Council approves Amazon warehouse, with conditions

Friday, January 29, 2021

At a Special Council meeting held Wednesday, January 27, Council unanimously approved a settlement in the appeal of a site plan application for the redevelopment of 2175 Cornwall Road to accommodate an Amazon warehouse, provided a number of conditions are met.

Those conditions include a number of provisions to reduce noise and traffic congestion within the surrounding residential community, including:

The applicant is being asked to use best efforts to achieve further measures on a voluntary basis such as providing infrastructure to accommodate electric vehicles, designing internal traffic flow to reduce the noise associated with trucks’ back-up alarms, and preventing the use of drones on site. 

“Staff and Council, residents and their residents associations have worked hard to come up with a resolution that will try to capture all the concerns that we heard from residents,” said Mayor Rob Burton. “I thank Councillors Haslett-Theall and Gittings for bringing this matter to Council. The process has allowed residents to have their say and provide input that resulted in changes that will be good for the neighbourhood,” said Mayor Burton.

Although many of the comments received from the public asked Council to simply refuse the application and stop the proposed development, Mayor Burton noted that the site plan process cannot be used to stop a development. The purpose of a site plan review is to seek controls on the physical layout of the infrastructure on the site, such as the building footprint and number of parking spaces.

The site of the proposed Amazon warehouse is located on Cornwall Road, west of Ford Drive and abutting an active CN rail line. The site currently contains a 29,200 square metre (314,000 square foot) warehouse and approximately 180 parking spaces. 

Agencies including Conservation Halton, Ministry of Transportation, Metrolinx, Enbridge Pipelines, Trans-Northern Pipelines and the Region of Halton had no objection to the proposed site modifications.

On January 22, 2020, an application for site plan approval was filed for the proposed development at 2175 Cornwall Road that included a significant expansion of the existing parking lot to be used for both employee and delivery vehicles. On November 23, 2020 the application was appealed to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (“LPAT”). On January 14, 2021, following a review by the town and extensive public consultation, the applicant submitted an offer to cap the parking at 689 spaces and limit the size of the building to 29,200 square metres.

“I appreciate the hundreds of emails and phone calls that have been received by members of our community and the time and energy of our residents’ associations. The process of site plan allows us to raise any areas of concern and our residents have helped us identify those -- noise, safety, pollution, among others -- and to seek action and revisions to mitigate those for our community,” said Councillor Gittings. “Our role and duty is to ensure this site is operated in as safe a manner as possible.”

“I too want to thank all the residents who reached out and engaged with us over the last ten months. Your pursuit of a better site plan and to get answers made a significant difference. It is apparent to all of Council, you value the neighbourhood you chose to raise your families in. This settlement in part resolves some of the concerns you raised,” said Janet Haslett-Theall.

Visit our YouTube channel to watch a recording of the January 27 Special Planning and Development meeting.