who buys a site such as this, the easiest way to go about it is to follow the approved plans of the previous developer, and she expects that to be the case with Lalu.
“The layout is the right number of lots and the right design for the area, so they’ve just stuck with that,” she said.
A spokesperson for Lalu could not be reached by press time.
With the plans for the development having dated back years, Ms. Fox said she thinks residents have raised their concerns recently, because of the news about the new owner of the development and because Lalu is expecting to “move forward with construction.”
“That’s, I think, why the existing residents don’t know about this, are hearing about this and just now have some questions about timing,” she said.
She described the planned homes as “large” and “substantial.”
At the end of the meeting, Mr. Dunn said he felt a lot of residents’ concerns were answered by the developer.
“In my opinion, I thought the answers they gave were quite thorough,” he said.
He also said the residents he spoke to afterward, were “pleased with the answers.”
Ms. Fox agreed that a lot of the residents’ questions were answered effectively.
“I thought it went well,” she said.
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