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Noise, traffic concerns brought up at public meeting on temporary food market application

DAN CEARNS, The Standard

SCUGOG: Traffic and noise concerns were heard by Scugog Councillors when a proposal for a temporary food market was presented at a meeting on Monday, June 27th.

The proposed market would be held at 10750 Regional Road 57 in Blackstock. The owners, the McNeill family, are seeking a temporary use bylaw to permit the proposed operation.

“The purpose of the proposed Temporary Use By-law is to permit up to six food trucks on a portion of the property on a temporary basis. The proposed food market will be located on an existing gravel parking area at the north end of the property and is intended to host up to six food trucks, and market stands with a seating area between April and October,” read a report from Scugog’s Manager of Planning Robin Prentice. “The purpose of the Temporary Use By-law is to permit the proposed use on a small scale until such time that the applicant can apply for a Zoning By-law Amendment to permit a full-scale market, which may include up to 18 vendors.”

Ward 4 Councillor Deborah Kiezebrink asked one of the owners what inspired this idea.

“We’re retired. We need something to do, basically. It’s been a really tough couple of years for our community. Talking with local farmers and people around the community, it’s been hard for employment. It’s been hard not seeing people. We see this as an opportunity to support our community,” Rebekah McNeill responded.

Residents Tom and Helen Drummelsmith spoke about their concerns with the application. “My biggest concern is the traffic [and] the danger of the traffic,” Mr. Drummelsmith said. “My experience has been cars come down from the bridge over the railroad and accelerate at great rates. The police often have speed traps set up in that area and are quite successful in catching speeders. The second worry I have is the gravel trucks, which I presume will stop to eat their lunches and so on, and there is absolutely no place for them to park or turn around and be safely off the road.”

Mrs. Drummelsmith stated she feels the Oak Ridges Moraine area should be “untouched” by “commercialism.” She also noted concerns regarding “noise pollution” and a potential increase in the garbage in the area from the food trucks.

Regional Councillor Wilma Wotten said a temporary use bylaw would “give the owners the opportunity to check the feasibility” of the operation and “give the residents a chance to assess” the potential success or impact of the operation.

Scugog councillors later voted to receive the report and to have Township staff report back to council later on regarding the application.

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