A proposal to build another big box retail development along the Lougheed Highway corridor was met with criticism from one Port Coquitlam councillor during Monday night's meeting.
Newly elected Coun. Dean Washington said the city has not fully felt the effects of the recenlty opened Walmart at Dominion Triangle and believes increased large-format retail space could put pressure on the city's downtown businesses.
"I really do fear for many of our small businesses in the community," he said. "To bring similar companies to this area is concerning for me... I believe this could end up as a no win situation for all involved."
The proposal being discussed involves a vacant commercial property at Oxford Street and Lougheed Highway, which was the site of a former car dealership.
If the application passes fourth reading, it would switch the property from a highway commercial designation to a large format commercial and allow 20% of the floor spoace within the site for personal and health services.
Coun. Mike Forrest supported third reading of the rezoning application but said he had reservations about the proposal.
He was critical of a consultant report, which said allowing personal and health services at the location would not have an impact on the downtown and northside business areas.
"I really have difficulty with the statements made by the consultant," he said. "It is almost as if the consultant had a foregone conclusion that they were after."
Forrest voted in favour of the first and second reading of the application, saying he wanted the process to continue to the public consultation period so he could hear what residents think.