| Oct 22, 2009

Back to HomeFeature Article - October 22, 2009 South Frontenac Council –Oct 20, 2009By Jeff Green

Smooth Sailing for for Barrett Xplore

Barrett Xplore’s service roll out in South Frontenac has been considerably smoother than their aborted efforts in Central Frontenac.

South Frontenac Council received two emailed letters of concern about one of the nine tower locations that will provide high-speed internet service to residents of South Frontenac who have been relegated to dial up service thus far.

The concerns were about a tower that is to be located within view of Devil Lake on the Perth Road south of Westport, and the concerns mirrored those that helped convince Barrett to back out of a planned tower in Arden earlier this summer. The letters talked about the towers altering the well-established natural character of the lakeside.

However, whereas a public meeting in Central Frontenac was filled with members of the Big Clear Lake Association, most of whom opposed the tower installation, at a public meeting in Sydenham on Tuesday night, October 20, not a single member of the public voiced concerns about the towers that are popping up this fall in South Frontenac.

Members of council asked questions about the towers, but were assured by Bob Davie of Barrett that the towers, at 45m in height, will not resemble the much higher cell phone towers that now dot the rural landscape, and “will not be lit.”

The Barrett presentation included a map, which predicts that most of South Frontenac will be covered by already existing service and new service provided by the towers, but that there would still be significant gaps, particularly in the regions around Frontenac Park to the east of Verona and north of Sydenham.

Barrett Xplore will be offering free installation with a three-year service contract until the end of 2009. Residential service packages range from $30 to $60 per month in addition to a $50 activation fee. For business customers, the price ranges from $60 to $100 per month. 

South Frontenac building activity down in '09

Compared to a solid 2008, and a booming 2007, which included the controversial Sydenham water plant, 2009 is shaping up as a bit of down year for building in South Frontenac.

As of the end of September 2009, building permits for $17.25 million had been taken out, as compared to $18.5 million in 2008, and about $25 million in 2007 for the same time period.

By the end of 2007, permits for over $29 million in construction were purchased, and in 2008 the total was $23.2 million.

While 2009 will likely be the lowest year of the last three, it will still be higher than the total for 2006, which was $18.6 million for the entire year. The township is still poised to see over $20 million in construction in 2009.

The building slump in South Frontenac will not be long-lasting, however, as several larger commercial and institutional projects are expected in 2010.

With commercial construction projects in Inverary, at the corner of Sydenham Road and Rutledge Road, and just south of Harrowsmith all working their way through the planning department, as well as the library building/township office renovation project in Sydenham, also slated to start next year, healthy construction numbers for 2010 are anticipated. 

by Wilma Kenny


Township residents attending council meetings have sometimes expressed frustration that they have not had access to the background information packages provided to council members and the press: the only printed material available to them has been the two-page agenda. Now, the entire information package, which can be more than 100 pages long, is posted prior to the meeting on the township’s website. As well, discussion of zoning issues is now accompanied by projected aerial photos of the property in question. These improvements not only save a lot of trees, but also make it much easier for observers to follow the discussion.


A public information meeting concerning a proposed plan of subdivision and zone change that would permit an industrial park on the southern edge of Inverary along Perth Road, drew comments from several residents. Concerns were mainly around the perceived loss of the rural nature of the area, and fears of increased traffic, noise, and vandalism. Councilors Ron Vandewal and Del Stowe both pointed out that light industrial and commercial use on the property would have less impact on water and sewage than a housing development of 35 or more houses, and might well generate less traffic. Residents were encouraged to send letters listing their concerns to Lindsay Mills, Township planner. These will be passed along to council for their consideration.


Two 3/4 ton extended cab trucks were budgeted and tendered in July, but at the time the successful tenderer was unable to meet the required delivery date. The trucks were re-tendered, and Public Works Manager Mark Segsworth reported there had been two bids, only one of which met the specifications and provided a delivery date. Council agreed with his recommendation that Edwards Ford’s bid of $87,200 be accepted. The trucks will be Oregon Orange, in keeping with township policy.


Council accepted the minutes of the water committee’s October 7 meeting. At that meeting, Cameron Smith of XCG Consultants reported that they now have nine months of water testing data measuring water temperature, dissolved organic compounds (DOCs) and Trihalomethanes (THMs). He noted that in spite of seasonal temperature fluctuations, the levels of DOCs had remained consistent, which should make it somewhat easier to design the corrections to the plant. Smith agreed to have his first technical memo complete and ready for peer review by October 20, following which it will come to Council, then will be communicated to the public.


There was good attendance at last week’s public open house to view and comment upon the architect’s draft drawings of the new library. A list of comments and suggestions from both the open house and the library committee following their recent library tour have been forwarded to architects Shoalts and Zabak, who plan to produce updated design drawings before the end of October. 

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