Condo plan meets resistance at meeting
By Angelica Ingram
Published Aug. 9, 2016
A proposal for a new condominium development for Haliburton Village is not sitting well with some of the neighbours.
Those opposed to the project known as Wallings Way made their opinion known at a Dysart et al planning public meeting held on Aug. 2.
About a dozen people filled council chambers to speak to a zoning bylaw amendment application for the lands of Vuksic, which is the location of the proposed development.
The zoning change, if passed, would change the property from residential type 1 to urban residential type 3.
Located on Wallings Road on the shore of Head Lake, the property is the proposed site for a three-storey, 21-unit condominium project by Greystone Project Management, which has built two buildings in Haliburton and is currently constructing a condo in Minden.
The application currently includes holding provisions, which must be approved before the project can proceed, said municipal planning director Patricia Martin.
Martin told the planning committee, which is chaired by Dysart Deputy-reeve Andrea Roberts and includes councillors Walt McKechnie and Nancy Wood-Roberts, that no specific comments in favour or against the proposal had been received.
Developer Pat Dube explained that this project would be the smallest of the three they have built in Haliburton and that there’s been a great interest in the community for it.
“I think it will be successful,” he said.
Realtor Peter Brady echoed those sentiments, saying the level of interest in Wallings Way exceeds the interest for Granite View and Granite Cove.
However there was a different type of interest in the project on display at the public meeting, with neighbours concerned about issues such as traffic, noise, privacy, property values.
Marilyn Hawley, who lives next door to the property, cited concerns about the influx of people moving to the quiet road, pointing out the other condominiums were built in areas that already had multi-unit dwellings.
“Haliburton has always strived to keep the village feel,” she said. “We’re becoming a condo town.”
Hawley questioned how much more development Head Lake could handle and said more subsidized housing for seniors was required in the area.
During the meeting Roberts asked for decorum from the public, as individuals were speaking out of turn and making comments, saying she would be asking people to leave if need be.
Jim Perog questioned whether the developers are responsible for problems that may occur to wells on neighbouring properties, as he knew of an issue with a property near Granite Cove.
According to Dube, they are responsible for a 150-metre radius.
Traffic was an ongoing issue raised numerous times throughout the meeting, with nearby residents concerned about the amount, flow, direction and possible accidents at the intersection of Wallings Road and County Road 21.
“Our road is not capable of taking anymore traffic, the road has been beat to death,” said Alison Rae.
Questions around a shoulder on the road and a one-way street were raised. Perog said he’s already noticed more traffic on the road since news of the condo had been announced.
In regards to traffic concerns, Brady said traffic audits at the two Greystone projects in town had been done and that according to those results, the new Wallings Way building would be decreasing the amount of traffic the MNRF building (also located on Wallings Road) currently has.
Sean Hawley said he too was worried about traffic, as well as his property value dropping by 40 to 50 per cent.
A resident of the road for 15 years, Hawley said the quiet way of life will disappear.
Brady said there wouldn’t be a negative effect on property values, as these types of buildings attracted a certain type of buyer that was a desirable neighbour.
Roberts said she thinks the questions around traffic and how the entry and exit into the condo will be managed are still unclear and need to be addressed by council.
“There are lots of questions that we will get answers to,” she said.
Mike Rae asked whether the name of the road would be changed to Wallings Way, to which Roberts said no.
People in attendance asked the committee to defer the zoning change.
“Wallings Road will never, ever be the same,” said Alison Rae. “If you were living next door to it yourself you would understand where we’re coming from. There are other places to build these condos. Not in town on our beautiful, quaint lake.”
The committee deferred the zoning change for the lands of Vuksic to get clarification on the issues raised.
“This gives time for more discussion,” said Roberts.
The file will come back at the Sept. 6 public meeting.