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Published on Friday, December 15, 2017

Conservation plan for Glen Abbey Golf Course received

Plan now goes out for public consultation before final consideration in January

Conservation plan for Glen Abbey Golf Course received
Oakville Beaver file photo
16 Mile Creek Valley view of Glen Abbey Golf Course from Upper Middle Road
By David Lea, Oakville Beaver

The Town of Oakville voted Tuesday, Dec. 12, to move forward with plans for additional measures to protect Glen Abbey Golf Course.

Councillors received information about a possible conservation plan during a reconvened meeting of the Oakville Planning and Development Council.

If passed, the plan would essentially require any proposed development on the property to first receive the approval of the town.

“The purpose of the conservation plan is to guide future alterations of Glen Abbey that are likely to affect the heritage attributes of the property,” said town heritage planner Susan Schappert in a report to council.

“The conservation plan includes descriptions of the alterations that are exempt from heritage permit approval and those that would require heritage permit approval. The conservation plan is not a maintenance plan for Glen Abbey, nor is it an operational or business management plan.”

Under such a plan, maintenance, meaning routine non-destructive actions that preserve the property’s existing form, would be exempt from a heritage review.

Town staff said a draft of the plan was provided to Glen Abbey Golf Course owner ClubLink and Golf Canada for preliminary review.

There has been considerable interest in the future of the golf course property ever since ClubLink announced plans to build 3,222 residential units at the site, including nine apartment buildings between nine and 12 storeys.

Many residents have voiced concerns about the loss of the golf course and the increased traffic levels should the development be allowed to proceed.

Given the golf course’s history within the community, the town carried out a cultural landscape assessment, which found the property to have local, provincial and national significance.

As a result, on Aug. 21, council unanimously voted to proceed with a Notice of Intention to Designate the property as a significant cultural heritage landscape under the Ontario Heritage Act.

Town staff has been tasked with developing protection measures for the property.

In addition to the conservation plan, council is looking at a zoning bylaw amendment, which would regulate the use of the 1333 Dorval Dr., property and the erection, location, and use of buildings and structures thereon to ensure the heritage attributes of the site are retained.

While no representatives from ClubLink spoke during the Tuesday meeting, ClubLink lawyer Mark Flowers has previously called the town’s notice to designate the entire site an “overreach in the extreme.”

He also questioned the town’s true motive behind the designation.

“A reasonable inference can be drawn that the primary purpose of this proposed designation with the attributes that have been identified is not about heritage conservation, but rather an attempt by the town to frustrate ClubLink’s development proposal,” said Flowers.

A public open house on the conservation plan and the proposed zoning bylaw amendment will be held at town hall on Wednesday, Jan. 10.

That event runs from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

These measures are scheduled to come before a special planning and development council for approval on Tuesday, Jan. 30.
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Author: Mayor Rob Burton

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