Old News, Nothing New?

I just rediscovered this article from the Dundas Star News - I don't think I ever posted it here, but it should be on the site especially since this exact location on the Spencer Creek trail inspired me to start this blog back in 2007.

Friday, September, 07, 2012 - 1:01:54 PM

McMurray could be next target for development

By Craig Campbell, Dundas Star News

November 2007 photo at site, by Randy Kay

A quiet, tree-lined central Dundas road just south of Hatt Street could be the next area to face residential development pressure.

McMurray Street is already the subject of one planning application and is surrounded by unused sites with unclear futures.

While a few properties – including a closed car wash at 118 Hatt Street, and former Valley City Manufacturing sites surrounding the former car wash – are unused and potentially available for sale, a site just down the street at McMurray and Hope streets is the subject of a five-year old rezoning application.

Donald Plouffe of Burlington applied to the City of Hamilton in 2007 to rezone the property known as 36 McMurray St. to permit development of 17 townhouses. But the project has apparently stalled under a number of issues.

“The file is still technically open – with plans still available for review,” said city of Hamilton planning manager Edward John.” However, given the time that has lapsed I will be providing the applicant with formal notice that the file will be closed unless additional action is taken.”

The application originally caught the attention of former Dundas resident, avid cyclist and hiker and blogger Randy Kay. He mentioned the application and his concerns about its potential impact on the Spencer Creek trail. Kay also posted pictures of soil testing taking on the site. (see photo above)

He received clarification that the draft plans for 17 townhouses included a buffer around the creek that would ensure continuance of the trail in that section.

But Kay also wondered if the 30 metre buffer required by the Hamilton Conservation Authority around Coldwater creeks would apply to Spencer Creek at that location.

“Any development would have to be done with the best interest in protecting the health of the creek, and maintaining the existing Spencer Creek Trail connection,” Kay said. “A naturalized buffer zone between the development and the creek should at least meet the minimum requirements for the health of the creek, and preferably exceed the bare minimum.”

John said the original application raised issues regarding road widening, a walkway block and remediation.

“There has been no activity on this one for quite some time,” he said.

Plouffe’s Ontario numbered company bought the property for $230,000 in October 1989 from J.R. Ferguson Company in Dundas. Eighteen years later, Plouffe’s company submitted the rezoning application.

The City of Hamilton inherited a Conservation Easement from the former Town of Dundas that provides the municipality with the right to access Spencer Creek for flood control construction and maintenance.

Plouffe could not be reached for comment by deadline.

Next-door to 36 McMurray St. is property owned by Valley City Manufacturing. The company closed earlier this year and owner Bob Crockford is considering options for possibly selling properties for residential and commercial redevelopment.

Next-door to the Valley City site is 118 Hatt St. a former car wash that closed down a couple of years ago.

John said he wasn’t aware of any planning consultations regarding the former car wash, and owner Arthur Roberts of Scrye Holdings Inc. could not be reached for comment by deadline. Scrye Holdings bought the property from First Brant Holdings for $230,000 in January 1986.


Dwayne Massey said…
There has been another round of soil testing at 36 Mcmurray in recent months.The other vacant lots on Mcmurray (former valley city parking) on both sides of spencer and part of the factory property are now being used by Bienenstock natural playgrounds as storage/ work yards which is turning Mcmurray and the area into a noisy unwelcome industrial area.
Randy said…
Thanks for the update Dwayne, do you have any photos of the site to share?
Dwayne Massey said…
The site still looks the same though they were back last week of August doing more soil testing.