Development gamble in Glen Walter

In this August 2017, file photo, a street in the Place St. Laurent subdivision in Glen Walter, Ont. Township council will consider giving sewer connections to the developer of Place St. Laurent, previously promised to a developer who hasn't started construction with less than two years left in his agreement. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

LANCASTER – The head of South Glengarry’s infrastructure is recommending council give sewer connections to an ambitious developer, previously promised to another development that appears to be going nowhere in the short term.

The Place St. Laurent subdivision has completed three phases of construction, has registered a fourth and has a proposed fifth phase for 20 lots.

The development surrounds Yacht Boulevard in Glen Walter, north of County Road 2.

But with a taxed-out sewer plant in Glen Walter, the municipality is limited in how many connections it can approve for development each year. There is worry that home construction would come to a halt if the township doesn’t address its plant problems.

The township’s own bylaw allows it to only give 40 per cent of yearly water and sewer capacity to general development. The problem isn’t with water connections, there are 127 hookups. The problem is with sewer connections, there are 18. Forty per cent would be 7 connections and one has already been spoken for.

Infrastructure General Manager Ewen MacDonald is recommending the township take 42 previously approved connections from the Purcell Road subdivision, approved in March 2016, because “it is unlikely that the developer will be able to meet the July 2021 date for construction as the outstanding reports, approvals, utilities plan, and design will likely not be completed by the specified date.”

In a report to council, MacDonald said he asked the Purcell Road developer to reduce the number of connections in exchange for an extension to the agreement, which becomes null and void on July 1, 2021 if no infrastructure is installed for phase one.

As for approving more waste water capacity in this year compared to what is approved (30 connections versus 7) MacDonald says the “waste water treatment plant has historically exceeded the criteria for effluent quality and the Ministry of Environment has not noted any concerns with the high flows.”

Council will decide whether to approve the development allocation tonight (Monday) at 7 p.m. at the Lancaster municipal office on Oak Street.

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