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Port Moody planning another public meeting for OCP
Third time may be a charm but for those concerned with the future of Port Moody, four could be the lucky number.
Port Moody residents will get another chance to comment on the draft official community plan at a town hall meeting in March after council unanimously approved the idea Tuesday.
The town hall meeting would be the fourth for the plan, which has come under heavy scrutiny from businesses, developers, neighbourhood associations and environmental groups on issues ranging from building heights to storm water management plans and availability of park space.
“It would only be fair to go back to our residents and give them one more kick at the can,” Coun. Diana Dilworth said Tuesday after it was suggested a meeting should be held before the April 1 land use meeting.
The lengthy document for guiding future planning and land use management in PoMo has undergone numerous changes since it was first shown to the public last June, prompting calls for yet another opportunity for public input.
MORE COMMENT SOUGHT
Several people spoke before council Tuesday, asking for another chance to comment.
“It’s time to make sure we do this right,” said George Assaf, a resident who is also a member of the Burrard Inlet Marine Enhancement Society.
Some of the changes were only recently incorporated after a series of key votes by council in early January. The town hall meeting would likely raise further issues, such as the call by the Port Moody Heritage Commission to turn the Ioco Townsite into an historic village and museum tourist attraction.
Other groups, meanwhile, are concerned that removing building heights and site coverage on the Oceanfront District near Rocky Point Park could make it easier for developers to build towers in the future.
Many other changes called for by the public have already been included, such as the addition of an institutional/research facility in the Oceanfront District, where Flavelle Sawmill Co. is currently operating, and connecting the waterfront property by trail to Rocky Point Park.
Another key change was a decrease in the city’s projected population to 50,000 from 59,000 in 2041, with a drop in the number of projected dwelling units from 26,800 to 22,727.
With the Evergreen Line on its way, council has tried to balance neighbourhood concerns with density spurred by rapid transit, resulting in changes to building heights and some compromises. For example, in the Moody Centre Station Transit-Oriented Development area, maximums were dropped to 12 from 20 storeys, although additional density and height allowances will be considered in exchange for community open space designations.
Additionally, near the Inlet Centre Station, a neighbourhood plan is proposed for Coronation Park, and building heights were dropped from 30 storeys to 26 in some Mixed Use-Inlet Centre designated areas.
The fourth town hall meeting has been tentatively set for Tuesday, March 18 to give the public an opportunity to discuss the 262-page OCP.
The document will then go to the land use committee before coming back to council for the initial readings of the bylaw. The OCP would then need to be sent to the Metro Vancouver board for comment before going back to public hearing, then to council for final adoption.
More information, including the draft plan, is available online.