North’s Official Plan Open House

Written by  Wednesday, 15 February 2017 21:43
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Mayor Ron Higgins and planner Joe Gallivan fielded numerous questions about the Official Plan at an open house in Ompah. Photo/Craig Bakay Mayor Ron Higgins and planner Joe Gallivan fielded numerous questions about the Official Plan at an open house in Ompah. Photo/Craig Bakay

Despite freezing rain Saturday morning, a full house turned out in Ompah to discuss proposed changes to North Frontenac Township’s Official Plan.

Many of those in attendance were from lake associations and there was one proposed change they were all glad to hear — larger minimum lot sizes and setbacks — even if the proposed changes don’t go as far as some would like.

Many of the comments were like this from Jim Holton, past-president of the Canonto Lake Association.

“We’ve been arguing for larger lots for years,” Holton said. “Water quality is not just about phosphorus.”

“Our available lakefront properties are getting scarce,” said Mayor Ron Higgins. “For example, Mazinaw Lake is at capacity.

“But I think the (County) private roads study will be good for us (and) we’re creating a best-in-class Official Plan here.”

Higgins said he’s pleased with some of the proposed changes that should encourage more affordable housing.

Planner Joe Gallivan said the proposed 250-ft frontage and 2-acre lot size with a 100-ft setback (up from 1 acre and 150-ft frontage) is “a good start” even though it’s smaller than the 1-hectare (2.2 acres) and 300-foot frontage required in South and Central Frontenac.

“It’s protecting the lake better than it is now,” Gallivan said. “(But), there’s more to it than just lot size.

“There are things like is there room for septic, how big can a boat house be, how big can a bunkie be?”

Gallivan is also including changes that will better accommodate the ‘live/work’ building where residents can set up a business in their home and sections to encourage smaller homes.

“There are now 350-square-foot homes that cost $60,000,” he said. “When I retire, that’s what I want to have.”

Gallivan said they’re also working on communal septic and water systems which would require smaller lot sizes to work efficiently.

He said after all the feedback has been considered, he expects to have a plan ready for adoption by the end of the summer.

“Council seems to like the plan so far,” he said.

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