Shipping containers in the town’s planning department’s sights

Carleton Place town hall.
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Posted on: August 28, 2019

At the Carleton Place Committee of the Whole meeting held immediately after the full council session, staff presented their intention to create a draft bylaw to regulate metal shipping containers within the town. Quoting the need for such regulations as a result of “ongoing and varied complaints” from residents, the bylaw will require planning and building permits for the placement of any and all large metal shipping containers which must include engineering certification regarding soil or concrete ground support.  Under the town’s development permit rules these units would be considered accessory buildings.  They will be considered for use in all zones (if appropriate according to current regs) but going forward they would be limited to industrial zones only.  Any containers approved before that restriction kicks in would be considered grandfathered and permitted to remain.  Owners of such structures will have until Dec 31 of this year to obtain the necessary permits which are expected to cost $500 in fees per unit at a minimum.  If any exemptions such as side-yard setbacks are required, a Class 2 application process would be needed at a cost of $2,500.  As far back as 2005 the province considered these units as building structures when used in a stationary manner and required building permits for such use.  Staff made it clear that temporary shipping containers, commonly known as pods, would be differentiated from more permanent container use and as such not subject to general restrictions.

Childcare fees increasing.  The committee also approved a staff recommendation to increase childcare fees by 2% in 2020.  Treasurer Trisa McConkey indicated that Lanark County required advance notice of any fee changes and as such she brought it to council for a decision. 

The town’s chief building official Lennox Smith also brought bylaw information to the committee indicating his department would be reviewing the current pool regulations to revise them to meet the safety needs of residents.  This is due in part to newer home lot sizes and the proliferation of hot-tubs and improved approaches to help prevent drowning deaths.

Article by Brian Turner