111411 City council
Newfoundland developer Paul Madden said Monday he will turn to IRAC in an attempt to build again next to Founders' Hall.
City council rejected, 7-3, his application to proceed with a second building next to his condominium project.
It was the second straight time council said no and the second consecutive time planning board has recommended that council approve his request.
Voting against Monday's application were Couns. Cecil Villard, Mitchell Tweel, Danny Redmond, David MacDonald, Eddie Rice, Melissa Hilton and Terry Bernard.
Madden was proposing commercial space on the ground floor with some retail space similar to what is located over at Peakes Quay. A section of the development would have been to accommodate his marina with office and washroom space.
On the second floor, he'd have office space and rental units.
Madden was clearly frustrated after council voted to reject.
During the regular monthly meeting, some councillors argued that developments like the one Madden proposed didn't fit into the Official Plan.
"It's funny how councillors can stand up and speak and say we should follow the 12-year plan,'' Madden said, referring to the Official Plan. "They didn't have any issue when the convention centre came on site. That was not on the 12-year plan.
"Seems to me anything that government or council or CADC is involved in seems to always sail through but when you get private development . . . what am I supposed to do now.''
Madden originally wanted his condominium building to be bigger but council rejected that idea so he downsized. Since then, he's been trying to add another building.
"The development is not a sound one, strictly from a planning point of view,'' said Rice, who represents residents in the area.
Rice questions why CADC sold Madden the land in the first place to allow one building, perhaps creating an expectation on the developer's part that a second one would naturally follow.
Rice agrees that Madden has a right to build on land he owns but not at any price.
"If you're playing on the waterfront, you have got a responsibility to answer to the citizens. It's not an average piece of land. It comes with responsibilities.''
As for the convention centre, Rice said that was a mistake as well.
"The (convention) centre was a decision made again in the bowels of hell by whoever and it's proven that's where it's ending up. (That decision) was made by the provincial government and our good friend CADC. It came (to council) for rubber stamping.''
The convention centre project is on hold after the steel seawall buckled.
Madden said having planning board give his application thumbs up twice only to have council then reject it twice sends the wrong message.
"We have a planning department who are professional planners yet when it comes to make recommendations council says 'we know better than planners and we'll just override it'. It's frustrating to say that Charlottetown is open for business. Maybe they are, maybe they're not. Doesn't seem like they are very perceptive.''