By Kirk Starratt
It seems Kings County council isn’t interested in revisiting a controversial development proposed for farmland adjacent to the Berwick Heights Golf Course in Weston.
Council defeated the proposal this past summer. Lorna Fulton, representing the applicant, Fury Farms Limited, made a presentation to council last month asking councillors to consider once again approving the $50-million residential development. It would involve a portion of the golf course property and about 40 acres of land next to the golf course currently zoned agricultural.
During the presentation, Fulton said they would voluntarily place 126 acres of prime agricultural land in a land bank if the development were approved. However, councillors voted in favour of upholding the original recommendation of the Planning Advisory Committee to deny the application.
Developer Gerry Fulton said on his way out of the February session that council had not only turned down a $50-million development, but also the positive tourism and economic development spinoffs that would have gone with it and voluntary land banking.
Councillor Wayne Atwater immediately gave notice that he would file a motion of reconsideration. He had until the March session to reveal what new information he was using as the basis of the reconsideration motion.
Atwater said at the Tuesday, March 4 council session that the new information involved councillor Barry Peterson’s statement during discussion of Fulton’s presentation in February that the Fultons’ property was already protected from development because it’s zoned agricultural. This would take away from the need to have the property land banked.
However, Atwater said, in fact, the prime agricultural land Fulton referred to in her presentation actually consists of five separate parcels that could be developed legally. These are also pre-1994 lots, meaning they were grandfathered as designated building lots at that time even though they’re zoned agricultural. “This was and is a valid compromise and I urge you to reconsider allowing the application to go forward,” Atwater told his council colleagues. He requested a recorded vote.
Council voted five in favour of reconsidering the application and six against, defeating the reconsideration motion before it had a chance to be debated.
By Kirk Starratt