At a special Committee of the Whole meeting at the Smiths Falls arena Aug. 12, Senior Planner Karl Grenke recommended that council approve a zoning bylaw proposal to build a long-term care facility in the area behind Pearl Street.
Jim Parsons purchased 35 acres of land behind Pearl Street and adjacent to the high school track for the purpose of building a new long-term care facility with up to 200 beds. It will include an assembly hall, home for the elderly, a nursing home, medical clinic and a religious institution.
“Providing another housing option for our aging population is a valuable addition for our future. We might all need some beds in there,” Councillor Wendy Alford said.
Pearl Street will be the main access point to the facility, which will need new zoning bylaws to allow unopened road allowances for the area. These roads were opened previously in 2017 for a new subdivision that was never developed.
“The ability to have this facility close to home is invaluable for our aging community,” Mayor Shawn Pankow said. “I’m supportive of the zoning change.”
Currently, the project is in phase 1 of development known as the environmental site assessment. Part of the 35 acres of land used to be a landfill and there is significant woodland and vegetation coverage to consider.
There are a wide variety of community land uses that require a 10-metre wide non-disturbance zone behind the backyards of the houses on Pearl Street. Traffic and noise concerns as well as loss of privacy and property value are being considered.