PlanSJ favours gravel pits over residences, developer says
Saint John subdivision owner worried about 'rural resource' designation
A Saint John property developer worries PlanSJ, the city's blueprint for the future, is a threat to her subdivision after council approved expansion of a gravel pit on Latimore Lake Road on Monday.
Kim Wilson, a co-owner of Latimore Estates, said the municipal plan has designated the Latimore Lake area in east Saint John as "rural resource," which she believes encourages gravel pits at the expense of residential development.
Approval for rezoning of the gravel pit, which is owned by Fundy Bay Holdings, came even though the previous council had turned down the same application in 2011.
"They brought it up, council. And they said, 'Well, this subdivision was started before PlanSJ was brought in, so we have to take consideration of this subdivision.' They just threw that right out the window," said Wilson.
Wilson estimates homes in her subdivision now generate between $90,000 and $150,000 in tax revenue for the city.
Wilson said that could be $1 million annually if the entire subdivision is developed, but she believes that may not be possible with the gravel pit expanding to within 230 metres of her project.
This was the gravel pit's third attempt to get the zoning change.
The company has operated an existing gravel pit in the area since the 1970s.
In order to have the rezoning approved, the company has agreed to terms that will mean the new pit will operate Monday to Friday, there will be no blasting on the site and the company will continue rehabilitation work on its existing pit.