Councillors 'shrugging off' Mount Cashel Road concerns
Residents say city councillors and developer ignoring their recommendations, ideas
Plans for a new housing development in the east end of St. John's is drawing criticism from residents who already live in the proposed area.
It has to do with the construction of 27 new townhouses on Mount Cashel Road, off Torbay Road.
The majority of St. John's city councillors voted in favour Monday evening to build them.
As it stands, the KMK Capital Group development will nearly double the number of homes in that area.
Area resident Paul Doucet says the current plan is too dense.
"It is a matter of what do you want your future [city] to look like," Doucet said.
"I don't think its the face of the future for the city."
Doucet is one of dozens of area residents who have signed petitions, as well as lobbied St. John's city councillors and the developer KMK to change the current plan or scrap it altogether.
Residents want better consideration of issues such as traffic congestion, snowclearing, density and the shadows that the new development will cast.
But Doucet said their attempts to have the plan changed have not gotten them far.
City 'shrugs,' developer says 'no'
"This seems to be the last avenue for us," Doucet said after Monday night's city council meeting.
"We have tried to explain our concerns and have them met, but the developer just continually comes back to us and says 'no, no, no,'" he said, adding, "and the city just seems to shrug their shoulders."
At Monday night's meeting, city councillors had mixed feelings and attitudes toward the proposal, with most of them voting to accept the design as it is.
"We have to get used to density. As our population continues to grow we can't continue with unlimited urban sprawl to solve our urban needs," said Coun. Tom Hann.
Deputy Mayor Ron Ellsworth said that "Mount Cashel Road residents' concerns don't justify the denying of [KMK's] proposal."
Councillors Art Puddister and Dave Lane voted against the design.
Coun. Bernard Davis agreed the area needs a development, but suggested that the current plan may not be the right one for the location.