Residents voice concerns and raise petition

To the Editor:

On August 20th, a second hearing will be held at Town Council to decide if the new Unifor parking lot will be allowed or not. As you know Unifor has illegally used this residential lot across from its Shipley Ave. main entry for parking for 4 cars. Now, they want to expand it to 8 cars with 4 electric car charging stations and the electric vault for which has been buried beside the stream in the floodplain.

This proposal requires a major change to Saugeen Shores Official Plan and Zoning By Law something a regular citizen would be hard pressed to do.

This lot was 2/3 built without any town or Saugeen Valley Conservation Authority permits before we, the residents, called for a stop work order.

Our position is that this parking lot is not needed in this congested area given the new Unifor parking lot that just opened off County Road 25.  With mail boxes, cross walks, cycling and walking traffic on this ‘shoulderless’ road that acts as the sole Access/ Egress for the entire neighbourhood, there are serious safety issues. Prior councils did not approve this area for parking so this council should honour that and acknowledge the safety concerns of the neighbourhood residents.

The residents have instituted a petition which can be read below and signed by going to: OR emailing; 

Whereas Unifor has recently opened up a large new parking lot expansion off CR 25; And Whereas the proposed new 8 car parking lot/ charging station is located in a very congested area used as a sole entry/exit way to the Shipley /Seiffert / Gobles Place neighbourhood;

And Whereas this congested area also serves as a the local postal mail box pick up zone, the Unifor Centre crosswalk connecting the Center to the beach, the bicycle and walking route to the Main Beach from Gobles Beach;

And Whereas this proposed 8 car parking lot and 4 car electrical car charging station is an expansion of an illegal use of this residential house site located in an environmentally sensitive EH stream zone;

And Whereas the County in conjunction with the Municipality will build a substantial new biking / walking lane on this North side of CR 25 from the beach to Highway 21 to promote and link existing tourist pathways resulting in a substantial increase in tourist traffic on the Shipley connecting route to Port Elgin’s Main Beach;

And Whereas the residents of this area feel a higher and better use of this land would be as a stream side, shaded parkette for local residents, tourists and bike / walk route users to enjoy;

We the below signed neighbourhood residents hereby request our town council to vote against this unneeded parking lot proposal and recommend Unifor donate or sell said lands to the town for the aforementioned parkette use.

Greg Schmalz
Port Elgin Beachers Association